The Contagious Gospel

Consider the words of Colossians 1:3-6:

We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and the love you have for all the saints – the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the Word of truth, the gospel that has come to you. All over the world this faith is bearing fruit and growing.

The faith and love of the saints in Colosse, like that of those in Rome (Romans 1:8) was highly contagious. It was literally being reported around the world. Is that what is happening in your life and ministry? I have been thinking about that lately. How incredibly convicting that can be. But on the other hand, how incredibly contagious is the Gospel, the true Gospel. When people hear about the presence of God in your life and see the difference with their own eyes, that is a powerfully attractive combination!

Listen friend: what you believe can be caught! Faith and belief in God, when consistently lived out in your actions and words, can be passed on from friend to friend, family to family, and generation to generation. But the Gospel must be rooted in passion in our lives to be contagious. Being a student pastor, I am very concerned with the way the Gospel is presented in our day and age to our teenagers. Too often the church inoculates teens to this passion by expecting them to fall in line and just “be nice.” That is not the Gospel. Churches will be held accountable for inoculating young people to the Gospel’s true power and sending them into adulthood without true Biblical faith.

I’ve seen so many passionless churches present to students that Jesus is a supplement in our lives to accomplish our own purposes in the world. Do you want to get in a good college? Add a little Jesus, be good and then it will happen! Want a high-paying job? Ask Jesus to help you with that. Jesus is not a morale booster for you to become who you want to be. The Church is not called to make good citizens who never rock the boat.

So you are a youth leader. Why would a student want to come to your ministry every week? Is there an obvious reason? How good is your good news? Gimmicks, events, and free food are only fun for a while. Teenagers are looking for good news – Gospel truth! Will they find it in your student ministry? Will they find a simplified and tamed gospel that reduces it to four spiritual laws? Or will they find a wild, dangerous, expansive Gospel that engages their whole life? That is a contagious Gospel.