The rest of the gospel

We evangelicals typically think of the gospel as the good news that our sins can be forgiven and we can be reconciled to God because of Jesus. Let me write it this way:

Problem: We have sinned.
Solution: Jesus.

This is good. This is important. But it’s only part of the gospel. There’s another part of the gospel that is also important. It goes like this:

Problem: We have been sinned against.
Solution: Jesus.

This was brought home to me as a young married man. I married a godly Christian woman. We wanted to please God, and expected to have a happy marrige. But both of us had been sinned against; we had sustained damage, and we brought that damage into our marriage. When the honeymoon was over, it felt like there was a “great gulf fixed” between the two of us.

When I got out my little Christian toolkit, I discovered that I didn’t have any tools to handle this. My gospel wasn’t big enough to handle the damage we had sustained. So I did what I suspect most Christians do: I pretended.

It took me a long time to find the rest of the gospel—the good news I had somehow missed along the way. I had to wait years to find the rest of the gospel. Decades in fact. I don’t want that to happen to you or to anyone else. That’s why I write the books I write, and, in particular, that’s why I wrote, What It Means to Follow Jesus. I just figure everybody deserves to know the whole gospel right from the start.

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