Good News?

God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:21)

 

Have you ever received good news that didn’t seem like such good news at the time, but later, when you heard the bad news, you realized just how good the news was? It happened to me on January 31, 1980. I had only been married for seven months. It was the first time I was away from my wife for more than a few hours. We had just found out that we were expecting our first child, and I didn’t have health insurance. We didn’t know what to do about our lack of health insurance, so I decided to join the Air Force. It was day twenty of basic training and the Training Instructor allowed us a few minutes to phone home. It happened to be my wife’s birthday, so I was anxious to call her and wish her a Happy Birthday. But when I called, she wasn’t there. Her mother answered the phone, and all she would tell me was that I shouldn’t worry because Nancy was alright. My first thought was, “Of course she’s alright; why wouldn’t she be alright.” Then she told me the bad news. The previous day, Nancy was involved in a car accident and she was currently in the hospital. In light of the bad news, the good news became a whole lot better news.

That’s the way the good news of the gospel is for many of us. The good news of the gospel is that we can go to heaven and receive adoption into God’s family and an eternal inheritance. Many of us think, “Of course God will adopt us into His family. Why wouldn’t He. We’re pretty good people.” But when we hear the bad news, we realize just how good the good news really is.

 

The bad news is that we are all destined for hell and eternal punishment. Because of our own personal sin, we deserve to be punished (2 Thessalonians 1:8). Because of our sin, we will be separated from God for all eternity (Romans 6:23). And the truth is, none of us are good enough to be excluded from this punishment (Romans 3:10).

 

That’s what makes the good news of the gospel so much better. The good news of the gospel is that God has provided a way for you to go to heaven and avoid hell (John 3:16 and 1 Peter 1:19-20). Through the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, your sins can be forgiven and you can go to heaven. Through Jesus’ sacrifice your sins can be wiped out and you can become righteous. “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:21) Now that’s good news. And in light of the bad news, it’s even better news.