[Commenting on 1 Corinthians 15;1-4] Here we see that the gospel is continual, in that we must continually be reminded of it; proclamational, in that it must be preached to us often, including preaching it to ourselves; essential, in that we must continually cling to it alone for the assurance of our salvation; central, in that it is the most important truth in all the world; eternal, in that it is passed on from one generation to the next without modification by religion; Christological, in that it is about the person and work of Jesus Christ alone; penal, in that the wages for sin – death – was paid; substitutional, in that Jesus’ death on the cross was literally in our place for our sins; biblical, in that it is in agreement with and the fulfillment of all Scripture; and eschatological, in that the resurrection of Jesus reveals to us our future hope of resurrected eternal life with him. Mark Driscoll in Death by Love
When Paul seeks to remind the Corinthians of the gospel this isn’t simply an instance of remedial Christianity, for it is by this gospel that they “are being saved” and it is in this gospel alone that they “stand”. The gospel of Christ isn’t the ABC’s of Christianity but the A to Z of Christianity. You don’t graduate the gospel as a Christian to go on to other things. If you ever graduate the gospel, you graduate Jesus only to flunk.
As a church we gather not to do, but to hear and be reminded what God has done for us in Christ. In fact, it is God who gathers us by His proclamation. It is the gospel that is the power of God unto salvation, making a people of those who were not His people. God’s Word gathers and sanctifies His church. Having heard God in the public assembly we then scatter to tell others what God has done, and in doing so long for Him in that act of proclamation to further act.
We begin our services with a call to worship to subtly communicate this fact. God first speaks, then we respond. We do not pull God down by our sacrifices, rather He has graciously condescended in Christ and become the sacrifice for us, and now the Spirit ministers this Christ to us as God’s Word is heralded. We sing because He has spoken. We gather not to serve, nor to be served by man, but as needy beggars we come to the table to feast on Christ. We serve because He has served. Having feasted we then serve others shouting to them that there is eternally satisfying bread available without cost.