When Jesus was beginning his ministry, he stood up in the Temple one day and read a passage of scripture that everyone knew was reserved for the One who would come to be the messiah and savior… “‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,’ Jesus said. ‘Because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor, he has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight to the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.’” (Luke 4 18-19 NIV)
Jesus was announcing that HE was coming to announce the message that would be good news to the poor, the prisoner, the oppressed. I fear that in modern evangelicalism, we have reduced the gospel down to nothing but a means of accepting Christ right now so that when I die, I go to heaven. But it’s not necessarily a gospel that has implications and ramifications in my life today and in the world around me. It’s just about me being safe for eternity.
But Jesus said that he was coming to announce a gospel, a good news that would be good news to those who were hurting, those who were broken, those who were trapped, those who were in pain. And then, when Jesus left the earth, he commissioned his church to go do what he was doing – sharing the good news. And Jesus’ gospel has ramifications and implications for the people who live and walk and work around you, and some of them are hurting.
So listen: One of the greatest ways that you can use your tongue is to speak up on behalf of those who are poor. To speak up on behalf of those who are oppressed. To speak up on behalf of those who are buried under the weight and the pain created by other people, by systems, by culture and to speak on behalf of those who are not always able to speak on their own behalf.
Let me just put it this way… If your gospel is not good news for the poor, for the blind, for the broken, for the prisoner, it isn’t Jesus’s good news. So, let’s share the right gospel and let’s share it loud and clear, and let’s make it good news to all of the broken.