Thursday, January 1, 2009
Spirit Led Christianity
Spirit Led Christianity
1. The Power to live: The apostle Paul reminds us that the kingdom of God does not consist in words but in power (1 Cor. 4:20), and that the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in (or “by” pointing to the means) the Holy Spirit (Rom. 14:17). The message of the gospel brings the power of God into every believer’s life through the person and work of the Lord Jesus and the empowering ministry of the Holy Spirit.
Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
1 Corinthians 1:18, 24 For the word of the cross is to those who are perishing foolishness, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God… . 24 but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.
1 Corinthians 2:4-5 And my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 that your faith should not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God.
Far too many Christians, however, are not experiencing the enabling power of God. For these believers it is simply a matter of doing the best they can to conform to certain expected standards. On the surface, some appear to be more successful at conforming to the rules than others, but if they are honest with themselves, and this is no easy task because of our bent for self-deception, there is the ever present awareness that something is wrong.
2. What The Holy Spirit Does:
(a) REGENERATES: John 3 v. 3-5.
(b) INDWELLS: 1 Cor. 6 v. 19. True of every believer however weak or imperfect. If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His. Romans 8 v. 9.
(c) SEALS: Eph. 1 v. 13, 14; Eph. 4 v. 30. This sealing stands for three things: A finished transaction, ownership and likeness to Christ! 2 Tim. 2 v. 19-21.
(d) INFILLS: Acts 2 v. 4; 4 v. 31; Eph. 5 v. 18. More about this later in our studies.
(e) EMPOWERS for service. Romans 8 v. 2.
(f) GUIDES: Acts 8 v. 26-29; 16 v. 6; 13 v. 2-4.
(g) ANOINTS - for knowledge and teaching. 1 John 2 v. 20, 27; 1 Cor. 2 v. 9-14; John 14 v. 26.
Note the anointing is spoken of as an accomplished fact to be enjoyed rather than something to be sought in Prayer.
3.How not to Grieve Him.
(a) CONFESSION of sin - what I or we know to be wrong. 1 John 1 v. 7-9. When this is done in honesty and sincerity, sin is cleansed, forgiven and forgotten. The Holy Spirit fills the life with His presence and power - fellowship with God is restored and the joy of the Lord is experienced. See Psalm 51 v. 3, 4, 10-13.
(b) COMMITMENT to Christ as Lord. Romans 12 v. 1, 2; 1 Cor. 6 v. 19; 1 Peter 3 v. 15; John 20 v. 28.
(i) Lord of my heart or the unseen part of me. Intellect - my thinking and reading. Emotion - my moods, feelings, loving, hating, etc. Will - my choices and decisions. Is He Lord of these realms?
(ii) Lord of my body or the seen part of me. Eyes - what I look at. Hearing - what I listen to. Lips - what I say. Hands - what I do. Feet - where I go. Is He Lord of these? Is He Lord of my friendships, my habits, my time, my career, my money? Is there a rival to His Lordship?
(c) CLAIM the promises of His Word. 1 John 5 v. 14, 15.
4. Results of Spirit-led living:
In the context of Eph. 5 v. 18 where we are commanded to be filled with the Spirit is seen a very practical Godly life, namely . . .
Melody in the Heart: V. 19, 20. Read it. If you are disgruntled and complaining you are not living the spirit-filled life. On the other hand the experience of this verse does not indicate the surrender of self-control and the indulgence of unintelligible rhapsodies.
Melody in the Church: V. 21. Submitting yourselves one to another.
Melody in the Home: V. 24, 25. Submissive wives and loving husbands. Obedient children, Eph. 6 v. 1; wise parents, Eph. 6 v. 4.
Melody in the Business: Obedient, loyal servants, Eph. 6 v. 5; considerate masters, Eph. 6 v. 9.
Victory in the Battle: Eph. 6 v. 10- 18. Note the armour I must take (not make) and the things I must put on and do. The fruit of the Spirit is nine fold. Galatians 5 v. 22.
The spirit-filled life is one that is prayerful, practical, powerful. It can be mine IF I really want it, go in for it and meet with God's conditions.