The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Mark 1:1
…Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” Mark 1:14-15
…And he said to them, “Let us go on to the next towns, that I may preach there also, for that is why I came out.” Mark 1:38
It’s time. The sense of urgency was palpable. Mark the gospel writer passionately wanted to show and tell the world how his mentor Peter was changed by the the incredible Jesus. The time had come. Not only had four hundred years of God’s silence been broken with the coming of Jesus on earth, the good news spread like wildfire. Jesus himself was compelled to go from town to town preaching, “The time is fulfilled and the kingdom of God is at hand, repent and believe the good news.”
What is the good news? New life. Jesus brings new life, new connections to God, to others, and to self the way God intended. Restoration to all things is brought through Jesus’ substitutionary life and death. Jesus demonstrated his authority and power by teaching and healing, and rising from the dead.. To Mark it seemed the world he knew dominated by the Romans and wrestling with persecution was being made right. According to Scott McKnight, repent and believe, and then let God’s Kingdom rule and reign in your life, the church and the community. That is the gospel. That is what Peter experienced, and Mark’s heart was burning to share. This is what Jesus still offers us today.
We live in fractured times with broken people who desperately need to hear the good news and experience the wonder of God’s healing in their hearts. Recall the time when Jesus reached into your painful sin, cleansed, restored, brought you new life and helped you to grow in Christian maturity. Or perhaps the time to transfer your sin to his cross and ask for forgiveness is now. God’s Kingdom is at hand, repent and believe. Pray to God asking him to give you passion and urgency and also to whom he would like you to quickly take the good news, to show them his love and tell them how he changed you.
By Donna Burns