The Gospel costs thing. You can't earn it or buy it. It can only be received as a free gift which is compliments of God's grace. It doesn't cost anything, but it demands everything. It demands that we go all in, putting all that we have into God's hands. And that's where we get stuck-in spiritual man's land. We're afraid that if we go all in that we might miss out on what this life has to offer. It's t true. The only thing you'll miss out on is everything God has to offer. And the good news is this: if you don't hold out on God, God won't hold out on you. Readers will find Batterson's writing filled with his customary vivid, contemporary illustrations as well as biblical characters like Shamgar and Elisha and Jonathan and ...Judas. No one has ever sacrificed anything for God. If you always get back more than you gave up, have you sacrificed anything at all? The eternal reward always outweighs the temporal sacrifice. At the end of the day, our greatest regret will be whatever we didn't give back to God. What we didn't push back across the table to Him. Eternity will reveal that holding out is losing out. The message of All In is simple: if Jesus is t Lord of all then Jesus is t Lord at all. It's all or thing. It's w or never. Kneeling at the foot of cross of Christ and surrendering to His Lordship is a radical act of dethroning yourself and enthroning Christ as King. It's also an act of disowning yourself. Nothing belongs to you. Not even you. Batterson writes, For many years, I thought I was following Jesus. I wasn't. I had invited Jesus to follow me. I call it inverted Christianity. And it's a subtle form of selfishness that masquerades as spirituality. That's when I sold out and bought in. When did we start believing that the gospel is an insurance plan? It's a daring plan. Jesus did t die just to keep us safe. He died to make us dangerous.
Mark Batterson serves as the lead pastor of National Community Church in Washington, D.C. Recognized as one of America's 25 most innovative churches, NCC is one church with seven locations. Mark's blog (www.markbatterson.com) and webcast (www.theaterchurch.com) also reach a virtual congregation around the world. Mark is the author of several bestselling books, including New York Times bestsellers The Circle Maker and In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day. He and his wife, Lora, live on Capitol Hill with their three children. You can follow Mark on Twitter: @markbatterson