Allegedly, America put a man on the moon.
Allegedly, there was a Holocaust.
Allegedly, the Cubs won a National Championship.
I was not there for any of these events.
I have to take other people’s word for it that they happened.
In some cases, I can review video footage.
But was the video footage from the moon, or a Hollywood studio?
There is an amount of faith required to accept any reality you were not present at.
I fear that when Christians talk about “believing the Gospel,” people hear it in similar fashion to believing man walked on the moon.
Faith in the Gospel is much more than believing it happened.
Oh sure, I believe that. Just like I believe there was a Holocaust, man walked on the moon, and the Cubs won a National Championship.
But biblical faith is more than mental assent, it’s more than agreeing with a set of facts about a past event you weren’t at.
Believing the Gospel is about identification with Christ.
Yes, I believe there was a historical event where a man named Jesus, who was God in the flesh, died on a cross, was buried, and rose again.
But biblical faith takes it a step further: I believe I was crucified with Christ, buried with Him and raised up to newness of life with Him.
It’s not just believing a past event about Jesus; it’s taking part in that past event in your own life now.
America is allegedly 80% Christian. Hardly looks like it.
That’s not because polls are wrong; that’s because people have no true concept of faith in the Gospel.
Unfortunately, the Church has fostered this weak faith, a faith that stops short of an identification with Christ that results in self-denial and the dying out of fleshly lust.
Instead we focus on poor Jesus, don’t you feel bad for Him? You should really be nice to people because of Jesus and death and sadness and stuff.
We reap our own lack of faith.
Christ died so you would die with Him.
Christ rose again so you would be raised up with Him.
Do you want this, or is nodding your head at historical fact enough for you?
Hell is filled with people who believed historical facts about Jesus.