Simplifying the Gospel via Chiasm

Hebrew poetry often uses a device called a chiasm. It’s where the items are structured A B B’ A’ being mirrored around a central point. Example:

His mighty hand has saved us.
We are redeemed by His marvelous power!

A: His mighty hand
B: Salvation
B’ Redemption
A’ His marvelous power

Interpretation: the beginning end and middle are emphasized. God’s salvation is here coupled with the idea of redemption. So God’s Salvation is a saving act. And the way that we are redemptively saved is by the mighty and powerful work of God.


I have a chiasm for the Gospel that I wrote last night after talking with my Grandmother, who I ask for prayer that she would come to understand the Gospel is not about earning salvation, but accepting God’s free gift He gave through Jesus Christ.

This is a simple chiasm of the Gospel.

God made us
We revolted
God loved us
And sent Jesus.
Whoever trusts Him
And repents
By serving Him
Will be saved.

It can also be put in this modified Chiastic form. A B C D C’ B’ A’ = E

And sent Jesus

         God loved us—|-Whoever trusts Him

              We revolted————–|————————-And repents

          God made us———————–|—————————-By Serving Him

Will be saved.


Interpretation:

God made us–God is good and created everything good. We human beings were made in His image and likeness to represent Him in ruling the earth, and to worship Him and love Him. (Genesis 1:1-2:3)

We revolted— But the Evil One tempted us to become our own god, and to serve ourselves, so we have all disobeyed God and sought to rule our own life on this earth, instead of submitting to Him.(Genesis 2:4-4:26)

God loved us— God was loyal to us and made up his mind to redeem all that was redeemable because we are His creatures, and His offspring captive and blinded by the Evil One. (The whole Old Testament)

And sent Jesus–So God sent His only begotten Son, sending Himself, as a human being like us, and he was tempted as we were, but did not fail, and was crucified, and the third day was raised to life. (The Gospels)

Whoever trusts Him— Whoever looks to Jesus to be his substitution and with the whole heart cries out to God for Him to save him, because he accepts the truth that God loves him. (The Gospels and Epistles)

And repents— And he who gives up his rebellion against God, and ceases to be his own ruler, his own god, and instead claims Jesus as his Lord, and decides to submit wholly to Him. (The Gospels and Epistles)

By serving Him–And out of Love for Him, worship’s him, and lives to honor Him by doing the good works which he was originally created to do: to rule as a citizen of the Kingdom of Heaven. (The Gospels and Epistles)

Will be saved— When wrath comes upon the disobedient, this one will be found in right relationship with God, because He knows Him, He has trusted Him, and He has done His Will. (The whole New Testament)


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A Goodnight Kiss: a Gospel Story

– – There was a little girl of 5 years old. Her parents took her to church very week. One day in Sunday School, she learned about Jesus blessing the children. That night when she went to bd, she said her prayers the way she always did, and this time she prayed, “Jesus, could you kiss me goodnight?” And she got in bed, and she’d stay up all night waiting for Jesus to kiss her on the cheek, while she listened to her Mommy and Daddy arguing in the other room. The goodnight kiss didn’t come. But she kept asking him every night before she went to bed.
– – Then, one night while her parents were arguing and the little girl was lying in bed awake by her open window, she grabbed her ears and prayed again that same prayer, “Jesus, please kiss me goodnight.” And then as she drifted almost to sleep, she closed her eyes, and felt a breeze blow through the window and brush against her cheek. She sat up, and looked but she didn’t see anyone, but she felt in her heart that she had been kissed goodnight by Jesus.
– – The next morning, the girl skipped into the kitchen where her Mommy and Daddy were eating breakfast, and they noticed that their daughter was more cheery than usual. So her Mommy asked, “Good morning! You look chipper this morning. Did you sleep well last night?” The girl nodded with a grin, “M hm. Jesus kissed me goodnight.” And she skipped off into the next room to play.
– – How do you think the parents reacted when they heard this? They were very sorry that they had been fighting, and had not kissed their daughter goodnight. And every night from that day on, every night both of them came in to tuck in their daughter and kissed her good night.

And that is what the Gospel is all about.