I was listening to a famous Bible teacher this morning. He is a good guy and greatly respected. He shared how he wanted to be known as a herald of the Gospel - the Good News that God has brought to us! And what is the good news? He shared this: The Good News is that Jesus was crucified for our sins, died and was buried, and rose again the third day! Isn't that good news? Our sins have been forgiven and we are going to heaven! Yes, my dear friend. You are correct! Our sins have been forgiven and we are going to heaven. Please know, that my heart would NEVER be to throw stones at that glorious good news, but I do want people to know that it is even "GOODER" than that!
If that was all there is to the Gospel, then that is not really going to
encourage us in the dark days we encounter in a fallen world.
I am going to heaven, but I am experiencing hell right now! If all the Gospel is, is that I get to go to heaven someday, then what happens in the meantime? Well, in the meantime it is going to be a MEAN TIME! I will be left to slug it out in this fallen world with my own resources, which are simply not sufficient to overcome the death that is on my plate on a daily basis.
Thankfully, there is more to the Gospel. The "finished work" of the Gospel was not finished at the cross! There was more for Jesus to do! First, He ascended to the throne to sit down. It was then, and only then that He could send the other Comforter - by the way the Greek word for "another" is another of the same kind! It is the coming of the Holy Spirit that allows the finished work of Jesus to continually be worked out in our own lives as we trust Him by faith to be our everything.
As we live on this planet, we exchange our strength for His strength, our knowledge for His wisdom, our independence for His guidance, our affections for His love.... and so we experience heaven - intimacy with God while we live on planet earth.
Now, that is really good news! We must take care to understand and help others understand, that the Gospel is not just a set of historical facts, but the experience of a relationship with God because those historical facts bring me to a Person who offers to be all that He is to all that I need as I trust Him.
Now that is GOOD NEWS!