Missing the Gospel in John 3

In listening to a lot of preaching today, it’s clear that it’s possible to talk about the gospel or even about the work of God without actually getting around to preaching the gospel itself—preaching Jesus Christ for sinners. This can happen with any number of passages, but today Jon and Justin are going to have a conversation about a well-known text: the interchange between Jesus and Nicodemus from John chapter three. There’s a lot of truly epic content in this passage, including the sovereign grace of God, the work of God, and regeneration in the new birth. Unfortunately, the gospel message within this passage—the Son of Man being lifted up for us—is often not talked about enough. We hope this discussion is encouraging and clarifying for you.

The Old Testament Preaches the Gospel

Many Christians struggle with reading and understanding the Old Testament. They know it’s supposed to be about Jesus, and they’ve read the New Testament, but they’re just disconnected from the Old. Today’s podcast is our attempt to give you reasons why you should read your Old Testament. By doing so, you will see the wonder and glory it defines for us, which leads us to Christ and His grace.

What Happened to Freedom in the Gospel?

Jesus said that those whom the Son sets free are free indeed. But maybe you’re listening to this podcast and thinking, “I don’t really feel free.” There may be reasons for that. The gospel is marvelous and wonderful, and it has many facets. At times, certain aspects aren’t discussed as much. The forgiveness of sins, absolution from guilt, and the imputation of Christ’s righteousness are wonderful truths. Additionally, we have been set free from the kingdom of darkness and from the evil one. Today on the podcast, Jon and Justin have a conversation about that freedom and how it is an essential part of the gospel message.

The Power of the Gospel (w/ Chris Gordon)

Paul declares to the church, “I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God.” He urges us not to feel ashamed because the gospel embodies a power that transcends our universe – God’s power. This concept often perplexes modern Christians. How can mere words encapsulate God’s power? This episode delves into this question, exploring how we can embrace the gospel’s benefits. Essentially, Paul emphasizes that while the world may ridicule it, Christians recognize the gospel as God’s power for their lives.

Train Wrecks Welcomed

Fairly regularly, we see posts or correspondence discouraging people from listening to Theocast because this podcast attracts those whose lives are shipwrecked. From our perspective, we are happy to receive such a compliment. Jesus came to seek and save the lost. He came to save sinners. He came for the weak and frail. He came for those who were weighed down by guilt and shame. This is the gospel. And, here’s the thing: it is anything but the celebration and condoning of sin.

The Clarity of the Gospel (w/ Kelsi Klembara of 1517)

In this episode, Jon and Justin sit down with Kelsi Klembara of 1517 (host of “Outside Ourselves”). The guys talk personally about their own experiences in the church and how they came to grow in their understanding of Christ and the gospel. After that, the conversation centers on the clarity of the gospel but covers a number of topics, including trends in the contemporary church, half-gospels, the sacraments, and what’s going on with people in our generation.

Are You Believing a Half-Gospel?

Paul warns Timothy to be aware of the “teachings of demons” (1 Tim 4:1). What would this sound like? A half gospel. In this episode, Jon explains how Satan has many believing they are only saved from their sin, but not unto perfect righteousness causing believers to attempt to earn their own standing before God by good works.

What is the Gospel?

What is the gospel? Sadly, the answer many church-going people would give has a lot to do with us. This has left some self-righteous and proud. This has left many anxious and fearful. The gospel, however, is the message about what Jesus alone has secured for sinners: the forgiveness of sins, imputed righteousness, and an eternal inheritance.

Who Does the Gospel Offend?

At multiple points, Paul writes that he is not ashamed of the gospel. Why did he need to write that? What is it about the gospel that could bring shame on someone who preaches it–or believes it? The gospel offends us in our self-righteousness. That’s clear. It also offends us in our licentiousness. The truth of our union with Christ and liberation from sin’s dominion can fly in the face of the desires of our flesh. In all of this, the Lord has us and will complete the good work he has begun in us! Jon and Justin talk about all of this on today’s episode.

Getting the Gospel Right (w/ NoCo Radio, The Pactum, and The Heidelcast)

In this special podcast, Jon and Justin are joined by fellow reformed podcasters, Mike Abendroth from No Compromise Radio, Pat Abendroth and Mike Grimes from The Pactum, and R. Scott Clark The Heidelcast! Recorded live at Westminster Theological Seminary California, all the guys discuss Covenant Theology, Assurance, Law/Gospel Distinction, and Sola Fide!

Following Jesus Is Not the Gospel

Following Jesus is not the gospel. There are a number of things that are fruits of regeneration and fruits of the gospel that are not the gospel. Biblically speaking, the gospel has nothing to do with us whatsoever. The gospel is completely about the person and work of Jesus Christ, our substitute and mediator. Jon and Justin talk about fruit of the gospel, the order of salvation, and justification from a confessional, reformed perspective.

Why the Gospel Terrifies Christians

It sounds a little crazy to say that the gospel terrifies Christians. But it clearly does. Christians are prone to qualify the grace of God in Christ. Christians are prone to hedge on justification by faith alone. At times, Christians can even be unsettled by the preaching of Christ from all of Scripture. Why are these things so? Jon and Justin consider history, fear-based theology, pietism, law/gospel confusion, and Christ-centered preaching in today’s episode.

The Problem: An Anemic Gospel

People make various diagnoses of what ails the church today. To some, it’s a loss of a commitment to moral and social values. To others, it’s a general lack of acceptance. To others, it’s that we don’t preach obedience and holiness enough. If we were to fix these things, would it cure what ails us? Jon and Justin consider these questions and suggest that the issue in so much of the church today is that we’re preaching an anemic gospel.

The Demands of the Gospel?

People like to talk about the “demands of the gospel.” But does the gospel make demands of us? Must we forsake sin in order to come to Christ? Do we need to make Jesus Lord of our lives?

Is Christ-Centered Preaching Dangerous? (Transcript)

There are a number of things discussed in the church as though they are part of the gospel–things like faith, repentance, obedience, and surrendering all to Jesus. But are these things the gospel? The guys have that conversation.

What Is-and Is Not-the Gospel?

There are a number of things discussed in the church as though they are part of the gospel–things like faith, repentance, obedience, and surrendering all to Jesus. But are these things the gospel? The guys have that conversation.