Per Amore Del Vangelo – What’s in a name? Well, in many ways, our blog name summarizes the core concern of our life. Paul refers to the Gospel as a matter of ‘fist importance’ (1 Cor. 15:1-3). The Gospel isn’t of first importance, as in it is something that we begin with and then leave behind. The Gospel is central, essential and significant for everything else, and in that sense it is of ‘first importance.’ Gospel means ‘good news.’ And it is ‘good news’ of the best variety. The Gospel is ‘power of God for salvation to everyone who believes’ (Rom. 1:16). The Gospel provides righteousness that we could never earn, and is the remedy for the bad news of our sinful rebellion and God’s anger against us (Rom. 1:18ff.). Paul summarizes the Gospel this way: “…Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures… He was buried, and… He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Cor. 15:3-4).
The specific phrase, ‘per amore del vangelo’ means ‘for the sake of the Gospel,’ and is derived from two texts: The first is 1 Corinthians 9:23. The verse comes in the midst of a context that is all about the sacrifices Paul makes and the things Paul gives up for gospel ministry. Though free, he becomes a slave to all, so that he might win more (1 Cor. 9:19, 21). He became all things to all men, so that he might by all means save some (1 Cor. 9:22).
1 Corinthians 9:23 I do all things for the sake of the gospel (per il vangelo), so that I may become a fellow partaker of it.
The second text is Mark 10:29. The rich man’s failure to follow Jesus segways into a discussion about who can be saved (Mark. 10:26). It is hard to enter the kingdom of God (10:23, 24), in fact it is impossible for people on their own (10:27). But, it isn’t impossible for God, because all things are possible with God (10:27). In contrast to the rich man who preferred his stuff to salvation and following Jesus, the kingdom of God belongs to those who receive it dependently like children (10:13-16). All of this discussion causes Peter to ask, ‘What of those of us who have left all to follow you?’ (10:28). This leads us to our verses where Jesus makes a comforting promise to all those who deny themselves for Jesus’ sake and the for the sake of the Gospel.
Mark 10:29-30 Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake (per amor del vangelo), 30 but that he will receive a hundred times as much now in the present age, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life.