Hunting for Good News: More from GospelFutures

Over at GospelFutures, Peter Kress is on a hunt for the Gospel.

Which raises the natural question, “What the heck are you talking about?”

Kress explains that, having experienced his own faith crisis, a Gospel that encourages skepticism toward others is not good news. “When faith communities define rules of inclusion and exclusion and allocate privileges based on those rules, compassion is compromised.”

Further, the Gospel is somewhere between the two common extremes of an “absolutely knowable” commodity owned by a few, an idol that breaks easily, and “abstracted” ideas and theories disconnected from our experiences.

So, what is the gospel I seek?  I am inspired by the idea that the human enterprise is the overcoming of suffering, evil and death to fully express love, life and beauty.  I hope/believe that this human enterprise is both response to and empowered in the gospel.  I hope/believe that the dimensions of the Jesus story: incarnation, suffering, resurrection, and spirit are powerful explanations of the embeddedness of gospel in this universe. 

Maybe, Kress muses, we think small when we think “Gospel.” Maybe God in Christ is at work in ways and places we do not perceive, struck as we are in ourselves.

Happy hunting.



  • Benj

    Seems to me that the Bible itself “defines rules of inclusion and exclusion,” the most important of which is that redemption is found in no other name than in Jesus Christ. Christian communities need to conform their own boundaries (and the degrees to which they enforce and apply those boundaries) to those defined by Scripture. But boundaries themselves are not bad–all communities have them.

    • peteenns

      Benj, did you read his post?

  • Matteo Masiello

    Dr. Enns, you seem a bit critical of Mr. Kress posing the question. Am I reading you right?

    • peteenns

      No. He’s a friend.

  • Forrest Long

    I understand where he is coming from because I have been going through the same crisis for the past while. After being in pastoral ministry for twenty-eight years in an evangelical setting things began to unravel and it hasn’t stopped. Things are not cut and dried, black and white, as we so often assume or are taught. As I move further away from the church I see no going back. And I feel good about it.