Sometimes ministries grow because they are blessed by God and recognized by the witness of the Holy Spirit in God’s people. Others grow through worldly popularity, tickling ears and accumulating followers of “like-compromise”. Funny thing is, even the “ear ticklers” preach from the Bible. So what are some distinguishing marks of a ministry that is authentically powerful through God? One distinguishing mark is this:an all-consuming revelation of Jesus Christ.
The world was not turned upside down by religious men teaching Bible verses. The world was rocked by people who preached Christ in all of His unsearchable riches and lived in the power of the Holy Spirit. They weren’t suffering persecution for teaching Biblical principles for success in business, relationships and morality. They were obsessed with making people partakers of God’s divine nature through Jesus Christ. Death, sickness, government oppression, corrupt religion, and all the hordes of hell had been completely defeated by this glorious Man to rescue a corrupt world. Through Jesus Christ, God revealed His redeeming love for sinners. By the Holy Spirit, the man on the cross was unveiled to be very co-creator, the fullness of God, the glorious ruler of heaven and earth who is offering forgiveness and the gift of His own Spirit as the identity and life of all who believe in Him. What was the result? The apostolic church rose to shout “We proclaim HIM!”
People with a revelation of Jesus Christ preach Him, not an “it”. They don’t preach salvation. They preach Christ who saves. They don’t preach on spiritual gifts. They preach Christ who gives one spirit with a diversity of manifestations to His body. They don’t preach on marriage. They preach Christ, the great bridegroom who dwells in men to empower them to lay down their lives for their bride even as He did for us on the cross. They don’t preach the Scriptures thinking that “in them we have life”. No! They preach Christ of whom all Scripture bears witness, so that people may come to Him and have Him as their very life.
Best of all, we preach Jesus Christ because He gives Himself to us by the Holy Spirit. This glorious Lord now dwells in us and live through us each day! Let Jesus Christ be magnified and the glory of God will be released through you for Christ in you is the hope of Glory!