Monday Motivator – August 27

Do you every wonder if you should be ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus because it is so ancient? And if something is old, it has to be bad, right?

That’s the way many people used to think. But then people started to notice that baseball stadiums like Camden Yards (built in the early 1990’s by the Baltimore Orioles Baseball Club to replace old Municipal Stadium), looked better when they were built like the old ones. It was the first of the “retro” ballparks constructed during the last two decades.

TVLand is a favorite place to see older shows that marked the growth of TV with hits like The Andy Griffith Show. Many people have stated they learned a lot about life from the lessons covered in episode plots and the way Andy Taylor raised his boy Opie.

It seems that we are comfortable with the idea that the past is not bad, and that not all good ideas in this world were thought up in the time between recent Twitter feeds and ESPN score updates at the bottom of the screen you happen to be looking at.

That should give us hope as we continue to share the message of Jesus with people around us. I know it’s a two thousand year old story, but its antiquity does not make it outdated. I believe the gospel of Jesus is as fresh and relevant to people living in 2012 as it was in year 12. What religion, worldview, philosophical or political system can deal with the following 5 concepts found in Christianity? 1) The foundation is God’s character and His love; 2) It confronts and deals with systemic evil in culture and in me; 3) It gives people a choice and the power to live life well; 4) It deals with inside and outside restoration; and 5) It offers hope for personal, family, cultural, and global transformation.

The truth of history is that man’s condition does not change and will not change. We might wear better clothes, have better transportation, drink cleaner water, use a laptop instead of an abacus, and be able to talk with someone on the other side of the country instead of face to face at the town gates…but human nature has not changed. All of us have a sin nature, just as everyone else in history had. The ancients needed a Savior, just like we do. The only hope of eternal life with God is salvation through Jesus.

Read John 3:1-17. Note verse 18 – “whoever believes in Jesus is not condemned.”

In this retro world, in which some of the best ideas are from way back – and which we are trying again, do not miss the opportunity to tell your friends about the old-time gospel. It never looked or sounded better. How can you improve how you tell the tale?

I am currently reading a newly released book from John Ortberg called, “Who Is This Man? The Unpredictable Impact of the Inescapable Jesus.” Jesus is history’s most familiar figure and His impact on art, science, government, medicine and education is immense and not a coincidence. Jesus’ vision for us to lead lives of dignity, compassion, forgiveness and hope continues to inspire and challenge humanity today. Grab a copy to read and discuss with a skeptical friend on your lunch break. Jesus changed everything.

Think theologically. For those who have never heard, the “old story” is brand new.

Love is a verb,

Mike Olejarz

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