“Glad Tidings of Great Joy” – Mosiah 3:3

The Greek word euaggelion (εὐαγγέλιον) means “good news” or “glad tidings.” It appears 76 times in the New Testament, and it is always translated “gospel” in the King James Version of the Bible.

The verb form of the word—euaggelizó (εὐαγγελίζω)—which appears 54 times, is usually translated “preach” or “preach the gospel.” But six times, it is translated more literally: bringing or declaring “glad tidings” or “good tidings” (Luke 1:19, Luke 2:10, Luke 8:1, Acts 13:32, Romans 10:15, 1 Thessalonians 3:6).

In multiple passages, the prophet Isaiah speaks of the Messiah and others bringing good tidings from God. In one passage, which is quoted repeatedly in the Book of Mormon, Isaiah rejoices in a messenger…

…that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!
(Isaiah 52:7, Mosiah 12:21, Mosiah 15:13-19, Mosiah 27:37, 3 Nephi 20:40)

The angel who appeared to King Benjamin introduced himself by saying, “I am come to declare unto you the glad tidings of great joy” (Mosiah 3:3). He told Benjamin that his words were intended to fill Benjamin and his people with joy.

Many years later, an angel would appear to a group of shepherds in Bethlehem with the same message: “Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people” (Luke 2:10).

As we’ve seen, the phrase “bring good tidings” or “declare glad tidings” could also be rendered “preach the gospel.” The word “joy” also has special significance in these passages. The word in Greek, chara (χαρά), is related to the word charis (χάρις), which means grace. So the sentence, “I am come to declare unto you the glad tidings of great joy,” could be rendered, “I am here to preach the gospel which will bring you joy because of God’s grace.”

Today, I will remember that the gospel of Jesus Christ is good news, and that it can bring joy to everyone. I will share with others the joy I have experienced because of God’s grace.

2 thoughts on ““Glad Tidings of Great Joy” – Mosiah 3:3

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  1. Really cool to see how much more meaningful the words of the angel were. Definitely gives us cause to rejoice with great joy because of our Savior!

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