1 Corinthians 2:1-5 ESV
“And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.”
I do not have the gift of gab. I am not someone who says all the right things the right way. I don’t have a smooth tongue. I am not a good story teller. I don’t even understand anything that is written too flowery.
When I was in high school, and I had to read poetry that was all in symbolic words and phrases, I had no idea what the poet was talking about. I don’t get hints very well. If you beat around the bush, I am not likely to know what you are trying to communicate. I always do best when things are just straight out. I don’t usually get jokes, either (just ask my brother).
But, since that time, the Lord has given me a gift to be able to understand things he wants me to get, even if they are obscure, and even if they are hidden messages, but I don’t do this naturally. This is spiritually discerned.
So, why am I telling you this? It is to say that I get what Paul is saying here. For, there are many people who do have a natural gift with words, and who are really good story tellers, and who know how to captivate their audience and to draw them in with their words. And, that can be enjoyable, so I am not saying that is a bad thing, but it can be if it is used in the wrong way.
For, when we are teaching the Word of God, it should not be with words of human wisdom. It should not be in flowery language used to impress people with our knowledge or to convince people that we know what we are talking about when we may not at all. It shouldn’t be of our flesh. And, it shouldn’t be to manipulate minds our direction, either. But, we should teach in the power of the Holy Spirit with the words God puts in our minds to share.
1 Corinthians 2:6-8 ESV
“Yet among the mature we do impart wisdom, although it is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are doomed to pass away. But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glory. None of the rulers of this age understood this, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.”
So, when we teach, or when we impart the Word of God, it should not be our words. In fact, we shouldn’t even be the ones to decide what we teach, either. For, if what we are teaching or sharing is to be Spirit-led, then it needs to be of the Spirit from start to finish. We need to ask for guidance of the Holy Spirit as to what he wants us to write about, not what we decide.
Then, as we go into the Word of God, we ask the Holy Spirit to speak his words to our hearts, and to give us the message he wants us to get from the Word, and then to help us to share the message, too, with others, which comes straight from him, from his heart and mind. For only God truly knows what is in our hearts and in the hearts of others. Only he knows where they are, or where we are, and what exactly we all need to hear today.
Have you ever blogged something you knew was of the Spirit of God and then that same day you read other blogs which were teaching the same message, though not in exactly the same way? That is one of the ways in which the Spirit works, and in confirming, too, that the message was indeed from him. For, he knows what we need to hear when we need to hear it.
1 Corinthians 2:9-13 ESV
“But, as it is written,
‘What no eye has seen, nor ear heard,
nor the heart of man imagined,
what God has prepared for those who love him’—
these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual.”
I am utterly awestruck all the time just watching how God works and how he moves in people’s hearts, and how he leads and guides us into his truth, too, and just how he coordinates so many things together, as well.
I literally sit down at my computer each day with a passage of scripture before me that I don’t know what it is going to be until midnight (eastern time). I.e., the Lord has been having me following the daily readings on biblegateway.com for maybe a year now, although he usually has me write on more than just one verse. Sometimes he may choose another passage, but most of the time that is my source for my daily Bible reading.
Before I even read the passage of scripture, the Lord has a song in my head, which he may even repeat the same song for several days in a row, but that is his choice, for this is his blog, his message, not mine. And, the song and the passage always go together, too.
Sometimes, too, he will give me a dream or a vision which is like a parable (an allegory) which he uses to guide me into the message he wants me to specifically get from that reading that day. And, they always fit together, too, if the dream or vision is from him.
And, in this way he can make the passage of scripture hit home to our lives and to our world and to our circumstances today, just like he did for those when he lived among the people of the earth. He always applied his truths specifically to their lives.
And, sometimes this involves him leading me to read news stories to see what is being said that is going on in the world and in our nation, and he will use a dream or a vision then to help me to see this through his eyes, and the dream or the vision and the song will also fit with what is in the news, too. There is no way I could, in my flesh, coordinate all these things together, not day after day after day. That is not my talent.
But, the Lord wants to speak to us, not just in theory, and not just in general, but he wants to speak to our specific situations in our lives, and in the church, and in our governments and in our world today. And, so he will show us these things by his Spirit, and they are spiritually discerned, but they must always be in agreement with the overall teachings of his Word and not be opposed to God’s Word in any way. So, we always need to test the spirits to make sure they are of God.
1 Corinthians 2:14-16 ESV
“The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual person judges all things, but is himself to be judged by no one. ‘For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?’ But we have the mind of Christ.”
If we are walking in the flesh, though, we are not going to get this. We are not going to hear the Spirit’s voice speaking to our hearts. We will not hear his messages that he is speaking to his church today. They will just fall on deaf ears. And, we won’t understand how others can hear God speak to their hearts, either. For, when we are following after the flesh, we think with the flesh like natural man (mankind). And, our ears are closed to the Spirit.
So, if we want to know what God is saying to us today – what he is saying to his church today – then we need to be walking according to the Spirit, and not according to the flesh. Then, we will have the mind of God; of Christ. And, we will be able to spiritually discern what God is presently saying to the churches and to us individually. But, we need to have ears to hear and not shut out the Spirit’s voice just because we don’t like the message.
This is not saying that we will have perfect understanding, though, for now we see through a glass dimly, but one day we will see face to face. Now we know only in part, but then we shall know fully (See: 1 Co. 13). So, sometimes we will have to work these things through before God until we have the understanding he wants us to have. So, we need to have patience.
Yet, again, we must test the spirits to see whether they are of God, for there are many false prophets out there saying “The Lord says” when the Lord is not saying it, but they are. And, the Spirit of God will make this clear to us if truly we are walking by the Spirit and we are not yielding to the flesh.
A Believer’s Prayer
An Original Work / July 31, 2012
With my whole heart, Lord, I pray
To be Yours, and Yours always.
Lead me in Your truth today.
May I love You, and obey.
Lead me in Your righteousness.
When I sin, may I confess;
Bow before You when I pray;
Live for You and You always.
Love You, Jesus, You’re my friend.
Life with You will never end.
You are with me through each day,
Giving love and peace always.
You will ne’er abandon me.
From my sin You set me free.
You died on that cruel tree,
So I’d live eternally.
Soon You’re coming back for me;
From this world to set me free;
Live with You eternally.
Oh, what joy that brings to me.
I will walk with You in white;
A pure bride, I’ve been made right
By the blood of Jesus Christ;
Pardoned by His sacrifice.
Saturday, February 2, 2019