Summary: In this text we see Jesus begin to proclaim God’s good news. He tells us what this good news is, and what we are invited to do about it. Then we see what we can expect from this good news, as well as what not to focus on. It all begins with some bad news,
What’s the best news you have ever heard/could ever hear?
Today, God has some really good news for you!
Today we will see Jesus begin to proclaim God’s good news. He’ll tell us what this good news is, and we will see what we are invited to do about this good news. Then we will see what we can expect from this good news, as well as what not to focus on. It all begins in with some bad news, though, so look with me at
A. The kingdom is near
The bad news is that John was put in prison...
The good news comes from Jesus.
“The time has come!”
Come = fulfilled. OT promises are coming true - Messiah!
Its the right time!
Favorable, opportune, significant time, not just chronology
Time is now - a sense of urgency
“Time’s up!” – The Message
The kingdom is near.
Rule of God over His creation. Spiritual & physical.
Kingdom & king always go hand in hand.
Near = at hand; this stage complete, return of Jesus is ultimate.
God has begun the decisive, ultimate chapter of history that will climax with Christ’s return. More news later...
God has drawn close in a dramatic fashion – in the person of Jesus. That’s as close as you can get!
Reach out and take it - we often make it distant and difficult.
Illus.: Think about this for a minute. Is this good news or bad news? First day of school, wedding day, April 15th – good days or bad days?
Good or bad news? Jesus says this is Good News! The kingdom has come so close you can touch it! “I’ve got good news for you,” Jesus says, “The kingdom has come near!”
This stunning announcement requires a response.
You must RSVP!
There is an urgency – time is up! Time to decide!
How should we respond to this wonderful news?
Jesus says “Repent, and believe the good news”
Make a radical change in one’s life as a whole
“Change your life” (The Message)
“Change your hearts and lives” (NCV)
Turn back to God!
And believe that the kingdom is near! A new emphasis on faith. "To bet your life that Christ is right."
Jesus is God’s final word to man in man’s last hour.
An either/or decision is required.
God has opened the door and made provision for repentance, but there is no time for delay!
Only by turning to God with faith can man participate with joy in the coming kingdom.
We’ll see an example of the kind of decision necessary in the next few verses. Notice the immediate responses of these 4 men as I read vv. 16-20.
C. We are invited to follow
Jesus suddenly calls Simon (Peter) and Andrew to follow. Their response is immediate.
They are called to fish for men. A clever play on words, yes, but more than that. What does it mean?
When I fish, I use lure or bait to fool, trick fish. Hmmm.
When they fished, they dropped a net and hauled in a scoop
This coincides with OT picture of God as fishermen/judge, (Jer 16:16; Ezek. 29:4f., 38:4; Amos 4:2)
Jesus was calling them to the urgent task of gathering men in view of the forthcoming judgment.
There is an urgency. Because Jesus has come, fishing is necessary!
Jesus gives us the same invitation.