Photo by Yogi Purnama on Unsplash
Scripture contains numerous plot summaries like 1 Corinthians 15: “As in Adam all die, so in Christ will all be made alive… And so it is written, ‘The first man Adam became a living being.’ The last Adam (eschatos adam, super adam) became a life-giving Spirit (1 Cor. 15:22, 45).”
Just the name “Jesus” is a plot summary. It means “God is Salvation.”
Sadly we often preach, “We are salvation . . . from God . . . who is salvation.”
We preach that we (our choice) saves us from God, when the Gospel is that God saves us from ourselves, that is, our choices.
It’s so important that we believe the “plot summaries” so that we preach the story of God’s love, for it’s the story of God’s victorious love (the Gospel) that is the power of salvation (Romans 1:16, 1 Cor. 1:18,25), and the power to make us in the image of God.
Imagine a little boy getting to the end of a Superman movie, when and where the world is threatened by some great evil, and all at once an announcer comes on the screen and says: “If you believe Superman will save the world, then he will save some of the world, but not all… And if you don’t believe he will save the world, he will not. And he will torture you forever without end.”
That’s the way we often preach the Gospel.
Or imagine a little girl watching Cinderella, Snow White or Sleeping Beauty. And an announcer interrupts the movie to say: “If you believe the Prince loves you, then he will love you forever and unconditionally. But if you don’t believe He loves you, unconditionally and absolutely, then he will torture you forever without end.”
That’s how we often preach the Gospel.
So people say they believe, but they don’t really believe… they don’t trust Superman or the Prince.
People say they trust God, but we teach them to trust themselves…
And so we have to make rules and laws for people to act good, because they don’t want to be good.
If a little boy loves Superman, no one has to tell him to act like superman.
And if a little girl loves the Prince, no one has to tell her to act like a princess.
The Story changes them.
The Word is living and active, piercing to the division of soul and spirit.
The Word performs surgery upon our hard hearts.
The Story of God’s victory in Christ Jesus is not dependent on you, but you are utterly depending on it—that is Him, the Superman.