God’s role in evangelism

2 Corinthians 4.1-6

When Jesus gave his disciples the instruction to go into the whole world and ‘make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you,’ he did not intend them to achieve this alone or purely by their personal powers of persuasion. He added, ‘And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.’ Matthew 28.19-20 Paul was deeply aware of the Spirit of Christ accompanying him as he preached and taught and therefore did not lose heart, v1 he was aware of the mercy of God in his ministry.

God’s role whenever the good news of Jesus is shared is to shine, ‘the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. v6 He makes his light shine in our hearts. This is fundamental to anyone coming to faith in Jesus. That role cannot be replicated by a human. God enables us to see who Jesus is. It is a matter of the Holy Spirit revealing Christ to us. That is the moment when someone becomes a Christian, when they recognise Jesus for who he is. When Paul became a Christian on the road to Damascus to persecute Christians, he saw miraculously a dazzling light. He asked, ‘Who are you Lord?’ Then Jesus replied, ‘I am Jesus.’ Acts 9.5 Not only physical light but the light of revelation had shone into Paul’s heart and he grasped who Jesus really was and called him Lord.

When Jesus healed the man blind from birth he said, ‘I am the light of the world.’ John 9.5 Jesus is the same God who brought light into the world at creation. Every time a person recognizes that Jesus is God and has come to save them from the consequences of their life of sin, God performs another miracle in their heart. It is no coincidence that the man who Jesus healed of blindness had been blind since birth John 9.1 we all have been blinded by sin and the devil until God reveals himself to us.  The sharing of the gospel alone is not sufficient for an individual to become a Christian.

There is spiritual conflict over the hearts of people, the gospel is veiled to those who are perishing. v3 The reason it is veiled is, ‘the god of this world has blinded the minds of unbelievers to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ.’ v4  The devil causes people to pursue and desire the things of this world above a relationship with God. Whether that is popularity, possessions, relationships, sensual gratification, power and prestige or immediate temporary gratifications. People are blinded to anything that will open their eyes to see Jesus for who he is.

Part of the blindness can be that they think they have Jesus labelled, as a teacher, a dead prophet, a con merchant, a made up person to justify people’s beliefs, a myth. The devil wants and is happy when that is how Jesus is viewed. Anything to prevent people seeing Jesus as, ‘the light of the gospel for the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.’ v4

Who are you praying for that the Holy Spirit will open their blind eyes to see the glory of Christ?

Have you in your anxiety that someone should believe striven to do what only God can do?

Open our eyes Lord

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