Good News Line February 2015

Fry's rant and God's response

Where is the good news? A growing crisis in east Ukraine, Syria and Iraq in turmoil and Boko Haram rampaging across northern Nigeria. ISIS/ISiL murdering hostages with the latest outrage, the public immolation of the Jordanian pilot, beyond belief. How can we describe our response?! Nearer to home the vile abuse and neglect of thousands of children (girls) in Rotherham, Rochdale and many other large towns and cities has shocked and horrified us all. 70 years on we have memories of the "Holocaust" and the Dresden bombing. Awful.  Then along comes Stephen Fry. He launched into a prolonged tirade against a god who, according to him - an avowed atheist doesn't even exist!

His words have caused grave offence to many Christians. However, what Fry has expressed, albeit in vile terms, many Christians may have thought at some time or other. When personal or family tragedy occurs or natural disaster, (often described as "acts of God") kills thousands of innocents, it's only human to cry out and ask.  “Why doesn’t a loving God intervene?” “How can He let it happen?” Or just plain: “Why? Why? Why?”

The GOOD NEWS is that there is an answer: though for many that answer may be difficult to understand. Or accept! Let me try to explain.

We need to go back to the beginning: Genesis. Interestingly, that’s what the word genesis means. Origin or beginning. In Genesis, the book, we read that God created or made our universe, planet Earth and everything that lives upon it. And then, finally as His "Piece de Resistance", God made “Man” in His own image. In the final verse of the first Chapter He surveyed all that he had made and pronounced it “very good.” Unfortunately, it did not end there. God gave man free will and, putting it simply, man messed it all up. And, sadly, it’s been down hill ever since!

If we are honest, pretty well all the dreadful happenings around us can be attributed to man’s failure and mistakes. But what about natural disasters like earthquakes and tsunamis you ask? Well, without going into the details of “Plate Tectonics” (which incidentally I would be very happy to discuss if you give me a call), it is foretold in the Bible that we are to expect such disasters. All that is a consequence of Man’s disobedience of his creator, God (in churchy terms we call it sin).         

However, the VERY GOOD NEWS is that God did leave matters there. He took action. He did and does intervene. As I write we are entering into the period in the Christian calendar that we call Lent. And that leads us up to Easter: God's ultimate intervention. He gave and continues to give us a way to put matters right. Through an amazing sacrifice. He gave of His very self in the form of His perfect Son Jesus Christ Not to rule but redeem or buy us back. We, that's you and me, who had and have gone astray. Jesus willingly took that burden of all our wrong doing and messed up lives to a cruel cross. That message is clearly foretold in Chapter 53 of Isaiah’s prophetic book in the Old Testament. Here's a verse or two to illustrate it. In verse 4 the prophet says: "Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed." please read the whole chapter it if you can find the time.

The Great News is that it did not end there. On the 3rd day after His crucifixion, that first glorious Easter Day, Jesus rose, alive from the tomb. There is hope; and Jesus does answer that persistent question, WHY? All He asks us to do is TRUST Him and allow Him to give us the answer. Remember Jesus is not a crucified sinner but a RISEN SAVIOUR.

If you would like to know more about Jesus and how He could answer your questions please call Ringwood 476974

Thank you for calling

PS. If you need help please contact any church leader or give me a call.

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