I LOVE sharing good news, don’t you? Think about a time most recently when you were able to proclaim good news to a group of people or a person.
“He went to Jarod’s,” “She said, ‘yes,'” “It’s a boy!,”are just a couple examples of the really good news we get to share with people. For me, I can remember the moment with both of my children when I got to declare to everyone that they were born. It’s funny, I can remember working at a hospital and being able to spot the new dads out of crowd. They were the ones with grins from ear-to-ear and would stop a total stranger in their tracks to share their good news. Shoot, I didn’t have any trouble walking up to a total stranger in the hospital and declaring, “It’s a girl!,” or “It’s a boy!” Most people would receive your news with almost equal joy just because they were excited for you.
Have you ever met someone who recently became a Christian and just couldn’t contain themselves? They were so excited for this new found freedom that they had to share with everyone around them. I love that, but I have a feeling secretly that grizzled veterans in the church world think to themselves, “their excitement won’t last.” Isn’t this a shame? Who ever said that the “honeymoon” had to end? Truth be told, here in Chapter 10 Paul is proclaiming that we need to do something with the good news. He even goes back and quotes from Isaiah 52:7 (NLT)
7 How beautiful on the mountains
are the feet of the messenger who brings good news,
the good news of peace and salvation,
the news that the God of Israel reigns!
This passage may seem like a nice passage to support the value of sharing the good news of Jesus Christ, but it’s actually far more than that. When you understand the context behind Paul’s usage, this passage takes on a whole new meaning. Isaiah 52:7 is the point where the herald (messenger) is delivering good news to Judah about the end of their exile in Babylon and return to their home land. Don’t forget that the Israelites were in captivity for 70 years! Can you imagine getting to be the one who would share this message with the Jewish remnant in Babylon? No wonder the feet of the messenger was beautiful. Fast forward to Rome.
Confess and Believe
Although the Jews were not in physical captivity, Paul would argue that they were experiencing a form of spiritual captivity due to their reliance on the law. Again, as we seen now in many parts of his letter, Paul is striving to show the difference between faith and the law. Paul argues that it’s faith that he’s been preaching the whole time. His heart, and it should be our heart as well, is that people will “hear” (v. 17) the good news and do two things: confess and believe.
Confession has played a major role since the beginning of Jesus’ gospel. Here Paul makes it plane to understand. Romans 10:9-10 (NLT) 9 If you openly declare (confess) that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.10 For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved.
The NIV reads, “If you confess with you mouth, Jesus is Lord.” The word “confess” (homologeo) means to “give verbal affirmation.” It’s one thing for people to believe in the secret place of their heart, it’s another when you say it out loud. But as we will see, the heart is still involved here.
(v. 9) “…and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Remember Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 15:17 (NLT) 17 And if Christ has not been raised, then your faith is useless and you are still guilty of your sins. So it’s here that Paul connects the importance between our salvation and Christ’s Resurrection.
(v. 13) “For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” This isn’t just worth noting, this is worth sharing. So not it’s time to stop reading and start sharing! Because just like we’ve already read, (v. 14) “How can they hear about him unless someone tells them?”