What is the good news? Romans 5:1 is a good place to start: "Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." Each word in that sentence is crucial. Let us look at three - justified, faith and peace.
A preacher told each of his congregants to think of a faith hero from the Bible. People like Moses, David, Paul and John. He then told them to think of a faith hero from history. People like Spurgeon, Edwards, Carey and Luther. He then said something which amazed them - there is no one in history, including the people you've thought of, who are more justified than you are right now. To be justified means that you are 100% right with God! He has declared you righteous.
Justification comes by faith, not works. Imagine for a moment if you actually had to atone for your own sins. Would it be possible? Not at all! Think of it this way - you can't jump a red traffic light and then stop twice at the next traffic light in order to make up for it. You cannot make up for a broken law by obeying another law twice as hard! That's why no one can ever be justified through the law. It must be by faith - confidence in the finished work of Jesus Christ and not in our own efforts.
Finally, when we are justified by faith, we have peace with God. Peace seems to be something everyone is chasing after, but never finding. That's because the only place true lasting peace can be found is at the cross where God meets humanity and all the promises of God find their 'yes' in Christ (2 Cor. 1:20). It is at that crucible where the full brunt of the Father's wrath was absorbed by Jesus, in our place, so that we can approach Him saying, "Abba, Father."
Good News Indeed!
Justification. Faith. Peace. These are aspects of the good news which we want every person in Africa to know. In Angola, we have been granted, by the grace of God, to broadcast a programme called Good News for Children to the Umbundu speaking children of Angola. The Umbundu people are the largest ethnic group in Angola comprising approximately 5 million people.1
Within this group of five million, there are many youth and children who need to hear the good news, and then put it into practice in their everyday lives. That's what Good News for Children seeks to do. It is broadcast on shortwave on Sunday evenings as a 15-minute devotional programme consisting of an introduction, a song, a message of not less than 8-minutes and a conclusion.
This programme exists to make these wonderful truths accessible to children so they too can enjoy a right relationship with God through placing their faith in Jesus Christ and experiencing the joy of knowing that they have peace with God.
Recently, a listener from Kaimbambo wrote the following to us, "I listen to the programme with my husband and my children. The programme is very nice. I like to hear stories, those for children, and also the music for children you have been using on the programme. Through this programme you are teaching the Word of God." TWR considers it a privilege to supply devotions to this listener's family.
Praise God that this programme is sponsored in full by TWR-Netherlands. Please pray for TWR-Netherlands and ask the Lord to continue to richly bless their ministry to Africa through their various sponsorships.
Published: 21 January 2011