When the apostles were arrested for preaching in the temple, again, (after their miraculous release from prison – Acts 5) they responded to further demands that they stop preaching, in Jesus’ name, ‘all the words of this Life’ (Acts 5:20) saying, ‘…we are witnesses to these things and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him.’ (Acts 5:29, 32). When Jesus was persecuted by religious authorities for healing on the Sabbath, he replied to his accusers, “My Father is working … and I am working.” (John 5:17 ESV). The apostles, in faithfully following their Lord, recognized the true source of their ministry.
This second of three brief posts on the theme of the Ministry of Christ also comes from Leon Morris…
“When the ministers of Christ work it matters little that certain men are saying or doing certain things. But it matters very much that Christ is working in and through them.
As G. W. Bromley puts it…
‘It is Jesus who speaks when the word of the Gospel is truly preached. It is Jesus who is proffered and who blesses when the sacraments are rightly administered. It is Jesus who heals or helps when practical assistance is extended to the needy. It is Jesus who bears and endures when persecution or hardship is imposed and accepted. It is Jesus who rules when spiritual discipline is exercised….it is He Himself who is the true Minister.’
“Whenever there is a stress on the human agents there is a perversion of New Testament teaching, and there is an ineffective ministry. Such a ministry may indeed be successful by human criteria, but it will always be a failure in the place that matters, namely in the souls of men.”
From Leon Morris in Ministers of God.