Gospel, essential to Discipleship

M. Bird:  The place of the gospel in theology is no mere academic exercise but has real outcomes in terms of Christian life and ministry.

(1)   The process of discipleship is largely the process of gospelization that is beginning to reflect in one’s life the realities which the gospel endeavours to create.  Paul had intended to come in persons to Rome so as to impart some spiritual gift to the saints in Rome, but in lieu of that he decides to encourage them and put them in his debt by explicating his gospel to them in hope for transforming their potentially fractious cosmopolitan community to one where Christian Jews and Gentiles were united in a common worship and by a common gospel (Rom. 1.11-12). Paul aspires to gospelize the Romans so that the truth and ramifications of the gospel works itself out in relations among the community.

(2)   Discipleship is the process of gospelizing our brothers and sisters so that they attain the full measure of maturity in Christ and walk in the footsteps of Christ in their own lives.


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