Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Obedience to the Holy Spirit

Scripture:  Acts 16 v 6: "Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia."
Ephesians 5 v 18 - 19: "And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord."
Ephesians 6 v 18: "Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints."

Jesus Christ lived on Earth with us for 33 years and we know more about Him than we know about the Holy Spirit who has been here for nearly 2000 years.
Until we know Him more intimately we may struggle to be obedient to Him or hear what He is telling us.  

The Holy Spirit is a person.  He is the third member of the Godhead, the Trinity of God.  1 John 5 v 7: "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one."

The Holy Spirit guides us into all truth.  He leads us in the path of righteousness and He can be grieved or offended.  He refused to let Paul and Silas travel into Asia, instead He showed Paul a vision of a person from Macedonia appealing for help.  Acts 16 v 9: "And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; There stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us."

They immediately went there and if you read the whole of Acts 16 you will discover the power that obedience to the Holy Spirit will bring to every situation.  Everything that gives us confidence showing that He prepares the ground ahead of us.   Asia would have been hard and unyielding at that time but the Macedonians were ready to hear about Jesus.

In Acts 5 Ananias and Sapphira made a promise to God to give the proceeds of the sale of property to the Apostles.  However they deducted some expenses beforehand and when challenged by Peter about it first Ananias, and then Sapphira lied.  Acts 5 v 3: "But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?"  They both died immediately under the judgment of God for lying to the Holy Spirit.

Christianity is not a game, nor is it weak, and it is definitely not to be taken lightly.  When you make Jesus Lord of your life and are baptised in the Holy Spirit, you become a new creation with spiritual abilities, and with eternal life already begun.  You also have responsibilities that are revealed as you read the Bible intelligently and are shown the will of God concerning your life.

You must leave your sinfulness at the foot of the Cross and go on unto perfection.  It continues until the day you are absent from the body and present with the Lord.  You will have challenges and trials along the way but if you are obedient to the Holy Spirit you will do just fine.

The fruit of the Spirit grows within you: love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and self-control.  The more you yield your self to the Spirit of God to do His will, the more those fruit will develop.  This yielding is how you overcome the flesh which is filled with strife, witchcraft, hatred, wrath, divisions, envy, murder, adultery, fornication, lust, drunkenness, heresy, cults, and all sorts of disobedience.  If you do not overcome Jesus may blot out your name from the Lamb's Book of Life. Revelation 3 v 5.

The last word Jesus said before His ascension was to wait for the Holy Ghost, the promise of the Father, who will empower us to be witnesses to Him.  He came and brought spiritual gifts to help us achieve miracles and spread the knowledge of Jesus throughout the world.  

What you do with the talents He has given you is very important.  Those who use their talents wisely in obedience to the Holy Spirit will receive much more, those who bury their talent will be on the receiving end of His wrath.

The Holy Spirit is called the Paraclete, which means One who is called along side to help.  Our Father loves us and knows when we are struggling, so the Spirit is with us to show or teach or discipline us through it.  Be aware of His presence and listen for His promptings of the right direction to take.

Prayer: Father God, thank You for sending the Holy Spirit to be our friend and guide through the trials of this world.  His gifts and fruit are very powerful assets that encourage us daily.  Teach us to be completely obedient to the Holy Spirit in truth and honour.  In Jesus' name. Amen.