“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners… . “
(Isaiah 61:1 NIV)
Notice the order of things Isaiah was called to do: 1) preach the good news, 2) bind up the brokenhearted, and 3) proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for prisoners. What was the first thing Isaiah was called to do? Preach the good news. Broken hearts will not experience true restoration without first accepting the good news. Captives will not experience true freedom without first accepting the good news. Prisoners will not experience the light of life without first accepting the good news. Preaching the good news is the key for the fulfillment of the subsequent promises spoken through Isaiah. So let me ask you, how many people have you preached the good news to lately? More importantly, how many relationships do you have with people who do not know Jesus? The majority of people who become believers do so due to a relationship with a genuine believer. Too often we encapsulate ourselves within a bubble of going to church, going to our Bible study small group, meeting our Christian friends for lunch, and participating in the church softball league. None of those things are wrong, but if our schedule is only filled with spending time with Christians, we have left no room for time with unbelievers. In Romans 10 Paul asks the recipients of his letter how the lost can believe in the one of whom they have not heard? We must be intentional to seek out the lost and proclaim the good news. Our loving actions will win over their hearts which should open their minds to hear the message we are proclaiming. And it is only through the acceptance of the Good News that they will be able to experience true freedom and restoration in life.
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