Good News!

August 7, 2017

Image result for Photo good news

Proverbs 25:25, 28

(All Scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated)

Our featured Scripture this time is Proverbs 25:25 and 28:

      As cold water to a weary soul, so is good news from a far country….
      Whoever has no rule over his own spirit is like a city broken down
      without walls.

At first glance, these two verses don’t seem to have much in common.  So why did I put them together for the featured Scripture?  Let’s take each verse and examine it before we see what ties them together.

•      Proverbs 25:25 – “As cold water to a weary soul, so is good news from a far country.”  I grew up working on the family dairy farm in Connecticut until I was ten.  After we sold that farm, I worked for neighboring farmers.  I even experienced working on a 40,000 acre ranch in South Dakota!  Those were the types of jobs I held until I joined the Air Force at age 18.  I mention this farm and ranch work because I know what it is to be weary and thirsty, working in hot and dusty fields in the blazing summer sun!  Oh, how good it was to take a break and have a big drink of cold water from the big thermos jug in the truck!

But what is the good news from a far country?  The word gospel is an Old English term meaning “good news,” according to Webster’s New World DictionaryAnd where did the gospel originate?  In a far country – Palestine, two thousand years ago!  Paul, in I Corinthians 15:1 through 5, gives us a good understanding of what the New Testament gospel is all about:

      Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you,
      which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are
      saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you — unless you
      believed in vain.  For I delivered to you first of all that which I also re-
      ceived:  that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and
      that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to
      the Scriptures, and that He was seen by [many who passed on the gospel]….

In Romans 4:20 through 25, the apostle, speaking of Abraham receiving God’s promise of a son, tells us how the good news is applied to those who believe:

He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was
      strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced
      that what He [God] had promised He was also able to perform.  And
      therefore “it was accounted to him for righteousness.” [quoting Gene-
      sis 15:6].  Now it was not written for his sake alone that it was imputed
      to him, but also for us.  It shall be imputed to us who believe in Him
      who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was delivered up
      because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification.

As Paul later wrote in Romans 10:13 (quoting Joel 2:32):  “For whoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Jesus Christ died on the cross bearing our sins!  He took our punishment! (See Isaiah 53:5, 6; I Peter 2:24).  And He was raised again from the dead to ever live to give us His own righteousness so we can stand as perfect before the Father! (See II Corinthians 5:21; Ephesians 1:6; Hebrews 7:25).  This is truly good news from a far country!

•      What about Provers 25:28? – “Whoever has no rule over his own spirit is like a city broken down without walls.”  Back in Bible days, a city without walls was susceptible to invasion by the enemy, which often resulted in destruction – being broken downSo usually, the first job of an attacking army was to destroy the wall surrounding and protecting the city, leaving it defenseless.

One of the biggest challenges in my life has been my very addictive nature.  I have fought addiction over the years, addiciton to nicotine, alcohol, food, pornography, and drugs!  I know what it is to have no rule over my own spirit!  I often lamented to God that I felt like a city broken down without walls!  Yes, I was a Christian – having accepted Jesus as my Savior when I was 19.  But that does not automatically mean victory in all areas of life!  I had to learn, ofttimes slowly, to rest in His arms as a little child and let Him fight the battles! (See Psalm 131:1, 2; Matthew 11:28-30; I Corinthians 6:12, 19, 20).  Today I am generally free of addictions – although I still have to keep a watch on my life, knowing my weak areas – and I continue to rest in my Lord!

You see, the good news from a far country is really very near! (See Deuteronomy 30:11-14; Romans 10:6-9).  All you have to do is call out to Him in faith!  Jesus Christ just doesn’t save your soul so you can be in heaven someday!  He gives you the power, the authority, the means to live your life in victory here and now! (See John 10:10; I Corinthians 15:57; Philippians 4:11-13).  As Paul wrote in Romans 6:14, “For sin shall not have dominion over you….

Yes, heaven someday will be wonderful!  But to experience day by day my wall solidly being in place, not broken down – to have rule over my own spirit is amazing good news from a far country!

Live in the power of the good news from a far country!  Open your heart and life to the gospel of Jesus Christ!

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