In Ezekial 2, God tells Ezekial that he will be a prophet to the people of Israel. Israel at this time was a very rebellious people and had long invoked the justice of the Lord. A prophet was one who was to be the mouthpiece of the Lord, relaying His messages to the people. This was what God was calling Ezekial to be. Now the Lord knew of the stubbornness of Israel’s heart and knew that His message through Ezekial was to be met with closed ears and hard hearts. Therefore, it comes to reason that God spoke to Ezekial to proclaim His message “whether they hear or refuse to hear.”
Flash forward a few thousand years and here we are in the 7th week of this year’s LOV summer camp. Numerous Bible studies have elapsed, many of which have seemingly been met with deaf ears. Honestly, I cannot know the work that God is doing in the hearts of the older boys who sit in my classroom, but I know the appearances of what is being interpreted by them, and that seems to be minimal. This has begun to be frustrating from the preparation of Bible studies to the presentation of Bible studies. These Bible studies honestly seem vain half the time as these boys distract and are distracted by others in the midst of Bible studies.
In the midst of this adversity, what keeps me going? What keeps my eyes on God as what He has called me to do is seemingly ignored by the people I am called to? The importance of the Gospel as a whole is the first and foremost factor. The Gospel is the only thing that can penetrate the hearts of those who hear this Word proclaimed. The second factor is the fact that God has given me the opportunity to speak His Truth, whether they hear or refuse to hear.
God is sovereign in salvation, and not a thing I can say can prick the hearts of the kids who hear this truth proclaimed. Only God can initiate and carry out the salvation and sanctification of those who would choose to follow Him. My only job is to speak the truth of the Gospel with my whole being as I rest in the goodness of the Gospel I proclaim. Whether they hear or refuse to hear is not up to me. Of course I want them to hear and receive the Gospel message with open arms, but I cannot force a reaction. Only the Holy Spirit can draw these kids into salvation.
Whether they hear or refuse to hear (Ezekial 2:5), I must proclaim the truth of the gospel. “Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel” (1 Corinthians 9:16).