Tag Archive | Good News of Jesus

Acts 8:4 ” Those who had been scattered preached the Word wherever they went.”

The early Church was forced to disperse after the stoning of Stephen, “for on that day a great persecution broke out against the Church at Jerusalem.” (Acts 8:1)  Because they no longer had the support and encouragement of the Body of Believers around them they could of given up, gone into hiding, and denied their faith…but they didn’t.  For it tells us in this verse that wherever they went they declared the Word of the Lord to those around them.  They refused to allow persecution to silence them, and instead became Itinerant Evangelists sharing the Good News of Jesus.

I Corinthians 15: 13-14 ” If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.”

The foundation of Christian faith is this, “We believe that Jesus died and rose again…” (I Thessalonians 4:14)  But stop and think about this for a minute.  How absurd does this really sound?  You actually believe that Jesus was crucified, died on a cross, was buried…but 3 days later rose from that grave alive?   How delusional can you be?  And if you do truly believe this “fairy-tale”, you must be living in a fantasy-world!   But this is exactly how the world views the Gospel Message…some far-fetched implausible story.  Except, within this story is something that all of mankind is constantly searching for… peace, hope, and freedom from guilt and shame.  For the resurrection of Christ is the basis of our hope as Believers, and it is only by our faith that we are set free from the penalty of sin and death.

II Corinthians 5:19 ” …that God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them.”

The chasm between God and man was too wide, so He sent His only Son to atone for our sins… in order that we may be reconciled.  And so , “We rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.” (Romans 5:11)   But there’s also responsibility attached to this reconciliation, for II Corinthians 5:18 tells us, “All this is from God, Who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation.”  So as Believers, we are called to serve others with compassion, and share with them a message of hope – The Good News of the Gospel- that they too may repent and believe…and be reconciled.

Ezekiel 34:11-12 ” For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I Myself will search for My sheep and look after them. As a shepherd looks after his scattered flock when he is with them, so will I look after My sheep. I will rescue them from all the places where they were scattered on a day of clouds and darkness.”

All of mankind can agree….”I have strayed like a lost sheep.” (Psalm 119:176)  But the wonderful thing about these verses in Ezekiel is how proactive the Lord is.  It’s Him that is searching us out, looking after us, and rescuing us from the thick darkness of sin.  Jesus is called the Good Shepherd who gathers and watches over His flock and tells us in Luke 19:10, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.”  And like the parable of the lost sheep, Jesus will leave the 99 on the hillside to go looking for the one that has wandered off. (Matthew 18:10-14)  Have you strayed away from the Lord?  Know that Jesus is actively looking for you today.

Ephesians 6:19 ” Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the Gospel.”

So what stops you from sharing Jesus with others?  Awkwardness? Apprehension?  Do you realize that even the early Church had reservations about telling others the Good News of the Gospel…for in Acts 4:29 the Believers prayed, “Enable Your servants to speak Your Word with great boldness.”  So I pray for you today that the Holy Spirit would give you the words to speak to that unbelieving friend, stranger, or relative.  And that you would speak with confidence, boldness, and articulation as you share the Gospel Message with them.

Mark 7:8 ” You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men.”

The Pharisees and Teachers of the Law had watched the disciples of Jesus eating without first washing their hands…a real defilement of tradition in their eyes!  So they confronted Jesus in what they believed to be a breaking of the Law.  To answer them, Jesus quoted Isaiah 29:13, “These people honor Me with their lips, but their hearts are far from Me.  They worship Me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.”  For anytime the Good News of the Gospel is pushed aside for man-made rules, our focus changes from Jesus to religion.  But remember, religion in and of itself will never save us.  Nor will man-made traditions and teachings ever get us to heaven.  It’s only by the blood of Jesus that we are saved…not any rule.

Luke 5:16 ” But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”

During His ministry here on earth, Jesus often sought out quiet places to pray.  But why?  It tells us in Mark 1:35, “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went off to a solitary place, where He prayed.”  The answer to “why He did this” is in what happened the night before.  The town of Capernaum had witnessed Jesus healing someone in the Synagogue…and so later that night the entire town converged at the house where Jesus was staying…bringing in tow every sick and demon-possessed person they could find.  And it says Jesus healed them.  When we give much, our emotional gas tanks gets low.  And the only way to fill them is to find a place of quiet reflection so that God can renew us .  Jesus was practicing the discipline of silence in order to replenish, restore, refresh, and revive His soul…and it’s something we could do well to imitate.