For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?” So, faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. – Romans 10:16b-17
Scripture reading: Romans 10:9-17
Confessing Jesus as Lord and believing in His resurrection are both necessary for salvation. But how does one obtain the faith to do this? The Holy Spirit is the Author of faith and He uses the preaching of the Word of Christ to create that faith.
During the early years of the Church, the believers possessed the Hebrew text of the Old Testament and its Greek translation, the Septuagint. By the middle of the second century, the Canon (official list) of the New Testament was fixed. Now the books of the OT and the NT formed the Bible. For centuries, it was in manuscript form. Thanks to Gutenberg’s invention of moveable type and the Reformation’s emphasis on the translation of the Bible, the laity could read Scripture in their native languages.
A great gift of the Modern Missionary Enterprise to the peoples of Asia and Africa has been the translation of the Bible into their local languages. In some instances, missionaries had to provide the alphabet for many nations before they could engage in their translation work.
Having the printed copy of the Word of God does not dispense with the preaching of the Gospel. The greatest periods in Church history were marked by powerful Biblical preaching. For example, the Patriarch of Constantinople (349–407), John Chrysostom, was known as the Golden-mouth for his eloquent and bold preaching. Among many noteworthy preachers of the 18th Century, George Whitefield (1714–1770) greatly influenced the Church in both Britain and America.
Suggestions for prayer
Pray that the Lord will equip His ministers with boldness as they proclaim His Word, thus walking in the footsteps of those men who preceded them in this calling.
This daily devotional is available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional. Rev. Bassam Michael Madany has served as a missionary in Syria, and in 1958 he began a 36-year radio and literature ministry to the Arab world. After retirement Bassam & his wife Shirley began an Internet ministry, Middle East Resources, to provide a “Christian Response to the Global Challenge of Islam.”