While reading Gordon Fee’s massive tome God’s Empowering Presence: The Holy Spirit in the Letters of Paul (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2011), I came across the following phrase (on page 735) that I just had to share:
“…like the legendary King Midas, everything Paul touches turns to gospel…”
What a fantastic and challenging image! King Midas was reputed to have the “golden touch” since everything to which he put his hand turned to gold. In the case of Paul, we could say that he had a “gospel touch”, because as we study his writings (something that Fee undertakes in an exemplary way), we can’t help but notice that the gospel was everything for Paul who declared: “I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may … testify to the gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20:24). By sad comparison, it seems that many preachers and teachers in the church today have a “moralist touch”: everything they touch turns simply to “Be good!” or “Try harder!”
May we be instead like Paul in this sense: may everything that we touch turn to gospel!