Guest Post

God, through Jesus Christ, welcomes you anyhow

What's the gospel in seven words? We asked theologians, pastors and others both to answer this question and to
expand on this in a few sentences. To see all the responses together as they're posted, bookmark this page. Add your own version here. --Ed.

God, through
Jesus Christ, welcomes you anyhow.

The gospel begins
and ends with God. Jesus makes God's action good news. But the word
"Jesus" alone doesn't help me; such Jesus is a nice guy, but I need
Jesus Christ, God's anointed. God
welcomes (or "accepts," etc.) you.
According to Luther, the words "for you" are the most important in
the sacraments (and preaching). "Anyhow"--fill in sin, guilt, pride, the
misfires of "spirituality"--implies that you weren't welcome without this
transaction, and that you bring nothing to it.

Martin E. Marty

The Century contributing editor's name has been on the masthead since 1956. He is an emeritus professor at the University of Chicago.

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