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The gospel is the foundation of everything we as Christians believe, and the reason Jennifer and I started our Marriage After God ministry. In this week’s episode of The Marriage After God podcast, we are discussing the single most important topic we will ever share on this podcast – the Gospel. The Gospel is both graciously simple and infinitely complex, but today our goal is to simply share the basic building blocks of the gospel.

“There’s a reason why we want to simplify it, I don’t know about you, but I’m going to be a little bit vulnerable here. I have been a Christian for a very long time… I became a Christian at 17, and now I’m 35. I was raised in a Christian home, so I knew God, but it wasn’t until maybe three years ago that I could actually fully verbalize the Gospel.” – Aaron Smith

Our goal is that today’s podcast will clarify the gospel message for our listeners and get them comfortable with expressing it to others. We pray this episode blesses you.

READ TRANSCRIPT

Aaron:
Hey, we’re Aaron and Jennifer Smith with Marriage After God.

Jennifer Smith:
Helping you cultivate an extraordinary marriage.

Aaron:
Today we’re going to talk about the gospel. Welcome to the Marriage After God Podcast, where we believe that marriage was meant to more than just happily ever after.

Jennifer Smith:
I’m Jennifer also known as unveiled wife.

Aaron:
I’m Aaron also known as husband revolution.

Jennifer Smith:
We’ve been married for over a decade.

Aaron:
So far we have four young children.

Jennifer Smith:
We have been doing marriage ministry online for over seven years through blogging and social media.

Aaron:
With the desire to inspire couples to keep God at the center of their marriage, encouraging them to walk in faith every day.

Jennifer Smith:
We believe that Christian marriage should be an extraordinary one full of life.

Aaron:
Love.

Jennifer Smith:
And power.

Aaron:
That can only be found by chasing after God.

Jennifer Smith:
Together.

Aaron:
Thank you for joining us in this journey as we chase boldly after God’s will for our life together.

Jennifer Smith:
This is Marriage After God.

Aaron:
Hey, friends, thanks for joining us with another episode of the Marriage After God Podcast. We’re just so excited to have you. It’s going to be great episode today. But before we get into the topic, we want to invite you to take our marriage prayer challenge. It’s completely free and it’s at 31 emails that we’re going to send you over the next month reminding you and giving you prompts every day to be praying for your spouse. All you got to do is go to marriageprochallenge.com and sign up, either you choose the husband prayer challenge or the wife prayer challenge. Again, it’s completely free marriageprochallenge.com and I’d love it if you’d join the hundreds of couples that have already gone through it and be blessed by that. So, Jennifer, why don’t you let everyone know what we’re going to be talking about.

Jennifer Smith:
Yeah, so you already shared by saying the gospel, but gosh, the gospel is so powerful and so beautiful and so rich. I just want to start off by saying this is, and will remain our most important episode on the Marriage After God Podcast. I’m actually surprised that we haven’t done yet. But it’s foundational to our faith and to what Aaron and I do for marriage after God. For all of you listening, it’s the foundation of everything that we believe. So we are sharing this with you today and if you’re listening and you’re a born again believer, then we hope this message will reaffirm your faith and just remind you of what your savior has done for you.

Jennifer Smith:
Something that Christians, we cannot neglect to revisit anyways. If you’re not saved and you’re hearing this message today, we just pray that it would transform your life and draw you so close to God and reconcile your heart to God. Please if this message does touch you in any way, feel free to reach out to Aaron and I, we’d love to hear from you. But either way, no matter where you are in life, we pray that this episode, the gospel touches your heart today. It means a lot to us to be able to share it with you. So we’re just praying for God to move through this episode. Why don’t you take it from there Aaron?

Aaron:
This is not going to be a very long episode. There’s infinite depth to the gospel, but there’s also infinite simplicity to the gospel. So we could over complicate it and we can’t complicate it enough. It’s both.

Jennifer Smith:
Today we want to simplify it for you.

Aaron:
We want to simplify it and there’s a reason we want to simplify it. I don’t know about you, I’m going to be a little vulnerable here, but I’ve been a Christian for a very long time not as long as most, but I became a Christian when I was 17 and a half, and now I’m 35.

Jennifer Smith:
You were also raised in a Christian home, so you knew God.

Aaron:
I was raised in a Christian home, so I knew God. But it wasn’t until maybe three years ago that I could actually fully verbalize the gospel which is really crazy because I grew up in church. I’m sure I’ve heard it. I’m going to had to because I’m saved. So at some point, I understood the gospel and it transformed me and it began that process of sanctification in my life. But it wasn’t until a few years ago that I… because I remember thinking I don’t feel confident in telling someone the gospel, what it is” what the gospel is that boil down to its core pieces.

Aaron:
So I began to study it and be discipled, and you know what, knowing what the gospel is, the core principles of the gospel, man, there’s so much power and how it transforms us, and we’ll talk about that a little bit. But we just want to share with our listeners the gospel, the core of the gospel and why it’s so important. So that’s what we’re going to do. We’ve all heard the gospel, right? If you’re a believer, you’re like, “Yeah, I must’ve heard the gospel.” But there’s pieces of it I don’t think we hear often enough. So we’re going to talk about those pieces.

Aaron:
The gospel means a teaching or revelation of Christ, or it means an announcement of good news. Have you ever heard the gospel is the good news of Jesus Christ? That’s essentially the simplest way of saying what the gospel is. Just a little side note, when you hear about the gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, those are the accounts of Jesus by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, so that’s why they call them the gospels.

Jennifer Smith:
That’s who He was and what He did.

Aaron:
Right, but that’s not the story of what Jesus did isn’t necessarily the full gospel, the thing that saves us, that was a story about Jesus fulfilling the prophecies and why he’s the gospel. Then when you read through the whole testament, you get the fuller picture of what the gospel is. Paul even calls it The Mystery of the Gospel, The Mystery of Christ, which is an amazing thing. I’m just going to boil this down into its simplest terms for everyone of what is the gospel. You know what, I hope that believers will take this and feel more confident when they sit down with someone that’s unsaved and say, “Hey, this is it. This is what I believe and this is what’s changed me. It starts with this, God created man.”

Jennifer Smith:
There we go.

Aaron:
God created man. We find that in Genesis. The first two chapters of Genesis, we learn about God creating everything. I know there are some people out there that believe Genesis is an allegory. It’s not real. It’s a story. I believe the Bible is true and I believe that Genesis is true. I believe that God created the world in six days. I believe that He created man from the dust, that he breathed his life into him, that He made us in His image because it tells us He did that.

Aaron:
He says, “Let us make man in our image.” God even speaks of himself in a multiple person because he’s talking in the trinity. That’s one of the first points we hear of the Godhead, the father, son, Holy Spirit. We’re made in his image. He created us. We are His, we are His creation. We are not gods. We’re not little gods. We are man and He made us, it starts there. Any thoughts on that, Jennifer?

Jennifer Smith:
Just, no. Just that simple.

Aaron:
It’s simple.

Jennifer Smith:
I don’t think that… Yeah.

Aaron:
That’s fine. So the thing I want to just bring out is for the people that do doubt, whether Genesis is true or not, all I believe is, all I can say is I don’t want to believe in a god. I can’t believe in a god that’s not powerful enough to create everything in six days. He either is or isn’t. I believe he did. So anyways, God created man starts there. So we have man, we’re created, we’re in His image. The next part of this, man sinned.

Jennifer Smith:
This is the part that we all relate to, right?

Aaron:
Yes, but I also think it’s the part that we forget. So we relate to it like, “Oh, we’re all sinners, we’re all, the whole… we’re just human.” That’s where we get this from is the ideas that we’re fallible. We sin. But it started with one man or one woman, I should say, she sinned and then caused her husband to sin. Through Adam and Eve, all men are sinners. It’s not you’re born and you actually could, “Well, I didn’t sin, so I might’ve…” No, no, you are born into a sin nature that we adopted from our forefathers, Adam and Eve. We’re sinners.

Jennifer Smith:
So jumping into some scripture here, Romans 3:23, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Not just some, not just the bad ones. The nice ones aren’t off the hook.

Aaron:
Yeah, and I want to amplify this because I think this is the part of the gospel that I forgot. Because we play this game of like, well, we’re all sinners. I’m like, we’re never going to not be sinners until we’re in heaven. But to realize what it means to be the sinner in this equation, it’s not like, “Well, I only said a little bit and so I’m not that… I only like set a couple of lies and at least I didn’t murder someone. At least I didn’t.” But when Jesus comes onto the scene in the New Testament, He says things that take all of our concepts of sin and throw them out the window.

Aaron:
He says, even the righteousness you do are as filthy rags. Jesus says, if you hate your brother, you’ve committed murder in your heart. Jesus says, if you look upon a woman lustfully, you’ve committed adultery with her in heart. It’s no longer look and don’t touch as a lot of people like to say. It was, you’ve already touched when you looked. So He takes the sin from the action and shows us where it truly existed in the heart because the sin nature is there. So whether or not, I’ve physically murdered someone, I am capable and it is in my heart to do so. That’s what God is coming to redeem, that broken, sinful nature. Whether I actually committed the act or not, I am already opposed to God in my heart at the core of who I am.

Aaron:
This is why the gospel is so amazing because this is who we are. We are the sinner. We are the man who is opposed to God. This is what Romans 1:18 says about the sinner. It says the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. So the gospel starts at I am man and not God, and I am a sinner under the wrath of God deserving His wrath. I deserve it. I can’t say God’s unjust. Romans even says that. No, God is fully just, we talked about this in another episode, last episode actually.

Aaron:
His Justice needs to be met out because I am a sinner and if I stand in the courtroom, I deserve judgment. There’s no way around it. There’s no lawyer good enough to get me off the hook. I am in and not just me, but if you a part of the race of man, raise your hand, we all deserve it. We deserve the wrath of God because God is perfectly just and perfectly holy and we are perfectly unholy. We do not by anything we do deserve anything God gives us other than his wrath and justice. So that’s the bad news of the good news. So I just wanted to bring that up, is that there’s two parts of this. Without the bad news, there can be no good news and with the good news, you have to recognize that there’s bad news. We need the good news because of the bad news.

Jennifer Smith:
So the good news is that we’ve been given away out from under God’s wrath.

Aaron:
That’s the good news.

Jennifer Smith:
That’s the good news.

Aaron:
People, listen, this is why when we tell someone the gospel, it starts with them believing the first two parts that they were created by God, which means that they give reverence to the creator. They say, oh, I believe in a creator, that’s the beginning. The second part is.

Jennifer Smith:
We’ve all sinned.

Aaron:
I also believe that what the Creator says about me, is true. I am a sinner which leads to the third part, I can accept. I want to accept the good news that instead of the wrath that I deserve, God sent His Son to die for me.

Jennifer Smith:
As payment.

Aaron:
As payment because remember God’s just, we talked about this last episode. Hey, Marriage After God family, we want to take a short moment to let you know about an organization that we believe in and support. Did you know that there are more than four million victims of sex trafficking globally and 99 percent of those are women and children? As a Christian and as a father, this truth breaks my heart. What if those were my children? What if that was my wife? Thank God there are Christ-centered organizations out there that are making a difference. Destiny Rescue is an international recognized Christian nonprofit organization dedicated to rescuing children trapped in exploitation and the sex trade.

Aaron:
Their vision is to rescue the sexually exploited and slaved, restore the abused, protect the vulnerable, empower the poor, and be a voice for those who can’t speak up for themselves. They currently work in seven countries around the world and have celebrated over 4,000 lives rescued from the evils of sex exploitation. Destiny Rescue has operations in Thailand, Cambodia, the Dominican Republic in the Philippines, India, and other locations that remain undisclosed for security purposes.

Aaron:
Since 2011, they’ve been working tirelessly to free children from exploitation around the world. They have helped keep hundreds more from entering the sex trade through the various prevention programs. Ensure justice for those who have been wronged and raised awareness to untold numbers. My family supports Destiny Rescue on a monthly basis. We want to invite you to join us and saving and protecting children from this wicked industry. Visit destinyrescue.org today and become a monthly partner with us. Thank you.

Aaron:
Someone has to pay for it, right?

Jennifer Smith:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Aaron:
God loves us so much that He doesn’t wish that any of us would bear the full weight of his punishment, His judgment. So He did something incredible, He took it on himself. We talked about this a little in the last episode again. We’ve just been going through the Chronicles of Narnia and I just keep thinking of Azlan going and taking on the what was owed to Edmund and he goes and sacrifices himself for him. That was a deliberate picture of Christ going to the cross to bear, not just the physical death that we deserve, but also the spiritual death. It says that he was separated from God on the Cross and that’s what we deserve.

Aaron:
It’s not just a physical death we deserve. Yes in our flesh, we deserve death and wrath, but we also deserve to be eternally separated from the father and heaven because light has no fellowship with darkness. Our unholiness, our unrighteousness cannot be in the presence of God. So the bad news, or I’ll start with the news, we are created in God’s image.

Aaron:
We are created we’re man, God created us. The bad news, because of Adam, we are all sinners and deserve the wrath of God. We are unholy. We are unrighteous, and we’re under the wrath of God. Without the good news, which is God sent His son Jesus to die on a cross for our sins. To bear our burdens, and to bear our reproach as a propitiation, which essentially means like a replacement. He took our place.

Jennifer Smith:
He could do it because he was 100 percent God. He was also a 100 percent man, but He was perfect. He was sinless.

Aaron:
So the Bible tells us that Jesus, who was fully man and fully God was able to bear the penalty for man because He was a man, but without sin. So Jesus did, and the Bible even calls Jesus the Second Adam. Jesus did what Adam couldn’t. Adam couldn’t walk in righteousness before Holy God, Jesus did for us. He came and fulfilled for us every requirement that we were supposed to fulfill but couldn’t in our flesh. Jesus did it, which is why He has the name that is above all names, which is why He’s at the right hand of the father, which is why His enemies in the world has been made a footstool for him. He is glorified. He is good and that’s amazing.

Jennifer Smith:
So Jesus Christ, who we call our Lord and Savior, He gave up His life as an atonement for our sin and by His power resurrected three days later.

Aaron:
Which is the other part of the good news.

Jennifer Smith:
That’s the power.

Aaron:
This is the power, yes. So there’s not just we’re mortal men, we’re sinners. A Holy God saves us. It doesn’t just end there.

Jennifer Smith:
No.

Aaron:
He resurrects. The Bible tells us that the same power that raised Christ from the dead will also bring life to our mortal bodies. Jesus tells us that if He goes away, He’s going to send us a helper, He sends us the Holy Spirit. So there’s not just the good news and like, “Oh, we’re redeemed. We’re made right before God” because that’s what Christ did. He came to reconcile man to the father. So we now as once sinful men are now made righteous and can actually have a relationship directly with God, not through a mediator, like an earthly priest, but through the perfect priest, Jesus Christ.

Aaron:
We’re going to get to the scripture on that in a second. But he raised again on the third day, which means we also are raised with him. That’s the picture of baptism. We die with him, we go into the water, we come out of the water, we raise with him in new life. So now we have new life. We have a new nature and an old body, which is where sanctification comes in and that process begins the moment of salvation. We begin being sanctified in the spirit of God. That’s the spirit that God gives us is His spirit. It’s His power. It’s His authority living in us, giving us the ability to actually obey Him and walk with Him.

Aaron:
We could not do it before we were slaves to unrighteousness. We were slaves to sin, but now we can actually practice righteousness as 1 John tells us and be righteous because we have a holy God living in us, making it possible for us to do it. So we have some scriptures that tell us how we are saved. So in Romans 10:9-10 it says this, because if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved for with the heart one believes and is justified and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. So this sounds like it could be just mean like, “Oh, Jesus is Lord, boom, done.” This is actually like really rich confess, the word confess is actually like perpetual confession.

Jennifer Smith:
Like continue.

Aaron:
My mouth continues to say through all of my words and actions, Jesus is Lord. It’s not just I’ve used words one time in my life, no, my mouth perpetually confesses Jesus is Lord. Then that part where it says Jesus is Lord, Lordship means something. It’s not just a word we say like, Oh yeah, Jesus is Lord. No, it means Jesus is my Lord and if he’s my Lord then I am His servant. If he’s Lord, then He gets the say on everything. So if one confesses with their mouth that Jesus is Lord and believes which belief is the only thing we have to offer God is our belief, which means God what you have said, going back to this idea of God created everything, created me even.

Aaron:
I have to believe that I am created in His image, that God created me, that what God said in His word is true. So belief is the beginning of everything. So if I believe what God has said and I believe in God, then I’m going to trust in what He said. That’s where it starts. It’s not just like, “Oh yeah, I believe in God” and then have no care for anything He said. I don’t actually believe in God because if I believed in God and He just told me that I’m under his wrath and I deserve eternal separation and I’m a sinner and I… then I’m going to be like, whoa. Well what’s the answer? Help me out. I believe you, or like, I believe what you said is true. Then we’re all going to believe what he tells us about His son Jesus. That’s incredible.

Aaron:
Belief so as you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead. So you’ve not only do you believe that Jesus came and that Jesus was gone and that he died on a cross, but all the way through to the fulfillment of he was raised from the dead, which means we get raised with him in new life. That’s just one of the scriptures. Ephesians 2:8 talks about it as well. You should dig into those scriptures. I have it right here it says, for by grace you have been saved through faith. Remember, faith is the action of belief. This is not your own doing, it is the gift of God.

Aaron:
So what’s the gift of God? It’s the grace of salvation. So when people say, we just need more grace, oh, God’s grace is going to cover you. The grace that God gave us, His name is Jesus. There’s no more grace thing that God could give than His son Jesus. There’s nothing greater than that, there’s no greater grace. So if you’re looking for more grace than what He already gave you on the cross, you will not find it. You will be disappointed, which is sad because what Christ did, God dying for man, a sinful man is an insanely incredible thing.

Jennifer Smith:
At the end of that verse there in Ephesians 2:8, it says that it is the gift of God. I’m just thinking this picture in my mind of when you give someone a gift, they receive it from you. With all humility and gentleness and they receive it…

Aaron:
Humbly, yeah.

Jennifer Smith:
… humbly to themselves. I see this just really beautiful picture of reconciliation that, grace isn’t just something that happens to all of us. It’s something that… it’s a gift that we get to receive and it’s a very personal gift that God gives. Receiving it requires action on our part to accept exactly what you’re saying but belief of what God has said, who we are and what He did for us.

Aaron:
Bringing that word belief again, if we believe what God said, then we’re going to believe what his son has said because Jesus himself says, I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through me. There are no other ways. There’s not many ways lead to God. There’s one way that leads to a relationship with God. I will say this, a part of the bad news, there are many ways that will bring you to the throne of God but only is going to bring you as a child. It’s through Jesus. The other ways is judgment because you’ve chosen to take the wrath of God rather than his gift of salvation.

Aaron:
Again, the bad news with the good news. So I want to talk about Romans for a second because we’ve been using Romans a lot. Something I just learned about Romans that I really love. I read it over and over and over again and it’s essentially the gospel, the whole book of Romans. The first half of it is who we are without Christ. The second half of it is who we are with Christ. So the end of Romans 7 is kind of like this tipping point in Romans where he’s going through Paul’s telling the church in Rome who we are before Christ. At the end of it, verse 24 he says, wretched man that I am, who will deliver me from this body of death.

Aaron:
A lot of people have used that to say like, see Paul struggled and look, I’m just here and I’m still having this, but that’s not what he’s saying because the very next verse says this, thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So he says like, oh, wretched man that I am without Christ, who can save me from this body. Then he says, thanks be to God through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Then he gives this precursor he says, so then I myself in my flesh serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh, I serve a lot of sin. He’s showing the contrast of he desires in his mind. But didn’t have the capability in his flesh.

Aaron:
Then in the very first verse of Chapter 9 or Chapter 8, this is what we get. It’s so incredible because he just talks about this whole thing of like the wrath that we deserve and who we are without Christ. Then he says this in Chapter 8, there is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus for the law of the spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done with the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do by sending His own son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh in order that the righteousness, the righteous requirements of the law might be fulfilled in us who walk not according to the flesh, but according to the spirit. That’s the gospel.

Aaron:
So if you want to like get a really in depth look into the gospel, Romans Chapter one through seven essentially give us the picture of the man without Christ. Romans eight through the end of Romans, I think it’s 16, gives us the picture of who we are in Christ and what we can now do in Christ because of what Christ did.

Jennifer Smith:
I love the way you broke it down in the two. Who we are as people under the wrath and why we need a savior, but then who we are in Christ because the way he did for us. But this’ll be funny for some people who maybe grew up like I did, but we heard the Romans wrote over and over and over. It’s just those handful of verses that lead you through Romans that are the gospel. But you’re absolutely right. Romans is a great place to dive in deep.

Aaron:
The other thing I realized about Romans, so you have Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, Acts, letter to the Romans. Acts is essentially an extension of Luke. So it’s Luke and then Acts. It’s almost like it should be the gospel of Luke One and the gospel of Luke two. So we have the gospels and then we have the Acts of the apostles. So the beginning of the church. Then boom, the very first epistle in the New Testament from Paul is Romans, which is the gospel. What’s awesome about that is Paul was the first one to bring the gospel to the Gentiles. He was God’s instrument to bring the gospel to us. It’s the first epistle in the New Testament, boom, Romans. It’s like you read the gospels. Who’s Jesus? Oh, what did the apostles do? Let’s the power’s coming in, the spirits coming. Boom, here’s the gospel, written in 16 chapters.

Jennifer Smith:
He also starts out in Romans 1 verse 16 it says, “But I’m not ashamed of the gospel for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes to the Jew first and also to the Greek.”

Aaron:
Yeah, because the gospel came first to the Jews.

Jennifer Smith:
Yeah, and here comes Paul.

Aaron:
Then boom, he’s like, now I’m going to go to the Gentiles. So that’s the gospel in essence. Like I said, there’s infinite depth to the gospel and the power and this Holy Spirit, how it works and what it does in our life. But as Paul says, for I’m not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who again, that word beliefs like, I’m going to believe what God said is true. So his words are my words. So the question is, if we believe wrong as our pastor Matt always said, if you believe wrong, you’ll never live strong. If your beliefs are not in order, if we have the gospel off, if we have the gospel off, if we think we’re still the same person before we found Christ as we are with Christ, which is something I believed, we’re off and we won’t be able to walk in the spirit as Paul encouraged us to do in Romans 8.

Jennifer Smith:
Why don’t you unpack that a little bit and explain for them what do you mean when you say you found Christ, but you are walking the same.

Aaron:
So, sanctification is a beautiful thing. God’s patient, he’s kind, He’s loving. He’s like a good father. Like when I look at my children and they’re young and they’re infants and they’re toddlers and they’re young kids, they’re learning. We just learned this. We have to repeat stuff a million and a half times to them.

Jennifer Smith:
Oh my goodness.

Aaron:
That’s how God sees us. We’re children so there’s still his mercy and his patience with us. But even though I was a believer and I was in my word, and I was praying and I was doing all the Christian things and I was, I truly love God. I had some misunderstandings about him and because of those misunderstandings about God, I wasn’t walking in victory in certain areas of my life, because I believed wrong. With my porn addiction, I legitimately believed I was still enslaved to pornography. I would say things like it happened to me again or I fell into this thing, like it’s something happening to me. Like I didn’t have any control over it.

Jennifer Smith:
Well, we also talked in the beginning of this episode how belief is so powerful and you actually believe that you would never be saved from something like that.

Aaron:
I never said it out loud, but internally I truly believed it would never go away. I thought maybe I would have a few months of freedom and then I would mess up or maybe a year and then I would have a relapse, I literally believed it was something that would be with me forever which is from the enemy. It’s also a wrong belief of the gospel because if the gospel is true then what else is true. So the Bible tells us that I’m free from the bonds of sin and death. So what that means is that “bondage that I’m in is no bondage at all”. Now, does that mean I’m not tempted? No, I’m totally attempted. Does that mean that it’s not difficult? No, it’s totally difficult.

Aaron:
I spent years in this addiction. But what it does mean is I am 100 percent free, which also means that I’m making a choice every single time. Either I’m choosing to dip in or I’m choosing to walk in the spirit. So when I finally was revealed that just the truth of the full gospel that I am free indeed, that I am no longer a slave to sin. That doesn’t mean I can’t choose to sin. I’m not enslaved to it. It has no control on me. I’m not in chains. I’m not in a prison, I’m not in a dungeon.

Aaron:
The gospel has set me free just like the word of God says it has. I need to believe it and I need to walk in it. The Bible tells me that with every temptation God will give a way of escape so that we will be able to… So it says right here in 1 Corinthians 10:13 it says, no temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. So all temptations are common, so it’s normal to be tempted. Temptation’s not sin. Temptation is temptation.

Jennifer Smith:
Then you stop there to explain that but I was like, no, keep reading.

Aaron:
It says this, God is faithful and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability. Wait a minute, so if I believe God then this is true?

Jennifer Smith:
I believe so.

Aaron:
So can I be tempted beyond my own ability to withstand?

Jennifer Smith:
No, this is.

Aaron:
No, that’s not what this says, so either I’m believing right or I’m believing wrong. Then it says this, but with the temptation, He will also provide the way of escape that you may be able to endure it. That is the truth. You know why? Because I believe it because I believe in God and I believe what he says is true. So this is only true though, for those that are filled with the spirit of God, because the spirit of God is the reason why we’re able to endure it. But he’s saying right here, He says, there’s no temptation that he will not provide a way of escape. So that means every temptation I can escape.

Aaron:
I hope the listeners are hearing the gospel right now, that this is the power that the gospel gives us. That we do not have to be slaves to the sinful nature anymore. Now, it is definitely a journey and that’s why God’s patient with us and it’s the sanctification process, 1 John tells us if we sin, we have an advocate with the father, Jesus Christ. If we confess our sins, he’s faithful and just to forgive us our sins, but…

Jennifer Smith:
How loving and faithful for him to provide the way of escape. [inaudible 00:34:41].

Aaron:
When we get to heaven, none of us are going to look at ourselves and say, look what we did.

Jennifer Smith:
No way.

Aaron:
We’re going to look at Jesus and say thank you, because not only did God save us and reconcile us to himself, but He also gave us a way of escape before sin and a way of escape after sin. He knows the nature of man. So I didn’t believe this was true. I had a false understanding of the gospel. Knowing the gospel now, babe could you attest to the freedom that I’ve walked in and the authority I’ve walked in and I’m not boasting in myself, I’m only boasting with the Lord has done, that I am still tempted every day, but I believe this is true and the Lord does give me a way escape every single time.

Jennifer Smith:
I would say this as your wife just seeing you walk this journey with God and believing this scripture and trusting Him, it’s a testament to the power of God in our marriage for me.

Aaron:
Yeah, and it’s encouraged you in your own faith. That there’s times that you think wrong and you realize like, “Oh, wait a minute, I do believe the gospel and I can walk in this. I can stand up under this. I can endure”.

Jennifer Smith:
One of the things that you said just a little bit ago is you gave this little picture of when you get to heaven and you’re going to just, in all humility, you won’t be able to boast in anything about what you’ve done, but you’ll be able to look at Christ and just say thank you. I think that’s going to be a really beautiful encounter when we do get that. But while we’re here on Earth, when the gospel changes our life and we receive that gift of grace that God gives us, it’s not just a thank you. We praise him for it and we are thankful.

Jennifer Smith:
But you also gave this picture of Lordship and servant and that relationship it’s so cool to have that picture in relationship to us and our savior because while we’re here on earth, there’s work to do and we’re moved by the gospel to not stay where we are, to keep moving forward, to keep practicing righteousness and carry out his work alongside him. For him. It’s not just thank you and you continue in what you’ve been doing. It is thank you, I’m changed now forever and here I’m going to prove it to you by…

Aaron:
I never want to go back to that life.

Jennifer Smith:
… yeah, I don’t want it.

Aaron:
Because what he’s given us is ultimately, infinitely better. That doesn’t mean everything’s, Hunky Dory.

Jennifer Smith:
No way.

Aaron:
It just means that my life in him is infinite. The guilt being washed away. The shame being removed, the new life, the power that he’s allowed me to walk in. I think of again Azlan after he comes back to life and everyone’s all excited. He says, are you ready to fight? He’s like, this is one battle, but we have a war to fight. They all run to the castle of the evil queen and each one starts like waking up. He says, go into all the house and go into the doorways and go into the crevices and go into closets and look every, don’t leave anything unturned in the house, looking for the frozen, the statues that, which turn these people in statues.

Aaron:
That’s the work you’re talking about where God’s taking us along with us and using us as instruments, extensions of Himself that we’re called part of His body. Think about that, we’re extensions of His body to go free the captives with the gospel. There’s nothing else. There’s no good. It doesn’t matter what of music. It doesn’t matter what kind of stories you can tell. Nothing’s more powerful than the gospel. It’s the only thing that has power.

Jennifer Smith:
This is all really good. But we do only have so much time and I want to quickly share a story with everyone. Just something that happened a little while ago with my son Elliot. He’s six years old and he was just putting pieces together. You know how kids do that and things are clicking in with for them. Elliot was asking me a question about how, well first he started off by telling me thank you mom, that you guys teach us about who God is. He goes, “because on really hard days, I have my hope in Him”.

Aaron:
He said that?

Jennifer Smith:
Yeah, he did. We were driving but there was another family on the sidewalk and he asked me if they knew God and I said, “Oh, I wouldn’t know unless I went and talked to them because I don’t know who they are”. He goes, you know what makes me sad when I think about some people knowing who God is but not accepting him and how hard it must be for them when they have a hard day. He goes, mom, “Where do they put their hope?” I’m like, “Oh my goodness.” I’m paraphrasing this story, like I didn’t write it down, but he was starting to understand that there was power in what God has done for us and the hope that we have as Christians.

Aaron:
Speaking of the hope that we have as Christians, so we love the gospel because it’s the thing that saves us and gives us power and, but there’s something that we get as believers. He gives us so much, but there’s another thing we get to look forward to and hope for and it’s going to be something that we’re talking about in the next episode.

Jennifer Smith:
Nope, you got to stay tuned.

Aaron:
So thanks for joining us. We pray that this episode just shine light on the gospel for you, that you can use it. Maybe you should it to someone that doesn’t know the gospel. Use it as a witnessing tool. Share with your friends, share it on social media and say, “Hey, if you’ve never heard the gospel, this is it.” Dig into the word of God yourself. Read Romans over and over and over again. See the big picture that’s in there, because it can sound complicated when you read through like one chapter at a time. But like just try sitting and just reading through the whole book over and over again. It’s not a very long read. That’s Romans. So as usual, we end in prayer. So Jennifer, would you pray [inaudible 00:41:08]?

Jennifer Smith:
Yeah. Dear Lord, thank you for creating life. Thank you for creating us. We’re so sorry that we have sinned against you, but thank you for sending your precious and perfect son Jesus Christ to save us from our sins and reconcile us to yourself. We believe in Jesus and what the gospel shares about his death and resurrection. We believe the power and authority of how he was raised to life again and how He gives us new life. We pray that same power would continue to strengthen us as we choose every day to walk in righteousness and not gratify the desires of our flesh. We glorify you, Lord, for you are worthy to be praised. We love you and we confess your name as the name above any other name. May Your word and the gospel of Jesus, continue to bring people to salvation and a reconciled relationship with you. May your will be done in Jesus name. Amen.

Aaron:
Amen. Thanks for joining us this week. If you’d like to leave us a star rating or review, we’d love that. Again, share this with someone and let’s spread the gospel. Love you guys.Did you enjoy today’s show? If you did, it would mean the world to us if you could leave us a review on iTunes. Also, if you’re interested, you can find many more encouraging stories and resources at marriageafterGod.com and let us help you cultivate an extraordinary marriage.

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