” That your rejoicing may be more abundant in Jesus Christ
for me by my coming to you again.”
The last 7 verses have all been about Paul’s desire to see the gospel of Jesus Christ preached, no matter what happens to him. He was ready for anything. But as he closes this portion, we see him talking about going free and coming to see them. What dedication!
Even as he was thinking this, he wanted to make sure that all his readers and the churches did not get into a position of lifting him up, but he wanted them to rejoice in Christ for the blessing of sending him. I love the humility of this man! He did not want to receive any glory – to Christ be all the glory.
I get invitations to revivals all the time from various ministries. Many of them I love to receive because I recognize the preachers that are going to be present there, and know they truly have a love for the Lord, and are humble servants. Two of those people are Bob Newton with Powerhouse Ministries and Sean Strong of Standing Strong ministries. Both take their tent crusades all over the country, and are full Pentecostal revival preachers. And both are humble men of God. I know when they put on a revival, Jesus Christ will be glorified.
But sometimes it seems the speakers at these conventions and revivals just want to be heard, and they want to be lifted up. It’s just the way the poster or invitation is worded or pictured that gives this impression. If I ever sense that when looking at these things, no matter who the speaker is, I would never attend.
Our goal as Christians or as preachers is to lift Jesus Christ up. He said if He is lifted up, He will draw men to himself (John 12:32). Our place is to lift Him up, not to save them. He will call them, and they will hear His voice in their hearts. Just lift Jesus up!
I need to do a better job at lifting up your name, Jesus. I like to teach the word, and I put together my messages very methodically and thoughtfully. But I don’t always lift you up in every message, and that has to change. You must be the centerpiece of every message. Help me never to neglect that altar call at the end, allowing people to make a choice to accept you as lord and Savior of their lives. Help me to always lift you up!