Mark 1:14 – After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. (NIV)
A few years ago, my daughter spent many hours training to run in the New York Marathon. The act of running and completing the run symbolized to her a great personal victory in that she had set a goal, put in the training, and completed the challenge.
History tells us that the first recorded marathon was in 490 B.C. when a soldier named Pheidippides ran from the town of Marathon, Greece, to Athens. Soldiers in the Greek army in which he served had won an important victory on the battlefield over the Persians. Pheidippides wanted to share the good news. Mile after mile, he kept his goal foremost in his mind and never gave up until he had completed the 24.8-mile run.
Sadly, Pheidippides died of exhaustion, but not before he had delivered this momentous message to his country's citizens: "Nike! Nike!" The translated words mean, "Rejoice, we conquer!" Pheidippides gave everything he had to tell others the good news.
About 33 A.D., as Jesus Christ hung dying on a wooden cross, with His last breath, He delivered the good news of victory:
John 19:30b – Jesus said, "It is finished." With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. (NIV)
The victory was that He took our punishment and died in our place so that every believer could have a restored relationship with God. But the even better good news is that three days later, He conquered death and rose from the dead! He gives that same victory over death to all who believe in Him.
Christians, we've been given not just good news, but we've been given the best news of all time: Jesus Christ has paid the penalty for our sin. Shouldn't we rejoice and give our all in order to share the news of such a great victory?
Prayer: Dear God, impress upon each one of us the enormity of the news Your Son, Jesus, brought to us. Help us to give our all so that others will know of Your great gift of redemption! Amen.