“A Good Earth Full of Good and Bad People.” That statement could summarize and explain our world’s current state of affairs. Thankfully, there are many more generally decent and good people than bad ones. But we all know it doesn’t take many rotten characters to bring misery and havoc. People are free to be the way they want to be and to do the things they want to do. Freedom is God’s gift to mankind. God is free and his children are free. Of course, forces of influence press upon that human gift of freedom. To make good freewill choices requires some knowledge of the options, of right and wrong, of cause and effect, of purpose. But the world is adrift in a sea of ignorance which makes freedom to choose a mixed bag.
Knowledge of God and his purpose for mankind is the missing key and the muddled mess of the human condition is evidence of that missing knowledge. Lacking the most vital knowledge to make man’s freedom blossom with goodness, joy, and peace, he wallows in ignorance and self destructive behavior. The dark side of evil finds easy prey among those ignorant of God. Evil is real and it seems to be gaining power. Its days are numbered so it may be marshaling a final assault against Yahweh’s children destined to bear his image and rule his creation.
Notice how Jesus characterized the message his Father commissioned him to give the world: Good News (“Gospel”). Good news about what? Knowledge about the coming Kingdom of God. Which in its essence is knowledge about God, his loving and merciful nature, his sovereign power over all life and things, his glorious plan for mankind, and his firstborn son to lead the way to eternal life.
Jesus likened that key knowledge of the Kingdom of God to a tiny mustard seed that would grow so large birds could nest in it. We live in the season when that mustard plant is growing. The Good News is more precious than all the diamonds, platinum and gold on earth. Nothing compares.
Soon, the heavens will open and the Good News will be manifest for all to behold. Then will the words of the prophet Isaiah find fulfillment:
They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain [kingdom],
For the earth will be full of the knowledge of Yahweh
As the waters cover the sea. (Isa 11:9)
The problem of a world caught in evil and ignorance will be freed by the knowledge of God—the Good News. What a privilege we believers have to carry that light, that hope to a sin-sick world desperate for Good News.