Why did Jesus command the gospel to be preached? Why was the gospel the central focus of Jesus’ and the apostle’s ministry? One reason is because God in His providence has ordained that the gospel is the means by which lost persons become saved and believers grow in their faith. John Stott sums this point up well in his book Between Two Worlds:
“One of the most fascinating of all the preacher’s tasks is to explore both the emptiness of fallen man and the fullness of Jesus Christ, in order to demonstrate how he can fill our emptiness, lighten our darkness, enrich our poverty, and bring our human aspirations to fulfillment. To encounter Christ is to touch reality and experience transcendence. He gives us a sense of self-worth or personal significance, because he assures us of God’s love for us. He sets us free from guilt because he died for us, from the prison of our own self-centeredness by the power of his resurrection, and from paralyzing fear because he reigns. He gives meaning to marriage and home, work and leisure, personhood and citizenship.”
As long as we struggle with sin we need to hear the gospel preached to us. “We must always keep focused on the gospel because it is the nature of sanctification that as we grow, we see more and more of our sinfulness. Instead of driving us to discouragement, this thought should drive us to the gospel” (Jerry Bridges). We do not just need to hear the gospel preached every week as we gather as a church, but really we must learn to preach the gospel to ourselves every day. It should make sense why God decided to make all the Scriptures about the gospel. We should encounter Christ as we rightly divide the word of truth every time we open it.