Summary: Are we joyful and excited about the gospel? Do we really consider it “good”? Why?
“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!’" (Isaiah 52:7.)
Are we joyful and excited about the gospel? Do we really consider it “good”? Why?
“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news…” – And do we appreciate those who bring the gospel?
If we consider the news to be really good, then we could truly exclaim, “How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news”!
But why do we say that news of the Word is good?
There are those who would quote that verse along the previous verse (“How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?” – verse 14) and would point out about the “problem” of lack of preachers -- preachers who “are sent.”
But that’s not actually the point, for we read in verse 18, “But I ask: Did they not hear? Of course they did: ‘Their voice HAS GONE OUT INTO ALL THE EARTH, their words TO THE ENDS OF THE WORLD.’"
The real “problem” is stated in verse 16:
“But not all the Israelites accepted the good news. For Isaiah says, ‘Lord, who has believed our message?’" – NOT ALL the Israelites accepted the good news! God’s Word “has gone out into all the earth” – “to the ends of the world.” But not all who heard believed.
Just what is being preached that we ought to accept and believe?
What does the bringer of good news proclaim?
Isaiah wrote, “…those who bring the good news, …proclaim peace,… bring good tidings, … proclaim salvation, … say to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!”
We read in Acts 5:42, “Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Christ.”
In Acts 8:34-35, we read: “The eunuch asked Philip, ‘Tell me, please, who is the prophet talking about, himself or someone else?’ Then Philip began with that very passage of Scripture and told him the good news about Jesus.”
Acts 10:36 states, “You know the message God sent to the people of Israel, telling the good news of peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all.”
We can also read Acts 11:20, “Some of them, however, men from Cyprus and Cyrene, went to Antioch and began to speak to Greeks also, telling them the good news about the Lord Jesus.”
Last part of Acts 17:18 states, “They said this because Paul was preaching the good news about Jesus and the resurrection.”
Paul wrote in Romans 1:1-3, “Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God -- the gospel he promised beforehand through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures regarding his Son…”
In chapter 15, verse20, he wrote: “It has always been my ambition to preach the gospel where Christ was not known, so that I would not be building on someone else’s foundation.”
In 2 Corinthians 4:4-5, we read: “The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.”
Paul also wrote in Galatians 1:15-16, “But when God, who set me apart from birth and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me so that I might preach him among the Gentiles…”
He added in Philippians 1:15-18:
“It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. The latter do so in love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.”
We tend to emphasize that the gospel is good, because of the good things that will happen to us. We will enjoy peace. We will experience happiness. We will have salvation.
Before the miraculous change that happened in our denomination – formerly, we are legalistic in our teachings – we focus on and emphasized that the gospel is about the kingdom, as we read Mark 1:15, “’The time has come,’ he said. ‘The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!’"