Summary: A sermon for Easter Sunday.
“Finally! Good News!”
by Rev. Ken Sauer, Pastor, Grace United Methodist Church, Soddy Daisy, TN www.graceumcsd.org
I don’t know about you folks, but I am getting sick of THE NEWS!!!
And I am one who has always had a sort of love affair with news.
As a young boy, I had a paper route.
I would get up really early every single day of the week, and a newspaper distributor would drop off a bundle of newspapers at the bottom of our driveway.
I always got kind of a thrill from being the first to read the headlines, and then being the one who delivered those headlines to all the neighbors!
When I got home from my newspaper route, before going to catch the bus for school, I would read the entire paper…
…and back then…
…especially the sports pages and the comics.
I remember the headline when Pope John Paul got shot. It took up just about the entire first half of the front page in stinging black letters:
And I saw that image over and over again as I delivered papers that morning.
I remember the headlines when a plane crashed into the 14th Street Bridge in Washington, D.C. and then fell into the icy Potomac River Below.
I remember when Reagan was shot.
I remember reading about the shooting and the death of John Lennon as I rode my bike and put papers between the storm doors of houses.
Later in college, I would write for the school newspaper, anchor the news on the school radio station.
Following college, I went off and pursued a career in television journalism…working as a reporter for ABC and CBS news affiliates.
Yet, I must say, “I am really getting sick of the news!”
With our 24/7 Cable News Networks we get bad news non-stop…and it’s the same stuff over and over again!!!
We hear about the scandals our politicians sometimes become embroiled in, and then we have to learn every steamy, depressing bit of detail.
I even asked and received for Christmas this year, from Jeanne, Newsweek Magazine so I could read more in-depth analysis of the stories I’ve been reading and hearing about all week!!!
Am I a glutton for punishment?
What did Barack Obama do this week?
How about Hillary and John McCain?
Who’s slinging the most mud?
Who’s being naughty; who’s being nice?
Who’s ahead in the latest poll?
Oh, I think I’m finally getting sick of it…
And then there is the Iraq war and the terrible state of the economy…
I’m sick of reading and hearing about the greed, the disregard for human life, the terrible state of humanity, and how awful we are capable of acting toward one another!!!
But as we celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ we come upon some Good News!!!
Finally!!! Good News!!!
That’s what the word Gospel means: Good News!!!
Would people buy a paper if all it had were good news?
I don’t know.
But people have been keeping the Bible on top of the Best Seller List since they started making a list…
…and the Bible is filled with Good News!!!
When you get sick of the news that the world is spewing at you…sit down, open your Bible and read, and take notes in a journal and as you do this you will find yourself becoming truly filled—filled to the brim with Good News…
…Good News which lifts you up, transforms your life, and makes life worth the living!!!
The news department of almost every television station dubs itself: Eyewitness News, and the apostles and the women were eyewitness reporters to the greatest news in the history of the universe!!!
In our Lesson from Acts Peter is an eyewitness news reporter, telling the good news of peace through Jesus Christ who is Lord of all.
Peter reports: “We are witnesses of everything he did in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem.
They killed him by hanging him on a tree, but God raised him from the dead on the third day and caused him to be seen…
He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one whom God appointed as judge of the living and the dead.
All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives the forgiveness of sins through his name.”
And the 44th verse informs us that while Peter was giving this eyewitness news update…this breaking news… “the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message.”
When was the last time the Holy Spirit came upon you as you listened to and watched eyewitness news and breaking news on CNN, Fox or MSNBC?
…not that it couldn’t happen…