Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Hole in our Gospel by Richard Stearns (An Exhortation)

You may have noticed that I didn't call this a book review. I found that this book did not need to be "reviewed" but needed to be used as a launching point for an exhortation. The Hole in our Gospel by Richard Stearns goes to the heart of the mission of Christ and the church. He correctly points to the hole in OUR gospel, because what we (the Western church) live out as the gospel is not the Gospel Jesus called us to. Yes we are saved, but have we given all to serve the poor, helpless, and the seemingly hopeless of the world's "least of these" to relieve the pain and suffering and free the captives? Are we spending ourselves for the poor? I look at myself and the answer is NO, I am not! The question that comes next is What now? Do I continue to sit at the buffet restaurant, shoveling food into my mouth while the rest of the world eats the crumbs from my table? And what about the Aids problem? And orphans? The lack of clean water?
Do I even see the food and clean water I enjoy each day as a blessing? Do I consider them at all?
Richard Stearns has written what could be the most important book for the church in many years. This should be required reading for all Christians. Stearns has packed his book with scripture references to show these aren't just his thoughts, but demands and commands from the very heart of God in His Word. In addition to the scripture, he recounts numerous stories of God's people in action to step out of themselves to love their neighbor.
I am left stirred with a shaken foundation, knowing I not only should do something but MUST.
There is a hole in our gospel, but not in THE GOSPEL. As the church, together we must fill it.

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