Does God depend on our evangelism?
No, God doesn’t depend on anyone or anything. He has life in himself. This is the doctrine of divine aseity. God doesn’t need anything. He’s the self-existent one.
God doesn’t need anything, but he chooses to use us. He could use angels to proclaim the message of the gospel, but in love he chose to use you and me. He gives us this wonderful privilege of proclaiming the truth about Jesus. And for the gospel to advance, we’re totally dependent on the Lord, and not vice versa.
In Acts 16:14, Paul preached the gospel and one of those who heard him was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what Paul said. In other words, it was God himself who worked through Paul’s preaching. Yes, he used Paul, but the Holy Spirit opened Lydia’s heart.
God works this way throughout the Scriptures. Acts 13:48 says,“When the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord, and as many as were appointed to eternal life believed.” Who appointed these people to eternal life? The Lord God himself.
So we have to recognize the sovereignty of God. God doesn’t need anyone, but in his glorious wisdom chooses to use us. And we’re the ones who benefit from this. It’s not like God says, “Oh, boy, if only I just had some people to share the gospel.” No, it’s our great privilege to be used by the Lord in this way.
God doesn’t depend on our evangelism. The idea that God depends on us can put an enormous burden on evangelists, as though God’s sovereign plan won’t be accomplished if they fail. God is the one “who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure” (Phil. 2:13). He gets all the credit. He gets all the glory. And you and I are blessed through our participation in God’s sovereign work of grace. We’re privileged to serve him by sharing or, for those of us who are pastors, preaching the gospel.
God doesn’t need us, but in his kindness he chooses to use us.
This article is part of our Frequently Asked Questions series. Listen to Pastor Adriel answer this question on Core Radio here.
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