Doing Christians are needed.
Evangelical protestant churches in America are in decline. If something doesn't dramatically change in the next few years, these churches will be a shadow of what they once were, if not extinct.
At the same time, the non-denominational protestant church in America is growing. In less than 10 years it will be larger than the Southern Baptist denomination.
Why? The biggest difference between them is that non-denominational churches embrace the Complete Gospel of Jesus, the Christ. Caring for “the other(s)” is a driving force in the life of their congregants.
Instead of cultivating “believing Christians” who stop short of acting out the “good news” first proclaimed by Jesus, churches that desire to grow need to spend as much time embracing the Forgotten Gospel in word and deed.
With Our Lives.
Each follower of the Complete Gospel is called and commanded to live changed lives, not just in moral and spiritual ways, but in outward ways. By setting the kingdom of God on earth Gospel of Jesus example through serving “the other(s),” especially the “least of these,” in our family, neighborhood, and workplace.
How we think (or don’t think), feel (or don’t feel), speak (or don’t speak), and act (or don’t act) toward the oppressed and marginalized speaks volumes (or doesn’t speak, or, worse, delivers the wrong perception) about Jesus, the Christ, to those who are watching.
Any definition of being a Christian that doesn’t include ushering in the kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven is not in keeping with the Complete Gospel of Jesus, the Christ. Ergo it is not fully Christian.
It is time to stop giving those who deny with their words or lack of deeds a pass. We can no longer say, “Well, they are technically Christian because they believe in the salvation Gospel.”
If they don’t fulfill what Jesus said, did, and commanded, to the best of their ability, they are gambling their eternity. We should be sick and tired of excusing these people for blaspheming what Jesus came to do, create a new world in our lives and pass it on to those around us.
In Our Communities.
The kingdom of God on earth is being, or not being, ushered in by the actions of people who call themselves Christian, using their gifts, resources, influence, time, and energy in individual and collective ways to provide hope to those in need.
Through Our Churches.
When the church embraces the Forgotten Gospel, it can become the most powerful organization for justice and hope in America. This will require a dramatic shift in the church’s hierarchy and its members, through education, emphasis, and an expectation toward action serving “the other(s)” wherever they are found.
To all who are weary and need rest.
To all who mourn and need comfort.
To all who are lonely and need friendship.
To all who are complacent and need disturbing.
To all who sin and need a savior.
To all who are glad and would serve.
This church opens wide its doors.
On a plague on the front door of the
Metro Baptist Church, New York City
The church in America can be better than this. It must!
Charlie is founder of Making Faith Matter, a movement to help the local church return to the Complete Gospel of Jesus, the Christ. This is expressed best by Jesus when He taught us to pray, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.” Charlie's new book “Reclaiming the Forgotten Gospel of Jesus” explores what could happen when churches adopt establishing the “Kingdom of God on earth” as their primary purpose. Learn more...
Reclaiming the Forgotten Gospel of Jesus
For decades, evangelical protestant churches in America have preached a salvation-centric Gospel of Christ. Today, a majority of protestants believe this is the complete gospel, and their churches have aligned their teachings to “seek and save the lost” only. In doing so, they relegated the life, words, and works of Jesus to secondary, non-gospel status.
But, what if the story of Jesus, passed down to us in the New Testament (especially Mark, Matthew, and Luke), describing His life, actions, death, and resurrection, is true? What if it accurately portrays the whole story of Jesus, the Son of God, as He lived among us? What if He still lives with us, showing us how to live out the kingdom of God on earth?
What if Jesus’s life was a living gospel, as He said it was, yet it has been forgotten by the evangelical protestant churches in America? And if this forgotten gospel has been ignored, what should the church do about it?
The purpose of this book is to explore how the life, words, and works of Jesus can bring churches, pastors, denominations, and members back to the Complete Gospel of Jesus, the Christ.