The Good News

“The gospel is only good news if it gets there in time.”
― Carl F. H. Henry

We have been privileged and blessed as a church fellowship this weekend to have Simon Guillebaud come and speak to us for our Kingdom Weekend when we focus on missions both near and far.

Simon has been a missionary in Burundi and shared his story of how God took him to that African nation and the incredible way that God has used him and his fellow believers in that country to show the love of God and salvation through faith in Jesus.

Simon came with the purpose of stirring our faith and exhorting us as believers in Christ to share the Good News that we have received wherever God has called and appointed us to be His witnesses. He warned against the dangers of apathy and other distractions of life which can interfere with our sense of urgency to share the Good News.

Simon’s teaching this morning was from the passage in Romans 10 verses 9-15

“If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. 11 As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” 12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

14 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15 And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!

So fellow believers in Christ how wonderful it is that we are the bearers of Good News but as Simon reminded us today as Carl F.H. Henry said: “The gospel is only good news if it gets there in time.

I have an encouraging testimony to share with you about how the Lord answered our prayer for the Good News to be given in time for someone. My friend’s son was diagnosed with terminal cancer just before Christmas last year. He has undergone much chemotherapy and is now on his second course but the Consultants have told him that it is terminal and he does not have much time left. We have prayed for him that he will hear and receive the Good News of salvation before it is too late. My friend has shared the gospel with her son but sometimes with family they won’t really “hear” what you say to them. I am sure if you have family who are not saved then you can identify with that.

We had been praying that the Lord would put someone else across his path. He lives hundreds of miles away from us. Last week the Lord answered those prayers. During a visit to the hospital a man (a complete stranger) asked my friend’s son if he had faith and then proceeded to share Jesus with him and why he needed salvation. Wow – thank the Lord that this man who we do not know was faithful and obedient to share the good news and that the message “got there in time“. My friend’s son called his Mum to tell her about this and we now pray that he will respond – our responsibility is to be obedient to share our faith but it is for the person who hears to respond. We cannot do that part for them but we continue to pray that the Holy Spirit will convict him, his heart will be softened and he will call on the Lord and be saved.

Lord today I pray that those who need to hear the message of salvation, the Good News will hear it and receive it in time. Stir our hearts with a sense of urgency our dear Lord and Father to share the good news when we have opportunity to do so. Thank you Jesus for the privilege of being co-workers for your Kingdom. Amen

Hidden Treasure

I felt prompted to share this blog post again from a while back which I hope will be a blessing to someone reading, especially if you have received a vision/ministry from God or you have recently sensed God’s call on your life but the resources for it have not yet been released. Hidden Treasures

The bible talks about words in season and this may be a word in season for someone at this time.

If this word is for you and it witnesses with you in and through the Holy Spirit then I hope it encourages you to take that first step in faith.

Hope you have, are having or will have a blessed day in Jesus.

The invitation- pass it on.

The words of Isaiah 55 remind us of God’s invitation to abundant life.  Jesus issues this invitation to all – regardless of race, gender, creed or colour – everyone is welcome.  Jesus calls people to come to Him – everyone who is weary, thirsty or hungry – only He can satisfy and give us true life in all its fullness and the promise of eternal life.    I attended Encounter at my friend’s church last night.   Their mission statement is simple -to help people find Jesus and follow Him.     An invitation to church or a special service can be one way to help someone you know discover Jesus as Saviour for themselves.    It is providing an opportunity for someone to meet and see Jesus – perhaps for the first ever time.    Christmas is just around the corner and we have the opportunity to invite people to a variety of events.   Jesus told a parable about people who were invited to a wedding feast but refused to come – they made lots of different excuses.  People will always have the choice whether to accept the invitation or not – that is up to them, but we should not give up or be discouraged from issuing the invite because it gets refused – Jesus isn’t.    He told the disciples to shake the dust from their feet and move on when their message was not welcomed at places.   Perhaps we need to shake off some past disappointments and defeatist mind sets and start sending out those invitations.  I know I do.    There will come a time when it will be too late to issue the invites but we can encourage others to “seek Him while He can be found”.  Isaiah 55 v 6.   Who can you invite today to find Jesus?

Hidden Treasures

I preached on Joseph a number of years ago and as part of that preach the Lord gave me 3 words.  The Lord has reminded me of those words now and so they may encourage you if you are currently in this season. 

The first was that the wealth of the Egyptians and the treasures of darkness would be released to the church for God’s plans to be accomplished for His glory and to advance His kingdom.  Those who had need of resources to fulfil the vision that God had given them had to ask in faith for these resources to be released to them.  

The resources would be released but not from the traditional church giving etc. but would come from external sources – “the wealth of the Egyptians” and “treasures of darkness”.    The Lord is not being literal here in that it is funds from the country of Egypt etc. but is saying that that the funds will come from unlikely sources and from people you may have thought were in opposition to you or the vision God has given you. It will clearly be the hand of God which releases the necessary resources.

It does not matter that you may not have all of God’s purposes revealed to you any this stage. As you walk out the purposes of God and His plans then more and more will be revealed to you. It just needs that first step of faith. 

If you need resources to fulfil the vision that God has given you then ask God to give you the “wealth of the Egyptians” and the “hidden riches of the secret places” so that you can be a blessing to others. 

Isaiah 45 v3.    v 14 “Thus says the Lord – the labour of Egypt and merchandise of Cush; and of the Sabeans, men of stature, they shall come over to you and they shall be yours.”

The second part of the word was that some would suffer for the sake of the vision and calling which the Lord had put on their life but that God would never forsake them.  He would be with them in every situation and would reward them when they stand before His throne. 

If you are going through a difficult situation then hold on to God in faith and run the race until the end.    The Lord will reward your faithfulness and will never let you down.  He is with you in all the suffering and pain to uphold you.

The third part of the word was that some would leave their homes and go to foreign people and foreign places and that was part of God’s purpose and plan.  He was calling them out.  

If you feel the call of God to go out to foreign places then follow that vision with confidence that it is God who has put the desire in your heart.

Bless you in Jesus name.