“FINDING OUT ABOUT CHRIST”
Appraisal by Pastor R Mayhew
In our post-Christian era, when so few attend a place of worship, many desperate attempts are made to attract the present generation back to church. The opinion prevails that if the objective is laudable the means are excusable, whatever they may be. But instead of God and His Son Jesus Christ being the focus of worship, man has assumed centre stage. Concert-style services and contrived praise have driven God from His own house—for without doubt the church is the house of God (1Tim.3:15) and temple of the Spirit (1Cor.3:16).
As with worship so with evangelism. Just as God is excluded from worship to accommodate man, so elements of the Gospel are removed, or toned down, to make it more palatable to man. The Law that Christ expounded so fully is scarcely mentioned, and His well-defined role as the world’s future judge is omitted. As a result, sin is never proclaimed in a way that makes a person feel guilty and judgement is no longer the dread it should be. A major element of the Gospel is therefore missing, one that is essential to drive a sick and complacent sinner to the physician of souls who alone can do him good.
But why the need to “improve” the Gospel when it is already perfect? Correctly understood the Gospel has all the elements necessary to melt grateful sinners to tears. Subtract the appalling sinfulness of man and the impending judgement of God and the reason for gratitude is taken away. The most inventive imaginations of men could never conceive so wonderful a message as we have the privilege of proclaiming. That a justly angry God should send His Son into this sordid world to suffer untold agonies for His enemies is truly amazing. Sooner polish the sun than improve on it; subtract the smallest element from the Gospel and we detract from its lustre and saving power!
Here we would commend the course and workbook Finding Out About Christ. It is prepared with inquirers in mind and presents the Gospel in the same way that the Gospel writers do. They record the testimony of the Apostles who saw Christ with their own eyes both before and after His resurrection. The Apostles were witnesses who appealed for a verdict and sought the response of repentance and faith in Christ’s saving work. In a similar way the course presents the evidence of Christ’s life and teaching as if to a jury. It then calls for a verdict and response.
The course is therefore centred on Christ and His death and resurrection as presented by the writers of the New Testament. The amazing love of Christ for sinners and the awesome fact that He who came to save will return to judge is held in balance, just as it is in the Gospels. “Finding Out About Christ” is a wholesome presentation of the Gospel as it really is.