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Over the years, I have been trying to teach our congregation(s) the importance of the Gospel. The Gospel is critical in our journey with Christ, not only when we get saved, but in the present and into the future. So often we apply the Gospel message towards a definitive point in time –the day we accepted the message of Christ’s death and resurrection by faith for salvation.
The problem is when we just relegate the Gospel message as a means to salvation (justification), we then lose the greater significance of how the Gospel aids us in sanctification. This is necessary in order to grow in Christ-likeness.
The Gospel has a way of addressing the wretched sinner, as well as the self-righteous Pharisee, who finds contentment in their works and legalism. After a person receives Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, I have noticed (through personal experience) that people forget the application of the Gospel message.
Our need of understanding the Gospel becomes more evident, as we try to overcome issues of our past, our sins and our temptations. This is why I have encouraged Christ-followers to preach the Gospel to themselves as they get ready every morning to face the new day.
Tullian Tchividjian, pastor of the historical Coral Ridge Church shares a prayer that was posted by his friend, Scotty Smith who is a pastor of Christ Community Church in Franklin, TN.
Pastor Scotty Smith wrote out his prayer, which I think needs to be our prayer on a daily basis.
While I still believe, with all my heart, you are the only Savior, I now see how more of my heart needs more of you and more of the gospel.
There is nobody on the face of the earth that needs the gospel today, and its transforming resources, more than me, and I am SO glad to be able to acknowledge this reality. I need you today, Jesus, as much as I did in March of 1968 when you washed away all my sins and covered me with the robe of your righteousness.
You have saved me in the past, when I was justified by grace alone through faith alone; you are saving me in the present, as the Holy Spirit applies more and more of your finished work to my whole being; and you will save me in the future, when you return to finish making all things new, including ME!
Lord Jesus, though I’m never tempted to look to any other name for my justification, I am very tempted to look to other names and means for my transformation–worse of all, is when I look to me to be my own savior. But only you, Jesus, are able to save completely those who come to God through you, for you are always living to pray for us and to advocate for us (Heb 7:25). You are my righteousness, holiness and redemption, and that’s why I only boast in you today! (1 Cor. 1:30-31)
So I come to you today, Jesus, right now! Save me more fully from my fear of man, my need to be in control, my ticky-tacky pettiness. Save me from trying to be anybody’s savior. I want to get irritated far less often and to be spontaneous much more often. I want to “light up” more quickly when I hear your name, Jesus, and not be downcast, when I don’t hear my name.
That’s more than enough confession for one day… Indeed, Jesus, I must be saved, I am being saved, through your name alone. Hallelujah!