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Sunday: The Living Word of God and the Holy Spirit — 12 Comments

  1. For some of us, study comes naturally. We read, study, compare, contrast, hypothesize, test, analyse and draw conclusions, and sometimes remain open to further adaptation. For others of us, we simply want the clear unequivocal conclusions worked out for us by those that we trust.

    Our belief behaviour forms a broad spectrum and we need to ask ourselves the question, where do we stand on this spectrum in our relationship to the Gospel. We are encouraged to study for ourselves, but what does that mean to those people who hate study and find it difficult to read.

    Paul wrote something about this for us to consider:

    Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings. 1 Cor 9:19-23NIV

    • Yes, Maurice. I think the answer lays somewhere in between what you said in your Sabbath thought about Pure religion, James 1:25-27KJV, and the Bible verses you are sharing with us here, that we must reach God's lost sheep where they are. Should we become a drunkard to reach the lost sheep that are drunkards? No, but I'm open to being led by the Holy Spirit, to go into a Bar to share God's word with someone that is searching for God.

      I was sharing with a Friend over the weekend that "if God allowed our eyes to be open, to see how many people that are truly searching for Him right now, or seeking help to understand His words in the Bible, then we would be amazed and ashamed that we were ignorant to this knowledge". What would we do with that knowledge?

      What would you do if God showed you that a lady in your neighborhood, within walking distance from your house, was continually praying that God would send her someone that understands the Bible well enough to explain it to her. Would you go? If God the Holy Spirit gave you the lady's name and address, the specific house to go to. Would you go?

      If only it were that easy. Because it is not always easy to share God's word with His lost sheep, then we have to always be prayerful, listening to the Holy Spirit for opportunities to share God's word. In the meantime, one suggestion to use to share God's word is to always have a couple of books in your car or bookbag to share with someone as the Holy Spirit moves you. Books like Steps to Christ, Desire of Ages, are great starter books to help with understanding the Bible.

      We must remember that our role is not to convert hearts or to save the lost sheep, only the Holy Spirit can convert a man's heart ("can a leopard change his spots?"). Our role is to share, to plant the seed, and to pray that the seed is watered; God the Holy Spirit will do the rest. Let's start, or continue, to share God's Word today.

      God's Blessing to you all!!

  2. How does the Holy Spirit convict of sin, righteousness and judgment? How does He guide us into all truth? John 16:8-13

    Through hearing and/or reading the Word of the LORD. Rom 10:17

    Is it the same way for everyone, I don't believe it is because we have different temperament types. Some are more open to feeling and others to thinking, some to hearing and others to reading, the LORD and the Holy Spirit know the way to impact our hearts and minds.
    Which do you prefer - listening to a sermon or reading an article?

    Have you ever thought about the differences between the four living creatures that surround the throne of God in Rev 4:6-8 how similar they are to the four main temperament types?
    Lion - Artisan
    Ox - Guardian
    Man - Idealist
    Eagle- Rationalist

    The Holy Spirit speaks to each type differently and all are valuable and needed to make up the body of Christ 1Cor 12:27-30, Eph 4:11-13

  3. Happy Father's Day to all you God fearing fathers who contribute on here for our spiritual enlightenment and growth. Thank you and God bless!!👏🏽💞

  4. By Faith do we start our relationship with God and by Faith do we maintain it. Everyone, old or young, with or without the means to read or study the Word of God - all are able to have Faith.

    Matt.18:3 - speaks about the need to 'become as little children', or we 'shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven'. Our relationship with our heavenly Father is maintained by Grace through Faith.
    Little children who love their parents do not 'argue' the intent of their parents's care for them. They trust that it is benevolent. Only later, through disappointing experiences, may some be discouraged and loose their trust.
    Our heavenly Father has earned our trust. He has never shown a disposition that we could describe as unfair or arbitrary.

    What does it mean to 'hold fast the word of life'? I looked up Phil.2:6 in my KJV. It says 'holding forth the word of life'. It means being steadfast, continuing to trust God to work in us through the Holy Spirit the changes to our inner nature.

    2Cor.5:17 - Anyone who is in Christ is a new creature. This new nature establishes itself more and more as we learn to trust the guidance given to us by the Holy Spirit. He is the one now who prompts our actions, it is not anylonger our flesh, the 'I' who wills obedience to the Word of God!
    It takes a while to get used to 'being led by the Spirit' as we keep Faith in Him who does this work in us.
    Phil.2:13 tells us that it is 'God which worketh in you'.. .

    The lesson writer states "Without the Holy Spirit, there is no affection for God's message". I agree. Even the initial recognition of ones interest in spiritual things is inspired by Him. Matt.16:17 - speaks about that Simon Peter was *blessed* 'for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven'.

    We have been called 'Children of God'. Rom.8:17 'And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together'.
    This is a conditional blessing - 'if so be that we suffer with him'.

    God has blessed us beyond measure by providing us His Holy Spirit! We could not know or come to the Father without Him! Because of the indwelling Holy Spirit we are now able to leave behind the obedience through the flesh(will), and embrace the obedience inspired by the Holy Spirit who now lives within us - and by which we can call Him 'Abba'-Father.

    Rom.8:28 - And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

  5. Some people were born in the church, while others came to the church by different other means. But it does not matter how you came, the Holy Spirit is the one who speaks to our minds showing us what is right from what is wrong, guiding us, instructing us, encouraging us etc in doing what is right. Many people do not know how to recognize the Holy Spirit voice. In the bible we are told about the Holy Spirit and how he dealt with humans. Jesus said when the Holy Ghost (comforter)is come, he will guide you into all truth. Many people thought it is their minds speaking to them but it is the Holy Spirit. Some says, my mind told me to do this or that, I did it and was successful. The Holy Spirit is guiding us more than we realized. But it is also good to know the difference between an angel and the Holy Spirit.

    Some times when we are in prayer, we get the answer on the spot, sometimes after prayer when we stay a little longer on our knees the answer comes, sometimes we go about our business and during the day or the week the Holy Spirit answer our prayers.
    Sometimes when we are reading and studying the bible it appears like if a light bulb just turn on in our understanding to a certain passage, it is the working of the Holy Spirit.

    • I hear what you are saying Lyn, but would add one more important ingredient. We need to listen to our community of believers. I have heard too many people claim that the Holy Spirit has told them this and that when all they are doing is putting the frighteners on the rest of us to believe the idea that they are promoting. The Holy Spirit uses a wide range of sources to quietly guide us and we would to well to listen to our community of believers to ensure that we are not going off on our own tangent. I am not saying that we should only listen to our community of believers. That too can go seriously wrong as we have seen on several occasions. But providing we have a good healthy interactive relationship with one another there is less chance of that happening.

      • Thanks for that, Maurice. I have witnessed plenty of examples of people claiming the Holy Spirit "told me" or "revealed to me" when it was quite evident that the telling or revelation didn't come from the Holy Spirit. This has happened both inside and outside the church. God told us not to neglect meeting together for the very purpose of keeping us balanced, I believe.

        I remember one example that was literally hair-raising, but it isn't the only one. I had met weekly with a women's Bible study group. They were Sunday keepers and knew I was a Sabbath keeper. We were reading in the epistles of Paul, but I don't remember where we were reading. I do remember being startled because I had not brought up the Sabbath, and our reading wasn't directly on the Sabbath. However, that morning, one after another, the women related that they had experienced the Holy Spirit telling them directly that they didn't need to keep the Sabbath. I was near tears when I recognized that these women I loved had chosen to listen to an evil spirit whose disturbing presence I felt. It ended my meeting with them, because I could not see any way forward after that dramatic encounter. (I'm sure that played into the devil's purpose.)

        I think perhaps their minds were stirred by what we were reading, and perhaps the Holy Spirit impressed them that Sabbath keeping was part of obedience, but another spirit spoke to them, and they chose to believe that spirit.

        I believe we need to be very careful that we don't interpret our own impressions as the Holy Spirit speaking - especially when speaking to others. When we are impressed to do something that goes against what we really want to do, we can be pretty sure that the Holy Spirit is impressing us. But when our impressions line up with what we already like and/or believe, it could just be our own minds impressing us and telling others that the Holy Spirit that direction can actually be a form of spiritual abuse. (The take-away is that "I have a better connection to God than you have, and you had better listen!")

        After listening to a lot of "God told me" testimonies, I've become a bit skeptical of them. Most of them were harmless enough, but then I don't see God in the business of communicating trivia to His children.

    • Lyn - It is so encouraging to read about your experience with the Holy Spirit. I am happy that you can understand and trust Him to guide you into all Truth.
      I am sure that you also know that He discerns falsehood should it be disguised as truth. He is not limited by man's personal fears. He does not leave anything out that is needful or important to fully understand His insights, and everything He reveals always squares with God's Word as found in the Scriptures.

      Yes, indeed, "the Holy Spirit guides us more than we realize"! Many believers have not been introduced to the Holy Spirit as their trustworthy guide and to turn to Him to interpret the Word of God for them.

      An example from Paul's ministry: Acts 19:1-6 - He describes an incident taking place in Ephesus whiles on his way to spread the Gospel according to Jesus' teachings. He met some disciples that had not yet heared about the Holy Ghost being given to all believers.
      v.3 - 'And he said unto them, unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, unto John's baptism'.
      v.4 - 'Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus'.
      v.6 - 'and when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied'.

      All spiritual gifts are given by the Holy Spirit. 1Cor.12:1-11.
      v.11 - But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.
      Thanks to God's Mercy, we can walk by Faith only whiles being taught and guided by Christ's indwelling Holy Spirit!

  6. We know that the Bible is God's word and He is Three in One; Father,Son and the Holy Spirit.The Bible writers in the first place were inspired by the Holy Spirit, and hence is the best teacher when it comes to interpreting the Bible. He is actually the author and understands the Bible clearly.

    By submitting to His guidance and direction,the Holy Spirit motivates us to hope, trust, and love.We only need to be humble, teachable students, willing to submit to Bible truths that are revealed to us so than we are able to master the Word of God.That is when our light will shine out to others and they will be able to get a glimpse of God’s Word by our example.
    In this regard, be prayerful any time that you open the pages of the Bible for the Holy Spirit’s guidance. He is a powerful Teacher of truth, and we won’t be led astray by following His promptings and guidance through God’s word.

    • Thank you, Apidi - You make wonderful points -
      "The Bible writers in the first place were inspired by the Holy Spirit, and hence is the best teacher when it comes to interpreting the Bible. He is actually the author and understands the Bible clearly".
      Yes, indeed, who could possibly be able to interpret the Scripture better than its author!
      The other very much appreciated point is, that the Holy Spirit "motivates us to hope, trust and love" - all three are 'gifts' of the Holy Spirit and underly our faithful acts of service.

  7. Living Gods Word brings to mind a couple of examples I recently heard. One is swimming. You can read all the theories, techniques and other peoples experiences, but if you’re suddenly tossed out of a boat in the middle of a lake or ocean, how likely are you to survive? What you need, to actually learn to swim, is to get in the water and physically do and practice what you’ve learned.
    The other example was you/me needing a surgeon for let’s say brain surgery. Do you want someone who has all the book learning and passed all the tests, but has never picked up a scalpel or even seen a surgery? Probably not. You want the surgeon who has learned from books and continued to learn by actually doing surgeries.
    We cannot survive the lions den, as Daniel did, if we have not “purposed in our hearts“ as Daniel did. He was an instrument for God in the conversion of a mighty king, because he lived the truth he had learned. That is what we are called to do, and what a privilege that is.


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