A most obstinate misconception associated with the gospel of Jesus Christ is that the gospel is welcome in this world. The conviction endemic among church folk persists that, if problems of misapprehension and misrepresentation are overcome and the gospel can be heard in its own integrity, the gospel will be found attractive by people, become popular and even be a success of some sort.
This idea is curious and ironical because it is bluntly contradicted in Scripture and in the experience of the continuing biblical witness in history from the event of Pentecost unto the present moment. During Jesus’ earthly ministry, no one in His family and not a single one of his disciples accepted Him, believed His vocation or loved the gospel He bespoke and embodies.
Since the rubrics of success, power, or gain are impertinent to the gospel, the witness of the saints looks foolish where it is most exemplary.
(”Living with Defeat,” The Witness [May 1977], pp. 13-14.)