Is The Holy Spirit A Thing, Being, Force, Person or Diety?
1. The Holy Spirit participated in the creation of the world.
2. In the Old Testament the Holy Spirit gave certain people.
Ability to prophecy
All the above
3. The Holy Spirit assisted Israel’s leaders in guiding the people.
4. The Holy Spirit gave people ability to foretell future events.
5. The Holy Spirit is involved in the lives of all the Children of Israel/God’s people.
THE SPIRIT PROMISEDLesson 3
The Spirit was working in the world since the creation. He worked in the life of the nation of Israel in the exodus and in the desert, giving gifts to people to carry out what God had commanded. Those who received the Spirit were the leaders. In Judges, Samuel, Chronicles and Nehemiah, the Spirit was in the leadership to give strength, wisdom, courage and information. The kings and the prophets informed, taught, warned and encouraged the people through the Spirit. The Spirit was the strength of the leadership as well as their protection (1 Samuel 19:18-24). If the leader began to disobey God, the Spirit could be removed from him (the example of Saul). In the Prophets we saw that a person could not be a prophet without the Spirit. Although the Spirit always had been present and active in the lives of the people of God, the prophets had spoken of a promise that God one day would make the Spirit available to all of humanity.
A. Isaiah 32:9-20
"You women who are so complacent, rise up and listen to me; you daughters who feel secure, hear what I have to say! In little more than a year you who feel secure will tremble; the grape harvest will fail, and the harvest of fruit will not come. Tremble, you complacent women; shudder, you daughters who feel secure! Strip off your clothes, put sackcloth around your waists. Beat your breasts for the pleasant fields, for the fruitful vines and for the land of my people, a land overgrown with thorns and briers - yes, mourn for all houses of merriment and for this city of revelry. The fortress will be abandoned, the noisy city deserted; citadel and watchtower will become a wasteland forever, the delight of donkeys, a pasture for flocks, till the Spirit is poured upon us from on high, and the desert becomes a fertile field, and the fertile field seems like a forest. Justice will dwell in the desert and righteousness live in the fertile field. The fruit of righteousness will be peace; the effect of righteousness will be quietness and confidence forever. My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes in undisturbed places of rest. Though hail flattens the forest and the city is leveled completely, how blessed you will be, sowing your seed by every stream, and letting your cattle and donkeys range free."
This was a warning of destruction. Jerusalem was always falling into sin and God promised to judge and destroy them. But, the important point for us is found in v. 15. When God pours out His Spirit on the people, life will come back to the land. Everything will be renewed. Justice will again exist and the effect will be peace, rest and security. This teaching, that when God removes His Spirit death comes and when He gives His Spirit life comes, is often repeated in the Old Testament. For example Psalms 104:29-30, "When you hide your face, they are terrified; when you take away their breath, they die and return to the dust. When you send your Spirit, they are created, and you renew the face of the earth."
B. Isaiah 44:1-5
"But now listen, O Jacob, my servant, Israel, whom I have chosen. This is what the LORD says - he who made you, who formed you in the womb, and who will help you: Do not be afraid, O Jacob, my servant, Jeshurun, whom I have chosen. For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants. They will spring up like grass in a meadow, like poplar trees by flowing streams. One will say, 'I belong to the LORD'; another will call himself by the name of Jacob; still another will write on his hand, 'The LORD's,' and will take the name Israel."
Here, when Gods pours out His Spirit, the descendants of Jacob, Israel, will receive the Spirit and the blessings of the Lord (life and renewal) will come (vv. 3-4). We will see that this is the basic teaching in all the prophecies.
C. Isaiah 59:20-21
"'The Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who repent of their sins,' declares the LORD. 'As for me, this is my covenant with them,' says the LORD. 'My Spirit, who is on you, and my words that I have put in your mouth will not depart from your mouth, or from the mouths of your children, or from the mouths of their descendants from this time on and forever,' says the LORD.'"
This is dealing with the judgment of God. Zion is being judged and also the nations. But the Redeemer will come and save those who are converted. These people will be in a covenant with God (v. 21). The Spirit will not be taken away from them. If the Spirit were taken away, the Word would also be taken away because The Word comes from the Spirit. This people will always be able to be pleasing to God and, thus, will always be blessed. Paul quotes this passage in Romans 11:26.
D. Ezekiel 36:16-28
"Again the word of the LORD came to me: 'Son of man, when the people of Israel were living in their own land, they defiled it by their conduct and their actions. Their conduct was like a woman's monthly uncleanness in my sight. So I poured out my wrath on them because they had shed blood in the land and because they had defiled it with their idols. I dispersed them among the nations, and they were scattered through the countries; I judged them according to their conduct and their actions. And wherever they went among the nations they profaned my holy name, for it was said of them, 'These are the LORD's people, and yet they had to leave his land.' I had concern for my holy name, which the house of Israel profaned among the nations where they had gone.
"Therefore say to the house of Israel, 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am going to do these things, but for the sake of my holy name, which you have profaned among the nations where you have gone. I will show the holiness of my great name, which has been profaned among the nations, the name you have profaned among them. Then the nations will know that I am the LORD, declares the Sovereign LORD, when I show myself holy through you before their eyes.
For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land. I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. You will live in the land I gave your forefathers; you will be my people, and I will be your God.'"
Here, the idea of salvation is presented. Israel, scattered among the nations, will be reunited by God because of His Holy Name. Israel will be sanctified and is going to receive the Spirit (vs. 25-27). Thus they will walk according to the will of God. It seems that the role of the Spirit has to do with seeing that people walk according to the statutes and judgments of God. Then the people will remain in the land and God will be their God. The Spirit, then, is who maintains the life that exists in God. With the Spirit, the people will not be separated from God again.
E. Ezekiel 37:11-14
"Then he said to me: "Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, 'Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.' Therefore prophesy and say to them: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: O my people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. Then you, my people, will know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the LORD have spoken, and I have done it, declares the LORD.'"
The prophet speaks about salvation after the destruction. Jerusalem already was destroyed, the people were captive and their hope was gone. But God can save His people, giving life to their dead, dry bones. The function of the Spirit (v. 14) is to give life. When God puts His Spirit in someone, He gives life. The Spirit is the promise of life. Ezekiel 39:29 "I will no longer hide my face from them, for I will pour out my Spirit on the house of Israel, declares the Sovereign LORD." Salvation came to the house of Israel and the pouring out of the Spirit is their guarantee of the continuous presence of God. The "redeemed people" will receive the Spirit.
F. Joel 2:12-32
"'Even now,' declares the LORD, 'return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.' Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity. Who knows? He may turn and have pity and leave behind a blessing - grain offerings and drink offerings for the LORD your God.
"Blow the trumpet in Zion, declare a holy fast, call a sacred assembly. Gather the people, consecrate the assembly; bring together the elders, gather the children, those nursing at the breast. Let the bridegroom leave his room and the bride her chamber. Let the priests, who minister before the LORD, weep between the temple porch and the altar. Let them say, 'Spare your people, O LORD. Do not make your inheritance an object of scorn, a byword among the nations. Why should they say among the peoples, 'Where is their God?'
"Then the LORD will be jealous for his land and take pity on his people. The LORD will reply to them: I am sending you grain, new wine and oil, enough to satisfy you fully; never again will I make you an object of scorn to the nations. 'I will drive the northern army far from you, pushing it into a parched and barren land, with its front columns going into the eastern sea and those in the rear into the western sea. And its stench will go up; its smell will rise.' Surely he has done great things. Be not afraid, O land; be glad and rejoice. Surely the LORD has done great things. Be not afraid, O wild animals, for the open pastures are becoming green. "The trees are bearing their fruit; the fig tree and the vine yield their riches. Be glad, O people of Zion, rejoice in the LORD your God, for he has given you the autumn rains in righteousness. He sends you abundant showers, both autumn and spring rains, as before. The threshing floors will be filled with grain; the vats will overflow with new wine and oil.
"I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten the great locust and the young locust, the other locusts and the locust swarm- my great army that I sent among you. You will have plenty to eat, until you are full, and you will praise the name of the LORD your God, who has worked wonders for you; never again will my people be shamed. Then you will know that I am in Israel, that I am the LORD your God, and that there is no other; never again will my people be shamed.
"And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days. I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD. And everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved; for on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will be deliverance, as the LORD has said, among the survivors whom the LORD calls."
Peter cites this passage in Acts 2. The context is very similar to the passages above: the judgment of God and, afterward, salvation. The security of life or salvation is once more tied to the pouring out of the Spirit. The difference here is that all the people of God will receive the Spirit, giving them security. Salvation will be for all and nobody will be ashamed.
G. What it is that we learn in the Old Testament?
First, that the people of Israel suffered judgment from God due to their sins.
Second, for all who would repent, the day of salvation is coming. God will change the hearts of the people and will pour out His Holy Spirit on them. This is what the people needed, because during all the history of Israel, they kept repenting but would soon fall away again. They needed a change of heart. They needed the Spirit to keep them holy. All God's people will receive the Spirit and (since the presence of the Spirit means the presence of God and therefore, life) all will have peace and life forever. The gift of the Spirit means the continuation of life and the favor of God.
H. What it is that we learned from the New Testament
John the Baptist, the last prophet of the old order, attributed this promise to the Son of God, Jesus Christ.
John 1:32-34 - "Then John gave this testimony: "I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him. I would not have known him, except that the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, 'The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is he who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.' I have seen and I testify that this is the Son of God."Jesus already had spoken of the promise of the Father to the disciples. The Father promised to send the Spirit in Jesus' name after His return to heaven.
John 7:39 - "By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified."
John 14:15-18 -"And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you."This "promise of the Father" in Acts 1:3-5 is the out-pouring of the Holy Spirit. The Father had already promised this in the Old Testament. Peter, in Acts 2:33, also says that the Promise is the out-pouring of the Spirit: "Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear." In Acts 1:5, the promise is called the baptism with the Holy Spirit. On the Day of Pentecost, the Father fulfilled His promise and Jesus poured out the Spirit on all flesh. Ever since that day, the Holy Spirit has been made available to all humanity. The ones who come to Christ for salvation receive the benefit. This out-pouring of the Spirit on the day of Pentecost is called the baptism with the Spirit. Once He was poured out, the Spirit began working in the lives of Christians:
John 14:26 - "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you."
John 15:26 - "'When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me.'"
John 16:7 - "But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you."
Acts 1:3-5 - "To whom He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God. And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, "which," He said, "you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now."
1. He gave miraculous power (miraculous gifts) to some.
2, He took up residence in the redeemed.
3. He gave non miraculous gifts to some.
1. God poured out His Spirit on the people of Israel, blessing them with physical blessings.
2. God promised that a redeemer would come to:
Those who repent
A and B
3. What has been learned from the scriptures about the promise of the Holy Spirit?
The outpouring of the Spirit indicates blessing for God’s people.
The Spirit is promised to the redeemed.
The Holy Spirit is needed to keep people holy.
People who receive the Holy Spirit will have peace and life.
The man upon whom the Holy Spirit comes down will baptize with the Holy Spirit.
Jesus said the promise of the Father was the baptism with the Holy Spirit.
All the above
C, D, E and F
BAPTISM WITH THE HOLY SPIRITLesson 4
One of the Bible subjects most misunderstood and confused in people's minds is the baptism with the Holy Spirit. A large part of the confusion is resolved with a proper biblical definition - exactly what is the baptism with the Holy Spirit? This lesson tries to do just that. When this is understood, then many of the other subjects become clear, such as:
1. When is someone baptized with the Spirit?
2. How can someone know if they have been baptized with the Spirit or not?
3. Is speaking in tongues the sign that somebody was baptized with the Spirit?
4. What happened in the house of Cornelius in Acts 10?
5. Is baptism "with" or "in the" Spirit the same thing as baptism "by" or "of" the Spirit?
6. Was Jesus speaking of the baptism with the Spirit when said to the Apostles: "you will receive power when the Holy Spirit descends on you"? (Acts 1:8)
7. If there is a baptism with the Holy Spirit and a baptism in water, how can we say that there is "only one baptism"?
I. The Baptism With The Holy Spirit Was Done by Jesus, Exclusively.
A. Matthew 3:11 - "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire." Mark 1:8 - "I indeed baptized you with water, but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit."II. The Baptism With the Holy Spirit Was Something Done With The Spirit And Not Done By The Spirit.
Luke 3:16 - "John answered, saying to all, "I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I is coming, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire."
John 1:33 "I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, 'Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit'."
Notes: It was not something done by men nor by the Holy Spirit, but only by Jesus.
1. John (who baptized in water) was preaching to his listeners to repent of their sins to be saved.
2. He informed them that someone greater than he was coming; therefore the time to make their decision to repent was limited.
3. John was not talking about dates or chronologies (neither the order nor when it would happen); but only about the greatness of Jesus.
4. Jesus' authority would be seen in that He would baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire.
a. Jesus has power over the two (Holy Spirit and fire);5. Baptism with the Holy Spirit did not involve fire.
b. Not that the two are the same thing.
a. The "tongues of fire" that rested on the apostles in Acts 2 were not an immersion in fire.6. The baptism with fire.
b. These two baptisms have two different purposes.
Matthew 3:12 - "His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His threshing floor, and gather His wheat into the barn; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire."
a. John knew that among his hearers were two groups of people, the ones who would accept his message (the wheat), and the ones that they would reject it (the chaff).
b. The ones who would accept it and repent would receive the blessing of the baptism with the Spirit.
c. The ones who rejected it would receive the punishment of the baptism with fire.
1) This did happen with these listeners in year 70 A.D. when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem.d. Malachi 4:1-6 is a parallel to Matthew 3:10-12.
2) This event is not mentioned in the gospel of John, probably because John was written after 70 A.D.
B. Acts 2:33 - "Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear."
C. Nobody (neither men nor the Spirit) would baptize with the Spirit. Only Jesus would do that. Men baptized in water and the Spirit gave gifts and power, but neither men nor the Spirit baptized with the Spirit. When we read in the Bible of a man acting or the Spirit doing something, we can know that such a thing does not refer to the baptism with the Holy Spirit.
A. Jesus …"baptizes with (or in) the Spirit."III. The Baptism With the Holy Spirit Happened On The Day Of Pentecost And Not Before.
Matthew 3:11 - "'I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me will come one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.'"
B. The Bible does not speak of the baptism "by the" Spirit but the baptism "with" the Spirit.
1. It was not some thing that the Spirit did (to fill, to seal, to give power, to give gifts) but something that Jesus did with the Spirit.
2. It is not the gift of speaking in languages (that is something that the Holy Spirit did and not Jesus (1 Corinthians 12:11).
3. Simply, it was not something that the Spirit does, but something done with the Spirit.
A.It had not happened yet when Jesus was baptized by John. (Matthew 3:11)
B. It would only happen after Jesus was glorified (after his resurrection).
John 7:39 - "On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him." By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified."
C. In the hour of the ascension of Jesus, they had still not received the promise from the Father (v. 4), which was the baptism with the Holy Spirit (v. 5).
Acts 1:4-5 - v. 4 "On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: "Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about." v. 5 "For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit."
D. On the day of Pentecost, in his sermon, Peter identifies the events of that day as being the fulfillment of the prophecy of the baptism with the Holy Spirit made by Joel the prophet.
Acts 2:16-17 - "No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
'In the last days, God says,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
Your young men will see visions,
Yyour old men will dream dreams.'"
E. The Spirit had been present, acting, moving, empowering, etc. since before the creation of the world but nothing that He did or that was done with Him before the day of Pentecost is called "the baptism with the Spirit." Before Pentecost, people had been full of the Spirit and had received power from the Spirit, but none of this was called "baptism with the Spirit."
F. Therefore, the baptism of the Holy Spirit is not:
1. The power to do miracles (many had done miracles before Pentecost).
2. The gift of inspiration (many had been inspired before Pentecost).
3. To be full of the Spirit (many had been before Pentecost).
a. John4. To be clothed by the Spirit since people in the Old Testament (before Pentecost) had been clothed with the Spirit (see Judges 6:34; 1 Chronicles 12:18; 2 Chronicles 24:20).
Luke 1:15 - "For he (John) will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from birth."
Luke 1:41 - "When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit."
Luke 1:67 - "His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied."
IV. It is called the "Promise of the Father"
A. Jesus had already spoken about the promise of the Father to his disciples. The Father promised to send the Spirit in the name of Jesus after Jesus returned to heaven.
1. John 14:16-17, 26 - "And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever; "the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. ... "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you."B. On the day of Pentecost, Jesus poured out the Spirit on all flesh. This event was what Joel (and Isaiah) has prophesied centuries before:
2. John 15:26 - "But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me."
3. John 16:7 - "Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you."
4. Acts 1:4-5 -"And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, "which," He said, "you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now."
1. Isaiah 32:15 - "Until the Spirit is poured upon us from on high. And the wilderness becomes a fruitful field, and the fruitful field is counted as a forest."
2. Isaiah 44:3 - "For I will pour water on him who is thirsty. And floods on the dry ground; I will pour My Spirit on your descendants,"
3. Joel 2:28 (Acts 2:17) - "And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh;"
C. On the day of Pentecost, the Father fulfilled His promise and Jesus poured out the Spirit. Acts 2:33 "Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear.
Note: Baptism with the Spirit was always a promise and never a command.
V. The Definition Of The Baptism With the Holy Spirit:
The Baptism with the Holy Spirit is what Jesus did with the Spirit on the day of Pentecost in fulfillment of the promise of the Father - Jesus poured out the Spirit on all flesh. The Spirit then became available to all saved people, independent of race (Jewish or heathen) or role in the government of God (priest, prophet, etc.)
VI. Some Implications:
A. This means that the Spirit was made available for all of humanity. Those who receive the benefit are those who become Christians.
B. The baptism with the Spirit occurred once in history. He, the Spirit, was poured out once for all.
1. In the same way that Jesus died once for all, the Spirit was poured out once for all. These two historical events never need to be repeated.C. All people of all ages were baptized with the Spirit potentially and all the saved in Christ of all ages are baptized effectively in the Spirit.
2. Even Acts 10:45 reflects this truth. Peter was called to preach to the Gentiles. While he was preaching, the Spirit fell on the Gentiles and they started to speak in languages. Does this mean that the Gentiles received the Spirit before they became Christians? Not at all. Certainly the Spirit already acted in some people before Acts 2. Saul in the Old Testament is an example. In 1 Samuel 10:10, the Spirit of the Lord possessed Saul and he prophesied (also see 1 Samuel 11:6). In 1 Samuel 16:14 it is said that the Spirit of the Lord was removed, but in 1 Samuel 19:23 the Spirit came upon Saul again and he prophesied. The Spirit can come upon somebody, make him prophesy (or do something else) and then remove Himself. Somebody being influenced by the Spirit, even to the point of prophesying, does not necessarily mean that the Spirit dwells in that person as was promised in the Old Testament.
In Acts, we learn about the promise of the Spirit through the preaching of Peter in chapter 2. When somebody is called by God through the gospel and becomes a Christian, this person receives the Spirit as a gift from God, the gift of the Spirit. This is possible because the Spirit was poured out on all flesh. In Acts 10, God wanted to show that this included the Gentiles, just as would be later preached: "He does not make a distinction." The Spirit fell on them before they had become Christians, showing that God accepted the Gentiles as well as the Jews who believed in Jesus as the Christ. When Peter and the others saw this, they recognized that the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles as well as the Jews. Then, without hesitation, the Gentiles were baptized, without circumcision, and, according to promise, received the Holy Spirit.
3. But when had He been poured out on the Gentiles? On the day of Pentecost. The perfect tense of the verb in Acts 10:45 reflects this. It indicates an act completed in the past with effects continuing in the present. (This is why some translations - NASB for example, translate verse 45 thusly: "All the circumcised believers who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also.") Once He was poured out, the Holy Spirit began to do His works, but nothing that He does is called "the baptism."
4. The baptism with the Holy Spirit is what Jesus did with the Spirit on the day of Pentecost. The effect of the baptism with the Holy Spirit is the same as the death of Christ. Although He died for all, only the ones that believe, repent and are baptized in water receive the benefit. Although poured out on all flesh, only the ones that believe, repent and are baptized in water receive the benefit.
5. Once He was poured out, the Spirit began to do His works, but nothing He did or does is referred to as the baptism with the Spirit. The baptism is what Jesus did with the Spirit on the day of Pentecost.
1. This was the promise of the Father.
Acts 1:4-5 - "On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: 'Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.'"
2. Jesus received the promise of the Father
Acts 2:33 - "Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear."
3 Peter explained that the promise was for "you others" - those Jews present on Pentecost, "for your children" - the Jews of future generations, and "for all who are far off" - the Gentiles.
Acts 2:39 - "The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off-for all whom the Lord our God will call."
4. It was for as many as the Lord our God shall call - all Christians in all ages. Ephesians 2:13 - "But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ."
D. Today, if you are in Christ, you have been effectively baptized with the Spirit. But when? On the day of Pentecost. But how? In the same way Jesus died for you 2,000 years ago. You received the benefit of the death of Christ when you became a Christian. The Spirit was poured out on all flesh 2,000 years ago. You received the benefit of this outpouring when you became a Christian.
VII. Baptism With The Spirit Does Not Mean "Receive Miraculous Power From The Spirit".
A. Luke 24:49 - "I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high."
This does not say that the promise of the Father is the same thing as "receive power". He said that both things would happen so they should stay in Jerusalem. The Spirit gave power before Pentecost but the baptism with the Spirit did not happen before Pentecost.
B. Jesus gave the Spirit and the Spirit gave power but the baptism is what Jesus did and not what the Spirit did.
C. Not all Christians did miracles but all Christians received the Spirit.
D. Since the baptism with the Spirit is a unique historical event, it doesn't make sense to talk about "receiving Holy Spirit baptism". The Bible never uses that type of phrase. How can you receive a past historical event? We can receive the Spirit or we can receive a gift from the Spirit but we cannot receive the "baptism of the Spirit".
VIII. We need to distinguish between the "baptism with the Spirit" which was a work of Jesus, and giving power, which is a work of the Spirit.
A. This is the most common mistake in the mind of many people - confusing what Jesus did with the Spirit (baptized or poured out) and what the Spirit did once He was poured out or made available.
B. For example, the Spirit gave miraculous powers to people to speak in other languages and heal the sick.
C. The Spirit seals believers in Christ, dwells in the redeemed, inspired the apostles and prophets, comforts and guides, etc. but none of this is called "the baptism".
D. The baptism is what Jesus did with the Spirit on the day of Pentecost - He poured Him out on all flesh.
E. In the Bible, when the Spirit descended on someone, came on someone or fell on someone, that person received divine power.
1. The Spirit descended on Jesus and Jesus did miracles:
Matthew 3:16 - "As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him."2. The Spirit came upon Simeon and he prophesied:
Luke 3:22 - "The Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: "You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased."
Mark 1:10 - "As Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove."
John 1:32 - "Then John gave this testimony: 'I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him'."
Luke 4:18 - "He Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed"
Luke 2:25-27 - "Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord's Christ. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required."3. The Spirit came upon Mary and she conceived Jesus:
Luke 1:35 - "The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God."4. The Spirit came upon the apostles and they received power.
Acts 1:8 - "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."5. The apostles spoke in languages:
Acts 2:3-4 - "They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them."6. They performed signs:
Acts 8:16 - "Because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them; they had simply been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus."7. Believers spoke in languages:
Acts 10:44-45 - "While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles."
8. Disciples spoke in languages and prophesied: Acts 19:6-7 - "When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied."
Note: In Acts 8, the apostles were men especially chosen to witness the resurrection of Jesus. They had qualifications: Luke 24:48; Acts 1:8; 1 John 1:1-2 and credentials: 2 Corinthians 12:12; 1 Corinthians 9:1; Acts 1:21, 22; Acts 8:18. They and only they had the power to make the Spirit fall on someone by the laying on of hands (and so to give power).
IX. Which Baptism Is The "One Baptism" Of Ephesians 4:4-6?
"There is one body and one Spirit- just as you were called to one hope when you were called - one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all." BAPTISM IN WATER (IN THE NAME OF JESUS):
A. Done by menX. Was The Baptism With The Spirit Only Promised To The Apostles? Some say that "Holy Spirit baptism" was only promised to the apostles. The "baptism of the Spirit" for these people is when somebody receives the power from the Spirit as inspiration, revelations, miracles, etc. But problems with this idea exist. First, the expression "baptism of the Spirit" does not exist in the Bible. All the translations have "baptism with the Spirit" or "baptism in the Spirit." It is not a baptism that the Spirit does, but rather, it is a baptism where the Spirit is used. In the promises of the Old Testament, it is the Spirit that would be poured out and this would be evident by the miraculous gifts that the Spirit would give. It has to be kept in mind what it is that was poured out - it was not gifts, but rather, the Spirit. The promise was the Spirit and not the gifts that the Spirit would distribute after being poured out. Miracles and gifts already had been given well before this baptism, but what was promised only occurred on that day and not before. Until that day, the Spirit never was poured out for all people, but since that day all can receive the Spirit. The words of Jesus in Acts 1:4-5 show that the promise of the Father and the baptism with the Spirit were the same thing. When the apostles received the Spirit in Acts 2, Peter said in v.16 that the prophecy of Joel (the promise of the Father) was being fulfilled. This agrees with the words of Jesus in. Acts 1:4-5 - "On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: 'Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.'" Peter agrees with John 7:39 and he says clearly that the promise was the pouring out of the Holy Spirit.
Matthew 28:19 - "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."B. Done with water
Acts 8:38 - "And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water and Philip baptized him."
1 Corinthians 1:14-16 - "I am thankful that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, so no one can say that you were baptized into my name. (Yes, I also baptized the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I don't remember if I baptized anyone else.)"
Acts 8:38-39 - "And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water and Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him again, but went on his way rejoicing."C. Happened many times (with every recorded conversion)
Acts 10:47 - "Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water? They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have."
D. Is a commandment and not a promise
Acts 2:38 - "Peter replied, 'Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit'."E. Definition: Christian baptism is immersion in water in the name of Jesus (by the authority of Jesus) for remission of sins. It is always preceded by faith and repentance.
Acts 22:16 - "'And now what are you waiting for? Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name'."
F. Some teachings:
Baptism in water is necessary for forgiveness of your sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 22:16)
Baptism in water is only permitted for someone who believes (Acts 8:37-8)
Baptism in water symbolizes a burial, an immersion (Romans 6:3-6).
In baptism, we enter into Christ (Galatians 3:27)
Ephesians 4:5 says that there is "only one baptism". This baptism is baptism in water, because the baptism in the Spirit had already happened and does not need to be repeated. Baptism in water in the name of Jesus, though, continues being done whenever someone becomes a Christian.
Acts 2:33 - "Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear" When Peter says: "this which you see and hear", he is using the manifestations of the Spirit to illustrate that the Spirit, in fact, was poured out. Jesus poured out the Spirit as was promised since the Old Testament. John 7:39 - "By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given [poured out], since Jesus had not yet been glorified."
Some of those who say that the promise of the baptism with the Spirit was only made to the apostles affirm that in the passages where Jesus speaks about this, only the apostles were present (for example, Acts 1:4-5). But when Jesus spoke to the apostles, this did not necessarily limit the promise. Actually, when we look at all the passages that speak about this baptism, we see that this was not so. When John the Baptist spoke, he was not only speaking to the apostles but to the multitude of Jews who went to be baptized by him. (Matthew 3:1-12 and Luke 3:15-16) When the apostle John spoke about the promise (the baptism with the Spirit) in John 7:39, it was not limited to the apostles. The promise of Acts is not limited to only some, but is a promise for all the saved. One reason that some think that it was limited is because they do not understand that the baptism with the Spirit is not the distribution of gifts (ex. languages) nor a miraculous thing.
1. How is one baptized with the Holy Spirit?
When Christ poured out the Holy Spirit upon all mankind.
When one hears and understands the Gospel.
When one turns their life over to Christ.
When someone speaks in tongues.
2. When does/did the baptism with the Holy Spirit occur?
When the Holy Spirit acts upon someone.
Every time someone believes in Christ.
When one dies to sin, is buried by immersion and is resurrected by God into Christ
On the Day of Pentecost when Jesus poured out the Spirit on all mankind.
3. Who has access to the Holy Spirit poured out by Christ?
Only a chosen few.
Anyone who obeys Christ’s call to redemption, the Gospel message
4. Only people granted special power to perform miracles have been baptized with the Holy Spirit?
5. Baptism mentioned in every New Testament of conversion is:
An immersion, total submersion.
Done in water
Done by man
All the above
A, B and C
A, B, C and D
A, B, C and E
THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THE LIFE OF A CHRISTIANLesson 5
When Jesus poured out the Spirit on all flesh on the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit started His ministry in the life of the Christians. All those who believed, repented and were baptized received the Spirit as a gift from God. "Peter replied, 'Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit'." (Acts 2:38)
What is the gift of the Holy Spirit mentioned in Acts 2:38? It is not the miraculous power that Paul described in 1 Corinthians 12 and that Jesus promised in Mark 16:17-20. This is obvious because the gift of the Holy Spirit in Acts 2:38 is promised for "all" that were baptized in the name of Jesus (Acts 2:39, 5:32) but it is a confirmed fact that miraculous gifts were not granted to all who were baptized. Nor did all who were baptized in water speak in tongues, prophesied or healed illnesses. Therefore, this gift, of Acts 2:38, is not a miraculous gift as in 1 Corinthians 12.
The gift of the Holy Spirit, promised in Acts 2:38 is the promise of the inner presence of the Spirit of God in the life of the Christians. The Spirit, given in our baptism, gives us a new spiritual life, with a new birth, and His personal indwelling.
I. The Spirit regenerates us (makes us to be born again into a new life). or renews us. This is part of our conversion.
John 3:5 - "Jesus answered, 'I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit'."
Romans 6:1-6 - "What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin."
These scriptures show how one crucifies his old sinful life. Following this death he is buried by immersion and resurrected from the water grave of baptism being give a new life (rebirth) and united with Christ in His Body, the Church.
John 14:16-20 - "And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live."
B. This promise was fulfilled.
Acts 5:32 - "We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him."
Romans 8:9-11 - "You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ. But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you."
Galatians 3:2-5 - "I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by observing the law, or by believing what you heard? Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort? Have you suffered so much for nothing-if it really was for nothing? Does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you because you observe the law, or because you believe what you heard?"
Galatians 3:26-29 - "You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise."
Galatians 4:5-6 - "Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, 'Abba, Father.' So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir."
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 - "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body."
1 Thessalonians 4:7-8 - "For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit."
C. His presence in us is God's seal (His stamp or mark of approval and ownership). This gives us a sense of security.
Ephesians 4:30 - "And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption."
2 Corinthians 1:21-22 - "Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come."
The Spirit does not seal us; rather, the Father seals us with the Spirit. The Spirit is the stamp or mark that we belong to God. How do we know that we are stamped? God said we are!
D. The Holy Spirit, given by God to the Christian, is the earnest of our inheritance. This gives us hope. This "earnest" is the down payment, given as a guarantee that the total blessing will be given. It is the guarantee that one day we will receive His glory.
2 Corinthians 1:22 - "He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come."
2 Corinthians 5:5 - "Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come."
Living in us, the Spirit transforms us into the likeness of God and produces His fruit in us: love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, gentleness and self-control in us.
Joy comes from the knowledge of the sufficiency of the power of God. The work of the Holy Spirit is to give to the believers the joy that Christ made available to them.
1 Thessalonians 1:6 - "You became imitators of us and of the Lord; in spite of severe suffering, you welcomed the message with the joy given by the Holy Spirit."
Philippians 4:5-7 - "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
Romans 8:37 - "No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us."
Jesus promised, "My peace I give you" (John 14:27). This fruit of the Holy Spirit is not dependent on the circumstances of this life because it is the "peace of God" given by the Spirit of God.
It is to show tolerance with patience when injustice is inflicted by others. It is patience under the pressure of the provocation. It is only by the Holy Spirit that we can fulfill the law that goes beyond forgiveness. The Spirit can give us the patience that God has for sinful men.
Romans 9:22 - "What if God, choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrath-prepared for destruction? "
It is love in action. A good way to please the God is to be kind to His other children.
F. GOODNESS: This quality differs from kindness as intentions differ from actions.
Benignancy involves intention. To be good is to practice what is good.
G. FAITHFULNESS: It means to be loyal, worthy, reliable, trustworthy.
Few things in the Christian life are more important than to be faithful. The faithful servant will be rewarded by God. Literally, faithfulness means to be full of faith until the end. Jesus is our example of faithfulness.
Matthew 25:23 - "His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'"
Hebrews 3:1-4 - "Therefore, holy brothers, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, the apostle and high priest whom we confess. He was faithful to the one who appointed him, just as Moses was faithful in all God's house. Jesus has been found worthy of greater honor than Moses, just as the builder of a house has greater honor than the house itself."
H. GENTLENESS: It means "to be under the control of God".<br> Gentleness is not weakness, but strength controlled by God. Moses is an example of gentleness (Numbers 12:3). The Greeks used the word gentleness to describe a tamed animal, trained to obey orders. The Christian with this fruit of the Spirit is trained to obey the orders of God, without complaining.
I. SELF CONTROL: We cannot obey God without discipline.
In 1 Corinthians 9:25 we see an example of this virtue - "Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever." Self-control, through the Holy Spirit, helps the Christian to crucify the old man, with its old habits, so that the new man can be raised in newness of life.
Although this passage in Galatians speaks of the fruit of the Spirit, we have a role to play in its development. Our responsibility is to work alongside of the Spirit. How does the Spirit work? He works by means of the Word and He intercedes for us. Galatians 5 implies that while we listen to Spirit inspired Word and walk in His instructions, this quality is developed inside our souls.
We know that He transforms us into the image of Jesus while we contemplate the glory of Christ as in a mirror.
2 Corinthians 3:18 - "And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit."
"5 Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. 6 The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; 7 the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God's law, nor can it do so. 8 Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God.
"9 You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ. 10 But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. 11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.
"12 Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation-but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. 13 For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, 14 because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father." 16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs-heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.
"18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.
"22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
"26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will.
"28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified."
2. He is unable to obey law. The weakness of our nature, wounded by sin, is unable to do what God wants us to do. All sin. (v. 3)
3. He is in the process of death. As a cadaver is decomposing, so is the person without the Spirit. He has an inclination toward sin (v5) and walks according to the principles of sin (v4). His destiny is death. (v6)
4. He is at war with God. No matter what he does, his lifestyle always offends God. (v. 7)
5. He is unable to do good deeds for the right motives and methods. (v. 8)
6. He is living for eternal death. He thinks he is really living but he is killing himself, eternally. (v. 13)
7. He is not saved and is not of God. If someone does not have the Spirit as the mark of God's ownership, he does not belong to God. (v. 9)
2. We are free from the slavery of Satan. Christ overcame and condemned sin. We are free from the principle of sin that acts in us, enslaving us. (vv. 2-3 also 2 Corinthians 3:17; Galatians 5:13).
3. We are able to obey God. Before conversion we could not obey God. Now, with the Spirit it is possible and it is a command. (v. 4 also Galatians 5:16).
4. We are under the influence and control of the Spirit. "According to the Spirit gives the idea that our way of living is now the Holy Spirit. (v. 4)
5. We are in a process of growth. We begin by inclining ourselves for the things of the Spirit. As we continue in this path we find ourselves more and more inclined to follow the Spirit. (vv. 5-6)
6. We are able to please God. In spite of sin, our spirit lives in the forgiveness of God. In spite of death, our bodies will be raised by the Spirit. (vv. 10-11)
2. Put to death self and the sin in us. Jesus said that the road to life was death (Mark 8.35; John 12.25). Let us use the Spirit to kill our sinful nature, and live for Christ. The only "insecticidt" that kills the flesh is the Holy Spirit. (v. 13)
3. Allow yourself to be guided by the Spirit; that is, obey God the Father out of gratitude and love for the One who forgave our sins. (vv. 14-17)
4. Trust in God. What we cannot do, God can. When we lack the words for prayer, God stills knows all. Have faith in him and every problem can be overcome (vv. 26-27)
1. What did Jesus pour out on all people on the day of Pentecost?
Forgiveness to everyone
The Holy Spirit
Power for everyone to work miracles
2. When does the Holy Spirit begin to dwell in a person?
Following their death to sin, burial and resurrection (baptism) into Christ.
3. If one who is in Christ allows Him to, the Holy Spirit will transform them into God’s likeness.
4. Which one is NOT a fruit of the Spirit?
5. It is possible for one in Christ, a Christian, to decide to return to his former way of life and live according to the sinful nature?
SINS AGAINST THE HOLY SPIRIT OF GODLesson 6
The Holy Spirit of God, through whom the Word of the Lord came to us and through whom God the Father and God the Son live in us, is a person. It is possible to sin against Him, just as it is possible to sin against the Father and the Son. One particular sin (blasphemy) is often referred to as the "unpardonable sin".
IT IS POSSIBLE TO BLASPHEME (SPEAK AGAINST) THE HOLY SPIRIT
Matthew 12:31-32 - "And so I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come."What it is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit? The only passages that use this expression are:
Mark 3:29 - "But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; he is guilty of an eternal sin."
Mark 3:20-30 and Matthew 12.22-32. In both places Jesus was warning the Pharisees and Scribes about their unbelief that led them to attribute the miracles of Jesus (done by the power of the Holy Spirit) to demons. Mark 3:29-30 shows that the reason for Jesus' warning was associated with the affirmation of the scribes. Therefore, we can say that:IT IS POSSIBLE TO INSULT THE HOLY SPIRIT
A. Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit was the sin of deliberately attributing the acts of the Spirit, which were made to produce faith in Christ, to demons, preventing such a person from coming to faith.
B. It is an unpardonable sin because such a person will not come to believe in Christ where they can find forgiveness.
C. It isn't people with doubts who have committed this sin but the person who doesn't want to know of God.
D. This "sin" is not to be equated with Acts 5:1-11; Hebrews 6:4-6 and 1 John 5.16-17. A certain parallel exists since these passages talk about a deliberate rejection of Christ and the Gospel. But still, in the context of the gospels, blasphemy against the Holy Spirit was attributing the power of the miracles of Jesus to demons and not to the Holy Spirit.
Hebrews 10:26-29 - "If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?"
This sin was committed by the Jews who renounced the faith after becoming disciples of Christ.
IT IS POSSIBLE PUT OUT THE SPIRIT'S FIRE
1 Thessalonians 5:19 - "Do not put out the Spirit's fire."IT IS POSSIBLE TO GRIEVE THE HOLY SPIRIT
This is the sin of not taking seriously an activity of the Spirit in your life. If the Spirit gives you a gift, service or function in the body of Christ but you do not use or exercise it, you are putting out the Spirit who wants to work in your life. If you continuously say "No" to Him, the fire of the Spirit is being extinguished.
Ephesians 4:25-30 - "25Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. 26 "In your anger do not sin": Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 and do not give the devil a foothold. 28 He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need. 29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption."
We can do this by:
a. Impure language (25 Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body and 29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen).
b. Words of anger against others (26 "In your anger do not sin": Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry).
c. Robbery and laziness (28 He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need). Little things do matter. Remember that He is our constant companion.
IT IS POSSIBLE TO LIE TO and TO TEMPT THE HOLY SPIRIT
Acts 5:3 - "Then Peter said, "Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land?"
Acts 5:9 - "Peter said to her, 'How could you agree to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also'."
IT IS POSSIBLE TO RESIST THE HOLY SPIRIT
When people resist the word of God given by means of men inspired by the Spirit, they resist the Spirit.
Acts 7:51 - "You stiff-necked people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears! You are just like your fathers: You always resist the Holy Spirit!"IT IS POSSIBLE TO REBEL AGAINST THE HOLY SPIRIT
Psalm 106:33 - "For they rebelled against the Spirit of God ,and rash words came from Moses' lips."
To refuse to obey is rebellion.
IT IS POSSIBLE TO PROFANE THE SPIRIT
1 Corinthians 6:19 - "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own."
1. Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is deliberately attributing to demons the miracles Jesus did by the Spirit.
2. What are the consequences for a Christian who deliberately chooses to keep on sinning?
None as he knew that he was going to ask for forgiveness before his decision.
None as the blood of Christ always continues to cleanse.
No more sacrifice for sin is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire.
3. A Christian can remove the Spirit from their life.
4. It is possible for a Christian to lie to the Holy Spirit.
THE GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT FOR SERVICELesson 7:
Jesus, returning to heaven, gave gifts to men by means of the Holy Spirit. For the purpose of this study, we will divide these gifts into two groups:
2. Gifts that would be used for the brethren in service, one to another. These gifts were the permanent ones and continue until today. The division into two groups is not perfectly drawn, however, because some gifts seem to fall in both groups. For example, gift of prophecy indicated the miraculous or supernatural act of receiving of knowledge of God but it was also used to serve (to build up) the brethren.
I. THE SUBJECT OF SPIRITUAL GIFTS DEALS WITH THE ORGANIZATION OF THE CHURCH AND THE GRACE OF GOD.
A. How the body of Christ functions
1. The church is the body of Christ
Ephesians 1:9-10 - "And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment-to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ."
The dream of Jesus is to have a church just like he is. As the church of Jesus Christ, the spiritual body of Christ, our identity helps us to know our purpose in life or our mission in the world. We are God's instrument to unite all things and all people to Jesus. That is why we exist. In practical terms what we do will be determined by our purpose in life. Your God-given ministry will contribute toward this purpose. To realize this dream costs a lot. We have to deny ourselves and submit to Jesus as the head or chief shepherd of the church.
2. Jesus is the head of the church.
Ephesians 1:22 - "And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church."
Ephesians 4:15 - "But, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head; Christ."
Ephesians 5:23 - "For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body."
Colossians 1:18 - "And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence."
Colossians 2:19 - "And not holding fast to the Head, from whom all the body, nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments, grows with the increase that is from God."
3. The work belongs to Jesus, the Head. He coordinates the work. He decides what each member of the body ought to be doing in the church.. Our part is to submit to him and try to recognize what he wants us to be doing, day by day, in the organization and in the work. We are personally responsible to him.
4. Jesus is not just a figurehead. To the contrary He is actively involved in all the church's work. It is Jesus who guides, organizes, oversees and shepherds the body in order for us to be what He wants us to be and do what He wants us to do. Let us always seek His plan, His guidance, His wisdom and His will in our ministries.
Ephesians 1:22-2:1 - "And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way."
5. Jesus operates today through the Holy Spirit, distributing gifts or services to the members of the body for the working of the church.
1 Corinthians 12:1-20 - "Now about spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be ignorant. You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other you were influenced and led astray to mute idols. Therefore I tell you that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, 'Jesus be cursed,' and no one can say, 'Jesus is Lord,' except by the Holy Spirit.
"There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men.
"Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines.
"The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body-whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free-and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.
"Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body."
a. The Spirit Places us in the Body: The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body-whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free-and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. (vv. 12 and 13)
b. The Spirit gives gifts to members of the body
There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. (v. 6-7)
c. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines. (v. 11)
d. But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. (v. 18)
6. Christ organized His church by the Spirit through gifts. This means that the organization is much more than ministers, evangelists and those who are responsible for some areas of work. Each and every member is part of the organization.
B. The grace of God
1. Grace is bestowed:
a. In the forgiveness of sins,
Ephesians 2:4-9 - "But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions-it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God not by works, so that no one can boast."
b. In our daily life.
2 Corinthians 9:8 - "And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work."
c. Even the service that you do for God in His kingdom is a favor that He grants
Ephesians 3:7-8 - "I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God's grace given me through the working of his power. Although I am less than the least of all God's people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ."
d. The grace of God gives ministries for us to do in the church.
2. The word "gift" emphasizes that it is a given thing. It is of grace
1 Peter 4:10-11 - "Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen."
Romans 12:3-6 - "For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith."
3. "What has God given for me to do in the church?" "What is the service that Jesus chose for me in the church?" "What is my gift?"
4. We need to remember that we do not gain our place in the body because of our own effort; it is given by God (Jesus, by means of the Spirit). Your ministry in the church should not be what you chose for yourself but what He chose for you.
II. SPIRITUAL GIFTS ARE FUNCTIONS, WORKS, SERVICES, MINISTRIES, ASSIGNMENTS
Romans 12:3-8 - For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.
A. Gifts are functions (works, ministries, services, jobs, roles) that you, as a member of the body of Christ, fulfill.
1. Gifts are not talents. Even though any and all talents and resources should and could be used in the exercise of your gift. People are born with talents (natural abilities) but gifts are given to people only when they are a part of the body of Christ. Several New Testament gifts were outside the realm of talents, natural abilities (tongues, Paul was not an impressive public speaker, some apostles were unlearned fishermen who were chosen and then trained to the job.)
2. Gifts are not personalities (patience, tender, courageous, outspoken, etc.). The gift that Peter and Paul shared was that of apostle, even with different personalities.
B. Gifts are services which various members are assigned by Jesus to exercise in a special way.
1. All of us should serve but some are deacons.
2. All of us should evangelize but some are evangelists.
3. All of us should be merciful but some have the gift of showing mercy.
4. All of us should contribute but some have the gift of giving.
5. All of us should take care of one another but some are shepherds (elders, pastors,
We can be involved in many areas of service but there are some services to which we were especially called. These are our gifts. The most important question in this sense concerning gifts is not "Lord, what do you want me to do?" but rather "Lord, in which ministry do you want me to specialize or dedicate myself?" Think of the gifts as your specialty.
C. Not all members have the same gifts but every Christian has one or more gifts. You wee given a function, a service, a ministry, a responsibility in the church. It was Jesus, by means of the Holy Spirit who gave it to you. Each member of the body needs to find his or her proper place and prepare himself for his ministry. Each one of us needs to ask ourselves this question: "What is my responsibility in the church?" or "Who am I in the body of Christ?" A simple answer would be: "My responsibility in the church is to do whatever the Lord chose for me to do." "My responsibility is according to the gift that God gave me." The duty of each one is according to what God has given him. Romans 12:3 and 6 - "I say to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith ... Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith."
The question then becomes, "What has God given me to do in the church?" "What is the ministry that Jesus chose for me in the church?" "What is my gift?" Your gift or ministry may change over time as in the case of Steven who began caring for the distribution of food to the widows (Acts 6: 4,5) and later was an evangelist (Acts 21:8).
III. GIFTS ARE CALLED "SPIRITUAL GIFTS".
2 Timothy 3:16-17 - 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."
The word of God equips us for our ministry. Through the Word the man of God will be equipped for the work. This means that the works must be spiritual because the Word deals with spiritual things. For example, the Bible does not teach the art of carpentry. It does not teach us how to use constructions tools, calculators and computers. But, the Word does prepare a carpenter to do a spiritual work inside of his trade. Gifts deal with involvement with God and people. We must use these gifts serving one another and this brings glory to God. This illustrates one more time that gifts are not talents or skills. The skill of the carpenter in building houses does not come from the Word but his talent can be used for the glory of God. This talent can place him in places and situations to meet the needs of people. When somebody needs his talent, he can go supply that necessity and, if given the opportunity, can share spiritual things in a spiritual way.
IV. THE ORGANIZATION OF THE CHURCH THROUGH GIFTS IS DIVERSE BUT UNITED
A. 1 Corinthians 12:1-11 - "Now about spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be ignorant. You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other you were influenced and led astray to mute idols. Therefore I tell you that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, "Jesus be cursed," and no one can say, "Jesus is Lord," except by the Holy Spirit.
"There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men.
"Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines."
1. In the church there is unity in diversity. This is seen in the variety of gifts, all given by the same Spirit. Different Christians have different gifts or ministries and they all are to be used for the mutual well-being. (verses 4-7)
2. The context here, in Paul's example, is of miraculous spirituals gifts of the Holy Spirit. The New Testament mentions gifts that are miraculous. (verses 8-10)
Acts 14:3 - "So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of his grace by enabling them to do miraculous signs and wonders.
Hebrews 2:3-4 - "How shall we escape if we ignore such a great salvation? This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard him. God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will."
and also gifts that are not miraculous
Ephesians 4:11 - "It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers,
Romans 12:7-8 - "If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully."
3. It is the same Spirit that gives one gift to one member and another gift to another member. It is the Spirit that makes the decision which person receives which gift. The person with three gifts is not better than the person with one gift. The person with the gift of knowledge was not better than the person with the gift of languages. (verse 11)
B. 1 Corinthians 12:12-31 - "The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body-whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free-and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.
"Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
"The eye cannot say to the hand, "I don't need you!" And the head cannot say to the feet, "I don't need you!" On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
"Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret? But eagerly desire the greater gifts. And now I will show you the most excellent way."
1. In the church there is unity with diversity. That is seen by the fact of the church being described as a body. (verse 12)
2. There are many members in the body of Christ. Each member is important. Each person is necessary and all must work in the body for the well-being of the body. (verse 14)
3. People sometimes say: "I am the Church", wanting to emphasize the fact of that the church is people and not bricks and cement. But, to be more correct, we should say "We are church" and "I am one of the members of the body of Christ".
4. No member functions by himself. Any member, separated from the body, will eventually grow weak, die and stink. Some say: "I am faithful to Jesus, but I do not participate in the church ". This idea is one hundred percent wrong. Separated from the body, the hand cannot help the body. It is true that the various members have different things to do, but all work as part of the body. As Ephesians 4:15-16 says: "speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love." (verse 21)
5. Jesus gives you permission. The members do not have to ask for the permission of the other members to do their own job. As members of the body, each one has his ministry (his gift). Hands, you do not need to ask for permission to do the job of a hand. You are a hand - do your work! Yes, we must communicate, cooperate and co-ordinate one with another, for the well-being and unity of the body. By all means, let the hand that is turning on the light switch communicate to the foot that is standing in the water! We must communicate, we must cooperate, but we have to use the gift that God gave us to use.
6. Each member of the church is important. Each member is necessary. Maybe someone thinks "I am not preaching, I don't teach class. The body does not need me ". Nonsense! How would the church be if all the members did the same thing? The Lord does not call us all to do the same thing. Not everyone has the same responsibility in the church. The Spirit gives gifts to the members of the body of Christ according to the needs of the body. The Lord, being the head, knows how to co-ordinate the body. He will never make the body to be all an eye or all a foot, etc. He gives to the body different types of ministries to supply the needs of the whole church. (verse 21)
7. Each member is important and necessary. The fingernail might think "The body does not need me. I am not important. It can exist without my presence." But, when an insect enters in my ear, no other member of the body is needed like that little fingernail.
8. The members of the body cooperate one with the others. When the foot steps on a thorn, the lungs, throat and mouth cooperate to produce a shout that distracts the pain in the foot. A leg picks the foot off the ground while another leg folds itself so that the body can sit down. The hands catch the hurt foot and the eyes search for the thorn. Finally, the fingers remove the thorn and the foot begins to feel relief. When one member suffers, all suffer. When one receives honor, all are honored. We don't do as the body whose members decided that the stomach was sluggish. So, the hands refused to put food in the mouth; the mouth refused to open; the teeth refused to chew. They decided to humiliate the stomach. The result was that the entire body became so weak that the hand did not have the strength to take the food, nor the mouth to open, nor the teeth to chew and the whole body died. We are members of the same body. We each must do our part, for the well-being of the entire body.
9. In all this, never forget that better than any gift is love. (verse 31)
V. COOPERATION AND THE INDIVIDUAL RESPONSIBILITY OF EACH MEMBER
Matthew 25:14-30 - "Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. So also, the one with the two talents gained two more. But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master's money.
"After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.'
"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'
"The man with the two talents also came. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.'
"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'
"Then the man who had received the one talent came. 'Master,' he said, 'I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.'
"His master replied, 'You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.
"'Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'"
A. This parable, the parable of the money, speaks of the individual responsibility of each one, independent of the action of the others. Each one will be judged by his own deeds. However, in the church, the body of Christ, when one member does not do his part, it not only harms himself but the whole body. If the eyes do not see, the entire body is in darkness. If the feet do not walk, the whole body gives up walking. Even if you received only one ministry you still must do it. Each member, receiving one, two or five ministries, must use what he has received for the good of the body.
B. We must not allow the existence of a system where one takes care of all. If the hands do not work but expect the eyes to work... If the feet do not walk but expect the eyes to walk... If the ears do not hear but expect the eyes to hear... If the mouth does not eat but expect eyes to eat... If the nose does not smell but expect the eyes to smell... This would not be a body. It would be a monster!
C. The church must have space for all the members to serve in the body. The church is all the brothers and sisters performing the functions of their spiritual ministries, each one serving the Lord, including those that are considered less important. It is fatal for the body to have useless members. All are members of the body. Each member has his function. Each member must fulfill his service before God. Each one must serve.
D. At times, we seem to resemble the sacerdotal system of Catholicism or the pastoral system of Protestantism. Some few take care of all the work of the church. We have to allow Christ to work and reveal our individual functions. Being the body of Christ, there is no lack of work to do. Each Christian is a priest. If God places the weight of a brother on your shoulders and if you are capable, then you pray and step up to help.
1 Peter 2:9 - "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."
Revelation 1:5-6 - "To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, 6 and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father-to him be glory and power for ever and ever!"
E. In the church, sometimes, those who have five "talents" or "gifts" or "ministries" carry the weight of the multitude of members with one "talent". That's a big weight to carry. The direction of a church is not something that depends only on the work of some, but rather a question of us having the capacity to make each one with one "talent" exercise his gifts. The great problem in the church nowadays is that the one "talent" members hide their "talent". If all the one "talent" members exercised their "talent", there would not need to be so many multi-talented members. We have that motivate all members to do their part.
F. All the body must learn to serve. We all must roll up our sleeves. It could be cleaning the building where the church assembles, take care of the needy, house the brothers, greet the visitors, distribute food, carry the money bag ... In the house of the Lord no servant can excuse himself saying that nobody gave him something to do. Before God, all His children are in service with ministries given by Him. If we think that there is somebody who the Lord cannot use, we really do not know the grace of God. In the church there are to be no marginalized members. We all need to arise and go to work.
G. Ephesians 4:16 says that "the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work."
This teaches 100% involvement of the members. No member can neglect his duty. We must always be encouraging each other to take initiative to do what they think Jesus is calling them to do and not to be restrained by the organization. The organization must facilitate and not hinder the service of any Christian.
H. It is right to call the brethren to serve Christ according to their gifts. It is right to encourage each other to place all our resources at the disposal of the Lord. But it is not right to create a guilt complex because somebody is not doing something that was not given them to do by the Lord.
I. You are one of the many members of the body. When you are working, serving, preaching, visiting, teaching, exhorting, counseling, etc. the body is working because the body only functions through its members. You, being a member of the body, are always a member of the body, all the time not only when the body is assembled together. The responsibilities of the church are the total of all the responsibilities of each member individually. For example: The body is working when:
1. Husbands are taking care of their wives
2. Wives are taking care of the home
3 Parents are raising their children in the way of the Lord
4. Servants are stopping to help a person in need
5. Elders are shepherding the flock
6. Leaders are organizing a retreat
7. People of faith are praying for the lost and the sick
8. Evangelists are evangelizing
9. Members are visiting in the hospitals
10. Counselors are helping a marriage
11. Authors are writing books and study material that edify.
Each brother and each sister has a ministry. We need to help them know what it is and also to equip them for a good performance in their ministry.
VI. WHO AM I IN THE BODY OF CHRIST?
This is the question each one of us needs to ask. How can I know what is my God given service. The New Testament does not give a concise list of steps for determining one's spiritual gift (function in the body). Some steps are suggested below but they should not be considered the final word on the subject.
A. Become A Christian: Gifts are given by God through the Spirit to members of the body of Christ.
B. Place Yourself Entirely At God's Disposal: This is an objective decision implied by your decision to become a Christian. Say to God as Isaiah did: "Here am I, send me." (Isaiah 6:8)
C. Pray: You know that God has a purpose for you in the body of Christ. So now you ask Him to show you what it is, knowing that He will answer for it is His will.
Psalm 25:12 - "Who, then, is the man that fears the LORD?
He will instruct him in the way chosen for him."
D. Review The Lists Of Gifts In The New Testament:
Romans 12:3-8 - "For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully."
1 Corinthians 12:28-29 - "And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues."
Ephesians 4:11-12 - "It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up."
1 Peter 4:10-11 - "Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever."
These lists should give you an idea about what God calls a ministry. The following are some examples of gifts, ministries (not including temporary or miraculous ones): Servant
1 Peter 4:11 - "If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever." Romans 12:7-8 - "If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach."
1 Corinthians 12:28 - "And in the church God has appointed … first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers."
Romans 12:8 - "If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach."
2 Timothy 1:11 - "And of this gospel I was appointed a herald and an apostle and a teacher."
Romans 12:8 - "If it is encouraging, let him encourage."
One who gives
Romans 12:8 - "If it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously."
One who aids/helps
1 Corinthians 12:28 - "And in the church God has appointed ... those able to help others."
One who shows mercy
Romans 12:8 - "If it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully."
1 Corinthians 12:28 - "And in the church God has appointed …, those with gifts of administration."
Shepherd, Pastor, Bishop
Acts 20:28-29 - "Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood."
Ephesians 4:11 - "It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers."
1 Timothy 3:1-2 - "Here is a trustworthy saying: If anyone sets his heart on being an overseer, he desires a noble task." Now the overseer must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach."
Titus 1:5-7 - "The reason I left you in Crete was that you might straighten out what was left unfinished and appoint elders in every town, as I directed you.
Evangelist, Preacher, Minister
1 Corinthians 9:16-18 - "Yet when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, for I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! If I preach voluntarily, I have a reward; if not voluntarily, I am simply discharging the trust committed to me."
Ephesians 4:11 - "It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers."
2 Peter 2:5-6 - "If he did not spare the ancient world when he brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others."
1 Timothy 4:6-7 - "If you point these things out to the brothers, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, brought up in the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed."
2 Timothy 1:11 - "And of this gospel I was appointed a herald and an apostle and a teacher."
1 Timothy 3:8 - "Deacons, likewise, are to be men worthy of respect, sincere, not indulging in much wine, and not pursuing dishonest gain."
And within all of these there are many things to be done in which you could serve the Lord. (Don't be limited by this list. We need to expand our areas of service. Look around to see what needs to be done that is not being done.) Consider the different ministries that already exist. It could be that some of these need your participation.
E. Consider The Needs Of The Church: Peter plainly tells us that we are to employ our gift for one another as good stewards of God's varied So we must look to the needs of the church.
1 Peter 4:10 - Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms.
F. Look For Opportunities: Start a journal of doors that God has opened for you. As time goes on you may begin to see a direction that He is leading you in.
G. Seek Guidance From Church Leadership: Leadership gifts are given to the church for the equipping of the saints. Make good use of these gifts of the leadership.
Ephesians 4:11-12 - It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.
H. Take The Initiative: You have prayed to the Lord, reviewed the list of ministries in the New Testament, taken into account the needs of the church that the Lord has brought to your attention and possibly even put the desire in you to fulfill. You have noted that God is always opening up doors of opportunity in certain directions and you have talked things over with the leadership in the church. Wait no longer, take the initiative and get on with what the Lord would have you to be doing.
Got the idea? Go through the steps given. Begin to serve the Lord by employing your gift for one another as good stewards of God's varied grace. May the Lord bless you in everything good that you desire to do.
The church, in the New Testament., is seen as an organism: living, growing and coordinated. This organism is composed of many parts joined in an organized way. Although organized, the church is more than a simple organization. The word most used (40 times) to speak of this aspect of the church, in the New Testament. is the word "body". The parallel is made many times between the characteristics of the human body (physical) and the church that is the body (spiritual) of Jesus Christ. The members all work as a unit in the body. There are no disconnected members. The service of the church is the spiritual activity of the saints, members one of the other in the Spirit. As a body, each member works in its ministry. It is not the independent activity of an individual but the coordinated work of all the members of the body.
Let us all dedicate ourselves to the services of the Christian life but we will be "specialists" in that service (gift) that the Lord Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, chose for us.
1. There are many different kinds of gifts, services and workings.
2. God’s grace is bestowed upon man
In the forgiveness of sin
In his daily life
In work, service or ministry a Christian must do
All the above
3. Generally a gift is freely given, not earned, but one can earn God’s grace by doing many good works.
4. Spiritual gifts given to Christians are:
Natural abilities, talents
Personalities, outspokenness or timidity
Services assigned by God for Christians to do
5. The Word of God equips Christians for ministry
6. In Christ everyone has the same spiritual gift
7. In Christ no one is more important than someone else.
8. God judges Christians on the number of works, services or functions they perform rather than on what they do with the gift, service or function he receives.
9. One must get approval from a church leader in order to perform the gift, work, service or function God assigned.
10. All Christians are alike and must perform the same works, services or functions to be pleasing to God.
11. Being an elder, pastor, shepherd or deacon is the most important work, service or function God has assigned since He specified their qualifications.
THE SIGN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRITLesson 8:
The primitive church was given miraculous gifts and non-miraculous gifts. In Biblical history, there were various periods when a special witness was necessary in order to establish the authority of the messengers of God. These were the times of Moses, Elijah and Elisha, and Christ and His apostles. Although there were other miracles in other periods, these were periods of a greater frequency of miracles when some holy men became great "miracle workers" by the power of God. When the revelation of God to men was completed (the New Testament), the necessity of this special confirmation of the word preached by God's messengers passed. Today, preachers do not need for the Spirit to confirm their words with signs. They only need to preach what is written. "Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name" (John 20:30-31) The recorded miracles are enough to produce faith just as the very miracles themselves had produced. The Word indicates in various ways the fact that these miraculous gifts were to cease soon after the completion of the New Testament.
I. Method of conferring.
The way these gifts were normally conferred shows that they were temporary.
A. It was by the laying on of the hands of the apostles. Acts 8:4-25 - "Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went. Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Christ there. When the crowds heard Philip and saw the miraculous signs he did, they all paid close attention to what he said. With shrieks, evil spirits came out of many, and many paralytics and cripples were healed. So there was great joy in that city.II Temporary nature. The New Testament teaches that miraculous gifts would be temporary.
"Now for some time a man named Simon had practiced sorcery in the city and amazed all the people of Samaria. He boasted that he was someone great, and all the people, both high and low, gave him their attention and exclaimed, "This man is the divine power known as the Great Power." They followed him because he had amazed them for a long time with his magic. But when they believed Philip as he preached the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. Simon himself believed and was baptized. And he followed Philip everywhere, astonished by the great signs and miracles he saw.
"When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them. "When they arrived, they prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them; they had simply been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.
"When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money and said, 'Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.'
"Peter answered: 'May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.'
"Then Simon answered, 'Pray to the Lord for me so that nothing you have said may happen to me.'
"When they had testified and proclaimed the word of the Lord, Peter and John returned to Jerusalem, preaching the gospel in many Samaritan villages."
1. Philip, full of the Spirit (Acts 6:3) and with the power to do miracles (Acts 8:13), could not pass this gift on to others.
2. Also, God did not give them power directly.
3. Two apostles were sent to Samaria to lay hands on them.
4, Simon perceived that the Holy Spirit (the manifestation of His power) was given through the laying on of the hands of the apostles.
B. The power of the Spirit was given through the laying on of the hands of apostle Paul and then they began speaking in tongues.
Acts 19:1-6 - "While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples and asked them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?" They answered, "No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit." So Paul asked, "Then what baptism did you receive?" "John's baptism," they replied. Paul said, "John's baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus." On hearing this, they were baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied."
C. Timothy received his gift (of prophecy perhaps) through the laying on of the hands of Paul.
2 Timothy 1:6 - " For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands."
D. If these gifts were to continue, the apostles would need to continue laying on their hands but when the apostle James died nobody took his place. The endowing of the miraculous power stopped with the death of last apostle.
1 Corinthians 13:8-13 -"Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love."III Purpose
The Biblical purpose of these gifts showed that they were temporary.
A. The purpose of the miracles of Jesus was:
1. To create faith that Jesus really was sent by God
John 10:31-39 - "Again the Jews picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus said to them, "I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?" "We are not stoning you for any of these," replied the Jews, "but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God." Jesus answered them, "Is it not written in your Law, 'I have said you are gods'? If he called them 'gods,' to whom the word of God came and the Scripture cannot be broken what about the one whom the Father set apart as his very own and sent into the world? Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, 'I am God's Son'? Do not believe me unless I do what my Father does. But if I do it, even though you do not believe me, believe the miracles, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father."
2, Strengthen the faith of the disciples
John 11:11-16 - "After he had said this, he went on to tell them, "Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going there to wake him up." His disciples replied, "Lord, if he sleeps, he will get better." Jesus had been speaking of his death, but his disciples thought he meant natural sleep. So then he told them plainly, "Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him." Then Thomas (called Didymus) said to the rest of the disciples, "Let us also go, that we may die with him."
3. The written report is enough to accomplish these purposes
John 20:30-31 - "Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
B. The purposes of the miracles of the apostolic age:
1. To prove that the apostles were messengers of God.
2 Corinthians 12:12 - "The things that mark an apostle - signs, wonders and miracles - were done among you with great perseverance."
Acts 2:43 - "Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles."
Acts 5:12 - "The apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders among the people. And all the believers used to meet together in Solomon's Colonnade."
Romans 15:17-19 - "I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done - by the power of signs and miracles, through the power of the Spirit. So from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum, I have fully proclaimed the gospel of Christ."
Without apostles today, we do not have the need to establish their authority.
2. To equip men to deliver the Word of God without error.
2 Peter 1:21 - "For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit."
1 Peter 1:10-11 - "Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow."
1 Corinthians 2:6-13 - "We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. No, we speak of God's secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. However, as it is written: 'No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him' but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words."
Jude 3 - "Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints."
This message has already been delivered once for all time
3. To confirm the word spoken by the apostles and prophets.
Mark 16:15-20 - "He said to them, 'Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.' After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God. Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it."
Hebrews 2:1-4 - "We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away. For if the message spoken by angels was binding, and every violation and disobedience received its just punishment, how shall we escape if we ignore such a great salvation? This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard him. God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will."
Acts 14:3 - "So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of his grace by enabling them to do miraculous signs and wonders."
Hebrews 6:13-18 - "When God made his promise to Abraham, since there was no one greater for him to swear by, he swore by himself, saying, "I will surely bless you and give you many descendants." And so after waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised. Men swear by someone greater than themselves, and the oath confirms what is said and puts an end to all argument. Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath. God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope offered to us may be greatly encouraged."
The point in this passage in Hebrews is to show how that, once confirmed, the Word of God is established and it is not necessary to be reconfirmed.
IV. Cessation of miracles
Miraculous gifts ceased when their purpose was fulfilled and when the way of receiving them ended. Today, the Word already written and confirmed is sufficient. It is only necessary for somebody to preach the Word.
V. Did Jesus also do miracles just for benevolence reasons? If that were so, why did he not cure everybody? It said that his ministry was for the house of Israel (Mark 7). The main mission of Jesus was to preach.
Mark 1:38-39 - "Jesus replied, 'Let us go somewhere else-to the nearby villages-so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.' So he traveled throughout Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and driving out demons."
His miracles were done mainly for evangelistic reasons.
John 10:37-39 - "Do not believe me unless I do what my Father does. But if I do it, even though you do not believe me, believe the miracles, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father."
John 11:14-15 - "So then he told them plainly, 'Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.'"
VI. Are people still doing miracles nowadays?
The miracles of Christ and the apostles exerted power over:
1. natureThe above do not seem to be happening today, so how would we explain the so-called modern day miracles? They are mostly done by healers, Spiritists, etc. Are they:
3. all illnesses
6. poisonous vipers
7. divine knowledge (revelations, predictions, tongues, etc...).
1. lies of deceivers?
2. products of auto-suggestion or hypnosis?
3. unknown natural parapsychological phenomena?
4. work of the devil?
We have to accept the possibility that there may be deceivers out in the world and also counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders.
2 Thessalonians 2:9-10 - "The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved."
VII. Does the spiritual gift of healing still exist today?
If it is, it is very different from what Jesus and the apostles did:
1. Jesus and the apostles did not do advertising
Mark 2:4 - "Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus and, after digging through it, lowered the mat the paralyzed man was lying on."
2. The cures in the New Testament were instantaneous
Mark 3:5 - "He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts, said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored."
Matthew 8:13 _ "Then Jesus said to the centurion, "Go! It will be done just as you believed it would." And his servant was healed at that very hour. "
3, Jesus and the apostles cured all types of affliction
Mark 1:32-34 _ "That evening after sunset the people brought to Jesus all the sick and demon-possessed. The whole town gathered at the door, and Jesus healed many who had various diseases. He also drove out many demons, but he would not let the demons speak because they knew who he was."
Acts 5:15-16 - "As a result, people brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter's shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by. Crowds gathered also from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those tormented by evil spirits, and all of them were healed."
4. They did not do partial or temporary cures
Mark 7:35 - "At this, the man's ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly."
5. The New Testament mentions the cure of extreme cases (dead raised) Also read John 9 and 11.
Luke 22:50-51 - "And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear. But Jesus answered, 'No more of this!' And he touched the man's ear and healed him." Acts 4:22 - "For the man who was miraculously healed was over forty years old."
6. Jesus and the apostles cured from a distance
Matthew 15:21-28 - "Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, 'Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from demon-possession.' Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, 'Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.' He answered, 'I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.' The woman came and knelt before him. 'Lord, help me!' she said. He replied, 'It is not right to take the children's bread and toss it to their dogs.' 'Yes, Lord,' she said, 'but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters' table.' Then Jesus answered, 'Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.' And her daughter was healed from that very hour."
John 4:46-54 - "Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death. 'Unless you people see miraculous signs and wonders," Jesus told him, "you will never believe.' The royal official said, 'Sir, come down before my child dies.' Jesus replied, 'You may go. Your son will live.' The man took Jesus at his word and departed. While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, 'The fever left him yesterday at the seventh hour.' Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, 'Your son will live.' So he and all his household believed. This was the second miraculous sign that Jesus performed, having come from Judea to Galilee. "
Luke 7:1-10 - "When Jesus had finished saying all this in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. There a centurion's servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die. The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant. When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, 'This man deserves to have you do this, because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue.' So Jesus went with them. He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: 'Lord, don't trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, 'Go,' and he goes; and that one, 'Come,' and he comes. I say to my servant, 'Do this,' and he does it.' When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, 'I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.' Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well."
7. Jesus and the apostles cured real illnesses
Matthew 11:5 - "The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is preached to the poor."
8. One does not see in the New Testament hypnotisms and auto-suggestion, nor pre-prepared conditionings and set-ups.
9. Jesus did not always demand faith on the part of those healed.
Luke 7:11-17 - "Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out-the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, 'Don't cry.' Then he went up and touched the coffin, and those carrying it stood still. He said, 'Young man, I say to you, get up!' The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother. They were all filled with awe and praised God. 'A great prophet has appeared among us," they said. "God has come to help his people.' This news about Jesus spread throughout Judea and the surrounding country."
Mark 9:23-24 - "'If you can'?" said Jesus. "Everything is possible for him who believes." Immediately the boy's father exclaimed, "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!" (Also read John 11).
10. Jesus cured in front of skeptics and enemies.
11. Even his enemies could not deny the miracles. There was no doubt that supernatural things were happening.
12. Universal healing is not promised in the New Testament. In fact, many Christians were not cured
1 Timothy 5:23 - "Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses."
2 Timothy 4:20 - "Erastus stayed in Corinth, and I left Trophimus sick in Miletus."
Philippians 2:27 - "Indeed he was ill, and almost died. But God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, to spare me sorrow upon sorrow."
2 Corinthians 12:7-10 - "To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong."
In each of these affirmations we can observe that the opposite is practiced today by some "healers". What they do is not the same gift of healing of the New Testament.
VIII. Can we still pray for healing?
The fact that the gift of healing does not still exist does not mean that God does not answer our prayers. James speaks of the prayer that can result in someone being healed by God of a disease, but is important to notice that this is different from the gift of healing. The gift of healing was the healing that God gave through a man who had, from the Spirit, the power to heal. Generally, prayer was not made because the person already had the power to heal. The prayer for healing is answered by God without an intermediate. Prayer is always present.
James 5:13-18 - "Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise. Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops."IX. Does Hebrews 13:8 "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and he will be forever" teach that Jesus today has to keep on doing miracles?
A. A misunderstanding of Hebrews 13.8 leads some to affirm that if Jesus and the apostles did miracles in the first century, He (Jesus) does not change, therefore He must keep on doing what He always did.XI. What is "the perfection " of 1 Corinthians 13:10?
B However, if Jesus cannot change in relation to His actions during His ministry:
1. Jesus would have to continue to be personally on the earth.
2. Jesus would have to have a physical body and to live in Palestine.
3. Jesus must have Jewish apostles as those that he chose.
4. Would this Jesus who does not change be the boy in Bethlehem, the crucified Jesus or the resurrected Jesus? Which of these must not change?
C. A better understanding: the text does not say that Jesus cannot participate in history as a human being in a process of growth.
1. The text teaches that in His interior essence or His most intimate nature, Jesus does not change. The next verse (9) speaks of the danger of falling into false doctrines "Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teachings. It is good for our hearts to be strengthened by grace, not by ceremonial foods, which are of no value to those who eat them." The lesson is that Jesus and His doctrine do not change, and therefore we do not have to change.
2. Historically, Jesus has worked in different ways. In the creation He worked in a different way than when he was a simple carpenter in Nazareth. He also did different things during different phases of His ministry.
3. Thus, the Jesus who did miracles is the same today but has a different ministry.
1 Corinthians 13:8-12 - "Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known."
A. The reply to this question is interesting in the fact the text speaks of a time when these miraculous gifts of the Spirit would cease.
B. The significant verse in this question is verse 10 and one key to a proper understanding is a literal and grammatically correct translation of the verse. Observe: the Greek/English Interlinear: "BUT WHEN MAY COME THAT WHICH IS PERFECT (teleion) THEN THAT IN PART (ek merous), SHALL BE DONE AWAY."
This verse is translated in the ASV, NKJV, and KJV thusly "but when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away."
C. The word translated "perfection" in verse 10 in the NIV is not a noun. It is an adjective. The more literal translations: "but when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away" correctly reflect this fact. The two adjectives, "perfect" and "partial" (in part), modify an assumed but unwritten noun. These two adjectives are contrasted and in fact perfect (teleion) means whole, entire or complete. A literal translation would be: "but when the perfect (complete) ______ comes, the partial_______ will be done away". The two blanks must be filled in with a noun. The question is: what noun should fill in the blanks? What is "that which is perfect?
D. In Greek, there has to be a grammatical agreement between articles, nouns and adjectives in a phrase. For example, consider this phrase: "when I buy the new car, I will sell the old car". The words old and new must agree with the word "car" in number and gender. To understand verse 10 we have to fill in the blanks after "perfect" and "partial" and the noun we choose to fill in the blanks must agree with the adjectives that precede them. This means that the word we choose to fill in the blanks must be masculine since the adjective "perfect" is masculine in Greek. Greek nouns can be masculine, feminine or neuter. We can eliminate certain words in the space of verse 10, observing the agreement. For example:
1. Love. Although this idea seems nice, the grammar of the passage does not allow it. Perfect, in the original, is a neuter adjective and love is feminine). Besides this, love and gifts are not mutually exclusive.
2. Heaven or the Return of Christ. As noted, "perfect" is in the neuter, and Christ is masculine. Also, this word is never used with reference to heaven or the return of Christ.
3. Human Perfection. Although the word is used to refer to human behavior (Matthew 5:48; 19:21; 1 Corinthians 2:6; 14:20; James 3:2), it does not fit in the context of verses 8-13, nor in the grammar of this text. The contrast in this context is of duration and not quality.
E. A more logical idea is that the "perfect" refers to the completion of the New Testament and the closing of the revelation of God for the Christian age.
1. Why speak of the end of miraculous gifts in relation to the complete revelation? Because the purpose of these gifts was to confirm the word spoken by inspired people.
Mark 16:20 - "Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it."
Hebrews 2:3-4 - "How shall we escape if we ignore such a great salvation? This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard him. God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will."
2. Was he purpose of gifts to mature Christians? Or to mature the love of Christians? No, prophecy, knowledge and tongues were to reveal God's Word.
1 Corinthians 13:2 - "If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing."
1 Corinthians 14:3-6 - "But everyone who prophesies speaks to men for their strengthening, encouragement and comfort. He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church. I would like every one of you to speak in tongues, but I would rather have you prophesy. He who prophesies is greater than one who speaks in tongues, unless he interprets, so that the church may be edified. Now, brothers, if I come to you and speak in tongues, what good will I be to you, unless I bring you some revelation or knowledge or prophecy or word of instruction?"
1 Corinthians 14:19 But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue.
Tongues were a sign for the unbelievers. Miraculous gifts among the Corinthians contributed to their lack of love and their immaturity.
1 Corinthians 3:1 - "Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual but as worldly-mere infants in Christ."
1 Corinthians 14:20 - "Brothers, stop thinking like children. In regard to evil be infants, but in your thinking be adults."
They needed gifts because the primitive church was as children in knowledge.
1 Corinthians 13:11 - "When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me."
3. "Perfect" (Greek "telios") means complete, grown, nothing lacking. Referring to people it means adult, mature. Read Matthew 5:44-48; Luke 6:36; Matthew 19:21; 1 Corinthians 2:6, 14; 1 Corinthians 14:20; Philippians 3:15; Colossians 4:12; Hebrews 5:14.) You do not need to reach this perfection to go to heaven.
They were perfect (complete, grown, nothing lacking) but not without sin.
Philippians 3:15 - "All of us who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you."
James 1:17 - "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."
James 1:4 - "Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."
James 2:22 - "You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did."
4. See the contrast with verse 9: Something is now "ek merous" (in part, incomplete, imperfect, something lacking) but later will be "teleios" (complete, perfect). The subject is the way we receive divine knowledge and the end of inspired preaching. The word to place in the spaces (Part C above) would be "revelation". Until the closing of the New Testament, God was revealing His will partially. A little bit here. A little bit there. Now the whole revelation for the church has already been given and we can read without somebody having the gift of prophecy or knowledge.
5. An illustration from the life of Paul: Paul left childish things when he grew. The infant church would leave the things of infancy when these gifts had ceased.
6. They saw obscurely as in a mirror. "Mirror" is the same as "sight". In comparison to the other prophets whom they needed to depend on obscure words a dream or vision, God spoke to Moses "mouth the mouth" or face the face. The revelation that he received was clear.
7. Some things we can know clearly:
Matthew 7:19 - "Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire." Luke 1:3-4 - "Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught."
Romans 1:32 - "Although they know God's righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.
1 Corinthians 14:37 _ "If anybody thinks he is a prophet or spiritually gifted, let him acknowledge that what I am writing to you is the Lord's command."
Colossians 1:6 that has come to you. All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God's grace in all its truth."
1 Timothy 4:3 - "They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth."
2 Peter 2:21 - "It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them."
2 Peter 1:2 - "Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord."
8. As long as inspiration continued, signs and wonders also continued "So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of his grace by enabling them to do miraculous signs and wonders." (Acts 14:3) The apostles chosen by Christ lived in the first century, until approximately 100 AD, when the last apostle John died. The apostles had miraculous gifts, and only they could pass this gift on to others. When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them. When they arrived, they prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them; they had simply been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money and said, "Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit." (Acts 8:14-15)
Those upon whom the apostles laid their hands may have lived into the second century and so there were still miraculous gifts acting directly in the church. But, since they did not have the power to pass this gift on to others, gifts ended with their death. By then copies of the New Testament had been spread to the known world. It was the Spirit, acting now, not through miraculous sign gifts, but through the Word.
1. The purpose of the Holy Spirit’s gift of miracles was to:
Heal sick people
Show that the apostles were superior to everyone else.
Prove that the Apostles’ message that Jesus was God who came in the flesh to provide the only way man could be reconciled to God.
2. Miracles of the Holy Spirit have not ceased and can still be performed today.
3. Today people who perform “miracles” perform the same type of miracles performed by the apostles, in the same manner and with the same results.
4. What was the “perfect” that was to come which caused the imperfect to disappear?
That which is perfect has not yet come.
The infallible inspired message from God recorded for all future generations
Return of Christ
5. Christians other than the Apostles could give other people the ability to perform miracles.
THE GIFT OF TONGUES (languages)Lesson 9
I. It was a miraculous gift granted by the Holy Spirit (Acts 2.4-11; 10.45-46; 11:15-17; 19.1-6; 1 Corinthians 12-14; Mark 16:15-20).
II. The tongues were LANGUAGES and DIALECTS spoken by people at the time where the phenomenon of tongue speaking occurred.
A. In Acts 2:4 "All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them" the word translated "tongue" is glossa, which in the Bible means the language of a people or nation.III. Tongues were not the more important gift and are the last ones mentioned in two lists.
B. The expressions "own language" in Acts 2:6 "When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard them speaking in his own language." and "native language" in Acts 2:8, "Then how is it that each of us hears them in his own native language?" comes from the Greek word dialectos from which our word "dialect" comes, which means the language of a particular people.
C. Luke says that a multitude of people assembled in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost from many different countries could all understand what the apostles said, each one in their own native language. "Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven … Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs-we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!" (Acts 2:5; 9-11)
D. To speak in tongues would be, for example, to speak in Armenian without ever having learned that language and being perfectly understood by someone who speaks that language.
E. In Corinth, the gift was the same, but due to the absence of people from various nations, the presence of a translator (interpreter) was necessary.
1. The one who did not understand that language would be as a foreigner "If then I do not grasp the meaning of what someone is saying, I am a foreigner to the speaker, and he is a foreigner to me." (1 Corinthians 14:11) This shows that the phenomenon was still speaking in languages.
2, Paul cites Isaiah 28:11-12 in 1 Corinthians 14:21 "Through men of strange tongues and through the lips of foreigners I will speak to this people, but even then they will not listen to me," A parallel is made between the Assyrian dialect and the dialects of those who speak in tongues. Thus one concludes that gift of tongues was "to speak a language without having learned it by natural ways."
1 Corinthians 12:7-10 - "To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues."IV. The gift of tongues was useless without love.
1 Corinthians 12:28-30 - "And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret?"
1 Corinthians 13 - "If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong … the greatest of these is love."V. TONGUES in 1 Corinthians 14:
1 Corinthians 14:1-19 - "Follow the way of love and eagerly desire spiritual gifts, especially the gift of prophecy. 2 For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God. Indeed, no one understands him; he utters mysteries with his spirit. 3 But everyone who prophesies speaks to men for their strengthening, encouragement and comfort. 4 He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church. 5 I would like every one of you to speak in tongues, but I would rather have you prophesy. He who prophesies is greater than one who speaks in tongues, unless he interprets, so that the church may be edified.Everything done in the assembly of the church should be done for the strengthening (edification) of the church.
"6 Now, brothers, if I come to you and speak in tongues, what good will I be to you, unless I bring you some revelation or knowledge or prophecy or word of instruction? 7 Even in the case of lifeless things that make sounds, such as the flute or harp, how will anyone know what tune is being played unless there is a distinction in the notes? 8 Again, if the trumpet does not sound a clear call, who will get ready for battle? 9 So it is with you. Unless you speak intelligible words with your tongue, how will anyone know what you are saying? You will just be speaking into the air. 10 Undoubtedly there are all sorts of languages in the world, yet none of them is without meaning. 11 If then I do not grasp the meaning of what someone is saying, I am a foreigner to the speaker, and he is a foreigner to me. 12 So it is with you. Since you are eager to have spiritual gifts, try to excel in gifts that build up the church.
"13 For this reason anyone who speaks in a tongue should pray that he may interpret what he says. 14 For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is unfruitful. 15 So what shall I do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my mind; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my mind. 16 If you are praising God with your spirit, how can one who finds himself among those who do not understand say "Amen" to your thanksgiving, since he does not know what you are saying? 17 You may be giving thanks well enough, but the other man is not edified.
'18 I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you. 19 But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue.
"20 Brothers, stop thinking like children. In regard to evil be infants, but in your thinking be adults. 21 In the Law it is written: "Through men of strange tongues and through the lips of foreigners I will speak to this people, but even then they will not listen to me," says the Lord.
"22 Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers; prophecy, however, is for believers, not for unbelievers. 23 So if the whole church comes together and everyone speaks in tongues, and some who do not understand or some unbelievers come in, will they not say that you are out of your mind? 24 But if an unbeliever or someone who does not understand comes in while everybody is prophesying, he will be convinced by all that he is a sinner and will be judged by all, 25 and the secrets of his heart will be laid bare. So he will fall down and worship God, exclaiming, "God is really among you!"
"26 What then shall we say, brothers? When you come together, everyone has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation. All of these must be done for the strengthening of the church. 27 If anyone speaks in a tongue, two-or at the most three-should speak, one at a time, and someone must interpret. 28 If there is no interpreter, the speaker should keep quiet in the church and speak to himself and God."
"I would like every one of you to speak in tongues, but I would rather have you prophesy. He who prophesies is greater than one who speaks in tongues, unless he interprets, so that the church may be edified." (v. 5)VI. The gift of tongues was temporary.
"So it is with you. Since you are eager to have spiritual gifts, try to excel in gifts that build up the church." (v.12)
"What then shall we say, brothers? When you come together, everyone has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation. All of these must be done for the strengthening of the church." (v.26)
A. Languages in v. 2 - Speaks to God, not men.
B. The gift of prophecy must be preferred to the gift of tongues, because the exercise of this gift builds up the church (vv3-4). Five words with understanding are better that ten thousand in a tongue (v19).
C. Three activities were done by people with gift of tongues: praying, singing and praising - All are directed toward God (vv 2:14-17).
D. Tongues cannot be used in the church meeting without an interpreter (vv26-28).
E. Tongues are a sign for unbelievers and its purpose was not the building up of the church (vv21-22).
1. In order to build up, the message must be understood (vv 7-11).
2, Isaiah 28:11-12 - a sign for the unbelievers, but they would not accept God.
3. The reaction of the unbelievers when an entire assembly is speaking in tongues: "These people are out of their minds!"
A. They obviously had a special purpose.VII. The gift of tongues in the New Testament was very different from "the modern gift of tongues."
B. Having the gift of tongues was not a test of salvation. Not all the Christians were given this gift.
C. The gift of tongues did not indicate great spirituality on the part of the person using the gift. Many in Corinth, as well as many nowadays who profess to have this gift, prove themselves to be carnal and not spiritual.
D. Paul mentioned the gifts of prophecy, knowledge and tongues as being "in part" and said that they would cease. These gifts were temporary in comparison to love that is permanent (1 Corinthians 13).
A. In the meeting of the church, in practice of the gift of tongues and prophecy, the women had to be silent.
1 Corinthians 14:34 - "Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says."B. The gift of tongues was not for the edification of one another.
1 Corinthians 14:4 - "He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church."C. Tongues were for the benefit of the unbelievers.
1 Corinthians 14:21-22 - "In the Law it is written: 'Through men of strange tongues and through the lips of foreigners I will speak to this people, but even then they will not listen to me, says the Lord.' Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers; prophecy, however, is for believers, not for unbelievers."D. Tongues were languages of men, understood by people who spoke these languages.
Acts 2:1-8 - "When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them. Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard them speaking in his own language. Utterly amazed, they asked: 'Are not all these men who are speaking Galileans? Then how is it that each of us hears them in his own native language?'"
Pentecostals say that they are "ecstatic utterance" and are unintelligible to others. Whatever may be the reason, what is normally being done today is not the same as was done in the New Testament.
NOTE: The confusion about this subject might have been avoided if the word "glossa" had been translated as "language". The word can mean either language or tongue, the organ in our mouths used to help form words.
1. In the statement in Acts “begin to speak in other tongues”, the word glossa translated as tongues means:
Ecstatic utterances only God understands
Any language unknown to the speaker
The Language of angels
2. The miracle of speaking in languages not known to the speaker was the most important gift.
3. Speaking in a language unknown to the hearers is useless for edification unless someone can interpret.
4. The gift of speaking in another person’s language was a temporary gift of the Holy Spirit.
THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THE LIFE OF JESUSLesson 10:
The work of the Holy Spirit in the redemptive plan of God is distinguished in the relationship of Jesus with the Spirit. The Spirit is not our redeemer but without Him, Jesus would not be our redeemer.
I. BEFORE THE BIRTH OF JESUS, the Holy Spirit acted in the prophets, giving them the knowledge of events in the future life of Jesus, thus preparing the people of God for His coming.
1 Peter 1:10-12 - "Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things."
II. IN THE CONCEPTION OF JESUS, the Holy Spirit was responsible for the Mary's virgin birth of Jesus, assuring the incarnation of the Word of God.
Matthew 1:18-20 - "This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit."III. IN THE INFANCY OF JESUS, the Spirit acted in people and circumstances to prepare the world to receive their King.
Luke 1:35 - "The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God.
John 1:14 - "The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
Luke 2:25-27 - "Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord's Christ. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required."IV. IN THE PREACHING OF JOHN THE BAPTIST, Jesus was announced as that one who would make the Holy Spirit available to all by the baptism in the Holy Spirit.
Luke 3:16 - "John answered them all, "I baptize you with water. But one more powerful than I will come, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire."V. IN THE BAPTISM OF JESUS, the Spirit presented Himself bodily as a dove to indicate Jesus as the SON of GOD.
Hebrews 2:4 - "God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will."
Luke 3:22 - "And the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: "You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased."VI. IN THE TEMPTATION OF JESUS, the Spirit led Him to the desert for the 40 days of fasting, consecration and consequent temptation.
Luke 4:1 - "Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert."
VII. IN THE BEGINNING OF THE MINISTRY OF JESUS, the Spirit filled Jesus with the power necessary for His ministry.
Luke 4:14-15 - "Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. He taught in their synagogues, and everyone praised him." Jesus understood that His ministry was the fulfillment of the passage of Isaiah (11:2) that spoke of the Spirit acting through the Messiah.The Spirit anointed Jesus and made Him ready to initiate His ministry. In this ministry, His teaching caused the people to be amazed.
Luke 4:16-21 - "He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. And he stood up to read. The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written: 'The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor.'
"Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him, and he began by saying to them, 'Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing'."
VIII. ALL THE MINISTRY OF JESUS was accompanied and directed by the Holy Spirit to:
A. His ministry in general
Matthew 12:15-21 - "Aware of this, Jesus withdrew from that place. Many followed him, and he healed all their sick, warning them not to tell who he was. This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: 'Here is my servant whom I have chosen, the one I love, in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him, and he will proclaim justice to the nations. He will not quarrel or cry out; no one will hear his voice in the streets. A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he leads justice to victory. In his name the nations will put their hope'."
B. His healing ministry
Matthew 12:28 - "But if I drive out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you."
Acts 10:38 - "How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him.
Without the Spirit Jesus could not have done His miracles.
C. His ministry of prayer
Luke 10:21 - "At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure."D. His ministry of teaching by the Spirit
Acts 1:1-2 - "In my former book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach until the day he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen."IX. THE SACRIFICE OF CHRIST ON THE CROSS was offered to God by Holy Spirit
Hebrews 9:14 - "How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!"The Spirit helped Him in His most difficult hour.
X. THE RESURRECTION OF CHRIST was a work of the Holy Spirit
Romans 8:11 - "And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you."XI. THE GLORIFICATION OF CHRIST among men since His ascension.
John 16:14 - "He (the Spirit) will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you."
The Holy Spirit was present in each instant of the life of the Master. So also He is always with us. The full and victorious Christian life can only be found in the Spirit.
1. Regarding Jesus the Holy Spirit acted
On the prophets before the birth of Christ
On Mary in the conception of Jesus
On others immediately following His birth.
Did not act at all
A and C
A, B and C
2. The Holy Spirit told John the Baptist who the Messiah was.
3. The Holy Spirit presented the Messiah, anointed one, or Christ, to the world when Jesus was baptized, immersed in water by John by stating “You are My Son, whom I love: with you I am well pleased.”
4. Following His crucifixion who raised Jesus from death and the grave?
The Holy Spirit
Only God, the Father
THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THE LIFE OF THE APOSTLESLesson 11:
The apostles were men especially chosen to witness the resurrection of Jesus. They had They had certain qualifications and credentials.
Luke 24:46-8 - "He told them … 'You are witnesses of these things'."
Acts 1:7-8 - "He said to them: … 'But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth'."
1 John 1:1-2 - "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched-this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us."
2 Corinthians 12:12 - "The things that mark an apostle - signs, wonders and miracles-were done among you with great perseverance."I. The Spirit gave them a special power :
1 Corinthians 9:1 - "Am I not free? Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord? Are you not the result of my work in the Lord?"
Acts 1:21-22 - "Therefore it is necessary to choose one of the men who have been with us the whole time the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from John's baptism to the time when Jesus was taken up from us. For one of these must become a witness with us of his resurrection."
Acts 8:18 - "Then Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money."
They had the power to give the powers of the Holy Spirit to people [make the Spirit fall on people (and thus receive power) by the laying on of their hands]. Because of His important role for Jesus, the Spirit had a very special function in the lives and ministries of the apostles.
II. They were blessed with a special presence of the Spirit:
He, The Spirit, was promised to the apostles as an intimate presence.
John 14:16-19 - "And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live."Breathing on them symbolized the giving of the Holy Spirit, since the word for "breath" and "spirit" is the same in Greek and Hebrew. Some modern scholars consider the relationship between these verses and Acts 2 irreconcilable, but there is no indication in John 20 that the apostles received the Holy Spirit on this occasion. Jesus could have been assuring them symbolically, on the Sunday of the resurrection, that what he promised to them would occur, which it did in Acts 2. In this context, there is not an indication that they received the Spirit yet. It was in Acts 1:4-5 that Jesus commanded them to wait for the promise of the coming of the Holy Spirit. In fact this promise was fulfilled in Acts 2.
John 20:22 - "And with that he breathed on them and said, 'Receive the Holy Spirit'."
III. The Spirit enabled them to testify:
The apostles became eyewitnesses of the ministry of Jesus. Now the Spirit, by the preaching and the miracles, would testify with them to the Word of God.
Mark 16:19-20 - "After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God. Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it."IV. The Spirit provided their defense when arrested:
John 15:26-27 - "When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me. And you also must testify, for you have been with me from the beginning."
Hebrews 2:3-4 - "How shall we escape if we ignore such a great salvation? This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard him. God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.
1 Thessalonians 1:4-5 - "He has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words, but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake.
When they were imprisoned because of the name of Jesus, the Spirit defended them.
Matthew 10:16-20 - "I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. Be on your guard against men; they will hand you over to the local councils and flog you in their synagogues. On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you."V. The Spirit was their teacher:
> During the life of Jesus, the apostles had not understood or learned many of the lessons Jesus taught them. The Holy Spirit would be the interpreter and the teacher who would remind them of what He taught and even teach them more.
John 14:25-26 - "All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you."4. The Spirit would teach things that Jesus did not teach because of the incapacity of the disciples to understand. All truth would be disclosed to the apostles, on later occasions.
John 16:12-15 - "I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you."5. The authority with which they taught was the same authority of Jesus because Jesus gave this authority to them and their teaching was the teaching of the Spirit.
Matthew 18:18 -"I tell you the truth, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
1 John 1:1-3 - "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched-this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ."
1 John 4:1-6 - "Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world. You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood."
1 Corinthians 12:3 - "Therefore I tell you that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, "Jesus be cursed," and no one can say, 'Jesus is Lord,' except by the Holy Spirit."
1 Corinthians 14:36-37 - "If anybody thinks he is a prophet or spiritually gifted, let him acknowledge that what I am writing to you is the Lord's command. If he ignores this, he himself will be ignored."
1. Why was the Holy Spirit given to the apostles?
So they could heal the sick
So they could be witnesses of Jesus
To protect them from harm.
2. What did the Holy Spirit do for the apostles?
Helped them testify accurately about Jesus, the Christ.
Defended them in prison
Allowed them to recall what Jesus taught.
Taught them things they were not able to understand when Jesus was with them.
All the above
THE HOLY SPIRIT AND THE BIBLELesson 12
The Spirit and the Bible have so close a relationship that some people confuse the Spirit with the Bible. On the other hand, others try to make a contrast between what the Spirit says and what the letter (the Bible) says. Neither of these points of view is accurate. The main work of the Holy Spirit is to reveal God to man and to point man toward God. He is the author of the Holy Scriptures, the Word of Life.
It is important to understand the difference between revelation and inspiration. Revelation is the action of God, that reveals to man what man cannot discover by his own effort. Inspiration is the action of God that causes man to infallibly record the revelation of God. All Scripture is inspired (2 Timothy 3:16), but not everything recorded by inspiration is considered as divine revelation. The historical facts in Kings and Chronicles did not need to be revealed. They were history. The recording of them, however, was by means of inspiration. There was a place in the Judea called Bethlehem and that is a geographic fact. The knowledge that the Messiah was to be born in Bethlehem was an example of revelation and inspiration (Micah 5:2). Many of the words of the friends of Job were erroneous ideas of people without perfect understanding. Those erroneous words of the friends were registered by inspiration for our clarification.
The source of prophecy is God and the Holy Spirit.
2 Peter 1:21 - "For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit."II. INSPIRATION
Numbers 11:25 - "Then the LORD came down in the cloud and spoke with him, and he took of the Spirit that was on him and put the Spirit on the seventy elders. When the Spirit rested on them, they prophesied, but they did not do so again."
Numbers 11:29 - "But Moses replied, 'Are you jealous for my sake? I wish that all the LORD's people were prophets and that the LORD would put his Spirit on them!'"
2 Samuel 23:2 - "The Spirit of the LORD spoke through me; his word was on my tongue."
Matthew 22:43 - "He said to them, 'How is it then that David, speaking by the Spirit, calls him 'Lord'' For he says."
Acts 1:16 - "And said, 'Brothers, the Scripture had to be fulfilled which the Holy Spirit spoke long ago through the mouth of David concerning Judas, who served as guide for those who arrested Jesus.'"
Acts 28:25 - "They disagreed among themselves and began to leave after Paul had made this final statement: "The Holy Spirit spoke the truth to your forefathers when he said through Isaiah the prophet."
Hebrews 10:15 - "The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this. First he says…"
2 Timothy 3:16-17 - "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work."III. SOME IMPORTANT POINTS.
A. The Bible is not God; not the Father, the Holy Spirit or Christ.
1. The Scriptures are inspired by God, but this does not mean that the scriptures became God. (2 Timothy 3:16)B. The Bible does not contradict the Holy Spirit.
2. The declarations of the prophets registered in the Bible had been written under the direction of the Holy Spirit, but this shows that the Holy Spirit is independent and superior to its creation, the Scriptures (2 Peter 1:20-21).
3. The Holy Spirit is a person of the Deity. The Bible is the creation of God, by the Spirit. We do not have to confuse the Creator with the creation.
4. "The Spirit of the LORD spoke through me; his word was on my tongue." There is a difference between the Spirit that spoke through David and the word that the Spirit spoke. (2 Samuel 23:2)
5. "He said to me, "Son of man, stand up on your feet and I will speak to you." As he spoke, the Spirit came into me and raised me to my feet, and I heard him speaking to me." The Spirit fell on the prophet and ordered him to speak the Word of God. (Ezekiel 2:1-2)
6. The Spirit and the Word are as different as the soldier and his sword. One is the weapon and the other is the power behind the weapon. (Ephesians 6:17)
1. We already observed in 2 Timothy 3.16; 2 Peter 1:20-21 that the Holy Spirit is the one responsible for the written revelation.C. The Holy Spirit acts through the written word.
2. This being so, the Holy Spirit as the one responsible for the written revelation, does not contradict what is in the Bible. It was He who wrote the Bible through men moved by Him. The Spirit's word and will are revealed in the Holy Scriptures.
3. The expression in 2 Corinthians 3:6 "the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life" has been misunderstood as: "following the Bible we will find death but following what the Holy Spirit says to the heart we will have life". This interpretation is completely wrong and out of context. Reading the whole text of 2 Corinthians 3:1-18, especially verse 11, it can be easily seen that the contrast is not between the Bible and the Holy Spirit, but between the Old Covenant (the Law of Moses, the Ten Commandments) and New Covenant (the New Will, the Ministry of the Spirit).
2 Corinthians 3:1-18 - "Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some people, letters of recommendation to you or from you? You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody. You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.
"Such confidence as this is ours through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant-not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
"Such confidence as this is ours through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant-not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
"Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, fading though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? If the ministry that condemns men is glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. And if what was fading away came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!
"Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to keep the Israelites from gazing at it while the radiance was fading away. But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit."
4. The Scriptures themselves affirm that those who are really spiritual obey what is written in the Bible. "If anybody thinks he is a prophet or spiritually gifted, let him acknowledge that what I am writing to you is the Lord's command." (1 Corinthians 14:37).
5. Thus being, if somebody says that the Holy Spirit is teaching him something that is contrary to what is in the Scriptures, you can be certain that it is not the Holy Spirit who is speaking through that person. The Holy Spirit does not contradict Himself.
1. The Word is called "the Sword of the Spirit" - Ephesians 6:17 2. A reading of Ephesians 5:18-20 in parallel with Colossians 3:16-17 is interesting:
3. In many places we see the working of the Holy Spirit by the written word (Bible).
4. This being so, we need to read, study, understand and practice the Bible. We will be, then, guided by the Spirit. The ability to put in practice what we learn also comes from the Spirit. "Because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God." (Romans 8:14).
5. To refuse Scripture is to refuse the words and the guidance of the Spirit.
D. The Holy Spirit Acts Independently From The Word
1. The inner witness of the Holy Spirit. Romans 8:14-16 - "Because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, 'Abba, Father.' The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs-heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us." Galatians 4:5-6 - "To redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, 'Abba, Father'."This witness is revealed in the Bible, but develops in our Christian experience of adoption as children of God.
2. The help we have in prayer.
Romans 8:26-27 - "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express."The Bible reveals that the Spirit helps us in prayer. We may not understand exactly how He does it but by faith we trust that it is so.
3. The indwelling of the Spirit. The Spirit personally resides in the Christian. That is disclosed in the Bible, but it is not the same thing as memorizing Bible verses. The Biblical declares that the Holy Spirit lives in us.
Romans 8:9 - "You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ."
1 Corinthians 6:19 - "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own."
Ephesians 2:22 - "And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit."
1 Thessalonians 4:8 - "Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit."
1. Revelation is what God has chosen to make known to man.
2. Inspiration is the infallible recording of God’s word.
3. All scripture is inspired of God.
4. The Scriptures, Bible, is God or the same as God
5. The Word of God is the Sword of the Spirit.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE FULL OF THE SPIRIT?Lesson 13
A. To receive power to speak in tongues?
B. To receive power to do miracles?
C. To have courage and faith to face obstacles in your ministry?
D. To be full of the fruit of the Spirit?
E. To simply have the Spirit dwelling in you?
F. To allow the Spirit to control your life?
G. Or something else?
Luke 1:15 - "For he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from birth."
Luke 1:67 - "His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied."
Luke 4:1 - "Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert."
Acts 2:4 - "All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them."
Acts 4:8 - "Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: "Rulers and elders of the people!"
Acts 4:31 - "After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly."
Acts 6:3 - "Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word."
Acts 6:5 - "This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism."
Acts 7:55 - "But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God."
Acts 9:17 - "Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, 'Brother Saul, the Lord-Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here-has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit.'"
Acts 11:24 - "He was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and faith, and a great number of people were brought to the Lord."
Acts 13:50-52 - "But the Jews incited the God-fearing women of high standing and the leading men of the city. They stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them from their region. So they shook the dust from their feet in protest against them and went to Iconium. And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit."
Colossians 3:16-17 - "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him."
Ephesians 5:1-21 - "Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
"But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God's holy people. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person-such a man is an idolater-has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God's wrath comes on those who are disobedient. herefore do not be partners with them.
"For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for it is light that makes everything visible. This is why it is said:
'Wake up, O sleeper,
rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.'
"Be very careful, then, how you live-not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord's will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ."
SOME THOUGHTS ABOUT EPHESIANS 5:
WHAT ARE THE "GROANS THAT WORDS CANNOT EXPRESS" OF ROMANS 8.22-27?Lesson 14
22 "We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
26 "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will."
A. These inexpressible groans are not:
1. To speak in tongues. That idea is outside the context of the chapter, and of the whole book of Romans. The use of the expression "groan" in verses 22-23 with reference to the creation and to all Christians, shows that it cannot be referring to tongues.B. These inexpressible groans could be:
2. Mysticism or some "existential" experience. It is not our act of religious effort in order to make contact with God but rather an expression of the help God gives us because of our weakness and incapacity. It is action of the Spirit and not our action (verse 27).
3. It is not a substitute for our duty to pray.
The communication of the Spirit (Who lives in us) with God the Father to communicate to Him what we, in our own words are not able to communicate. In our weakness, without the ability to know what we should ask for and without the capacity of really expressing what we feel, we need, the Spirit, who lives inside of us and understands us perfectly and who knows how to communicate perfectly with God (v27). Their conversation, clearly, is not by human words.
1. The Holy Spirit’s groans are
The speaking in tongues.
Communication of the Spirit dwelling in Christians with God, the Father.
HOW CAN I KNOW THAT I HAVE THE HOLY SPIRIT?Lesson 15
Some desire a physical manifestation or a certain feeling. But can we trust our feelings? If someone could perform signs (miracles, tongues, etc.), would this prove that he has the Spirit or that he is right with God?
1. Simon, the sorcerer
Acts 8:9-10 - "Now for some time a man named Simon had practiced sorcery in the city and amazed all the people of Samaria. He boasted that he was someone great, and all the people, both high and low, gave him their attention and exclaimed, "This man is the divine power known as the Great Power."2. The Ephesians
Acts 19:18-19 - "Many of those who believed now came and openly confessed their evil deeds. A number who had practiced sorcery brought their scrolls together and burned them publicly. When they calculated the value of the scrolls, the total came to fifty thousand drachmas."3. Power versus Truth
2 Thessalonians 1:9-12 - "They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of his power on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you. With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith. We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ."4. Satan appearing as an angel.
2 Corinthians 11:10-15 - "As surely as the truth of Christ is in me, nobody in the regions of Achaia will stop this boasting of mine. Why? Because I do not love you? God knows I do! And I will keep on doing what I am doing in order to cut the ground from under those who want an opportunity to be considered equal with us in the things they boast about. For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve."We know that we have the Spirit, mainly, because God has promised that He would give the Spirit to those who believe, repent and are baptized (Acts 2:38; Acts 5:32; 1 Corinthians 3:16). If you heard the word of Christ, believed in the gospel of Christ, repented of your sins and surrendered your life to Christ, being baptized into Christ, then you were given the Spirit with certainty. Now, you are to live in a way worthy of the gospel because you are the sanctuary of God. The Spirit will remain in the Christian as long as the Christian remains in Christ.
Acts 2:38 - "Peter replied, "Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit."However, the Christian can live in such way that he loses his life with God.
Hebrews 6:4-8 - "It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, if they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace. Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and that produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessing of God. But land that produces thorns and thistles is worthless and is in danger of being cursed. In the end it will be burned."
Hebrews 10:26-31 - "If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, 'It is mine to avenge; I will repay,' and again, 'The Lord will judge his people.' It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God."
Living this way, he also loses the blessings of God's indwelling Spirit.
1. One can purchase the gift of the Holy Spirit.
2. There were/are false prophets, fake apostles and deceitful men?
3. Christians can fall from God’s love and grace.
DOES CHRIST'S SAVING WORK INVOLVE THE HEALING OF OUR BODIES?Lesson 16
1 Peter 2:21-25 - "To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example that you should follow in his steps: "He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth. When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls."
A. Peter says that in suffering, Christians must imitate the suffering of our Master. The passage of Isaiah 53 had to be in Peter's mind since he quoted a phrase from that passage.
1 Peter 1:21-25 - "Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God. Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. For, 'All men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord stands forever.' And this is the word that was preached to you."
B. The Greek verb sarados, translated "healed" in v.24 is used in the Scriptures to describe physical cures (Matthew 8:8) and for "spiritual cures;" that is, repentance and conversion. (John 12:40 and Hebrews 12:13)
C. It is certain that, in some way, the passage of Isaiah was fulfilled in the ministry of cures Jesus performed.
Matthew 8:16-17 - "When evening came, many who were demon-possessed were brought to him, and he drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick. This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: 'He took up our infirmities and carried our diseases.'"D. However, there were times when Jesus did not cure at all.
Mark 6:5-6 - "He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. And he was amazed at their lack of faith" and only cured one man in a multitude of other sick people as in John 5:2-9 "Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. Here a great number of disabled people used to lie-the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, 'Do you want to get well?' 'Sir,' the invalid replied, 'I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.' Then Jesus said to him, 'Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.' At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked."
E. Also in the ministry of the apostles, some sick people were not healed:
Epaphroditus -"But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, fellow worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs. For he longs for all of you and is distressed because you heard he was ill. Indeed he was ill, and almost died. But God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, to spare me sorrow upon sorrow." (Philippians 2:25-27)
Paul - "To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me." (2 Corinthians 12:7)
Timothy - "Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses." (1 Timothy 5:23)
Trophimus - "Erastus stayed in Corinth, and I left Trophimus sick in Miletus." (2 Timothy 4:20)
F. In the context of 1 Peter 2, the healing is in the spiritual sense and there is no reason to believe that the work of Jesus on the cross guarantees physical health for all Christians.
G. Romans 8:20-23 "For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies." This passage, written to Christians, shows that our physical bodies are still subject to illness, pain and death as we await the return of Jesus."
H. The redemption of the body, as well as the redemption of creation, will be accomplished in the final resurrection and not in the present time.
I. The text of 1 Peter 2:24 refers to the healing of the man's main illness which is sin. It was sin that Christ carried on His body at the cross. Our current redemption is from sin, but one day, even our bodies will be redeemed in the resurrection.
1. When someone becomes a Christian, God heals all their physical illnesses.
WHAT ARE TONGUES OF ANGELS?