It’s likely you’ve heard the admonition to “preach the gospel to yourself.” But do you have a practical, systematic way for doing that? What do you say when you preach the gospel to yourself?
The gospel message about Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection has the ability to enrich us and make us wealthy in mind and spirit, word and deed (see Colossians 3:16). Yet if we have little grasp on how to effectively let it, we miss out on the power it holds.
Preaching the gospel to ourselves means allowing our thinking, emotions, and responses to daily be shaped by the truth of the gospel.
In this series, we hope to give you practical help in preaching the gospel to yourself. We’ve pulled key gospel concepts and compiled them into a list of words, such as justification, redemption, and sanctification. Don’t let the big words scare you because we’ve explained them!
We’ve also summarized each of these powerful truths in a useable way.
We hope this series will deepen your grasp on the gospel and give you verbiage for what to say when you preach the gospel to yourself.
How to use this series:
To begin, read my post below. Then visit each of the links for more gospel words. Take notes while you visit! You may want to bookmark this page because you’ll probably want to come back here often.
Justification by Arabah
Sanctification by Jen
Redemption by Rebekah
Reconciliation by Kathy
Regeneration by Marci
Atonement by Leah
Adoption by Kerry
Consecration by Kimberly
Adoption changes everything.
The first time I watched “Home for the Holidays” (a yearly T.V. special promoting adoption/foster care) a teenaged orphan girl was featured. Through sobs she related how she prayed to be part of a family from the time she understood she was an orphan. But she was losing hope because of her age. Then the show cut to scenes of the girl with her adoptive family. It was bliss caught on camera. Pure, overwhelming, never-thought-possible-joy saturated her smile when she rested her head on her daddy’s shoulder, or as she sidled up beside her mama to help with mundane tasks. Assured acceptance and deep gratitude twinkled in her eyes when her parents spoke her name as “our daughter”.
That girl knew what it was to belong to nowhere. She was acutely aware that “orphan” means “powerless”. Without a doubt she knew that nobody owed her anything. But two people chose to give her everything.
Gratitude replaced fear. Loneliness took a backseat to loyalty. Chores were done pleasantly because they were done with and for her family.
Are we impacted the same way by our adoption in Christ? Do we adore our Father and allow His provision to impact our choices and attitudes?
Our Father crafted a plan to make us His own even before He breathed mankind into existence so that He could provide us with “every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realm” in Christ (Eph.1:3-4). The orphan girl’s new relationship came fully-loaded with resources…far beyond material provision. If she gets bullied she now has a daddy to defend her. When she gets her heart broken, she has a listening ear waiting to provide wise counsel. “Every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms” is like that for us, with one huge exception.
The resources provided by our adoption in Christ are immeasurable and perfect. The riches God provides for us are “according to the great might that He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places.” (Eph. 1:19-20) That means when God’s children cry out for help He uses the same power on our behalf that He used to defeat death by raising Christ from the grave!
Did you catch that?
Because you are adopted you have access to omnipotence. How should that truth change your thinking?
As orphans we were “sons of disobedience”, “separated from Christ”, “having no hope and without God in the world.” We were the epitome of destitute. We possessed no resources to forgive, to tell the truth, or to be kind.
As God’s children we now draw on “the strength of His might.” We still have no resources of our own. We have all of His!
As an orphan anger was your only option, but as God’s child you now get to chose peace. When somebody offends you and you want to retaliate, you have resurrection power at your disposal to “maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” instead.(Eph. 4:3)
Orphans have to look out for themselves. Royal children have plenty to share. When greed tempts you to be stingy with your stuff you now have the option to “work with (your) own hands, so that (you) may have something to share with anyone in need”. (Eph. 4:28)
Orphans can’t depend on anybody with certainty. God’s children can be sure of their Father’s desire and ability to meet their every need. Children of God are confident that our Father is able to do “far more abundantly than all we ask or think.” (Eph. 3:20) Our Daddy really is better than the all other daddies. It doesn’t matter what challenge is thrown at us. Our Abba Father already provided what we need to meet that challenge: Himself.
Adoption changes everything. In Christ we have all we need to speak like Him, forgive like Him, and pour out love like He does. We can offer security, acceptance, and second chances to others because our Father shows us how it’s done and He gives us the means to imitate Him.
The adopted child who embraces their new status and uses it to please their Father is an expression of gratitude without earthly equal.
You can make choices today like you have resurrection power on your side, because you do. You’re adopted.