Risk & Adventure – Jonathan Dodson

The Dangerous Gospel

Is the gospel dangerous? Absolutely. It demands your life, submission to King Jesus instead of submission to self. In fact, it will actually call us to die to ourselves, and for some to even risk their lives. But the logic of the gospel is not denial for denial’s sake. The gospel isn’t ascetic. Rather, the gospel is hedonistic; it offers life in death and security in risk.

Jesus follows his famous cost of discipleship call with a gospel of reward promise: “For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it” (Lk 9:24). Lose your life, not just to lose it but also to gain it. Lose your life and you will save it. When we lose our lives for Christ, we gain our lives in Christ. What feels like sacrifice will become service.

The gospel is dangerous because it asks for our whole life, but it also more secure than comfort because it gives you a real life. Jesus takes our whole life, but in exchange, he gives us a better one.

In the end, risk is actually minimized only in the gospel of Christ, because Jesus is the only one who can save us from death. If this is true, then mediocre, even grandiose risk is well within our ability. The Spirit of God wants to unleash disciples who take up their cross and submit to Jesus daily.

His presence and power in each of us is just waiting to be released, as we turn in submission to Jesus Christ as our Lord. So go ahead, attempt some great things for God, knowing that God delights to do great things through you!

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Jonathan Dodson is one of the pastors of Austin City Life in Austin, Texas and also helps lead The GCM Collective, Acts 29 Texas, and PlantR.

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