Just prior to election day I wanted to encourage each of us to lean into the gospel.
As a Christian I believe that about 2,000 years ago something happened that revealed the truth of our own destruction but also that through this revelation something new was born. A new creation. A reconciling had begun.
For many the death and resurrection of Christ is called “good news.” This word “euangelion” (we say gospel or good news) meant that the world had changed. It wasn’t good advice about something we could say to protect ourselves from an angry god. It wasn’t good advice about where we would or wouldn’t go when we died. It was that through this event the world had changed. That through this event God’s kingdom had been revealed and that all were invited into this announcement.
That we no longer had to live under the boot of the Empire. That we could live for something greater.
That we could live for love. The very thing the early Christians insisted that God is.
This announcement for them was so beautiful that they were willing to live in service of others. Not of building themselves up to be more powerful, but making themselves nothing to raise the least of these up. They shared their wealth with those who had not. Because this Christ insisted that in the poor you would find him and that through the rich it would be difficult to see this Kingdom of God.
The gospel in one word is about reconciliation. That through giving ourselves to those in need, through abandoning our status and ego, through submitting ourselves to the kingdom of Christ, we might take part in the reconciliation of everything. Because we are the body.
Jesus insisted that this message was to be given to everybody, everywhere. That inside of this truth there no longer was any classes. No nationality. No occupation. Not even gender. Instead all is being made one in Christ.
As it all began as one. It will be reconciled as one. We get to encourage and and be a part of that message and work.
It happens when we expose the darkness that hides this message. When one nationality is thought to be better than others. When one occupation is thought to be higher than others. When one gender is thought to be superior than others. When one race is thought greater. When one’s religion is used to put others down. We as good news people live to change these things. Because we know that ALL THINGS are made ONE in Christ. Righteousness is the oneness of Christ. Because the good news hates oppression. Because the good news tears down the ego. Because the good news conquers evil. Because the good news loves the world. Because through us Christ is reconciling all of his creation.
“Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they who mourn,
for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they shall be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful,
for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure of heart,
for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they shall be called children of God.
Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
This message is true today, and it will be true tomorrow.
1 John 4