Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Gospel as "Good News"

When I discuss "the Gospel" I always go back to my parsing tendency. The "gospel" is the "good news". It is NOT the "beat one over the head like a hellfire and damnation preacher" news. (There are those who need that type of preaching, and I have delivered that type of sermon at least once, but it is not best for everyone.) It is the "Exercise faith; Repent continually; Be baptized; Receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost; repeat ad infinitum as you endure to the end; praise Heavenly Father and Jesus that you will be redeemed despite your inability to live to a standard of perfection that otherwise would damn all to an everlasting separation from God" news. It is the "Do all you can do, and I will make up the difference" news.

In saying this, I am not in the mercy-glorying, cop-out-claiming, all-is-well-in-Zion camp. I just choose to focus on the fact that I can muddle my way through life doing the best I know how to do, struggling to change my imperfect self, without overwhelming guilt and shame - because someone bought me and paid for me and is willing to take me home.

4 comments:

Christy said...

I love this post. And I love this message too - and share it as often as I can in church/seminary/etc - because I know that I need it - I'm the type to give up because I'll never make it - therefore this message is sooo important.

RoAnn said...

Yes! Recently I have attended R.S. meetings in Texas and Washington, and in both places I was so grateful to see that the sisters felt comfortable sharing some of their struggles in a positive way. There was such a feeling of support and encouragement in both groups.

How much easier it is both to endure trials and progress towards our eternal goals when we can fully trust in the Atonement to make up for our faults, and also be surrounded by fellow Saints who are eager to understand us, and help us along the way.

Tasha said...

wait you aren't perfect? :)

Mama D said...

Tasha, I love your wit!

Ray, I love your last sentence. As always, because I need to be reminded of that important detail over and over again...