Taking a boiled peanut in my hand, I was told the topic of our teen devotion was going to be “The Gospel in a Nutshell”. I do not remember what was said that evening in terms of remarks. However, I do remember following the instructions to crack open the nutshell that appeared never to have been opened. To my surprise instead of seeing nuts, a piece of paper dropped out.
The following was on the paper: For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16
Over 30 years later, that is still The Gospel in a Nutshell. It is still the good news that Jesus, who was the very Son of God, came into the world as a baby. This Jesus was sent by God to live a sinless, perfect life which He did completely. Though Jesus had never done anything wrong, godless men nailed Jesus to a cross . . .and it pleased God.
God had such affection and love for the world, He wanted to provide a way for all men to have a way out of the world and into His Kingdom. By sending Jesus, God invites men, who do not deserve to be united with Him, to have peace with Him. God, who is in charge of everything and has all right to make all the determinations in all things, determined when the first man (Adam) chose to disobey His commands, all men disobeyed God’s commands. Because of this, no man deserved God to walk with him.
Jesus willingly pleased God by coming to the world which was already condemned to pay the required cost for all who would receive the help. Jesus’ death on the cross was the payment required by God. The very Son of God, who had never disobeyed God, became disobedience for us. He did this completely by proclaiming from the cross, “It is finished”. Jesus died.
To ensure Jesus was dead, a spear pierced His side which resulted in a pouring out of blood and water. Then His body was taken down, prepared, and put in a tomb. His body was in a tomb for three days. On the third day, God raised Jesus to life again. God resurrected the body of Jesus. This allowed Jesus to appear to many hundreds of people. Jesus had a body that was unlike that of any human body, yet he could still be seen and eat.
After a period of time, the close followers of Jesus watched as Jesus went up into Heaven where He remains to this day. The followers of Jesus were informed, Jesus would come back just as He was seen departing. The disciples would never be the same, though their Savior had gone away, they had experienced The Gospel In A Nutshell.
The disciples had faith (confidence, belief) Jesus was the Son of God. They knew God had sent Him and that He always did everything God told Him to do. Love was the reason God sent Jesus. The disciples understood and accepted the great affection God had for them by trusting Jesus’ shed blood made them acceptable to belong to God and have eternal life in the Kingdom of God.
Do you believe The Gospel In A Nutshell? Having heard the word of God, the gospel of God? Do you believe you were so loved by God that He sent His only son who shed His blood on a cross so that you may have life forever?
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16
Hearing this Word, take action on what you hear and “believe”. No work is required. No duty must be performed. Believeth means you choose to have confidence that Jesus’ death on the cross gives you peace with God, agreement with Him, and life forever with Him. Since you are no longer perishing as the “world”, you are alive In Christ Jesus. You identify with Christ Jesus and begin to align everything in your life with the alignment of Christ Jesus.
For more information, please refer to What Must I Do To Be Saved?
Written By: Anne Gurley