The gospel is “good news” by definition. The word gospel means “good news.” So you have to ask yourself what is the “good news” that everyone is talking about? What is the gospel? There are so many opinions it will likely confuse you if you search Google or pick up a study Bible and read the commentaries. For me I keep it simple and focused and precise…the gospel is Jesus. The good news is Jesus.
Now that definition encompasses a whole lot of stuff. Jesus is a revelation of the true nature of God. Jesus is our savior. Jesus is our example. Jesus is our substitution. The list goes on an on but in the center is Jesus. That is why I say the gospel is Jesus or you could say the gospel is “God saves” which is what Jesus means. Pick what works for you in your head. That is called freedom. You get to use your mind of Christ. Yay!
So what is “good” about the good news? Have you ever thought about that? Luke says this:
Luke 2:10 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. (ESV)
This is the Phillips account:
Luke 2:8-12 There were some shepherds living in the same part of the country, keeping guard throughout the night over their flocks in the open fields. Suddenly an angel of the Lord stood by their side, the splendour of the Lord blazed around them, and they were terror-stricken. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid! Listen, I bring you glorious news of great joy which is for all the people. This very day, in David’s town, a Saviour has been born for you. He is Christ, the Lord. Let this prove it to you: you will find a baby, wrapped up and lying in a manger.” (PHILLIPS)
And then all the heavens are filled with the army of God. Millions and millions of angels singing together this:
Luke 2:14 Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men in whom he is well pleased. (ERV)
Wow! Something is really “good” in this story. So what is “good” about the good news? …………………God is.
Jesus saved us from sin. He took it away, yay! Jesus reconciled us to God. We were enemies in our own minds to God and He demonstrated His love by dying (letting us kill Him) and not raising a finger of defense or vengeance or rebuke or judgment. As a matter of fact the judgment of God towards man was Him dying on the cross at our hands. That is a non-judgment judgment. He took all of our fallen nature to the grave and left it there. We died with Him and were raised with Him. All of that is “good news” and more. For me all of that fits into a “legal” or “accounting” basket. It all satisfies much of our fallen thinking that comes from fallen fruit consumption. It is necessary and amazing and liberating and brings freedom. Still for me there is something so much more powerful than all that. …………….Our union with Him.
When Jesus came and reconciled mankind He became mankind. In the last several posts I’ve talked about this very thing but I just can’t let it go. When Jesus joined Himself to mankind He did it in a very mysterious but very tangible way. God impregnated a woman and she conceived a child. God’s “seed” joined a woman’s egg and Jesus was born of God and a woman. Because all of us were and are in Christ from before the foundations of the Earth, Jesus was all of us when He became a man. Mankind was joined to God and God became mankind. It is a mystery but so very powerful, if we can see it.
When Jesus came out of the tomb He was still joined to mankind. He was still mankind itself. He was mankind glorified. We all went in the grave with Him and came out with Him.
2 Cor 5:14 For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; 15 and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised. (ESV)
Now we are all a new creation. We are all something new, different, never before seen:
2 Cor 5:16 From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (ESV)
Now we get to tell every person on this planet we meet that they too are a new creation:
2 Cor 5:18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world (the whole cosmos) to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. (ESV, amplification mine)
Since it is finished and we have been reconciled it is time to live from that reality:
2 Cor 5:20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
So what does that look like? This is where the “good news” gets really really good.
We are joined to goodness Himself. We died with Him now we live with Him. We are attached to goodness. This is what Paul said:
Gal 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (ESV)
The “good” of good news is God Himself. His goodness is all the presents under the tree that are waiting to be unwrapped. His goodness is winning a prize or receiving a bonus. His glory is His goodness. He has glory all around Him and coming out of Him. All the fullness of God is in us. We are filled with His glory, His manifest goodness. Not only that but we are connected with Him. We are His kids. We are joined in birth and death and resurrection in Jesus. We are connected at the cellular level with the substance that produces glory. We are joined to good and that is good.
I don’t know if you are seeing this truth. It will change everything for you. It is intoxicating to know that we are closer to glory, manifest goodness, than an electron to a proton. We occupy the same space as the same person of Jesus.
For me that is what makes the good news soooooooooo good. I am united with the creator of good who produces good because He is good. That is really good news if you think about it.