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Good News

"Na ka mea te anahera ki a ratou, Kaua e mataku: ta te mea he kaikauwhau tenei ahau ki a koutou mo te hari nui, meake puta mai ki te iwi katoa". 
 
"But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people".


—Luke 2:10


This same good news that Luke writes about has traveled across history and around the world. I am continually drawn to reflect upon the incredible 1800-year journey of the good news from its origin in Israel all the way to Aotearoa, New Zealand on Christmas Day, 1814.

Another journey is deeply important to me: the journey of my ancestors that has led to me, where I am, today. I often ponder the generations of my Māori and Pākehā ancestors from 1814 to the day I was born. 

Over those 160 years, my Māori ancestors were making their way from Southland to Auckland; and my Pākehā ancestors were making their way from Europe in the nineteenth century to settle in Auckland over a hundred years later.

These two journeys became one on the day when the good news of Jesus Christ came to me. 
 
One of my deepest convictions is this: the good news of Jesus’ birth, the good news of his life, death, resurrection… is still good news, today!

The good news of Jesus is still good news for everyone, from the poorest to the richest. It is good news for the sick and for the healthy. It is good news for the prosperous business owner and the struggling debtor.

The good news of Jesus is good news for people, but also for countries and nations. It is good for economies and the environment. It is good news for the whole world. 


The good news of Jesus’s life, death, and resurrection, is still good news for you and me.
 
When I think of Aotearoa, New Zealand, I see a country deeply influenced by the good news of Jesusfrom our Treaty, to our original labour laws, to our human rights legislation. I see a country whose current agriculture and viticulture was shaped by our earliest missionaries.
 
Most importantly, the good news of Jesus is still good news for all the people of these islands. From the oldest New Zealander to our newest citizen, the good news is still good news. From the wealthiest individuals to our worst repeat offenders, the good news is still news.
 
The good news of Jesus Christ brings true and lasting hope. The good news of Jesus Christ is that despite our failures and sins, eternal life has been given to everyone who repents and believes that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, saves. He saves by taking our place and enduring the punishment we once deserved.

Eternal life, freedom from sin, a genuine and loving relationship with the Creator:
this is good news. 

The triune God entrusts his message of good news to ordinary people. He did on the first Christmas, and he does at this Christmas.

Ordinary people like us.

While we breathe on these Islands, our responsibility is to live, speak and embody this good news in ordinary ways. This Christmas, the good news of Jesus is still good news. 



 

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