Posted by: thefourwinds | January 16, 2009

Keeping the gospel central

Here’s a letter to a pastor friend of mine (with some introductory personal pleasantries removed) regarding something I had said to him about my church’s focus on keeping the gospel central, ahead of any other teaching or action we pursue as a church (even very good things, like fighting abortion, or homeschooling our children, etc.). 

Dear _____, 

You ask a good question about what I meant about keeping the gospel central.  I think maybe my statement needs some clarification or application so you can see how it’s being applied by Pastors _____ and _____.
The driving force is to keep anything from supplanting the gospel as the foundation behind everything.  The example you give as to the current focus in your church (men taking more a more active role in their homes) can easily be tied with regularity and consistency to the gospel. 
For example, why is it that men ought to be more involved in their families?  Because it’s a Scriptural teaching.  But what is the goal behind that Scriptural teaching? 
The goal is that the children of God fearers (in our time, the children of believers) will learn to know, love and fear God themselves.  That’s imparting the gospel!  As more families concretely impart the gospel to their own children by living out the Word with regards to fathers leading their homes (and in any/every other way), the kingdom of God grows and the gospel spreads.  That’s what I mean by keeping the gospel central, and that’s the way I’ve interpreted how Pastors _____ and _____ are applying that in our church.
In my own life, the concern I was bringing up had to do with a nagging concern I have that if I don’t do this and that in my kids’ lives, if I can’t “rescue” them from certain conditions that I would choose not to have them in if I had the power, then I must be failing them (or maybe I get to the point where I believe God is failing us). 
The remedy is for me to remember that trials are a normal part of following Christ, and my focus on imparting God’s grace to the kids amid our circumstances allows them to experience the gospel in a tangible way.  As you said last night, we are citizens of a better country. 
Also, regarding homeschooling, it could be that we get tempted to put homeschooling (and all the goals, processes, curricula, competitions, and worldly recognition) ahead of the foundation, which is imparting the gospel to our families in a concrete way.  Any of us could raise our kids to win the next national spelling bee (or whatever contest), and have the kids with the best manners, but that’s not the Bible’s purpose for the education of our children.  The Bible’s purpose for the education of our children is so that they will fear, love, and serve God.  Once again, that’s imparting the gospel, and it can have an impact for generations.
Hope that clears things up.  If the Holy Spirit is truly convicting you that your focus is drifting away from the gospel, I think it would be very easy to tie everything that you’re emphasizing back to the foundation of the gospel.
Grace in Christ to you and yours today!



  1. Thanks for sharing this wise and godly counsel with your readership.

    May the Lamb that was slain receive the reward of His suffering!

    In Christ,

  2. CD,

    Thanks for your encouragement!

  3. I am always interested in how we can put the gospel into various aspects of life. Thanks for the reminder and the emphasis! jeffh

  4. […] is always to become conceited, or to forget that the gospel is the true aim (see my previous post, Keeping the gospel central).  Leading someone to believe that there is a creator but never pointing them to Christ is just as […]

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