For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles— 2 assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God’s grace that was given to me for you, 3 how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. 4 When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. 6 This mystery is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.
7 Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God’s grace, which was given me by the working of his power. 8 To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God, who created all things, 10 so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. 11 This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him. 13 So I ask you not to lose heart over what I am suffering for you, which is your glory. – Ephesians 3:1-13
We had a bad habit years ago. We would watch the TV evening news in bed, and then M*A*S*H immediately afterward. We joked about trying to turn off the TV before the beginning notes of the M*A*S*H theme song came through the speakers. We didn’t manage to succeed until they stopped running reruns of the show. Now we don’t even watch the TV news. It’s so sensational, focusing on dramatic Late Breaking News of freeway accidents, gang shootings, apartment fires, and high-speed chases. Late breaking it may be. But important? No.
In the context of the sweep of history the message of Jesus is late-breaking news. Yes, it’s 2000 years old. Yes, it’s been proclaimed week in and week out from church pulpits and in Sunday School classes. Yes, missionaries and everyday people have witnessed to Jesus’ love daily. But this is late breaking – especially in view of eternity.
My friend says, “Eternity lasts a long, long time.” So this mystery of God’s love in Jesus that was first revealed explicitly 2000 years ago is not only late-breaking, it is far-reaching. The impact of this good news bent the arc of history. This revelation of the mystery changed the course of people’s eternal destiny. Late breaking and far-reaching.
This late-breaking news is especially late-breaking and truly new-news to those who are outside the fellowship of believers. We cannot overstate this – although we are likely to think little of it. When a person is brought to faith they recognize this as profoundly new and late-breaking. The older they are the more obviously late-breaking it is.
Do you know someone who is apart from the fellowship of believers? Do they know the real story of Jesus? They need to hear this late-breaking news in a way that is neither sensational nor trivial. This is real good news. Late-breaking and far-reaching: We are partakers of the promises of God from the beginning of time and reaching through the span of eternity.