Over my years in ministry, I have had countless conversations with pastors of church plants. In the early stages, it is important for leaders to craft a mission statement, codify values, and/or develop a strategic plan for their city and campus.

All organizations need clarity and focus to operate well. But there is something even more important and foundational to church planting than a mission statement or a compelling vision: the gospel.

Sometimes, we get so caught up in what we can do to help a campus, city, or nation—that we forget what God will do for a campus, city, or nation when we preach the simple, foundational truth of the gospel.

In Paul’s letter to the Romans, we see why we need to stay focused on the gospel. The gospel, not our vision and values, must be our central message because it is the only power for salvation.