At Theme Training last night, Matt Reagan proclaimed, explained, and rejoiced about the gospel. He described it as “our whole life,” “the thing that is the center of all history” and “the clearest picture of who Jesus is.”
For most of his message, Matt talked about how good the Good News is.
Hebrews 10:14: For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.
But how can we hear this and so often feel nothing? How can there be such numbness to the gospel in our hearts?
Matt brought up three sedatives that put us to sleep when it comes to the gospel.
One is a shallow understanding of sin. This blog post could never fully describe the weight that was felt in the fellowship hall of Garden City Baptist last night. With full conviction, holding nothing back, Matt preached about sin that was in every heart in the room.
“You must get to a place in your life when you say, ‘how could he possibly love me?’”
We must know we are broken to understand the gospel.
Another sedative is the distraction of personal performance. This one hit home for many people (probably everyone). He talked about how we perform for people, and we perform for God. He stressed how there is nothing we can do for God.
Romans 4:4-5: Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness…
There is nothing that we do. Matt quoted something he has read: “the law requires 100 percent doing; the gospel requires 100 percent not doing.”
Luke 18:9-14 is a perfect passage for what we have a right to say before the Lord. “God, be merciful to me, a sinner!” We can’t pay God back with obedience or gratitude, and there is nothing we can do to improve him or improve ourselves.
But, this is such good news!
1 Cor. 3: 21-23: So let no one boast in men. For all things are yours, whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future—all are yours, and you are Christ's, and Christ is God's.
All work has been done. It is finished. Now, we can rejoice that all is our’s because we are Christ’s.
The third and final sedative is the forgotten reality of eternity. We are now free to say that God’s wrath has been taken away from me forever, and I will never see it.
Matt said, “The rest of your life should be a celebration.”