When the Spirit Speaks

“As for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him.” (1 John 2:27)

I suspect that since this is true for me that it most likely is true for most of us that when listening we are involved in planning what we are to say in response to what we are hearing. I suppose that we could call that multi-tasking, but, I am not that capable and usually miss the full point of what I was supposed to be hearing. Then maybe it is a little more unique to me as I have never been a conversation piece and able to speak on a broad range of topics. Small talk is not one of my gifts and I suspect that neither is the large. But this does not cause fear or anxiety as I have a friend that is closer than a brother and has promised to never leave me alone or in need of an answer. The Spirit of Truth resides within and I follow the example that He shares. “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.” (John 16:13) The Spirit of Truth speaks only that which the Father gives Him and I speak that which He gives me. I need not worry for defense as His word is truth and is provided at the time of my need. “For the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say.” (Luke 12:12)

I know Him and I know His voice and pray sincerely that you also know Him. The world does not know Him because they cannot see Him for lack of faith that He is but we know Him because He abides with us personally. “That is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you.” (John 14:17) Because He abides with us and testifies to the Word of God for us we can live in the peace of knowing that we are the Children of God. “The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God.” (Romans 8:16)

I used to look at people strangely when they would say the Spirit told them this or that. I would say I didn’t hear anything said to you. I would even be more surprised that they seem to know what I was thinking as I thought that only I could hear my thoughts. God knows our thoughts and He knows our heart. If we should feel distant to Him then it is because we have not sought to be close to Him. As we move towards God He will move closer to us. “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” (James 4:8) If we do not quench His Spirit within, then we will learn to listen and better know His voice and come into the full revelation of God the Creator. “It is the Spirit who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth. For there are three that testify: the Spirit and the water and the blood; and the three are in agreement.” (1 John 5:6-8) The Holy Spirit leads us internality to eternity.

Even so our battle is external in that we still are living in the fleshly tent through this world. Our adversary will continue to tempt us with the lust for the things of this world in order to prohibit our journey to the greater world to come. Even as the flesh had been crucified with Christ on the cross the spiritual battle rages on until we leave this flesh behind in the grave. If we would but listen to our Spiritual Counselor and trust His word of truth and resist the fiery darts of the evil one he will flee from us and we will receive the victory that is already ours. “Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.” (Galatians 516:17 24:25) When we are led internally by the Holy Spirit we can be victorious externally.

The Holy Spirit can speak to us by the actions and instructions of others. He can bring others into our life that will lead us to accomplish things according to His will and purpose. It could be someone that we have been praying for that God who is rich in mercy would have mercy and open their hearts to the truth of His gospel. It may be in answer to the prayers of others that one comes to us with a prepared heart in need of spiritual food. It will not be a mystery or a circumstance, as we serve a God of order. We will receive His Word in our spirit from His Spirit to enact His will. The Apostle Peter clearly heard and faithfully obeyed. “While Peter was reflecting on the vision, the Spirit said to him, “Behold, three men are looking for you. “But get up, go downstairs and accompany them without misgivings, for I have sent them Myself” (Acts 10:19-20) As a result Cornelius and his family were saved to the Kingdom of God.

A reverent fear of the Lord is the foundation to all knowledge. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (Proverbs 1:7) All knowledge comes from the Word of God, as in the beginning there was only God and all is of His creation. His Holy Spirit will give unto each of us His revelation knowledge that He desires us to have to accomplish His good work. I do not believe that we all are given all knowledge but the knowledge that is specific to the talents we have and the purpose that we serve. We are all empowered through the Spirit to do the good work. “For to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, and to another the word of knowledge according to the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit, and to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, and to another the effecting of miracles, and to another prophecy, and to another the distinguishing of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, and to another the interpretation of tongues.” (1 Corinthians 12:8-10)

The Word of God is the absolute power of the universe, it is the absolute truth, as in the beginning was God and all is of His creation. (Genesis 1:1) Whoever has the Word of God written upon their heart has the power of the universe at their usage. The Christian must study the Word of God, pray the Word of God, and meditate upon the Word of God. The word of God must be written upon their heart, that none may take it from them, for it is the Word of life. “Bind them on your fingers; Write them on the tablet of your heart.” (Proverbs 7:3) The Word of God is not just printed upon a page in a book but is living and active and speaks anew as God wills to His children. “For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)

The Holy Scriptures are not the creation of men but words given to us by God Himself through the Holy Spirit by the hand of Holy Men in obedience to the will of God. “But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.” (1 Peter 1:20-21) It is the living Word of God given by the living God that His living Spirit of Truth can speak to the hearts of men that they may have life and have it abundantly to do the good work of His Kingdom. “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

Thomas N Kirkpatrick

First Baptist Church of Durant, August 7, 2015

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