All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God’s grace in all its truth.
Most people regard the gospel as simply words. It is both the collection of stories about the life of Jesus as well as the message of salvation. Words change and lose their meaning over time but the gospel never changes.
There is a temptation to make the gospel more palatable for some people by watering it down and making it simpler. Different words can be used to convey the gospel message but the moment that the actual content is changed, it is no longer the gospel.
Planting the gospel is no different from planting any other seed. If a person plants an apple seed, they can expect to get an apple tree in return. But if you turn the apple seed into an orange seed, an apple tree will not grow regardless of how much a person wants it to be an apple tree.
If we want to harvest the fruit of the gospel, we must plant seeds of the gospel. There are many things that can be done to draw people into church and to create opportunities to share the gospel. In the end though, the gospel has to be shared in order to have an effective witness.
Mature Christians bear the fruit of the gospel that was planted in them. That fruit contains the seeds of the gospel that we are to plant in others. When they are planted in good soil, they will sprout, produce fruit, and continue the cycle.