Far too often, christians forgets the gospel is also for them as much as it is for their non-christians counterpart. Too often Christians become bored with the gospel, the gospel no longer thrill us, excites us or awes us. Ray Ortlund has written to remedy the situation, he wants readers to be thrilled again by the beauty of Jesus.
First Ortlund reminds the readers the most important news they should know — that the gospel is for them! Ortlund then highlights that it is only by knowing the gospel doctrines then, and only then can we have a gospel culture. Both are necessary and either can do without each other, but with both of them comes power. Ortlund then re-tells the gospel to the readers so that they will hear again the gospel. Next Ortlund reminds the readers that the gospel is for the church — the body of believers in Christ, not just for individuals. He shows the readers that christianity is never meant for just individuals, but always for the community of believers.
Next, Ortlund shows the readers that the gospel is ultimately for everyone, for those who are within the church and those without. It is the only way of salvation for the world. Ortlund shows us that when Jesus is on world, he shows us the preview, the preview of what life will be like in the future. And that is where we are going, if we trust in the gospel.
Ortlund then moves to show how it is sometimes difficult for us to believe in the gospel, not only so, it is also difficult have cultures shaped by the gospel. Furthermore, sometimes the prevalent culture is already anti-gospel. He directs readers to think critically about our own culture, because sometimes our culture “denies” the gospel by not showing forth what the gospel entails.
Following which, Ortlund then calls the churches to expect to have fruitful seasons as we bring the gospel to people around us, we would definitely reap some fruit, however, we will also face opposition. Just like Jesus and Paul, whenever they goes there are those who are thankfully for the news they brings, and some are hatefully towards the message they bring. As disciples, we shouldn’t expect to receive any less.
Lastly, Ortlund ends by exhorting the churches to be reminded that with the gospel comes 3 things: power, courage and love. It is the gospel that will accomplish God’s work, we must trust, and grow in it. Nothing else must replace or substitute it.
As I read this book, this book has helped me grown to love the gospel and also to think critically about my culture. Thinking practically about how the gospel shapes my life, my church and my culture. Highly recommend if you want to grow in the understanding of the gospel, and also in how you can think practically about the gospel in your life.
Rating: 4.5 / 5
Disclaimer: I was given this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.