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The Explicit Gospel: Part 1

May we be a school where the gospel is infused into everything we do as we seek to provide a Christ-centered, biblically-directed education.

Over the past several years, our faculty and staff have read a book in the summer and then discussed it throughout the year as part of our faculty development program. This year, our faculty and staff team read and discussed The Explicit Gospel, by Matt Chandler who serves as Lead Teaching Pastor of The Village Church in Texas. Mr. Brink and I discussed some various options for our reading book last spring and we came back to a central question: Do we have a biblical understanding of the gospel? We decided to present our faculty and staff team with a book that would allow an ongoing conversation to occur about the gospel and how ECS applies the gospel day-in-and-day-out.

Chandler's impetus behind writing the book was a moment that occurred during a baptism ceremony at his church that involved five people. The first was a lady named Karen who became heavily involved in witchcraft and then shared that Jesus is better than anything she had previously tried or put her hope and trust in. The next four baptisms were bothersome to him because they were people who had grown up in the church and did not understand or hear the gospel until coming to The Village. He asked a poignant question: "How can you grow up going to church every week and not hear the gospel?" Chandler responds with this thought, "What I found was that for a great many young twentysomethings and thirtysomethings, the gospel had been merely assumed, not taught or proclaimed as central" (13). This question is extended to thinking about ECS . . . Can a student grow up in a home with believers in Christ, attend a Bible believing church, and attend ECS without hearing the gospel? I hope not, but Mr. Brink and I were hopeful to center this year's faculty conversations regarding our book on the gospel, which is the good news that Christ Jesus lived on this earth, was crucified, buried, and rose again breaking the curse of sin for those who put their faith and trust in Christ alone. Mankind has a sin problem separating us from a holy God who created us, and we are in need of Jesus to save us from our sins.

The book presents the gospel from two vantage points: the gospel on the ground and the gospel in the air. Next week, I will expound on these two points and share how our faculty and staff implemented this book this year.

May we be a school where the gospel is infused into everything we do as we seek to provide a Christ-centered, biblically-directed education. I am inspired more than ever to serve, protect, and advance the mission of ECS.