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What Makes the Gospel Good News?

Personal salvation is nice, but delighting in God is better.

The best news of the Christian gospel is that the supremely glorious Creator of the universe has acted in Jesus Christ's death and resurrection to remove every obstacle between us and himself so that we may find everlasting joy in seeing and savoring his infinite beauty. The saving love of God is his doing whatever must be done, at great cost to himself, and for the least deserving, so that he might enthrall them with what will make them supremely happy forever, namely, himself. Therefore, the gospel of God and the love of God are expressed finally and fully in God's gift of himself for our everlasting pleasure. "In your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore" (Ps. 16:11).

Christ Is a Soul Satisfying Portion

Those who have seen God most clearly in the face of Christ and have savored him most fully tell us something of what this is like. Jonathan Edwards opens the window on his own soul and on the meaning of the gospel with these exultant words:

They that have Christ, they have a soul satisfying portion. They have the truest pleasures and comforts. Here is to be found the proper happiness of the soul. Least liable to accidents and change … Here is the best employment for the understanding … Such as have Christ, they have better and greater riches than others … Better honor … Far better pleasures than sensual men. The joys are more exquisitely delighting than ever was enjoyed by the greatest epicure. [There are] no pleasures like those that are by the enlightenings of the Spirit of Christ, the discoveries of the beauty of Christ and the manifestations of his love.

This is why Jesus said that the pure are blessed because "they shall see God" (Matt. 5:8). It's why David ...

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