This site uses cookies to provide you with more responsive and personalized service and to collect certain information about your use of the site.  You can change your cookie settings through your browser.  If you continue without changing your settings, you agree to our use of cookies.  See our Privacy Policy for more information.

Why Doesn’t the Holy Spirit Intervene?

Why doesn't the Holy Spirit intervene in the lives of people deceived by cults and lead them to Jesus Christ?

Many of us experience the pain of knowing a person led astray by a cult. We might wonder, Why didn’t God intervene in that person’s life? People join cults because they are spiritually blind (Eph. 4:18–21). They reject the gospel of their own volition because they have “refused to love the truth and so be saved” (2 Thess. 2:10). The fact that the Holy Spirit is the one who gives new life should motivate us since it means God can work in a way that we cannot. God is sovereign, He has the freedom to do as He wills (Psalms 115:3; 135:6). This includes saving whomever He chooses: “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion” (Rom. 9:15). We also know that God’s mercy flows from His character as “the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness” (Ex. 34:6).

Understanding the character of God should give us a sense of hope as we reach out to the people in our lives who have not heard or understood the gospel. The surprising conversion of the apostle Paul is a reminder that Jesus “came into the world to save sinners” (1 Tim. 1:15). We should not assume that anyone is beyond the reach of God’s grace.

BY Eric C. Redmond

Eric C. Redmond serves as a professor of Bible at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago and as associate pastor of adult ministries at Calvary Memorial Church in Oak Park, Ill. He is married to Pam and they have five children. He is the author of Say It!  Celebrating Expository Preaching in the African American Tradition (Moody Publishers), Where Are All the Brothers? Straight Answers to Men's’ Questions about the Church (Crossway), a commentary on Jonah in the Christ-Centered Exposition Series (B&H Publishers), and a study guide on Ephesians in the Knowing the Bible series (Crossway).

Find Questions and Answers by Month