Read Luke 4:13-44
16 He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:
18 ‘The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.’
“I must proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God…,
because that is why I was sent.” Luke 4:43
Jesus was clear about his Message and his Mission. He came preaching that the Kingdom of God was near, that there was a new way to be the people of God. The good news of the kingdom was the only gospel Jesus preached and it was the only message he taught his disciples to proclaim. What message are we proclaiming? A message about the Kingdom (or about Jesus) that sounds like bad news is not the gospel of Jesus.
Our friend, Simon Ponsonby wrote a letter to the UK Church, in it he points out that, “We have a gospel. We have the breath-taking, heart-racing, life-changing, epic story of God who loves us and has come for us. This story of stories presents God in Christ entering the world to rewrite our fractured story, to rescue the drowning, to find the lost, to free the bound, to comfort the broken, to restore the fallen, to enlighten the confused, to create community, to transform society, to recreate creation. Without it we are doomed, we are damned. Death and life and heaven and hell are at stake here.”
This is the story we live in. This is the adventure we are living out. This is the Gospel message and mission we have been called to participate in. By saying “yes” to following Jesus you have ‘signed up’ for the exact same mission: communicating the works and words that enact and explain the Kingdom of God.
Do you know the gospel? Do you know the message you carry? The Good News that God himself, the creator has come to rescue us from sin and renew all things in and through the work of Jesus Christ on our behalf, and to establish his kingdom in the power of the Holy Spirit. (See Jon Tyson’s session on the Gospel from the New Wine Leaders Conference 2014)
Do you know this message of Gracious Acceptance? Of Life Transformation? Of a Renewed World? Today how will you communicate this message in your words and your actions?
For more on this listen to our series from the end of 2014: The Gospel.