The apostle Paul likens the living the Christian life to running a race. In his analogy are three main points:
1.Direction. Just as an athlete runs towards a goal, rather than running aimlessly, a Christian should aim for the prize set before him by God, rather than aiming at nothing.
2.Drive.An athlete needs to be determined to not only complete the race, but to prepare for it. Before we become Christians, we are unable to be motivated to do the will of God, but by faith, God’s grace by his Spirit gives us the power to do his will and to work through our salvation.
3.Discipline. You can’t just turn up for a race and hope that trying hard will enable you to win. An athlete needs to undergo regular, disciplined, training in order to be able to win. Similarly, to live the Christian life, a Christian needs to mature, by regularly communicating with God through prayer and his word, and by learning from trials.
As the church gears up for another Holiday Bible Club, we were reminded this evening of what the Apostle Paul wrote in his letter to the church in Rome.
The Gospel, the good news, of Jesus Christ is something we should not be ashamed of.
1. The substance of this Gospel is amazing. Even though we are sinners, God become a man, lived amongst us, was crucified and rose again. His crucifixion was so that we might be forgiven our sin, that the punishment due for our sin might be placed on him.
2. The source of this Gospel is God himself. It is not the concoction of clever men, but Jesus Christ being God said amongst many other things, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life”. It is not by what we can do or by what we are or anything of ourselves, not by our good works or our intellect that we are saved.
3. The scope of this Gospel is for the whole world. “For everyone who believes”. By “faith from first to last”. Anyone, regardless of background, culture, ethnic origin, language or anything else, who puts their trust in Jesus Christ can receive this Gospel. Oh that God might enable us to have faith in Christ.