I did a word search of the New Testament.
‘Joy’ occurs 68 times, ‘Rejoice’ 37 and ‘Glad’ 26. Altogether that adds up to… a lot! And the word Love occurs even more. (261 times)
Gospel means ‘Good news’. The New Testament is God’s new contract with humanity, and it is good news that brings great joy.
When we look around us, we see the world is not random. It is organised, complex and sometimes even predictable. That means it was made – wonderfully made. There is a maker, and we are his made items.
But we don’t live like made items who have a maker.
The first people God made didn’t want God or his word over them. They wanted to be God themselves. So they chose to reject God. And they died to him, and became broken and dirty. Then they died physically too. These same things are now true for all of us.
What do you do with your rubbish?
Do you keep it and treasure it, and put it under your pillow?
God is even more against rubbish than us. He is more pure and clean and holy. His rubbish has to be thrown away into his rubbish pit called Hell.
And there is the problem. It’s our biggest problem.
We are God’s rubbish and we deserve to be thrown away by our maker.
And deep down we know it.
Think about what score God would give you out of 100?
My guess is that your answer was something less than 100. Because we know we aren’t perfect.
God’s pass mark is not 50. It is 100. If God accepted anyone with any imperfection, any dirt on them, then He would become dirty, and that isn’t possible.
When we look at ourselves, the big, sad truth we find is that we are not worth keeping by our maker. And there is nothing we can do about it.
But maybe God could do something.
What if He did rescue us from what we deserve, from our brokenness and dirtiness? That would be such very good news. It would be reason for joy and rejoicing and being glad!
Christmas is coming again. Its the time we celebrate God’s love in sending his hero to rescue us.
It is never too early to think about Christmas, about God’s love, about the hero He sent, and the great joy his self-sacrificing love gives us.
Assistant Minister | 11:30am (Easy English)