“The gospel is the good news that God hasn’t given up on the world, that the tomb is empty and that a giant resurrection rescue is underway and that you and I can be a part of it. And so yes, this has a deeply personal dimension to it. Jesus is saving me. He’s saving me from my sins, from my mistakes, from my pride, from my indifference to the suffering of the world around me, from my cynicism and despair. The brokenness I see in the world around me is true of my own soul, and so he’s rescuing me, moment by moment, day by day, because God wants to put it all back together—you, me, the whole world. And so he starts deep inside each of us with our awareness that we need help, that we need saving, that we need rescuing. And then he begins to show us step by step what it looks like to put flesh and blood on this gospel. Because we all fall short, and that’s the beautiful part. Broken, flawed, vulnerable people like you and me are invited to be the hands and feet of a Jesus who loves us exactly as we are and yet loves us way too much to let us stay that way.”
Rob Bell says that the gospel is that “God hasn’t given up on the world”. For Mr. Bell, God is this sort of social activist, one who has a wonderful plan for this world, and he’s attempting to make this world better, if he could just get some support in the grassroots (from you and me)- then maybe we can get this resurrection thing on the way. What the resurrection means for Rob Bell, is not Christ’s victory over death, not at all, it’s about the “giant resurrection rescue underway” where God will (insert kind earthly gesture here), through you and me. What Rob Bell is espousing, is nothing different than what we’ve heard before. It is the social gospel. The idea that the gospel is lived out, when you and I- by our efforts- usher in the kingdom of God. In this concept, salvation is not a matter of Christ dying as substitute under the wrath of God for our sins, no, it’s about Christ being sent to be an example of social love. Personal salvation isn’t important. What is important is the well being of all mankind, through our social efforts of helping the poor, giving to charity, etc.
As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!- Galatians 1:9