HOLY SPIRIT

VICTORY OVER THE WORLD

“Then I saw another beast rising out of the earth.  It had two horns like a lamb and it spoke like a dragon….It preforms great signs, even making fire come down from heaven to earth in front of people, and by the signs that it is allowed to work…it deceives those who dwell on earth…”  (Rev 13:11,13-14 ESV).

“The Dragon-Lamb (Rev 13:11-14) is capable of great signs.  In the realms of wisdom and knowledge, faith and healing, miracles of power, prophecies and discernment of the occult, tongues and their interpretation, the wisdom of this world outlives the works of modern religion” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p147).

FATHER, for the most part our modern religion succumbs easily to this “Dragon-Lamb” because prideful flesh has taken over the Church, ignoring Your SPIRIT.  We have so silenced Your SPIRIT that most pew sitters today don’t even know enough to seek Him.

“There are no reasons why the gifts of the Spirit should be operative in one dispensation and not in another.  They did not cease at the close of the Apostolic Age.  They have been manifest in all ages of the Church, and there are abundant proofs that they are still available…” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p146-147).

And with joy the SPIRIT still pours out His desires!  It may seem that the SPIRIT has stepped back presently and stopped giving His spiritual gifts.  But that is a lie from the “father of lies.”

“A revival of spiritual gifts in the Church would bring to naught the mocking pretensions of the world….in the Spirit of God there is victory over the world” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p147).

But, it takes two to tango.  Is the Church ready to give the SPIRIT freedom in our lives?  We need to abide with Him in order to understand Him and His desires.  Are we ready to take time in our days to get to know Him?

“What unspeakable joy to be secluded with Him in the secret closet, and for hours drink of that fountain of everlasting life and eat of the fruit of the Tree of Life.  You can come out of that prayer chamber already in heavenly places in Christ Jesus” David Wilkerson (ref#138, p165).

SPIRIT, thank You for putting into words this blog study of Your attributes and works.  I desire to keep this knowledge of You in my thoughts as I begin the next blog study of “Terms of Theology.”

HOLY SPIRIT

BUILDING UP THE CHURCH

“…if a man is regenerate, he is saved….If he should die he would go to heaven.  But though he is saved he is not yet fitted for God’s service” R.A. Torrey (ref#223, p114).

“Spiritual gifts may be given at the moment of regeneration, but they may lie undiscovered and dormant for a long period of time….Spiritual gifts can be abused and neglected, but if they are received at regeneration, it would appear that they cannot be lost.  The Corinthian church illustrates the fact that believers can be highly gifted but spiritually immature” Kenneth Boa, (The Gifts of the Spirit, http://bible.org/article/gifts-spirit).

“The Corinthians were rich in gifts and poor in fruit.  Our Lord told of some who wrought wonders in His name, but they were none of His. (Matt 7:21-23)” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p138).  “So with yourselves, since you are eager for manifestations of the Spirit, strive to excel in building up the church” (1 Cor 14:12 ESV).

Multi-gifted Christians often discover their combination of gifts through a gradual process…Each multi-gifted Christian has received a combination of spiritual abilities that is perfectly suited to his or her God-given ministry” Kenneth Boa, (The Gifts of the Spirit, http://bible.org/article/gifts-spirit).

“The gifts of the Spirit are for service…Some are permanent.  Others are given for special vocations and exceptional occasions…” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p146).

 “God’s various gifts are handed out everywhere; but they all originate in God’s Spirit….God’s various expressions of power are in action everywhere; but God himself is behind it all. Each person is given something to do that shows who God is: Everyone gets in on it, everyone benefits. All kinds of things are handed out by the Spirit, and to all kinds of people! The variety is wonderful:

wise counsel

clear understanding

simple trust

healing the sick

miraculous acts

proclamation

distinguishing between spirits

tongues

interpretation of tongues.

All these gifts have a common origin, but are handed out one by one by the one Spirit of God. He decides who gets what, and when” (1 Cor 12:4-11 MSG).

FATHER, thank Your for spiritual gifts.  They are correctly called “gifts” for as I learn more and more to abide with You I realize I contribute nothing to their success.

HOLY SPIRIT

THE HOLY SPIRIT TO THE CHURCH

“It is for the church to explore the resources of the Spirit; the resources of the world are futile” Jim Cymbala (ref#161, p19).

“…the Church of God has two Paracletes, or Advocates – one in heaven with the Father, Christ, and the other on earth, in the heart of the believer, even the Holy Spirit” Charles Ross (ref#241, p90).

“The Father gave Him [CHRIST] the gift, and He passes it on to us;…The gift of the Holy Ghost to the Church is also, then, the absolute proof of the sufficiency of the work of Christ and of its acceptance with God….’I accept your work, it is sufficient; You have died for the redeemed, they are Your people.  So I will give you My Spirit to give to them, and then they will know that they are Your people and My people…” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#211, p138).

“ He [the SPIRIT] has come to reign over each and all.  Jesus Christ had defined His mission and outlined His program.  He was to unify them into one Body, guide them into all truth, and strengthen them for all service.  In the Church He is the supreme executive, but He has His seat in the soul.  He directs all things from the spiritual center of the inner life” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p44).  “His objective is to produce holiness…But His ultimate work is to make us a holy people…” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Jan 2nd).

FATHER, I know that the HOLY SPIRIT will create in all of us who CHRIST claims as His bride, holiness and purity.  Your perfect will is to bring us a life of prayer and brokenness before Your throne.  I hunger to be secluded with You in the secret closet waiting for You to bring Your remnant church into one mind—living only for You. David Wilkerson (ref#138, p165).

HOLY SPIRIT

GRIEVING THE SPIRIT

“Don’t grieve God.  Don’t break his heart.  His Holy Spirit, moving and breathing in you, is the most intimate part of your life, making you fit for himself.  Don’t take such a gift for granted” (Eph 4:30 MSG).

“All that we know of ourselves spiritually, all that we know of God, of Jesus, and of His Word, we owe to the teaching of the Holy Spirit.  All the real light, sanctification, strength, and comfort we ever possess on our way to glory, we must ascribe to Him” Octavius Winslow (ref#135, March 19th).

“…the Spirit that God caused to live in us jealously yearns for us” (James 4:5 International Standard Version).

“Think of the grief of the Spirit of Love!  Who can measure the anguish of His rebuffs, reproaches, and rejection.  Love is sensitive.  It shrinks from distrust, indifference and reproach.  It yearns for love” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p 122-123).

“The Spirit though always the blessed occupant of the Church of Christ and of the individual believer, may not always be manifestly present.  The prayerless, unholy, and trifling walk of a believer will cause Him to withdraw His sensible presence.  The coldness, formality, worldliness, and divisions of a church will compel Him to withhold the plentiful rain or the gentle dew of His precious influence.  He may be so disowned, dishonored, wounded, and grieved, as to retire behind the curtains of His secret glory for a while, leaving the scene of worldliness and strife to the curse and the reproach of barrenness” Octavius Winslow (ref#135, March 19th).

Oh FATHER, You have graced me with the HOLY SPIRIT. And I plead for more of His influences, not less.   I remind myself it is my work to not interrupt His work.

HOLY SPIRIT

THE HOLY SPIRIT AS SPIRIT KNOWLEDGE

“…all that has been done by God the Father and by God the Son will be of no value to us unless the Spirit reveals these things to our souls” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, Feb 29thPM).

 “’What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him’—these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit.  For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God”(1 Cor 2:9-10 ESV).

“…our conviction of the truth of Scripture must be derived from a higher source than human conjectures, judgments, or reasons; namely, the secret testimony of the Spirit” John Calvin (ref#113, p33).

“When the Holy Spirit…comes, he shall guide you into all truth.  For he will not be presenting his own ideas, but will be passing on to you what he has heard….” (John 16:13 TLB).

“God’s truth comes to us through three essential processes: revelation, inspiration, and illumination” Carol Ruvolo (ref#228, p70).

“Revelation involves the actual disclosure of God’s truth…” Carol Ruvolo (ref#228, p70). “By revelation is understood those truths made known by supernatural means, because they lie beyond the power of man to discover” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p102).

“Inspiration is concerned with the means and processes by which these truths are made known” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p102).  “…inspiration has to do with recording divine revelation perfectly and completely…” Carol Ruvolo (ref#228, p70).

“…illumination is what enables us to understand that truth” Carol Ruvolo (ref#228, p70).   “…The Bible can neither be accounted for nor interpreted but by His [the SPIRIT’s] guidance…Revealed truth can be known only through the Revealer” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p15, brackets mine).

FATHER, since human reasoning is my default way of thinking, I ask Your help that I may train myself to be aware of the SPIRIT’s activity in giving the Truth.  I recognize my head knowledge has no ability to spawn appropriate spiritual actions.

HOLY SPIRIT

THE SPIRIT’S MOVEMENTS – EXAMPLES

“…God the Father has his eye on each of you, and has determined by the work of the Spirit to keep you obedient…” (1 Pet 1:1-2 MSG).

“Can you work yourself up into being an automatically loving person in every situation, to all people, consistently over time?  I doubt it. Can you try and try and try to be a joyful person to the point where you suddenly become joyful always, no matter what is happening?  No.  It is only as we allow the Holy Spirit to do His work in us—opening ourselves continually to His power and presence—that our very nature is transformed…”  Charles F. Stanley (ref#230, p62).

So, how do I know if flesh is moving me or the SPIRIT?  I can get up on Sunday morning and go to church; did the SPIRIT move me to do that? Maybe, but probably not.  I (flesh) just decided to do it (probably because it is a habit and expected of me).

Martyn Lloyd-Jones describes the moving of the SPIRIT this way: “…you are aware of the power of God dealing with you, surging and rising within you, and you are amazed and astonished….a wonder-working power active in you, moving, disturbing, leading, persuading, drawing you ever onward” Martyn Lloyd-Jones (ref#189, Nov 19th)?

I know the SPIRIT resides in me:

When a command materializes in my head and I don’t default to rationalization.

When my thinking is clear and my will is willing.

When I can observe clearly the enemy’s activity.

When I easily confess my sins and forgive the sins of others.

When I know the preacher is speaking directly to me.

When I possess the boldness to witness.

When GOD’s will becomes easy to perform.

When my prayer is answered before I am done praying.

When I write blogs and don’t get hungry or tired.

When I have endless patience while waiting for the LORD.

When I try to express inexpressible joy because I understand now that He lives to order me aright.

When His words are so hot on the page I’m reading I lift my hands in submission and praise.

 “…the gift of the Spirit always sets the heart singing. Its confidence is unwavering, its power is invincible, and its joy unspeakable” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p34). AMEN!

HOLY SPIRIT

BE FILLED

“…be filled with the Spirit,” (Eph 5:18 ESV).

“…we are leaky vessels, and have to be kept right under the fountain all the time in order to keep full…” Jim Cymbala (ref#161, p110-111).

“…Be filled”…literally rendered “be being kept filled.”…a command demanding conscious, continual action on our part (ref#228, p74).

“…it is one thing to have the Holy Spirit dwelling away back of consciousness in some hidden sanctuary of our being, and quite another thing to have that Holy Spirit taking entire possession of the house” R.A. Torrey (ref#223, p115).

“The fullness of the Spirit vitalizes natural powers, quickens dormant faculties, and reinforces capabilities…The brain gets a new quality of alertness, endurance and effectiveness.  The mind receives new powers of perception, intelligence and understanding.  The heart finds a new clarity of vision, a new simplicity of motive, and a new intensity of emotion.  The impossible becomes capable of achievement in the sanctified powers of the natural man” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p143-144).

“…seek to ‘be filled with the Spirit’!  Then your thirsting’s for God will be deeper, your breathings after holiness more intense, your communion with your heavenly Father closer, and your faith in Jesus stronger.  The indwelling of the Spirit is the root of all holiness; but the communication of the Spirit in the fullness of His gracious, sanctifying, Christ-transforming influence is the secret of a higher degree of heavenly-mindedness” Octavius Winslow (ref#135, Nov 13th).

“The work of God cannot be accomplished without the fullness of the Spirit, and everywhere God waits to give His Holy Spirit to them that ask Him.  It is His will that every believer should be filled with the Spirit, overflow in the power of the Spirit, and in all things prevail through the Spirit…God waits to fill ordinary people with extraordinary power, and to turn a baffled faith into a rapturous conquest” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p161-162).

“If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him (Luke 11:13 ESV).

HOLY SPIRIT

ABUSE OF SPIRITUAL GIFTS

“Gifts are liable to abuse. In the Early Church they appealed to unspiritual men who desired them for carnal purposes and thought they had a commercial value.  They are still commercialized” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p147).

“…I…[Apostle Paul]could not speak to you as to spiritual men…for you are still fleshly….since there is jealously and strife among you…” (1 Cor 3:1,3 NASB).

“…carnal people were in possession of spiritual gifts and used them for carnal ends.  Spiritual gifts are no proof of spirituality…the gifts were…perverted to wrong ends or exercised in the wrong spirit….” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p148).

All Christians want GOD to move more and faster than He does.  We pray for spiritual gifts to help GOD.  We focus on spiritual success.  But we cannot override GOD’s will.

Pushing the issue of spiritual success pushes the HOLY SPIRIT behind us.  The great spiritual awakenings of history have fizzled out in a matter of years—even months because the pride of man thinks he can help the Spirit of GOD.

The truth is well-meaning Christians yearn for spiritual gifts so they can be viewed as great successful Christians.  They use GOD’s gifts to make themselves look successful.  It’s about them and not about GOD at all!

We all need to review why we desire spiritual gifts.   May I be loyal to the Lordship of CHRIST and loyal to the Word, for the “Word of Truth attests the Spirit of Truth.…the Spirit interprets, corroborates, verifies, and confirms the Word” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p148).

NOTE:  Genuine spiritual gifts may even appear as unsuccessful to our human minds.  GOD’s will is not our will.  It is so frightening how deluded we are!

HOLY SPIRIT

THE GIFT(S) OF THE SPIRIT

“The greatest blessing we possess is the indwelling Spirit” A.W. Pink (ref#269, p99).  “The gift of the Spirit is the distinguishing feature of the Christian religion….In His indwelling Presence is the secret of all Christian experience, and in the abiding energy of His power is the dynamic of all Christian service” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p157).

“…love had been worked into your lives by the Spirit” (Col 1:5-8 MSG).

“…the Holy Spirit is promised under a twofold consideration: (1) As a Spirit of sanctification to the elect, to convert them and make them believers.  (2) As a Spirit of consolation to believers…” John Owen (ref#35, p359).  “…he [the Spirit] is described to us as a Fountain, whence all heavenly riches flow to us…” John Calvin (ref#113, p350).

“He maintains the life of grace in us….He is owner of the house, and not an underling…He commands and governs after His own will” A. W. Pink (ref#269, p100). My joy comes from being “…animated and motivated by God’s Spirit…” (Gal 5:16-18 MSG).

“Spiritual gifts are not the same as the gift of the Spirit.  The gift of the Spirit has been bestowed on all believers (John 14:16; Acts 2:38), and every member of the body should appropriate this gift” (Kenneth Boa, The Gifts of the Spirit,http://bible.org/article/gifts-spirit).  The SPIRIT when gifted produces fruit.  “Fruit belongs to character…fruit is the manifestation of cultivated life….fruit is a quality of life…fruit is a manifestation….fruit is implanted and is gradual development…Fruit is for all…” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p145-146).

“The gifts of the Spirit, on the other hand, are distributed as he decides to each person (1 Cor 12:11)” (Kenneth Boa,The Gifts of the Spirit,http://bible.org/article/gifts-spirit).  “Gifts are an evidence of the Spirit; but they are no proof of holiness…Gifts are according to the elections of the sovereign will of the Spirit of God;…Gifts are for service…Gifts are functional…Gifts are bestowed…Gifts may be given immediately and complete…gifts are for those for whom they have been prepared…We may covet gifts, but we must bear fruit.  Gifts cannot take the place of fruit” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p145-146).  The gift of the HOLY SPIRIT bears fruit; gifts of the SPIRIT can operate without producing fruit.

FATHER, it is my human nature to desire gifts more than fruit.  For the SPIRIT to produce fruit in me I must be patient and humble.  And since fruit defines a true Christian, I desire to be patient and humble over doing something extraordinary using the SPIRIT’s gifts.

HOLY SPIRIT

THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT

“…the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…”(Gal 5:22-23 ESV).

“They refer to character, and set forth the kind of man the Spirit produces rather than the things He inspires him to do.  The nine elements have been divided into three sections of three each. (1) In relation to God: love, joy, peace. (2) In relation to our fellows: longsuffering, gentleness, goodness. (3) In relation to ourselves: faithfulness,…meekness, self-control” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p138).

“In newspaper English, the passage would read something like this: The Fruit of the Spirit is an affectionate, lovable disposition, a radiant spirit and a cheerful temper, a tranquil mind and a quiet manner, a forbearing patience in provoking circumstances and with trying people, a sympathetic insight and tactful helpfulness, generous judgment and a big-souled charity, loyalty and reliableness under all circumstances, humility that forgets self in the joy of others, in all things self-mastered and self-controlled, which is the final mark of perfecting” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p139).

“…fruit…grows by abiding and is perfected without noise or fuss, without anxiety or care.  God glories in fruit” Samuel Chadwick (ref#195, p138). “…Paul… says that they are to be regarded as the proper result of the Spirit’s operations on the soul” Barnes’ Notes (ref#16, [Gal 5:22]).

“Spiritual gifts are not the same as the fruit of the Spirit. Spiritual fruit is produced from within; spiritual gifts are imparted from without.  Fruit relates to Christlike character; gifts relate to Christian service….Paul made it clear in 1 Corinthians 13 that spiritual gifts without spiritual fruit are worthless….” (Kenneth Boa, The Gifts of the Spirit,http://bible.org/article/gifts-spirit).