Good News and Bad News

January 16, 2011

“I have good news and bad news,” said a doctor solemnly.
“What’s the good news?” asked the patient.
The doctor replied, “They are naming a disease after you.”

A joke you have to explain is not very funny, but the bad news here is that the patient has a newly discovered disease.  This joke is in one sense similar to the gospel message.  The Good News also points to a problem, a bad news, that we may have been unaware of or have forgotten.  The Gospel tells us that we are sick and in need of a physician.  To only take the feel-good part of the Good News is to actually not present it in its entirety.  The Good News is good because there is a bad news.

Here the doctor thinks that having a disease named after you is a good news at all in the face of the bad news of having a disease.  The badness of the bad news far outweighs the goodness of the good news. That’s why the joke is funny.  But with the Gospel, it’s the opposite.  The goodness of the Good News far outweighs the badness of the bad news.  That is why the Good News is amazing.

How do you view the Gospel? Do you see how bad sin is and how even the smallest sin will lead to death? There may be natural sins, but there are no innocent sins.  Conversely, do you the see how good this message of salvation really is? I think understading these two things are the two secrets to really understanding the greatness of God.  For if we know the depths of our sins and what Jesus had to do to rescue us, then we will know how great He really is.


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