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Human Thinking & Divine Revealing Work Together To Awaken Saving Faith

6 observations that clarify how human thinking and divine revealing work together in awakening saving faith (based on 2 Corinthians 4:4-6):

  1. The glory of Christ is seen in the gospel. The revelation of the glory of Christ is not a mystical experience cut loose from our thinking about Christ in the gospel. If we stop thinking about the gospel, we will not see the glory of Christ.

  2. The glory of Christ is really there. This divine glory is really and objectively there in the gospel. Otherwise, Paul would not speak of the god of this world blinding the minds of unbelievers. If something is not really there, you don’t need to be blind to miss it.

  3. The glory of Christ is seen through the facts of the gospel. The glory of Christ in the gospel—is not seen in a vision or a dream or a whispered word from the Holy Spirit. It is seen in the biblical story of Christ as the inspired apostle preaches the gospel of Christ. Verse 5: “What we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.”

  4. The decisive ground of saving faith is God’s gift of sight to the eyes of the heart. Our hearts are transformed and brought into harmony with the truth of Christ’s worth. This is why our thinking can now stand in the service of the gospel and become the humble agent of saving faith.

  5. Saving faith is reasonable. It goes beyond what mere thinking and reasoning upon the facts can produce, but it is itself reasonable. Jonathan Edwards explains, “By a reasonable conviction, I mean, a conviction founded on real evidence, or upon that which is a good reason, or just ground of conviction.”11

  6. This is the only path to spiritual certainty. “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life” (1 John 5:13). We are meant to know that the gospel is true and that we are saved, not cross our fingers.

Excerpt modified from Think by John Piper.

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