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I’ve Got Some Good News and some Bad News

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In the scheme of things.  In the processes of life, we have to make a decision about which way we will go in certain things.  In the area of our faith, we know God’s Word is very clear about the need for dealing with our sin condition by repenting of our sins, accepting Jesus and giving Him control of our life, and confessing Him as Lord.  Roma10:9,10  says it all  that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth, he confesses, resulting in salvation.  This central truth from God’s Word is undeniable and the effect this life-change has on our life is radical.  Paul, in writing to the church at Rome spelled it all out perfectly and his understanding of the decision is unparalleled.  The end of verse 10 is the part we sometimes leave out as believers, where Paul says with the mouth, resulting in salvation.  This verbal, heart-felt confession to God has a result…Salvation.  This is the Good News Paul was telling the church at Corinth about in 1 Corinthians 15 (New Living Translation) Let me now remind you, dear brothers and sisters, of the Good News I preached to you before. You welcomed it then, and you still stand firm in it. It is this Good News that saves you if you continue to believe the message I told you—unless, of course, you believed something that was never true in the first place.

This Good News does save us and the acceptance of it and life-change it produces takes us into a different realm of thinking and living.   We take on a righteousness that is only possible through a regeneration brought on by the Holy Spirit in our life.  The Holy Spirit continues to develop the righteousness that is from God.  That righteousness continues to grow every moment of every day.  The Good News is VERY GOOD NEWS for eternity with Christ is the end goal and daily living for Christ is the joy of learning more and more about God internally.

The Bad News is for those who never receive Jesus and never experience this salvation and life-change.  They not only miss the eternity God has prepared for them, but they live a life without hope and purpose.  The part that is in the middle you might say is for those who identify with the Good News but live like their life is the result of the Bad News.  In other words, no spiritual growth, no desire to know God, no joy or love from above, and no effect on the world in which they live.  Sad, so sad.  In 1 Peter 4 Peter writes about the effect this life-change has on our lives and the effect it has in the world in which we live.  1 Peter 4: 12-13 Friends, when life gets really difficult, don’t jump to the conclusion that God isn’t on the job. Instead, be glad that you are in the very thick of what Christ experienced. This is a spiritual refining process, with glory just around the corner. 14-16 If you’re abused because of Christ, count yourself fortunate. It’s the Spirit of God and his glory in you that brought you to the notice of others. If they’re on you because you broke the law or disturbed the peace, that’s a different matter. But if it’s because you’re a Christian, don’t give it a second thought. Be proud of the distinguished status reflected in that name!  17-19 It’s judgment time for God’s own family. We’re first in line. If it starts with us, think what it’s going to be like for those who refuse God’s Message! If good people barely make it, What’s in store for the bad? So if you find life difficult because you’re doing what God said, take it in stride. Trust him. He knows what he’s doing, and he’ll keep on doing it. 

Peter says ‘it is judgment time for God’s own family” and that judgment is needed to turn the ship around and sail the course God has set before us.  And yes, even though this is difficult to hear, “we are on the wrong course” and that course is sending us down paths we should not be following.  It is time to correct our course and get back on track with God.  The tough thing is God is going to redirect us and bring us back to Him, but there will be some pain along with it because we have drifted too far in the wrong direction.  If it seems like getting back to where He wants us to be is a big step it is because “it is a big step.”  Who moved? We did!!  Praise God that He lets us move again.  Toward Him!  As the scripture says, “We’re first in line.”  Which means it is up to us to repent and get back in line with the Lord.  We do have the good news and praise God it is full of God’s grace and mercy.  So we need to change now!

For those who don’t have Christ, their news is Bad News.  That is why we need to share the Good News with them to turn their Bad News into Good News.   Without Christ, they will spend eternity in hell.  With Christ, we spend eternity in heaven.  There’s not a lot to figure out here, so foundationally we must tell them the truth and tell it with urgency.   It’s not about how good or bad they are.  It is about the sin condition that we are all born with because of the original sin of Adam and Eve.  Jesus died on the cross and made that right, but a person must do what Paul spoke about in Romans 10:9-10 to receive it.

The Good News is with Jesus you are going to heaven.

The Bad News is without Jesus you are going to hell.

End of story…

The Pilgrimage continues…

David Warren

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