2021 will be a year of good news. Does that mean we’ll see positive news headlines in the media? Probably not. But the word “gospel” literally means “good news,” and it never gets old.
Salvation can be described in many ways – repenting and believing, receiving Christ, trusting in Christ, believing in him as Lord and Savior – but perhaps my favorite terminology has become bowing before Jesus as King. He saves all who are allegiant. All who surrender. All who trust in his care.
Jesus died. Completely. He fully suffered death, the penalty of our sin, on our behalf. He took on our fiercest enemy and defeated it so that death, for those of us who place our faith in him, will simply be an instantaneous transition from this life to the next.
The good news you’ve been waiting for all your life is this – the Messiah and Savior came, just as God promised, to die as a payment for the penalty of our sins and to rise again to reign forever and ever as King and High Priest!
Anyone who is ever saved is saved by repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
God wants the good news shared with everyone and he’s given us the task. We have to realize that the good news of the gospel is simply too good to keep to ourselves.
The gospel – the good news – is that Jesus died on the cross to provide a substitutionary atonement, paying for the penalty incurred by the sins of lost mankind. He rose again from the grave the third day resulting in His absolute victory over sin, death, and the grave.
Our culture has bought into this strange notion that we are ever-evolving in our enlightenment and everyone who is old and dead is dumb. Everything we thought pre-Elvis is primitive and ignorant. So ancient story about God visiting an old man named Abraham and instructing him to sacrifice his teenaged son Isaac on an altar with a knife is downright offensive to our modern sensibilities. It’s one of those stories skeptics zero in on to illustrate the outlandish nature of God’s brutality.
And I’ll admit, I’ve often struggled with the story. Human sacrifice is certainly out of line with everything else that God has revealed and seems to break several of the big ten commandments. Could the story really be the account of a senile old man hallucinating? Or was God just that mean back then? But my doubts seem to wash away when I realize what’s really going on in the story, found in Genesis, chapter 22. And when I get it, I’m overwhelmed with the nature of God’s grace.