If you’re a regular church goer and have followed church conversations for some time, you would have noticed trends – how they come, take over the discussion and then become the acceptable norm. There was a time when it was the “should ladies wear trousers?” conversation and although I feel that the matter has been “over-discussed” in Christian circles, some people still believe you would go to hell if you wear trousers as a female but that’s not why I’m writing this, so I’d leave them to their opinion.
Trends have changed, the conversation has changed too and the new vibe that has found itself into the mainstream is on the Gospel of Grace. This would seem like a very easy to grasp topic on its own knowing that it is the basis of our Christian walk but we have decided to make an issue out of it. Trust me, I can’t even blame them. For so long, African countries, (Nigeria as a case study) have celebrated and embraced cultural Christianity – one that is dependent on our traditions, cultures and beliefs. When we should be influencing the world, the cultures of this world has influenced us hence the seeming powerlessness of our Christianity – one that can’t save our dark hearts. It’s a simple illustration that Jesus gave in the bible when he said you don’t pour new wine into old wineskin or old wine in new wineskin (Matthew 9:16-17).
So, what exactly is the Gospel of Grace?
To be clear, the gospel of grace isn’t something that youth just got involved in, a new invention or a new movement. It’s always been around but we have been clouded by culture so much that we couldn’t see what God had been trying to convey all through scripture. It is not another gospel, it is the gospel itself. It is the sacrificial work of Christ for everyone that speaks of assurance of the salvation of you and I away from what we do or do not do. Ephesians 2:5-9 explains this in details.
The Gospel of grace preaches that we are loved by God regardless of what we do whilst many others preach that we would have to do x and y and z with a little addition of yz in order to be accepted into the God fold hence the disagreement. The moment you try to make a mixture of grace and law just to suit your own message, you’ve lost the gospel.
The issue many have had with this Gospel of grace is that a large chunk of the people who are committed to proclaiming the gospel of grace are quick to tag themselves as grace preachers hence the idea that they are only rebels preaching another gospel. You can’t exactly condemn them for the radicalism they express in preaching the gospel. It’s only natural that whoever has been bound by laws, rules and formulas for so long a time and suddenly gets liberated would have to give full expression to the new life hence having to break free from everything that once held them bound.
Some others have also brought forth the argument that those who preach the gospel of grace are the lawless and lazy people. Not only is that wrong, it’s only illogical. Titus clearly addresses this in the book of Titus 2:11-12. If we can all establish that only faith in Christ makes one a candidate for heaven, then why confuse ourselves by adding irrelevant theology along the way.
Charles Spurgeon once wrote, “I never could either believe or preach gospel which saves me today and rejects me tomorrow – a gospel which puts me in Christ family one hour and makes me a child of the devil the next.”
Finally, I would love to add that it’s very true that people stray away from the gospel but truer is the fact that the true gospel possesses the power to keep one rooted in Christ even till death.