“But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake” (2 Cor. 4:3-5).
We live in an age that is blinded not only by the sensual things of the flesh but by the institutions of religion. I would that every person in this world knew and experienced the true peace that is found in Jesus Christ. Any minister or church that preaches ‘themselves’ is a false one. In our own power and ability, we have nothing to offer to save this lost world. We do have the ability to point people to a Savior — not only by our words, but by the light that emanates through us from Christ within.
I would that the glorious light of the gospel shine brighter and brighter in this dark, evil time. Through many years of ministry around the world, I have recognized a great need to help establish native ministries in the truth of the Word. This is not about gaining a following or having someone ‘join’ a group. It is about teaching and encouraging people to be the Church in their locality. Unity then comes about as people walk in the truth, being led by the Spirit.
A few months ago in Kenya (following a simple gospel message), a minister from a local denomination told me, “That was refreshing.” He then told me many ministers that come are building an image after themselves. There is no true freedom or peace found in following a man or religion. I confess my weariness of religion and the carnality that is found amongst professing Christians. At the same time, I proclaim loudly my love for God, for truth, and for all of His children. My heart cries for the sinner, for the hypocrites, and for the backslidden to find true satisfaction. That is found neither within the four walls of a chapel nor in following a good, religious way of life. It is found in an experience of complete surrender to Jesus Christ and in following freely the narrow, joyous, sacrificial, loving Biblical way that leads to life eternal.
It is the desire of my wife and me to share through the written word of this paper some of the foundational, scriptural truths that can assist honest hearts in becoming established in the truth. We will publish this as often as the Lord gives us the time and inspiration. We would appreciate prayer for this new endeavor that it will be spiritually successful.
Let us all pray for the Lord’s blessing on every meeting this season. There is still power in prayer, and I look for some mountains to be brought low by the power of God.
-Michael W Smith