Recently I’ve been reading and writing about how we present the gospel, and I’ve considered these “five” gospels that are preached: a gospel of Genesis 1, which focuses on our common humanity and our inherent capacities; a gospel of Genesis 3, which focuses on our sinfulness and which can easily run amok; a gospel that focuses on the death of Jesus, which ends up seeing the gospel that forgives our sins so we can go to heaven; a gospel that focuses on the resurrection, which emphasizes liberation and deliverance from oppression and death; and a gospel that focuses on Pentecost, which emphasizes religious experience. Each of these sorts falls short of Shalom, that condition of human existence in which humans, as eikons of God, are in union with God and communion with one another. God’s will for us on earth is the same will he has for us in the heavens.
Any genuine gospel will keep these in balance: when it does, it can lead to Shalom; when it doesn’t, it offers a gospel that stops short of Shalom.
We are in the Chautauqua region of New York for a speaking event. I’m hoping to get back to this blog Sunday night or Monday morning.