Hope for the world, homework for the church

Scripture: Luke 3:1-20
Series: Grow in confidence with Luke
Speaker: Jos Slager
Date: 09-01-2022

he message of the Bible is an evidence based message of extraordinary hope for the whole world. The Bible tells us that the world will not continue as we see it now. Finally good will triumph over evil, light over darkness, justice over wickedness, joy over sorrow, life over death. This is good news. The evidence we have in the historic life, words and works of Jesus Christ. Especially in his well attested death and resurrection. Look at Him, study His life and you will get confidence. In and through Him the victory has begun and ever since this hope has begun to infect the world. Extraordinary hope. Very good news. And yes, of course, also bad news: for evil, darkness, wickedness, sorrow, disease and death; but why bother about that? Who cares if these will be cast into the dumping ground of hell, the everlasting fire? We won’t miss these, will we? Definitely true! However, if God’s people were tasked to be the agents of this hope (and so they are!) then there are two problems that need to be addressed. Firstly: that God’s people shouldn’t think too high and good of themselves. The evil and wickedness they see around them, is also found in our own hearts and must be dealt with. Secondly: that God’s people shouldn’t think too low and bad of people around them. The problem is not so much that God doesn’t want to include them into the good news, but that God’s people – like Jonah – don’t want to address them with God’s mercy. Upcoming Sunday we look at John the Baptist’s prophetic ministry and we will see how this ministry continues to be important for today’s church.