Rom 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
The gospel is the good news that we have received by faith. It cannot be earned and none of us deserve it by our own merits. This is the good news of Jesus Christ - the good news of what He has accomplished. It is the foundation of our abundant living as believers. This abundant life is not found in self-effort religion - it is found in Jesus!
We have discovered in the Bible that whenever a person tells the story of what Christ has done in his life or what Christ has done on the cross, this announcement is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes.
News is something that has already happened. We learned last time that whenever we go and tell the story, the Lord works with us, and confirms the word with signs following! That is why the gospel is the power of God.
The power of God is in the announcement of the gospel. It is not found in someone declaring the judgment and the wrath of God! It is not found in pointing out all the failures of someone’s life. The power of God is not found in doing good works or in religion. The power of God is found when we tell the good news of what Jesus has done!
Matt 4:16 The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up. 17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Jesus came into the picture and this great light began to shine – the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus was bringing a New Covenant message to an Old Covenant people. He was telling them that this thing called the New Covenant is so close, it is at hand! Then came the cross and it was at the cross that we passed from the Old Covenant into the New Covenant!
What we see in the life of Jesus is the walk out of the Old Covenant into the New Covenant. In the Old, we did things to obtain: If I am good enough then Jesus will help me; if I do all the right things then I will be accepted. Jesus, through the cross, brought to us an incredible revelation - He paid the price so that we could freely receive all things!
Eph 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: KJV No longer do we do things to obtain favor - we have favor. We don’t do things to be blessed - we are blessed. It is because we know that we are blessed that we do things.
It is because we know that we are blessed that we do things.
We forgive others because we know that Christ has already forgiven us. We don’t need to earn forgiveness because He paid the price so we could be forgiven - He paid the penalty! This is good news!
John 16:12 I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.
Here we see Jesus nearing the end of His journey and He tells His closest followers, “I have a lot more to tell you; there is so much more for you to understand but you cannot bear them now.” It would have been impossible for them to understand the gospel because Jesus had not yet gone to the cross!
Col 1:25 Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God. Paul has a ministry for us. It was given to him for us to fulfill the word of God. In John 16:12 the word was not yet fulfilled so the Lord brings in Paul to fulfill the word of the New Covenant. To Peter, James and John the mystery was hidden. Now the Apostle Paul reveals the mystery of the New Covenant: 26 Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: 27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: KJV
The disciples did not know this before the cross because they were all running after Jesus. “Oh, if I could touch the hem of His garment; Praise God, Jesus is in the boat. Don’t you care that we perish. Wake him up.” They lowered the man down through the roof that he might be healed by Jesus. This was all in an effort to reach Him, to be noticed by Jesus and to be accepted by Jesus. “If I am good enough; if I press hard enough, etc.” All of that is Old Covenant.
In the New Covenant, we have this treasure in earthen vessels – where we are, He is! Now we have understanding that they did not have in John 16:12. The Old Covenant veil has been removed!
In our religion we say, “We need a breakthrough; we need more anointing; we need more wisdom; we need more….”
Elisha wanted the double portion, but now we have Jesus! David said, “I am like a deer panting after water” - Jesus said you will never thirst again! In fact, out of our bellies flow rivers of living water!
In our religion we say, “We need a breakthrough; we need more anointing; we need more wisdom; we need more….”But the Apostle Paul had tapped into the New Covenant and had this ministry for us to reveal the hidden mystery – Christ in you, the hope of glory!
Eph 1:17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: 18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, KJV
He is not saying we don’t have the victory or the anointing, but we don’t understand what we have. His prayer was that we could understand the incredible victory we have in Christ! Jesus told them, “There are many more things to tell you but you can’t bear them now.” The work is finished, but the Word is not yet finished. He sees Saul of Tarsus headed for Damascus outside of Jerusalem. (Not Israel, but Damascus of Arabia. The gospel is now headed for the world and for several years Jesus, through the Holy Ghost teaches the gospel to Paul, who then teaches the other disciples.)
Jesus teaches him what really happened at the cross. When we read Matthew, Mark, Luke and John we see the history of what happened; not the spiritual of what happened. He teaches Paul that when He died, we died. When He rose, we rose. When He was seated, we also were seated.
All this happened at the cross, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus. He put away the sins of the world and took the wrath and anger of God for us. When He was raised into new life, we also are raised into new life. Then Jesus ascended and we learn that He took His blood into the heavens to the Holy of Holies and applied that blood to the mercy seat. The blood of Jesus speaks better things that that of Abel - we are forgiven, we are righteous because He is righteous, and we are seated because He is seated!
The power of the gospel is in its announcement! Speak the Good News of what Jesus has done and witness the power of God in your life!