And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people." Luke 2:10
One of the ways to test the authenticity of our message, the truth of our Gospel, is to stop and think if it applies to "all the people." Can I preach my Sunday sermon to persecuted believers in other countries? Would it "fit" if my congregation was poorer, or more urban, or less urban?
I'm not talking about illustrations and the peripheral things. Obviously, those may need tweaked. But, would the core of my message, the heart of what I am proclaiming--the theology and application--would that apply to any Christian, anywhere?
I am coming increasingly to the conviction that if the answer is "no," that I am not really proclaiming the Gospel. I may be proclaiming a church, a culture or my own hopes and dreams, but if it is not "for all the people" then it is not what the angels told the shepherds they were receiving in Christ.
And If that is not my message, why am I talking at all?