About Jesus    Steve Sweetman

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The Moral Gospel

While growing up in my youth, the church I was a part of put a great deal of emphasis on obeying the ten commands and being good boys and girls.  There was so much emphasis on this that many of us thought that salvation came from obeying the ten commandments  and being good kids.  This did not help the struggle that I had with feelings of "so-called" guilt.  I say, "so-called" guilt  because guilt is not a feeling.  It is a position in which we stand before God, whether we feel guilty or not.

All of us youth had a hard time living up to the ten commandments and also to the other commands our church put on us.  As a result, we would have these guilty type feelings.  We  apparently did not understand that peace with God did not come from being good little boys and girls.   We'd get saved every other Sunday.  Yet these salvation experiences were more like begging Jesus to forgive us for all the bad things we did.  We did not really know that Jesus forgave our sins on the cross.  That had already been accomplished.  We needed to simply trust Him for that. 

Yes, we need to be taught law.  We need to be taught the ten commandments.  Yet at the same time we need to put law into the perspective of the New Testament times in which we live.  We are no longer saved by any law. (Rom. 10:4-5)  We are saved only by trusting in Jesus and what He did for us. 

Yes, let us tell our children about sin, but let us also tell them plainly what Jesus did for us on the cross and make sure they know that simply being good moral people will not get us anywhere with God.  The "Moral Gospel" in Evangelical churches is becoming more popular as times goes on.  We need to come back to our evangelical roots and understand that we trust in Jesus alone for our salvation.  As Paul says in Gal. 5:4-5, that if we try to be justified by any law then we have been alienated from Christ and have fallen from grace.  See for yourself what he says.  They are strong swords.  They are clear words.  The "Moral Gospel" is not New Testament teaching and therefore should not be taught. 


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