I’ve just come back from a prayer meeting focussed on mission events we’re holding next year. The woman I was praying with earnestly asked the Father,
Lord, we don’t want to persuade people that the Gospel is a good idea. We want them to meet the living Lord Jesus and be born again.
My Amen was hearty indeed!
We all love the phrase: ‘The Gospel is not good advice, it’s good news.’ Or at least, we should love it. It’s an essential reminder that we don’t preach a moral ladder to Jesus. Instead we announce that He has come down.
But I am worried about a similar error in our evangelism. It’s thinking that the Gospel is a good idea – even the best idea. The crowning ‘world view’ among ‘world views’.
In reality this is precisely the ‘good advice’ problem transposed to epistemology. Where ‘good advice’ preaching proclaims a moral ladder to Jesus, ‘good idea’ preaching proclaims a reasoned ladder to Jesus.
Both approaches are just as opposed to the good news as each other. One is moral pelagianism, the other is intellectual pelagianism.
But for people who believe in Scripture alone, Christ alone, grace alone, faith alone – let’s please preach the gospel alone. That is evangelism to the glory of God alone.