What is the invitation of the gospel? Too often, I unconsciously settle into treating the gospel as Jesus calling people to believe in him. It is often given that simple caricature in sermons, articles and in the casual treatment by the world.
In the whole of God's word, I find the gospel much more dramatic, disturbing, and radical. Scripture is bursting with promises of freedom, joy, peace and restoration. Jesus' voice doesn't merely invite me to believe in him; belief is just the beginning, like agreeing to use the key I've been handed to open the gate or accepting a wrapped gift.
Recall a much-anticipated event with family or loved friends in your life. Jesus is a passionate God, and his desire for eternity is reconciliation, to be united with us. He can't wait! He anticipates with joy the moment any one of us runs through the gate, tearing the wrapping paper away to gasp, startled at the nature of the invitation inside: