What is it you cannot do, and God will never help you do?
At this point in human history, I have heard that there are over 2.5 billion men, women, and children, living in some 17,000 separate people groups, who will be born, live their whole life and die without ever hearing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
They will have no opportunity to hear the Good News unless someone tells them, goes to them by crossing a geographical barrier, a cultural barrier, a language barrier to bring the Gospel to them.
I once met a university student from South Carolina who did not have Christian parents. He had never been to church, but he had an extended Christian family. The young man had just spent a 900-mile drive with a church leader, his uncle, when I met him.
We talked about China. I told him stories about my years living there. He asked me, “So how come you like China so much?” I said, “Because it’s a great place to preach the Gospel to people who have never heard it.” He turned quiet. I assumed my answer was satisfactory or off-putting. Then the student said, “Well, I’ve never heard the Gospel.” So I told him the Good News.
A proverb says, “Like cold water to a weary soul is good news from a distant land” (Proverbs 25:25). The superb news comes to us from a very distant land — heaven through ancient Israel, through printing presses that turned in Gutenberg, through someone who cared enough to speak it to someone else and by whole measure through the Holy Spirit.
Receiving the Good News from a distant land is not like getting a selfie from someone. It is not a picture of someone taken on a day when they are finally looking good after a struggle with this or that, having overcome a life challenge with the help of Jesus — though that is wonderful and expected and important.
The heart of the Good News is not about us, or about anything we can ever accomplish. The Good News is about something we cannot do. It is about something for which we have zero ability to perform.
The Good News starts with disbelief in our abilities. At its core, it begins with what we cannot do. It starts with how we cannot save ourselves, how we cannot on our own make arrangements for our own eternal life.
Just as no one could ever adopt their self, so too no one can never save their own sou. There is no such things as D.I.Y. eternal salvation. But, the fantastic news from a distant land is that Jesus came to arrange it for you, to do for you what you could never do for yourself.
Now that’s something to Celebrate!