Yesterday we were considering how, with our ‘feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.’ Ephesians 6:15, we could bring good news to people with confidence, and even have some fun doing so. This is because the gospel is such good news especially to the ‘poor, the broken-hearted, the captives, the prisoners and all who mourn’. That is quite a list, and it comes of course, from Isaiah 62:1-3. It was the passage Jesus read out in the temple at the start of His ministry. Simply put, the ‘Good News’ is only going to be ‘Good’ if someone realises that they have need of Jesus, and of His mercy and forgiveness, His healing, His help etc.
Jesus emphasized this truth when He told the Pharisees, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Mark 2:17. And I wonder if this is why, in our very affluent society where so much is provided for us in so many areas of life, that there seems to be so little hunger for our ‘Good News’. Even Jesus, in an occupied country where there was great need, was rejected by the self sufficient. Jesus ‘wept over Jerusalem’, saying “If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace – but now it is hidden from your eyes….” Luke 19:41. Those who felt their need came and found ‘peace’, while the leaders had turned it down, and so He let them know that very hard times were ahead.
It seems important therefore at this time, when there are so many potentially threatening things on the horizon; Covid, Global Warming, Cyber wars, increasing drug abuse, extremist terror groups etc, plus more immediate concerns like the potential breakdown of our health service, our social care, our schools and our economy, with all the implications of that, and as people are increasingly feeling the familiar things that give security being shaken, that we, God’s people, have our feet well fitted out with readiness to share some good news.
We read, ‘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. These verses are of course addressed to God’s people, and sometimes we need to put on our ‘shoes’ in order to encourage our brothers and sisters, and not just the unbelievers, so that whatever is happening in the world around us we, God’s own people, can still sing our song, “Our God Reigns.”
I believe as the world gets increasingly shaken up by physical, economic, political and even spiritual crises, it is going to be very important that God’s people are not shaken. That, because we know that ‘Our God Reigns’, we can stay steady and continue to offer hope to those around us. God has said, “Once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” …..so that which cannot be shaken remains. Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God with reverence and awe’. Hebrews 12:26-28.
Let us practice that song, and let us grow our faith in whatever ‘shakings’ are happening for us in our lives at the moment. Let usdeclare our faith, by thanking God that ‘He reigns’, and that He will be with us in everything, so that we will not be shaken. As we thank God and prove His faithfulness, we will grow in our faith. Then we will have a stronger and stronger message for those in the world around us. We want them to see, and therefore be hungry, for what we have in our lives, for the ‘Good News’. We want to be those with ‘beautiful feet’, so that when that time comes and ‘men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world.’ Luke 21:26, we will be seen – ‘the sons of God revealed’ Romans 8:18 – as those carrying good news, proclaiming peace and salvation. Letting everyone know that in fact ‘Our God Reigns’.