Here’s the Good News:
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be glory for ever and ever.
To every person on the planet the message of Christianity is ‘grace and peace to you from God…’ It’s not ‘we want to control you.’ It’s not ‘we want your money.’ It’s not a political agenda or the drive to make people like us, as if our God is a ‘cookie-cutter god.’ No, the message from God through the church is ‘grace and peace to you.’ Grace because we all need it. Peace because we’re all in bondage and held captive. Jesus, the Son of God, came to proclaim freedom and to release the captive. (Luke 4:17-21) How He did that comes next…
“… who gave Himself for our sins to rescue us from the present age.”
A large part of the Good News is some bad news. The world we live in is evil, far from God and it snares us often in sin. Because we are evil with sinful hearts, our culture is evil and plagued with sin. We are in bondage to sin… sin that separates us from our holy God. We need someone to rescue us! The Savior saves by giving Himself for our sins. The cross is the central image of the Gospel. In this single image, representing a single event, the wrath, holiness and love of an amazing God is demonstrated.
Jesus Christ took our place and died for us. Our sins against God deserve death as payment. Jesus, who never sinned, died a death He didn’t deserve so that our sins would not be held against us. This is Good News!
This Gospel was God’s plan. It’s what He wanted because of His amazing love for us. God’s love for us in unexplainable. It isn’t logical. There’s no reason for it, except it flows from the character and heart of God who IS unconditional love (1 John 4:7-8). And so we worship God!
“… to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen!”
As a disciple of Jesus I must never forget that the Good News is good! Everyday I need to embrace the grace and peace God has given me and worship Him for it. And then, as I share it with others, I need to keep the positive and gracious aspects of the Good News at the forefront. This love of God is what melts people’s hearts! Who wouldn’t want such grace and peace?
To You, Father, be glory for ever and ever! Help me this day to bring You glory. Thank You for my Savior, Your Son, who has rescued me. It’s good to be rescued! May my life be an act of worship to You. You are worthy!