In his book, Grounded in the Gospel: Building Believers the Old-Fashioned Way, J.I. Packer has a chapter entitled “The Gospel as of First Importance.” In that chapter, Packer discusses the pastoral and formational applications of the Gospel. Many are familiar with the quote from Tim Keller that “the Gospel is not the ABC’s of the Christian life; it is the A through Z of the Christian life.” Packer writes,
“In that spirit we offer the following ‘Gospel Alphabet’–twenty-six pastoral and formative reasons why the Gospel must retain primacy as the content of Christian education” (108).
This week, we come to the letter “F”.
F is for Fidelity
Faithfulness to the true Gospel calls for ongoing study and obedience. It calls as well for watchfulness, lest false Gospels be introduced. The battle against counterfeit gospels has always been part of church life. Even in the first century Paul battled against such, as did Peter and Jude and John. Like Paul we must be resolved that we will tolerate no other “Gospel,” even if it comes from a heavenly angel or springs from our own imperfectly sanctified hearts, and we should expect the same fidelity from those with whom and to whom we minister (Gal. 1:6-9). Only a constant learning and reviewing of the Gospel can ensure that we will be astute to separate the chaff from the wheat.