A very good morning to you my precious friends and family

2 Corinthians 4:6 says “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 chapter 4 is one of the great chapters in the Bible, and gives Paul’s description of why it is that Christians do not lose heart or become discouraged. He starts with that as his theme in verse 1 and ends with it in verse 16. How and why do we not “lose heart”?

First, because in evangelism, we share the truth plainly. We do not use deception, but rather rely upon the power of God and His Word by His Spirit to open blind eyes. This approach – the lack of deception or manipulation and the reliance on the work of God through his Word – allows us to not lose heart.

Martin Luther expressed it best when, reflecting on the extraordinary work of God through his life and ministry, said that while he and his friend Melanchthon sipped their beer, the Word was at work. It is God’s Word. It is God’s work. He must do it. That means we can sleep and rest and not lose heart.

Second, God’s purpose is to cause us at times to have our weaknesses exposed so that people can see that the power is from God, and not from us. This also causes us not to lose heart, because if we sense that we are being ridiculed or coming across as weak, we know that God is using our weakness to show His power.

Third, we do not lose heart because of the eternal perspective. 2 Corinthians 4 verse 17 reminds us “Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” While sometimes things may be hard, we have an eternal future that gives us great courage, hope, and strength, even in the midst of difficulties.

What then should we do most of all in order not to lose heart? Consciously and deliberately “fix your eyes not on what is seen but what is unseen.” Spend time prayerfully imagining heaven. Fix your eyes on our Lord Jesus. And in the light of that eternal glory and His glorious face, nothing should ever cause you to lose heart.

God gave light by command at creation, but at the point of salvation, He illuminates Himself in Christ. The “light” is the knowledge of salvation. The more we know about God’s glory, the greater light and knowledge we have.

Our message is not about ourselves. It is that Jesus is Lord. One day all of creation will acknowledge and praise Him. But for the people around us to praise our Lord Jesus today, they need to see Him alive in us. We serve others in Jesus' name. We are His body — His hands of compassion, His heart of mercy, and His voice of tenderness. So let's lift up Jesus — not just by telling others about him, but serving others as His presence in the world.

Psalm 51 verse 5 reminds us we were sinners from the moment of our conception in the womb, we all come into this world with a bias against the things of the Lord and a commitment to suppressing His truth (see Romans 1:18–32). We therefore need the Holy Spirit to open our eyes to what is plain to anyone who is willing to see the truth, namely, that the Bible alone is the Word of God. By His divine power, the Holy Spirit changes our hearts, enabling us to accept Scripture’s testimony about itself and believe those things that prove it is the creator God’s revelation of Himself.

We need the Holy Spirit not only to make us see that the Bible is the Word of God but also to help us understand its teaching. As we study the Scripture, we need to do all we can to avail ourselves of the many fine tools for Bible study available today, but we also need to pray that the Holy Spirit would help us receive and obey the teachings of His Word. The challenge is whether we pray regularly for the Holy Spirit’s clarity or understanding?

That is what God is saying to us in these words. Where do you find the light of the glory of God? In the face of Jesus Christ. And where do you find the face of Jesus? In the Scriptures. As you read them and let the Spirit of God interpret them, the face of Christ comes clearer. That is how light comes into a darkened heart.

Let us pray:

Lord our God, thank You for the light that has come into my darkness through Your Word. Lord Holy Spirit, please teach us how to reverence God, the Father, in true holiness.  Help us to receive the truth of the Word.  Help us to conduct our lives in a manner worthy of Christ.  Help us to walk daily so that You would shine in me. Amen.

Much love from Maurice and Margaret