Good news tells us, all-inclusive price has already been paid

Published 12:00am Saturday, February 22, 2014

Some stories teach practical lessons that we can apply to daily life. Recently, I read about a young man who left the Old Country many years ago to sail to America and start a new life.

His father gave him some money, just enough to get by until he found a job. His mother prepared a box of food for the journey. The parents hugged their son and said tearful good-byes. Then the young man gave his ticket to a porter on the ship and found the small cabin he would share with several others during the month-long voyage.

At mealtime that first night, the young man went topside and took out the box of food his mother gave him. He watched other passengers enter a large room with tables while he ate one of the sandwiches.

He could see waiters serving plates of food that smelled delicious, but the young man continued to eat one of his sandwiches. He thought about going to the dining room, deciding instead to save the money his father had given him.

As the days passed, the box of food began to dwindle. The young man was surviving on crackers and cheese. He would eat alone in his cabin because the aroma of the food made him even hungrier.

Three days before arriving in New York, the last of his food was gone.  In desperation, he approached a porter. Pulling some money out of his pocket, the young man asked how much the meals cost.

The porter explained to the young man that he could eat for free because his meals were included in the price of the passage. This story reminded me of the words in James 4:2, “You do not have because you do not ask.”

The moral of the story is that the price has been paid and, spiritually speaking, that means Christ has paid the price for sinners like you and me to be reconciled to God. The apostle Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 5:20-21, “Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

Scottish Bible scholar William Barclay once said, “The essential fact of Christianity is that God thought all men worth the sacrifice of His Son.” The definition of the Gospel is Good News, and the Good News is Jesus died on the Cross to pay the price for our sins.

E. Stanley Jones has written, “Religions are man’s search for God; the Gospel is God’s search for man. There are many religions, but one Gospel.”  Through Jesus’ sacrifice, we can receive forgiveness from our sins and have a personal relationship with God.

I implore you, if your sins are separating you from God, to ask for forgiveness through faith in Jesus Christ. Christians, we must tell people the Good News.

Jan White is an award-winning religion columnist. She can be reached at jwhite@andycable.com.

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