Welcome back, I believe you had a wonderful Christmas and like me you are expecting great things in the New Year. We thank God for His goodness this year but we believe that 2016 will be BETTER, BIGGER, BOLDER AND BRIGHTER just like the path of the just (Proverbs 4:18). When we started the weekly Capsule (God's Pill) in January 2014, I can truthfully say it was a challenge God put to me, and I responded, knowing that He that has called me is faithful. My sincere prayer is that it has affected your life for good.
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.”
Romans 1:16-17 KJV
In capsule 51, I shared one of two scriptures that I believe present a 'nutshell' view of all that we have shared this year. Matthew 11: 27-30 presents the invitation to the Christian life and what it has to offer. It makes bold claims and back them up with the integrity of God. However, despite these assurances you have to understand the dynamics of how things work. Let me give you an analogy, when you read the brochure for a fancy new car that you desire and can afford, to enjoy the full benefits of what that car has got to offer, either of two things is assumed , that you know how to drive (which is the preferred option) or you have somebody to drive it for you. Matthew 11:27-30 is the car, Romans 1:16-17 is the skill and knowledge to drive it, without it the car will gather dust and rust. There is no point sitting in the car and saying 'bbrrrrmmmm' expecting something to happen, because nothing will. Do you get the picture?
Romans 1:16-17 shows you how to actualise Matthew 11:27-30. The reason why Apostle Paul declared that he was not ashamed of the gospel of Christ is because in his days people made funny of the whole concept of THE GOOD NEWS (Gospel), they felt it was just too good and simple to be true, so they rejected it. They wanted something more complex, more intellectual, convoluted and demanding (1 Corinthians 1:18; 22-24). The same is happening today, that is why a lot of people fall prey to charlatans. Anything outside the gospel of grace is absolute gimmickry, a waste of time and resources.
The word salvation is the Greek word 'sozo' which is the all encompassing word for: Forgiveness of sin, Deliverance from demonic oppression, Healing and Material wealth which we know is the REST that was promised in Matthew 11:27-30. So what Romans 1:16 means, is that the Gospel of Christ holds the power to produce REST. So if you understand what the gospel of Christ is and accept it, you will release the power that 'effortlessly' produce rest. Don't forget that Gospel means good news and if it is news it means it has already happened. So if it has already happened, you do not need to struggle for it, that is why it is called REST.
'For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.” Romans 1:17
Verse 17 says, The totality of God's righteousness, everything God has to offer is revealed in this gospel of Christ, no where else , or it is the Blueprint of how God has made us right with Himself and it is accomplished from start to finish by faith. The last part of the jigsaw is that 'the just shall live by faith' or you have to appropriate it by faith or accept it by faith. Faith as I have explained in the past is your positive response to grace. Let me connect the dots for you. The Good news of Christ called the gospel of grace has in it the power to produce REST if you accept it as a gift and live by it.
“There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.”
Hebrews 4:9-11 KJV
GOSPEL PLUS FAITH = SALVATION.OR REST. ANY OTHER THING IS A GIMMICK.
I owe a lot to a lot of people, the wonderful people who make it happen every week (WR and M), who give me the nudge at the right time, my leaders and mentors, the ever growing readership, both the silent and vocal, you are special. My wife and our children who I love dearly and of course the Almighty God to whom we owe all . My challenge to all is, let's rise up and take 2016 by the scruff of the neck and make it the year of the Gospel of grace, good news of Christ and not be ashamed to proclaim.