Then He ordered them to tell no one, but the more He would order them, the more they would proclaim it. – Mark 7:36
As a pastor of a local church, I discovered that one of the most difficult practices for a congregant to maintain was consistent proclamation of the gospel. Then I read the verse in context above and wondered if maybe I needed to change tactics. Jesus ordered those whose lives He had radically changed to tell no one about the experience, but the more He told them to stop, the more they spoke up!
Was Jesus using some sort of reverse psychology to get the message out about His identity? Perhaps, but before He physically departed this earth He gave a new command, “Go, and make disciples of all nations….” We have no reason to be confused about what we are to do. If we have a problem proclaiming, it is not because we do not know we should do it. I believe the problem to be much deeper than that.
As the apostles after Pentecost could not be silent, we who have truly been changed by the indwelling Holy Spirit should find ourselves with the same malady. The depth of their need and the wonder of their salvation demanded the proclamation of their transformation. Perhaps, we have simply forgotten the depth and the wonder of it all.
Is it not wonderful news to believe that salvation lies outside ourselves? – Martin Luther