What is the Gospel? According to 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, the Gospel is embodied in these words: “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures.”
1 Corinthians 2:2 says, “For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.”
Dr. Walter A. Elwell, editor of the Tyndale Bible Dictionary, explains the Gospel of Christ: “Having risen from the dead, Jesus Christ again evangelizes, doing so now through his appointed representatives. More than that, Christ has become the central theme of the Gospel; the Proclaimer is now the Proclaimed. This is repeatedly affirmed in Acts and in Paul’s writings. The New Testament always speaks of the Gospel–never the gospels–of Christ. A second gospel is as inconceivable and as unnecessary as a second Christ. This is the one Gospel that God authorizes and proclaims.”
TEXT: Matthew 5:38-42:
38 Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth:
39 But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
40 And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also.
41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
42 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.
G. Campbell Morgan said, “The old said, Insist on your own rights, love your neighbor, hate your enemy, and so secure your safety. The new says, Suffer wrong, and lavish your love on all.”
We all have experienced the feeling of being wronged by someone, whether family, friend, or enemy. We all have also experienced the urge to get retribution or justice for wrongs or perceived wrongs done to us. We know what the phrase, “an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth” means. The principle behind this phrase is a part of the Old Testament Jewish law, and Jesus addresses it now because, like many of the Old Testament laws, the religious leaders had twisted it into something that God had not intended for it to represent.
The proper sphere of the eye for an eye principle is civil government authority. It was the government’s responsibility to seek out wrongdoers and, after due process, extract judgment on behalf of those offended. But, over time, the religious teachers began to teach that retribution belonged in the sphere of personal responsibility. They taught that it was a man’s duty to seek to pluck out the eye of his fellow man if his own eye had been plucked out. However, this caused a great deal of problems because some would go after their neighbor for perceived offenses without an objective point of view; they would seek to get retribution and then some.
Jesus, however, says, “I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.” Regarding this passage, Dr. John Walvoord writes, “Once again, the standards of Christ’s kingdom are contrasted to the Mosaic law. Rather than demand an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, Jesus exhorted His kingdom’s subjects not to resist evil but to turn the other cheek. Jesus then gave three specific examples of kingdom behavior: not resisting an adversary in court; volunteering to go the second mile (referring to the Roman practice of commandeering civilians to carry the luggage of military personnel a prescribed distance, one Roman mile.); and giving to those who borrow rather than turning them away. In the millennial kingdom, such high standards could be literally enforced.”
But, we do not live in the millennial kingdom. So, how do we apply the true intent of Jesus’ words in our everyday lives? If the Lord tarries His coming and we live, that is what we will begin looking at in our next message.
Now, if you are with us today and you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, allow me to show you how you can place your faith and trust in Him for Salvation from sin and Hell.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.