"Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland." (Isaiah 43:18-19 NIV)
"But the angel said to them, 'Do not be
afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the
people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you;
he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a
baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.' Suddenly a great company
of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
'Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his
favor rests.' When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the
shepherds said to one another, 'Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing
that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.' So they hurried
off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the
manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning
what had been told them about this child." (Luke 2:10-17 NIV)
It was not a new thing for an angel to appear with a message but one thing was new in the message that the single angel brought to the shepherds. The message an angel had brought in the past had been for one person or one group of people. This message was the Good News for all the people. Another new thing in this account is the baby being found in a manger.
What did the shepherds do when they heard what the angel said? They trusted the message and did what the angel told them to do. They looked in the mangers of Bethlehem until they found a baby. After that, they went out praising God and telling everyone what they had seen and Who they had seen. They did not know any theology but just what had been told to them and what they had seen. That is what they told others
This message is a message for all peoples. Like the shepherds, we need to tell all peoples the Good News of Jesus Christ. We need to tell them just what we know. We don't have to know all the whys and wherefores, we just need to tell them what we have been told and what we have experienced.
I saw the results of a survey on a Christian web site of atheists about what might reach them. The one thing they thought might turn them to Jesus Christ was testimonies of Jesus and how He has worked in someone's life.
Jesus commands us to go teach disciples. This may be a new thing God wants you to do.
May we obey what the psalmist has told us to do:
"Sing praises to the LORD, enthroned in Zion; proclaim among the nations what he has done." (Psalm 9:11 NIV)
By Dean W. Masters
Owner of the Master's List.
(To access the entire "A New Thing" mini-series, please click here.)