1 Thessalonians 1:1-10, “The Gospel is Personal.” (Part 3)

In verse 9, when the Apostle Paul writes, “You turned from idols to serve the living and true God” he is saying that in the lives of the Thessalonians the gospel had upended the internal parts of their life.

Therefore, we need to ask ourselves, “Has the gospel become personal?”   

This might be hard for us to grasp so over the last few decades there have been little catch phrases to help us understand how the gospel is incredibly personal. 

In the 1970’s the local church started to latch on to the phrase, “Born Again Christian.”  Have you ever heard that phrase?  It comes from John 3 when Jesus calls Nicodemus to be born again, and the language caught on in the 1970’s because the culture was caught up in the throws of riots, violence, assassinations, psychedelic’s, and as a result people were looking for stable truth to build your life, and the phrase, “born again” captured it for people because it was having a completely different view on all of life.

In the 1980’s the local church started to latch on to the phrase, “Ask Jesus into my heart.”  Perhaps some of us have used that phrase, but the phrase was so helpful at the time because it was a way to describe Jesus taking total control of your life.  It is for Jesus to sit on the throne of your heart.  It helped make the gospel personal.

Then, in the 1990’s the local church rallied around the phrase, “Accepting Christ as our Lord and Savior.”  Now, Lord and Savior, that’s good language!  Jesus is our Savior, but even more so, Jesus is Lord!  Jesus is in control of every part of our life, why, because the gospel is personal. 

All of these phrases are helpful, and the Lord has used these phrases to help us understand the fullness of how the gospel is personal, but ultimately we need to ask ourselves, “Has the gospel become personal for us?” 

Are we putting our trust in Jesus?  Are we turning from the idols of our day, and serving the living and true God?

Even in our culture today, women can absolutely pull out their inner Beyonce and say, “A boyfriend, or a husband is not my rescuer.”  That’s good. 

Women shouldn’t look for some boyfriend or husband to rescue them from the difficulties of this world, and at the same time the answer isn’t for that woman to become her own rescuer.

How many of us are thinking, “If we can just get that vaccine then all our dreams will come true?”  My security and safety of life will return!  We will be rescued! 

Yes, I want the vaccine also, but, there’s always going to be another virus that preys upon the weaknesses of humanity, therefore, let us turn from the idols of our day, and serve the living and true God. 

Jesus is the only One who is secure.  Jesus is the only One who is stable.  Jesus is the only One who will carry you through any chaos of your day, and He proved it at the cross. 

It was at the cross that Jesus is weighted down by the dredge of sin to the point of death on the cross, and He conquers it, so that we might find forgiveness, peace, rest, courage, strength, and life in Him.  Might we respond to Him!