Gospel lends to spread of good news
One of the interesting characteristics of humans is the keen interest we have in the news. Of course there is certainly nothing immoral about this idiosyncrasy and for the most part, information is a good thing. However, it does have a potentially serious downside. The average person does not realize the fierce competition among the purveyors of news. There is big money made by those reporting the news to us. The result is what we hear is predominately the most sensational, scandalous and fearful news that can be found. There is no end to it. Global warming, terrorist threats, nuclear threats, environmental threats to food and water supplies and on and on. It is a constant flood of bad news filling our ears day after day and it is one reason why there is so much depression, and anxiety in our society.
I am not suggesting we should hide our heads in the sand (though, in some cases, this might be a better option). The truth is, there is lot of good news in the world. The problem is — we don’t hear much of it. Good news has become so rare that even when we do hear it, it is more likely met with suspicion and skepticism rather than happiness, and relief.
The message of Jesus Christ and the Christian religion is called, “The Gospel.” This word is a translation of a Greek word that simply means, “good news.” It is a wonderful word that is used over a hundred times in the New Testament. Christian theologians point out that a verse in John 3:16 condenses the message of the good news better than any other one verse in the Bible. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
This is the astonishing proclamation in the words of Jesus Christ, that the God, who created the world and men, is a loving God who, because of His love, sacrificed His own Son in order to procure immortality and everlasting life for every human being who will believe His proclamation. There is an assumption in the verse, that men are aware of their mortality and grieve over the miseries of their present existence, especially the inevitable future pains of death and the sorrows of separation from those he loves. By extension, the verse also implies several other important bits of information; Our desperate spiritual need, the ultimate triumph of good over evil, and the promise of a much superior future environment for people who live in the dimension of immortality.
This proclamation along with all of its implications is the fascinating subject of the New Testament which expands and explains the exciting details of the good news. That is why the New Testament is supremely worthy of study and consideration if we should wake up to the realization that there actually is some news in the world that is not bad.
Pastor Gene Holman of Living Word Fellowship in Gardnerville is a member of Carson Valley Ministers’ Association.