What is the Gospel?

11. Luke 4_16-30


“What is the Gospel?” That’s such a simple question, yet it’s frighteningly easy to get wrong. We’d expect unbelievers to get it wrong and they do, usually answering with various versions of: “Try your best. Be nice. Do good.” That’s not the Gospel. But believers get it wrong too, with their answers also tending to emphasize the human response to the Gospel. “Believe, repent, seek, call, etc…” That’s not the Gospel.

So, what is the Gospel? Who better than Jesus to give us the answer, which he did in Luke 4:16-30, when he preached his first sermon in his home synagogue in Nazareth.

An Exhilarating Victory

Isaiah 53v10-3

It’s easy to turn Good Friday into Bad Friday. We can meditate so much on Christ’s sufferings and our sins that caused them, that we end up feeling extra guilty rather than extra-Gospelly. We feel so bad that Jesus had to suffer for us that we end up feeling bad and suffering ourselves. We spend so much time in the dark that we don’t want to see the light. That mutates Good Friday into Bad Friday. How do we see the light of the cross in the darkness of the cross? How do we increase our spiritual satisfaction during Easter? Isaiah 53:10-12 points us to the answer.

Sermon notes on Isaiah 53:11.

Toughened by Temptation

10. Luke 4v1-15


“How can I be a Christian when I’m tempted like this?” I’m sure every Christian has thought this at times. An idea or an image about sin comes into our minds, and we think, “How can I think that and still be a Christian? Why does God allow me to be tempted like this?” Or to put it simply, What’s the point in temptation? In Luke 4:1-15, the story of Jesus’s temptation helps us understand the story of our temptation.

Three Baptisms

9. Luke 3v15-21


There are few areas where Christians are so confused as the area of baptism. Whether it’s infant baptism or believer’s baptism, many believe that the waters of baptism are saving. So let me state this as clearly as possible. Baptism does not save. So, what does baptism do? If anyone should know what baptism stands for, it’s John the Baptist. Let’s ask him by studying his ministry in Luke 3:15-21.

The Greatest Answer to the Greatest Question

8. Luke 3v11-14


“Half of these patients are here because of unresolved guilt.” That’s what a consultant psychiatrist told a doctor friend of mine as they walked through a large mental health facility. “They need forgiveness,” he explained, “and I can’t help them with that.” The consultant, who wasn’t a Christian, cared deeply for his patients but felt hopeless and helpless in the face of the deepest human problem: “How can I get forgiveness?” Sadly, a few years later, the psychiatrist committed suicide. He knew the greatest question, but didn’t know the greatest answer. Let’s hear God’s answer through the ministry of John the Baptist in Luke 3:1-14.