A Gospel Primer by Milton Vincent | Review

I never really noticed this little book floating around our house, until a friend recommended it.  I picked it up once I had finished a couple of others.  It didn’t take too long to finish (even considering that I only read it during breakfast), but it is packed with theology.

The point of the book is contained in the subtitle – “learning to see the glories of God’s love.”  It’s a gospel primer for Christians.  We often tend to see the gospel as something that is in our past – it got us saved, and now its usefulness is done.  But that couldn’t be further from the truth.  According to Vincent, we need to be “preaching the gospel to ourselves” every day.

“God did not give us His gospel just so we could embrace it and be converted.  Actually, He offers it to us every day as a gift that keeps on giving to us everything we need for life and godliness.”  ~ Introduction

The book is divided into three parts, with a fourth section recounting Vincent’s own testimony.  The first part (also the longest) contains thirty-one reasons to rehearse the gospel to yourself, spanning pretty much every area of the Christian walk.  Each one will open your eyes still further to how much we need the gospel in our daily lives.  Some of them I’d thought of before, but many I’d never even considered.

The second part is simply the story of the gospel, in prose form.  It’s composed of several sections, beginning with, “The Glory of God” and ending with, “My Salvation.”  It’s not long, and it’s written in simple language; but it’s packed with truth.  One thing I appreciated about this section (and the next), is that for every sentence, even every phrase, there’s a footnote containing the verses from which that particular truth is taken.  You don’t have to take the author’s word for it; everything he says is directly from the Scriptures.

The third part is actually the gospel in poetic form.  Honestly, I was a little wary of this at first – not because I don’t think the gospel can be put into poetic form (it can and should), but because if an author lacks the skill it can end up sounding forced or unnatural.  But it was actually quite good.  The poetry isn’t complex, but it flows well and is easy to understand.  Sometimes poetry can make more of an impact or lasting impression, so I loved that he added that.

In the introduction, Vincent advises that you read the book slowly.  That’s probably good advice.  Reading only a little every day allowed me to really process what I was taking in.   I hadn’t really thought before about how important it is to preach the gospel to myself, but the book makes it very clear.  We need the gospel – every day, even every hour.  If we lose sight of this truth we lose one of the greatest tools available for our walk with Christ.  A day-to-day awareness and rehearsal of these glorious truths isn’t optional for us – it’s essential.  I’ll definitely be reading this book again, hopefully many times, as I grow in my own knowledge and understanding of the gospel.

Have you read this book?  What did you think?  Please let me know!  I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Join the conversation!