“My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.” 1 Corinthians 2:4-5
Paul was incredibly well-educated and well-versed in the Scripture of his day. He would have had a doctorate and could have been a seminary professor if he so chose. If anyone could have pulled off being wise and persuasive, it would have been Paul. Yet Paul himself said that his message and teaching did not rely on wise and persuasive words but on a demonstration of the Spirit’s power.
A demonstration of the Spirit’s power. That was Paul’s key to evangelism. With no Holy Spirit, there’s no option of demonstrating the Spirit’s power. This leaves us with wise and persuasive words and we know they won’t convert anyone.
How do we begin to demonstrate the Spirit’s power in our life, and how does that lead to effective sharing of the gospel?
“For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you because our gospel came to you not only in word but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction.” 1 Thessalonians 1:4-5
The fruit of the Spirit must be evident in your life: love, joy, peace, patience, faithfulness, gentleness, goodness, kindness, self-control. This will allow you to show supernatural grace: forgiveness, even to your enemies.
The gifts of the Spirit must flow as the Holy Spirit leads: words of knowledge, words of wisdom, prophecy, faith, healing, miracles, discerning of spirits, different kinds of tongues, and interpretation of tongues.
“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” John 14:12-13
Jesus was speaking to his disciples from the heart, in the knowledge that the cross awaited. Contextually, he is talking about his miracles, urging his disciples to believe in him as the Son of God because of the works he has done in their sight. Caught up in the Spirit, he prophesies that those who believe in him, including believers down through the ages, will perform the same, and even greater miracles. In the power and effectiveness of his children, Father God will be glorified. What a glorious promise!
Torben Sondergaad’s Last Reformation ministry demonstrates the truth of Jesus and Paul’s words. Check it out http://www.lastreformation .com. We must be walking in the power of the Holy Spirit if we are to accomplish anything for God’s Kingdom.
For further excellent articles like this one check out Duncan Edward Pile on the Patheos website.