The Gospel, Passion, and the College Campus

I had the privilege and opportunity to share the Word with some college students the other night. It really is one of the most fun things I do in ministry. College students are intriguing to me for several different reasons. One being their thought process about faith, life, and calling. Helping develop collegiate students in these crucial areas is absolutely fascinating to me and exciting.

As I was preparing to speak to these students on the subject of “The Gospel, Passion, and the College Campus” I really had two questions that were running through my head based on my texts from 1 Corinthians 9:19-27 and 1 Timothy 4:7-8. The two questions were…

1. What are you willing to sacrifice for the Gospel? Here is another way of saying it: whatever you are the most passionate about you will run the hardest after.

2. Skeptic/spiritually unsure collegiate student… are you even in the race? Faith and trust in Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior gets you in the race. For a collegiate student that claims to be a believer in Jesus Christ… are you taking steps forward in the race? In other words, you may be busy but are you accomplishing anything?  

When I first wrote these questions down they hit me like a ton of bricks. What would I be willing to give up for the Gospel? Do I even know what true sacrifice looks like? In 1 Corinthians 9 Paul talks about running in a race with the ultimate goal of winning. To do this we must discipline our body, time, resources in order to win. Discipline means sacrifice. Warren Wiersbe says in his commentary, “Discipline means giving up the good and the better for the best.” So what are you willing to give up for the Gospel?

The second question is a two folded question- one for skeptics of the Gospel and one for believers in the Gospel. For believers, I focused on what “training in godliness” looked like from 1 Timothy 4:7-8. The ESV translates 1 Timothy 4:7-8 this way: “{7} Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; {8} for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.” This whole idea of “training in godliness” really resonates with me. I think many Christians may be busy doing “Christian things” but are we being productive, are we accomplishing anything?

I believe these two questions are imperative for today’s Christ professing collegiate student to ask. Am I even in the race? And, if I am in the race, am I taking steps forward in the race?