19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.
20 For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.
Jesus’ life is a case study in surrender. He never did or said anything that He did not receive first from the Father.
49 For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.
Jesus was anointed by the Holy Spirit to minister (Acts 10:38). Every word recorded as being spoken by Him was received from the Father through the anointing. He modeled a life lived as a living sacrifice!
Jesus went to the cross to open the doorway for humanity to enter into a relationship with our creator. There is no room for “self” beyond this doorway.
We enter God’s presence from our position in Christ and will always find ourselves to be accepted based on the blood. Our acceptance is guaranteed because of our position in Christ but our useability in His plan is not! This is conditional on our willingness to present our bodies as living sacrifices and to renew our minds with the Word of God.
It bears revisiting the need for patience in this process. It is not possible to crucify our flesh with one quick prayer. The Bible is not a place to find quick answers!
Time is required for us to develop in spiritual matters. We’ve previously quoted Jesus’ statement in Mark 4 in which He said that the heart is soil for the Word of God to be planted in. The Word is “seed” but must be planted and given time to grow.
Ministers often fall into the habit of only spending time in God’s Word to prepare messages. This is a very dangerous trap. We must all spend time planting “Word” seed in our hearts for our own spiritual growth.
It is important that Christians develop a deep reverence for the Word of God. Paul closed his second letter to the Corinthian church with an exhortation to commune with the Holy Spirit. Communion implies fellowship and our fellowship with the Holy Spirit begins in Scripture.
The Holy Spirit anointed the men who penned the Bible. It is where we become familiar with His voice. If we are not spending time giving the Word of God careful and considerate thought, we will not be familiar with His voice!
Paul encouraged his readers to present their bodies as living sacrifices and then to renew their minds with the Word of God (Romans 12:1-2). He likened the process of renewal to washing using the water of the Word (Ephesians 5:26). The Holy Spirit will “wash” our souls with the water of Scripture.
Far too many Christians have lost touch with the concept of meditating in God’s Word. They pull it off of a shelf on Sunday morning, dutifully show up at service with it under their arm, and then put it back on the shelf after service. It stays on that shelf until the next service.
We are surrounded by a world focused on the instant gratification of fleshly desires. This attitude has unfortunately gotten into the church. It can be easily seen in looking at Christians who run from meeting to meeting seeking a “touch” from the Holy Spirit. This is so much easier than spending hours out of site fellowshipping with Him in the Word of God!
I pray that it is becoming clear to you that revelation knowledge does not come from a single “touch” imparted to us via an anointed man or woman of God. Unlocking the plan of God will require us to pay a price. It will require commitment.
The revelation of God’s plan will come as a result of our spending countless hours totally immersed in the Word of God. There is no instant gratification to be had when it comes to pursuing the plan of God!
We will have to give ourselves to the Word of God every day. God told Joshua that he would have to meditate on Scripture day and night (Joshua 1:8-9) to succeed as the leader of Israel. If anyone had an excuse for being busy wouldn’t it have been him?
Inevitably, people will ask about prayer when we discuss these things. Prayer is important. I am not debating that it is a bedrock of our Christian growth. We need to realize though that prayer separate from the Word of God will lead us into error.
Jude encouraged his readers to “build themselves up on their most holy faith”. This was their responsibility and it is equally our responsibility today. God is not going to do this for us!
Faith is built on the foundation of God’s Word. We build ourselves up spiritually by praying in the Holy Spirit (Jude 20) but must have a foundation built on Scripture to do so successfully.
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Wow! I’d love to hear that story! We recently had a prayer request from a former member (now in the Yokohama area) for a missionary family from their church in Vietnam. The husband is Vietnamese and the wife is Japanese, and their oldest child, a daughter, has just been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. The father, naturally having the best command of the language, is with the daughter in the hospital, while the wife cares for the two younger children at home.
Welcome to Virtual Vitamins! I am amused, but not surprised, that this series has so many parts, because even fundamentals have many angles. May my words bless you, as I’m sure yours bless many.
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Thank you. I look forward to reading your posts. My aunt and uncle spent years in the Philippines as missionaries. I always looked forward to their deputation trips each year to hear stories of the work they were doing. My uncle always had that area of the world on his heart as he was led to the Lord by an enemy prisoner as a US Marine in the Vietnam war.
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It’s good connecting with you and thank you for following my blog.
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“Our acceptance is guaranteed because of our position in Christ but our useability in His plan is not! This is conditional on our willingness to present our bodies as living sacrifices and to renew our minds with the Word of God.”
Wow, this is a good word on sanctification! Thank you.
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