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3/15 - THE GOSPEL IN SEVEN WORDS (OR LESS)

. Posted in 2013 Lenten Readings

When the Cranson's labor-of-Love in this year's Lenten booklet began, I suggested to them that we might get some interesting contributions by seeing if some people might like to try to put the Gospel into seven words (at most) and explain why they said it that way. The idea for this came from an issue of The Christian Century. I later heard from some people that they tried, but felt they just couldn't do it very well.

If there are few or any seven word contributions in this Lenten booklet, I thought you still might like to see what some of the contributors to the Christian Century had to say. A great Old Testament scholar used only six words and said he rested on the seventh! Others used six or seven words - and here are some of them:

. We are who God says we are . God was born. We can be reborn . Divinely persistent, God really loves us . We are the Church of Infinite Chances . In Christ, God's YES defeats our NO . God through Jesus Christ welcomes you anyhow . Christ's humanity occasions our divinity

The one I liked the most was very familiar to all of us

. God was in Christ, reconciling the world

Those are, perhaps, among the most powerful words that come directly from the Bible. I sometimes try to add a few words of my own like; God was in Christ reconciling the world to His Presence. If I want to be really bold I even add in the Holy Spirit. And, finally if I'm still thinking as I did in the pieces I wrote earlier in the Lenten booklet, I add who continually calls us to help make this a better world.

Whoops, that's more than seven words isn't it? Forgive me.

By the way, there was one other item in the list from the Christian Century. . .

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God gets the last word

Submitted by Don Gustafson