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      Nurturing people in the image of God since 1868.                                                                          POB 397/520 Dry Creek Rd./Smithville, TN



Comedian Milton Berle told about a newsboy standing on the comer with a stack of papers yelling, "Read all about it.  Fifty people swindled!  Fifty people swindled!" Curious, a man walked over, bought a paper, and checked the front page.  Finding nothing, the man said, "There's nothing in here about fif(y people being swindled." The newsboy ignored him and went on, calling out, "Read all about it.  Fifty-one people swindled!" Not all news is good news, is it?  Bad news pile ups and grabs the headlines on a daily basis.  Paul Harvey once noted that if it's not black, bleak, and bloody it won't make page one.  As singer Anne Murray noted in a song many years ago, "we sure could use a little good news today."

Good news is exactly what the Bible has to share.  Luke 2:8ff records the night 2,000 years ago when an angel appeared to shepherds near Bethlehem with news that still shocks those who bother to think- 'I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.  For there is born to you this day in the city

of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord." That announcement represents the greatest and most stunning news human ears could ever hear- God came to earth in the Person of His Son.  Not on a sight-seeing tour or an information-gathering junket.  No, Jesus was born in a manger in Bethlehem so that thirty-three years later He could die on a cross in Jerusalem- all in order to save us from sin.  Of course it is true we don't know the exact date that Christ was born; 'and yes, some people give too much free reign to human imagination and go to extremes in celebrating Christmas as the birthday of Jesus.  But human innovations and unbiblical extremes don't change the fact that Jesus was born to be the Savior of the world!  Sin still dominates our world and harms human beings from the womb to the tomb and from pole to pole.  Our world still desperately needs a Savior.  God's good news is that in Jesus we now have One!

Someone has noted our greatest need as follows:  "If our greatest need had been information, God would have sent us an educator.  If our greatest need had been technology, God would have sent us a scientist.  If our greatest need had been money, God would have sent us an economist. If our greatest need had been pleasure, God would have sent us an entertainer.  But our greatest need was forgiveness, so God sent us a Savior." Bad news abounds.  Could you use some good news?  Jesus is God's good news to you!

Dan Gulley
Smithville church of Christ