the missing middle
Your friend preaches the gospel. You pastor challenges you to receive Christ. And almost all the time the line goes something like this:
“IF YOU RECEIVE CHRIST IN YOUR LIFE, YOU WILL GO TO HEAVEN.”
It is what I call the “missing middle”. When I receive Christ – the result is heaven and anything I do in between that is of no importance. Basically, the line communicates that if I receive Christ at the age of 10, from 11 to present, it doesn’t matter how I live as long as I receive now, when I die one day I’ll go to heaven.
The gospel is more than heaven though it might be the highlight. The gospel is about sin dominating us, God sending His son Jesus to die on the cross for my sin, Me being renewed by the cleansing of my sin through the blood of Jesus and experiencing new birth and life now that I am in Christ. I then become part of God’s history. He does His work in me and through me. My life is about HIs story and His glory. I die to myself. I am a new creation in Christ.
Then I die physically and I meet God in heaven.
I hope you don’t miss the middle.