The Gospel-Centered Church

9 Nov

Joe Thorn wrote a good article recently about living as a Gospel-centered church.  This phrase is kind of a new catchphrase in evangelicalism.  Whenever something becomes a catchphrase, there is always the risk that the true meaning of the phrase is lost.

Thorn’s article sheds light on the true meaning of Gospel-centeredness particularly in these two paragraphs . . .

“Some churches are driven by doctrinal purity. In the pursuit of the truth it is not uncommon for a church to be more about their theological heritage than the founder and perfecter of our faith. Some churches are driven by numbers. The desire to see as many people as possible trust in Christ can lead to a pragmatism that gives the nod to anything that results in more people in the front door. Some churches are driven by a desire to be culturally relevant, while other churches are focused on how culturally distinct they can remain. In both cases something other than the cross is capturing the attention of the congregation. Some churches are driven by social or spiritual works that, while good, begin to eclipse the point of all good works.

Gospel-centered churches do not forsake these things, but they are not driven by them. They are driven by a love for Jesus and his work on our behalf. Therefore gospel-centered churches are so focused on Jesus and the hope of redemption that they are passionate and articulate about their theology. Their desire to know and make known Jesus demands doctrinal precision and leads them to want and work toward as many people as possible repenting of sin and trusting in Christ. When the gospel is central in a church it leads them out into the world on mission, while preserving their counter-cultural character as the people of God. The gospel-centered church is driven by love (for God and others) and this leads to joyful obedience that points back to God.”

Here is the link to the whole article:  http://www.joethorn.net/2009/08/11/gospel-centered/

One Response to “The Gospel-Centered Church”

  1. Shannon November 10, 2011 at 10:49 am #

    A great article – thanks for sharing!

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