Tell What You Are

October 2, 2020 Save Article

BIBLE MEDITATION:

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

(2 Corinthians 5:17)

DEVOTIONAL THOUGHT:

Happiness doesn’t come from what you have, but from what you are. That's why the social gospel will never work. Some well-meaning Christians think that if they could just change people’s conditions, they could somehow change their character and thus change society. That's never going to work. Listen, I want to ask you a question: Where did mankind get into trouble in the first place? In the Garden of Eden. Where are you going to find a better environment than that? Yet Eden was where people decided to rebel against God.

Don't buy into the idea that a better or even perfect environment is going to save the world. Better living conditions improve people’s lives in the sense of meeting their physical needs, and we should want to help people have clean water, sufficient food, clothing, and shelter. But that’s not what we’re talking about here. We’re talking about character.

This is the difference between the social gospel and the saving gospel. The saving gospel realizes you're not going to build the knowledge of God, His character, and His principles into people by providing a nicer environment, any more than you could purify water by painting the pump handle. The Bible puts the emphasis not on what man has, not even primarily on what man does, but on what man is.

ACTION POINT:

If you want this world to become a better place, help people understand that what they need is an inward change. To provide the best environment for people to change, share with them the life-changing Gospel.