Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Repent And Believe The Good News

15 and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God
is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel."

According to Mark's Gospel, these are the first recorded words
of Jesus Christ after beginning His earthly ministry.

It's important to understand that the word translated "Gospel"
means "good news." Many translations render it that way.

Religious thinking has turned this wonderful announcement of
Jesus into a harsh reprimand used to put people down. This
wrong interpretation is something like "you no-good bunch of
dirty rotten sinners, unless you become perfect I will reject

Nothing could be further from the truth. Truth Himself was
standing before the people joyfully sharing good news of God's
love. He offered truth their lives could be built on, so
regardless of life's storms, they could always enjoy victory
and blessing.

Jesus was not saying "repent" as a rebuke, but as an
encouragement. He was not mad or condemning, but full of joy
and bursting with good news to share.

In modern language what Jesus said was, "Change your thinking
and believe the good news!"

He was telling the people: "Your thinking is not correct. It
does not line up with ultimate reality. It does not work to
your advantage. Your way of thinking and your approach to life
is off the mark, but I see reality clearly and I understand how
everything works. So change your thinking to line up with mine,
so you can enjoy life as I meant for you to do."

Jesus, by one English word -- repent -- is saying that your way
does not work, but My way will work to provide you life in all
its fullness, life as God intended. So, believe the good news I
am telling you, and change your thinking so you can enjoy life.

14 After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee,
proclaiming the good news of God.

The good news Jesus was proclaiming could not have been about
His death and resurrection -- which is certainly good news for
us -- for He had not yet died. Good news does not have to be
limited to one thing, or one time.

The good news Jesus was proclaiming was God's kingdom -- the
rule of God. This is good news because satan is a horrible
master, but God is good and kind. So enjoying the rule of God
and living in His kingdom is a wonderful blessing. Jesus came
proclaiming that was now available for all people. It is
available to you simply by receiving Jesus as your Lord.

The main good news Jesus was proclaiming was that God is good!
God is a wonderful, loving Heavenly Father who loves us beyond
our human comprehension, and you can now choose to live under
His beneficent Kingdom.

The message of Jesus was "Change your thinking about God, and
believe the good news I have to share with you from God and
about God."

We must choose to believe the good news Jesus proclaimed before
it will benefit us.

SAY THIS: I believe the Good News about God being good!


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