Outgrowing the Gospel?
A devotional thought from Geoff Ashley for “Forever Trusting”
1 Corinthians 15:1-2: “Now brothers, I want to clarify for you the gospel I proclaimed to you; you received it and have taken your stand on it. You are also saved by it, if you hold to the message I proclaimed to you—unless you believed for no purpose.”
Some things you simply outgrow. Sometimes this is a negative: a favorite shirt shrinks and fades, friends come and go, etc. Other times it is a positive: who doesn’t regret some fashion choice or hairstyle they’ve grown out of?
As we grow, we graduate to newer and better things. Elementary school is transcended by middle school, which is eclipsed by high school. Some go to university and then on to graduate degrees. Some of the skills that we attain along the way are ever-present helps and daily reminders of our education. I can’t remember the last time I went an entire day without reading at least something. Other things are buried away in the cavernous recesses of the mind, stored somewhere, but somewhat inaccessible. Just ask me questions from introductory organic chemistry and see my mind screech to a halt as gaskets are blown.
The gospel, however, is not one of those things we outgrow. The Christian life is not a movement away from the foundation of the gospel but a continual excavation of the glories of the gospel and a daily dependence upon the gospel.
In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul dealt with the essential message of the gospel and stated that his goal is to clarify (other translations say “remind”) the Corinthians of the gospel. These were believers that he was writing to, believers who were facing a plethora of problems. Yet Paul didn’t offer empty platitudes or psychology; rather, he exhorted believers to go back to the beginning.
The gospel is not something we outgrow; it is something we are growing into. As we reflect upon the work of the triune God and our response to Him in regard to our perseverance and assurance, may we do so with both eyes fixed firmly upon the good news of Jesus Christ.
Pause and Reflect
• Does the simple message of Christ crucified and resurrected ever seem elementary to you? How might you begin to change your thinking in this area?
• Think again about the basic elements of the gospel, and spend a few minutes worshiping God for the good news of a Son given to save us from our sin that we might be adopted into the divine family.