“For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 4:5, 6 NIV84)
To all the pastors and teachers out there, it’s not about us! I constantly worry about getting in the way of the message God wants communicated through me. I’m being serious! We pastors and teachers have been spiritually gifted to communicate the truths of God’s word. We must remember that the focus needs to be on the word of God and not the gift, or the one gifted. Satan has a tendency to play in the area of pride, arrogance and popularity. This is why Paul says that he is a servant (slave) of Jesus Christ. It is the Master that gets the attention, not the hired hand. We are but the hired hands using gifts and talents that the Master Himself has provided us. We need to humbly step aside so that in our teaching and preaching the hearer hears and sees Jesus and not us. Because I struggle with this issue, I pray every time I speak that “they would see and hear Jesus, and not me.”
One more thing. Paul ends these verses with a sentence that is very significant. He tells us that God “has made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.” Three words jump out to me as I read this verse. They are “light,” “knowledge” and “glory.” If we ever want to see the glory of God we must have the knowledge that opens that view to us. We must know truth from falsehood, right from wrong, God’s word from everything else. In order to have that knowledge, we need to have the light of God’s work shine in and through us. And once we have all that together, it allows us to see that the glory of God has been revealed in Jesus. It is the word of God that works in our heart and enlightens us with the spiritual knowledge of understanding that it’s all about Jesus.
And so this devotion goes full circle. It is always all about Jesus. We must get ourselves out of the way of God’s light. We need to be reflectors of the light, so it can shine in the hearts of others, giving them the knowledge of the truth about Jesus Christ.