I am a firstborn daughter. And like many stereotypical firstborns, I was an overachieving student, receiving straight A’s throughout most of school.
My sister, on the other hand, even though she’s brilliant and savvy, struggled in a typical school setting; she needed more freedom to explore. As a result, she would typically receive lower grades than me.
When we brought home our report cards each term, my parents were, of course, proud of me, but the normalcy of my good grades soon grew lackluster. They stopped cheering or being as excited because they grew to expect that I would get good grades.
My good grades became normal. My sister, on the other hand, would receive a C+ and they’d be like, “You can get your ears pierced! You can have friends over! You can have a reward of your choosing!”
So, while my good grades were good news, that good news soon became old news.
The point is. So often, good news can become old news. The fact that I got straight A’s was great news, but nobody cared anymore because it was rote, stale, and expected.
Good news can become old news when you hear it often enough.
What Is the Good News of Jesus Christ?
That is particularly true for many of us when it comes to the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. For some of us, we’ve heard the gospel most of our lives.
We’ve even loved the gospel and been transformed by the gospel. But if we’re being honest, sometimes the good news of Jesus’ death, resurrection, salvation, and return — can become old news for us.
For those of you who are new to church, or new to Jesus, I hope you haven’t lost your fire for him. But I think for many of us, if we aren’t careful to pursue the presence of God and the Spirit’s reign in our lives, the good news can become old news.
Romans 3:21-26 says, “But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood — to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished — he did it to demonstrate his righteousness at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.
If the good news has become old news to you, here are a couple of “Good News” to remember from the above passage of Scripture.
God Has Perfect Timing
There’s a concept in theology called The Kairos moment…which is the fitting moment, the right time, a divine-alignment moment.
And what the above passage in Romans is saying, is that at the very, right, perfect moment — when all of history was ready and ripe — Jesus died for us — so that we might be freely justified by his grace.
What that means, is that God’s “arm” was not twisted; God wasn’t like, “Oh, I guess I’ll forgive them and set them free if I must.”
Rather, God offered his justification freely for us through the costly sacrifice of Christ — at the perfect time he had decided beforehand.
God waited for the perfect timing so that we would know his salvation. And, still today, God continues to work all things out in his perfect, kairos timing.
Your Record Is Expunged
The idea of justification today is like a criminal’s record being expunged. All of those things we’ve done or left undone, our own sin against God and each other, our own apathy, our unwillingness to worship or submit to God — all of that has been annulled, abolished, deleted, eradicated, erased, and exterminated freely and graciously because of Jesus’s death on the cross.
When I was growing up, I thought that when we died, we would have a heavenly television screen revealing our secrets.
We’d go to heaven and God was going to make us sit and watch the story of our life, all while pointing out all the ways we’d messed up, or been selfish, or chosen sin instead of on AM1160 in Chicago. You can preorder her upcoming children’s book, Big Feeling Days: A Book About Hard Things, Heavy Emotions, and Jesus’ Love, and find and follow her @aubsamp on Instagram. Go to aubreysampson.com for more.
LISTEN: A Prayer for Loved Ones Who Don’t Know Jesus
The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of Salem Web Network and Salem Media Group.
WATCH: A Prayer to Be Bold for the Gospel
Thumbnail courtesy of Canva.com Stock footage courtesy of soundstripe.com