What I appreciated so much about Mike Erre’s first sermon is that he set the tone for his “administration”! If you are curious as to what he said, listen to his sermon on 9/9, “Of First Importance”. His assertion is correct… keeping Jesus is central. I remember Dr. D.A. Carson saying once that it’s easy to sound prophetic from the margins. What he meant is that it’s really easy and popular to speak with passion about issues that are secondary or peripheral. It’s not that they aren’t important. But they can easily replace that which is of first importance. Issues like social justice, spiritual giftings, church growth, small groups, etc. are good things but what Dr. Carson is we must keep that which is of first importance first.
In1 Cor. 15:1-8 Paul tells his readers that he wants to make known to them the gospel. Did they not know the gospel? No. Most likely given the context, he’s reminding them of the gospel. In v.1-2 he says something interesting – this gospel is what they received (past tense), on which they now stand (present tense) and by which they are being saved (future tense). In other words, the gospel must be remembered constantly and it’s work is past, present, and future tense. So the gospel is not only the way “in” the Kingdom but the way to keep moving ahead.
What we read in v.1-8 is most likely a saying that arose in the early church and Paul is merely reciting it as most of his readers would have recognized it. Some scholars would date this very close to Jesus’ death and resurrection. Paul tells us that the core of the gospel is Christ crucified, buried, and raised. This was attested to by the apostles as witnesses and finally including Paul.
So what does this have to do with young adult ministry? We are never beyond the gospel and the gospel must be central to all that we do!l! What started as incredibly good news to us does not become something mundane. There is something radically stirring about the good news that started when we entered His Kingdom and continues today and will be fully consummated when we enter the Kingdom in full. Because of this we never “graduate” beyond the gospel according to Paul. It is a life of constant remembering of what Jesus has done and what He continues to do through His Spirit.