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Sermon Quotes

The Gospel

Augustine of Hippo 

If you believe what you like in the Gospel, and reject what you don’t like, it is not the Gospel you believe, but yourself.

Horatius Bonar

The gospel comes to the sinner at once with nothing short of complete forgiveness as the starting-point of all his efforts to be holy. It does not say, “Go and sin no more, and I will not condemn thee.” It says at once, “Neither do I condemn thee: go and sin no more.

Wendell Berry

Especially among Christians in positions of wealth and power, the idea of reading the Gospels and keeping Jesus’ commandments as stated therein has been replaced by a curious process of logic. According to this process, people first declare themselves to be followers of Christ, and then they assume that whatever they say or do merits the adjective “Christian”.

Blessed are the Peacemakers: Christ’s Teachings of Love, Compassion, and Forgiveness

Dietrich Bonhoeffer 

Costly grace is the gospel which must be sought again and again and again, the gift which must be asked for, the door at which a man must knock. Such grace is costly because it calls us to follow, and it is grace because it calls us to follow Jesus Christ. It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life. It is costly because it condemns sin, and grace because it justifies the sinner. Above all, it is costly because it cost God the life of his Son: ‘Ye were bought at a price’, and what has cost God much cannot be cheap for us. Above all, it is grace because God did not reckon his Son too dear a price to pay for our life, but delivered him up for us. Costly grace is the Incarnation of God.

Jerry Bridges

Preach the gospel to yourself every day.

Frederick Buechner

It is a world of magic and mystery, of deep darkness and flickering starlight. It is a world where terrible things happen and wonderful things too. It is a world where goodness is pitted against evil, love against hate, order against chaos, in a great struggle where often it is hard to be sure who belongs to which side because appearances are endlessly deceptive. Yet for all its confusion and wildness, it is a world where the battle goes ultimately to the good, who live happily ever after, and where in the long run everybody, good and evil alike, becomes known by his true name….That is the fairy tale of the Gospel with, of course, one crucial difference from all other fairy tales, which is that the claim made for it is that it is true, that it not only happened once upon a time but has kept on happening ever since and is happening still.” 

Telling the Truth: The Gospel as Tragedy, Comedy, and Fairy Tale

John Calvin

Only those who have learned well to be earnestly dissatisfied with themselves, and to be confounded with shame at their wretchedness truly understand the Christian gospel.

Francis of Assisi

It is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching.

Timothy Keller

The gospel is this: We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope.” 

The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God

Brennan Manning

The gospel is absurd and the life of Jesus is meaningless unless we believe that He lived, died, and rose again with but one purpose in mind: to make brand-new creation. Not to make people with better morals but to create a community of prophets and professional lovers, men and women who would surrender to the mystery of the fire of the Spirit that burns within, who would live in ever greater fidelity to the omnipresent Word of God, who would enter into the center of it all, the very heart and mystery of Christ, into the center of the flame that consumes, purifies, and sets everything aglow with peace, joy, boldness, and extravagant, furious love. This, my friend, is what it really means to be a Christian.

The Furious Longing of God

Lesslie Newbigin

The gospel is not just the illustration (even the best illustration) of an idea. It is the story of actions by which the human situation is irreversibly changed.

Blaise Pascal

The gospel to me is simply irresistible.

Eugene Peterson

The Christian gospel is rooted in langauge: God spoke a creation into being; our Savior was the Word made flesh. The poet is the person who uses words not primarily to convey information but to make a relationship, shape beauty, form truth…

 

David Platt 

The modern-day gospel says, ‘God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life. Therefore, follow these steps, and you can be saved.’ Meanwhile, the biblical gospel says, ‘You are an enemy of God, dead in your sin, & in your present state of rebellion, you are not even able to see that you need life, much less to cause yourself to come to life. Therefore, you are radically dependent on God to do something in your life that you could never do.” 

Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream

Robby Gallaty 

The gospel came to you because it was heading to someone else. God never intended for your salvation to be an end, but a beginning. God saved you to be a conduit through whom His glorious, life-changing gospel would flow to others.

Growing Up: Making Disciples Who Make Disciples, Submitted by Chris Moore

Dallas Willard

Does the Gospel I preach and teach have a natural tendency to cause people who hear it to become full-time students of Jesus? Would those who believe it become his apprentices as a natural “next step”? What can we responsibly expect would result from people actually believing the substance of my message?

Malcolm Muggeridge

Jesus’ good news, then, was that the Kingdom of God had come, and that he, Jesus, was its herald and expounder to men. More than that, in some special, mysterious way, he was the Kingdom.

Jesus: The Man Who Lives

John Piper 

The gospel is not a heavenly demand of what we must do to be saved; it is a heavenly declaration of what God has done to save us. 

Bloodlines, Crossway. Kindle Edition. 

Martin Luther King Jr.

The gospel at its best deals with the whole man, not only his soul but his body, not only his spiritual well-being, but his material well being. Any religion that professes to be concerned about the souls of men and is not concerned about the slums that damn them, the economic conditions that strangle them and the social conditions that cripple them is a spiritually moribund religion awaiting burial.

Pilgrimage to Non-Violence, 1960

Martin Luther King Jr.

The Christian gospel is a two-way road. On the one hand, it seeks to change the souls of men, and thereby unite them with God; on the other hand, it seeks to change the environmental conditions of men so the soul will have a chance after it is changed.

Martin Luther

The Son of God did not want to be seen and found in heaven. Therefore he descended from heaven into this humility and came to us in our flesh, laid himself into the womb of his mother and into the manger and went on to the cross. This was the ladder that he placed on earth so that we might ascend to God on it. This is the way you must take.

George Herbert

Death used to be an executioner, but the gospel has made him just a gardener.

Jean Sullivan

The Gospel is not made to dominate the world. It’s the grain of sand that upsets the world’s machinery. One can’t inhale its fragrance and be content to leave everything the way it is.

“Morning Light” Christianity Today, Vol. 33, no. 16

N.T. Wright

The call of the gospel is for the church to implement the victory of God in the world through suffering love. 

Taken from Evil and the Justice of God by N.T. Wright Copyright (c) 2006, p.104, by N.T. Wright. Published by InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, IL. www.ivpress.com

Mark DeYmaz

Lament, repentance, reconciliation and justice are not peripheral to the gospel but intrinsic to it.

A.M. Hunter

The New Testament makes it clear that the early Church’s message always …had two aspects—one theological, the other ethical: (i) the Gospel which the apostles preached; and (ii) the Commandment, growing out of the Gospel, which they taught to those who accepted the Gospel. The Gospel was a declaration of what God, in his grace, had done for men through Christ; the Commandment was a statement of what God required from men who had become the objects of his gracious action.’

Design for life: an exposition of the Sermon on the Mount (SCM, 1953; revised edition 1965).

D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

The glory of the gospel is that when the Church is absolutely different from the world, she invariably attracts it. It is then that the world is made to listen to her message, though it may hate it at first.’

Studies in the Sermon on the Mount, InterVarsity Press, 1977.

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