Passion for the Good News

Oct. 23, 2020

Scripture Readings

Have you ever been drawn into a conversation where you just can’t wait to express your opinion about the topic at hand? I know I have. Maybe it’s been a conversation about politics or economics. Maybe it’s a conversation about who the best hockey team is (and while I may be sure it is the Flames, you may be equally sure it’s another team, perhaps hailing from a city to the north).  

In 2020, my guess is you’ve been in more than one conversation about COVID-19. Or perhaps you have followed some of the conversations about it in the news or on social media. Have you noticed how different the opinions can be, even among Christians? And in some cases it can lead to unkind comments or thoughts about those who have different opinions than we do. In the church where Timothy was a young pastor, the issues might have been different, but the temptation to quarrel and argue about the latest issues has been around for a long time.

In Paul’s letter to Timothy he felt it was important to warn about quarrelling more than once. Check it out - I counted at least three times.

Warnings about what not to do are one thing, but I love that God also identifies something that we should do. There is something worth fighting for, and that is the Good News of the resurrection of Jesus. Now, that’s something we can passionately defend and present to others as the most remarkable news in history! Yes, it might bring suffering, and in Paul’s case, it brought imprisonment. Do we have the passion that says we are willing to endure anything if it will bring salvation to others? Let’s ask God to give us that passion. I really need that! What about you?

Does this passion for the Good News have to be obnoxious and in-your-face?  I don’t think so. Today’s passage tells us that the Lord’s servant is to be kind to everyone, gently instructing others and not quarrelling. Paul reminds us that the Good News was confirmed by many reliable witnesses - in other words, lots of evidence. In today’s context, let’s ask God to give us opportunities to offer the Good News to others and be able to explain the convincing evidence for the truth of the Gospel - not in an argumentative way, but in a kind, attractive and compelling way. 

Don Stephenson

Congregant, husband of Sandra, father of four, and proud grandpa