The Story: Those who have truly been born again will live to the glory of God, just as Jesus did. Notice that the Gospel (“truth”) is something to obey, not merely to receive or accept or believe. It makes a difference, when we are sharing our faith with someone, whether we ask him to “receive” Jesus, “believe” in Him, or “obey” Him. Many will happily “receive” Jesus or “believe” in Him for the promise of forgiven sins and an eternal home in heaven. But if we do not call them, at the same time, to obey Jesus and follow Him in the path of righteousness, we have not preached the Gospel truly, but only in part. Which is as much as to say we have not preached the Gospel at all. When the Word of God has wrought its redeeming and transforming work in a person’s soul, the result will be, increasingly, purity in thoughts, affections, and actions, expressed as love for God and neighbor. Where such is not the case, we may have good reason to wonder whether true regeneration has occurred.
The Structure: As we’ll see on Sunday, the whole Gospel is a call to repentance, faith, and obedience, issuing in a dedicated pursuit of holiness and love. A variety of false gospels are circulating today. Whoever says that being a Christian means “simply believing” in Jesus needs to explain what he means. If he doesn’t mean what Peter means, then this is “another gospel”, as Paul might say, and not the true Gospel at all. Which Gospel have you “obeyed”?
Briefly outline the Gospel as you might share it with someone this week:
Each week’s studies in our Scriptorium column are available in a free PDF form, suitable for personal or group use. For this week’s study, “This is the Gospel: 1 Peter 1.12-25,” simply click here.
T. M. Moore
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.