“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news” (Isaiah 52:7 NIV).
“I sure could use a little good news for a change!” Do you ever have such thoughts? You encounter the plethora of tragic news stories broadcast on TV and the internet: natural disasters like earthquakes and floods causing widespread destruction; nations at each other’s throats, firing missiles at one another; people exhibiting cruel behavior toward their fellowman, inflicting pain and heartache even on their own family members. Does this perhaps make you want to throw your hands up and say, “Enough already! Isn’t there any good news to report?”
The loving relationship which our first parents enjoyed with
God at the dawn of time, but which was fractured through the
fall into sin, has been perfectly and permanently repaired.
Though we may be tempted at times to feel this way (living as we do in a sin-corrupted world, there will unfortunately never be a shortage of news stories reporting trouble and tragedy), as Christians we may take heart in the knowledge that our God has given us some very good news to share—in fact, the best news ever! He has committed to us the privilege of broadcasting the soul-comforting Gospel of Christ, the tidings of great joy intended for all people, that God’s eternal Son descended from heaven to neutralize the power of sin and Satan, and to bring us fullness of life. He did this in sheer love—though we are unworthy of the least of His mercies—by living a holy life in our place, by offering on the cross His spotless life as a ransom to His Father, and by restoring Himself to life again on the third day. Now, thanks to His successfully-completed Savior mission, the loving relationship which our first parents enjoyed with God at the dawn of time, but which was fractured through the fall into sin, has been perfectly and permanently repaired. Now, all who hear this good news and accept it with a heart of faith have God’s gift of life everlasting. They are blessed to enjoy a loving relationship with Him throughout the days of their life on earth. They will experience the indescribable happiness of living with Him perpetually in the life of the world to come.
Watch for opportunities the Savior gives you for sharing this simple but astonishingly good message with people you know and meet along life’s path (family, friends, neighbors, co-workers). Bear in mind, too, that the work of evangelism need not be thought of as a hard or complicated thing. It simply means being ready to tell the good news about Jesus. It means talking with those who ask you about your hope in Christ. What Jesus means to you. Why you love Him. The joy He has given you in His forgiveness. The peace He has given you through His victory over death. The comfort He has given you of knowing He is with you, guiding your footsteps day by day and controlling every event (including the “bad news” things that happen) so that they work for your ultimate good. The special privilege He has given you, His blood-bought child, to serve Him in love during this present life. The confidence He has planted in your heart of seeing Him in glory and living with Him in heaven. In other words, you can simply share your own experience as a Christian with others.
As you go about your evangelism work, may you also draw confidence from the Bible teaching that it is the Gospel that is the power to salvation, not your own eloquence of speech or ability to convince. Count on the Spirit of God to perform His blessed work of winning souls for Christ and leading them into His kingdom in His own time and way, through the good news of Jesus that you share.
Preach you the Word and plant it home
And never faint, the Harvest-Lord
Who gave the sower seed to sow
Will watch and tend His planted Word.
(Worship Supplement 2000, #781, stanza 5)
Thomas Schuetze is pastor of St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church in Lakewood, Colorado.