What is the Good News?


J R Woodward, has gathered a large group of writers from around the world, to write a series of posts, under the title, "Good News for Your City".

In this blog series each of the contributors will be summarizing their understanding of the Good News in 300 to 500 words. Each author is writing their entry as if they were invited by their city newspaper to write an article on the Good News.

Mine is for London, and the Times newspaper, and will be online later this week. Meantime you can see it below. You can follow on twitter with the tag, #The Good News.

London Bad news has flowed almost daily for the last few months. An unremitting parade of graphs, numbers, interviews, headlines, all showing the inexorable slide into recession and economic crises. Radio chat shows, news programs, breakfast TV, reality TV, even non new programs, all having to make reference to the credit crunch. It’s bad and it’s going to get worse, with the numbers attached to the bad news being so large, we have ceased to be able to comprehend them.

So many of the headlines seem to speak of the greed that led to credit crunch and the fear that has ensued after the consumer binge, passing into general conversation. It’s the ‘greedy’ who have caused the fears the rest of us face.

And living on the edge of London, which lies at the epicenter of this financial earthquake, it’s hard not to be caught up in the fear and panic, on the lips of everyone, everywhere. How bad will it be, when will it end, will I get through this?

How do we navigate times like this, buoyed along by media saturated resources titled ‘How to survive a recession’? In a world where the market is taken for granted as the reality of everyday life, maybe we take to heart, practice and find comfort from Warren Buffet’s axiom ‘...be fearful when others are greedy and to be greedy only when others are fearful’.

But is our world a closed system of limited resources that we have to fight over, in competition with each other, where only the fittest will survive? Are life, time, and relationships all a commodities to trade, or hedge against the ups and downs of the market? Is there more to human life than this cycle of fear and greed?

Easter, the death and resurrection of Jesus, was and is news to our city. Christians call this story, The Gospel, which literally means ‘Good News’. Does the Good News of Jesus look different to our ‘bad news’?

The heart of the Easter Good News story, is that there is a God, who is beyond the limits of the markets, and our finite resources, who interrupts and enters into our world. He enters our world in person, as Jesus, to deal with this very cycle of fear and greed.

His death and resurrection, reveal a different economy, where the response to fear isn’t greed, and greed the response to fear. But Jesus reveals that the giving ourselves to God and one another, opens the doors to a new economy and way of life with limitless resources.

Maybe that’s some Good News we could explore together this Easter.