THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT
Program Air Date - 3-3-02
LESSON TITLE: EXAMINING GOD: "GOD THE SPIRIT"
We are excited to have you with us today for the Living Word Program. What a wondrous Lord's Day morning it is.
As always it is an honor and privilege to have you with us. We are thankful you have chosen to join us as we commit this time to the things of God.
It is our hope and prayer this morning that we may each participate and do our part to make this time acceptable before Him and according to His Word. Now let's begin by talking to God through prayer!
Our first song this morning reminds us of just how great and wondrous our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is. Won't you join in with the congregation at this time as we sing together, "There is Power in the Blood."
(SONG # 1)
How many of us guys are guilty of taking our wives for granted? But you might say, "Ray, I love my wife and I have told her that many times!" Well, I might ask you, "when was the last time you told her?" We have all heard the joke before about the ol' fellow who said he told his wife he loved her the day they got married and furthermore, that he would let her know if he ever changed his mind! This is a funny little example, but how true it is when it comes down to the reality of things.
Men, let's face it, we just aren't very good at being romantic most of the time. In fact, most of us aren't even good at just letting those we love know how much we do love them and appreciate all that they do.
I can't tell you how many movies and books I have read, or how many people have actually told me that they wished they had told someone how they felt or what they were thinking when they had the chance. Why is it that we often wait until it is too late before we say we love someone. Why is it that one has to leave or even die before we realize how much they mean to us.
The Bible is full of ideas about how we need to treat our wives and why we need to treat them in such a way! I like the way Paul puts it in Ephesians 5:25, there it say, "Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her." Notice that Paul said we are to love our wives just as Christ loves the church. Let me ask, "how much did Christ love the church?" Well the same verse tells us that He loved it enough to die for it! Men do we love our wives that much?
In verse 28, Paul went on to say, "So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself." Again, we are to love our wives just as we love ourselves. And verse 33 again reemphasizes the same thing - husbands love your wives as yourselves.
Have you figured it out yet? We are to love our wives as we love ourselves. Thus we care for, protect and nurture our wife. Furthermore, we are to love her enough to die for her.
Don't you think this is why Jesus said, "Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning 'made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate." Matthew 19:4-6! When we chose to marry we become as one flesh before our God. That is why we must treat our wives as ourselves. This is why we must treat them as we want to be treated - they are truly a part of us in God's eyes.
Finally, I wanted to read a verse that Solomon wrote in Proverbs 31:10, "Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies." Have you told your wife, the mother of your children how much you love her yet today? If not, why not do it right now!
Well, its almost time to begin our study from God's Word. Our specific topic today will deal with "God the Spirit!" This is our next lesson in the series on "Examining God." So, please continue with us this morning and in a few minutes I will return with this study from God's Word. The name of our next hymn is, "This is My Fathers World."
(SONG # 2)
Speaker: Ray Sullins
Thank you for continuing with us this morning as we have the opportunity to look into God's word and consider the Holy Spirit. Over the past several weeks we've been looking at the Godhead and actually have seen now the Father and those references made to the Son and we want to really focus primarily today on looking at the spirit of God because we see clearly in the Bible that the spirit of God is not only a Biblical topic but an individual or a person of the Godhead that really needs to be considered as He is said to be God Himself.
If you'll look with me beginning in Genesis chapter 1 there's probably no better place to start than where God began and that's in creating the world, the world at least as we know it and the things that pertain to it. There in the book of Genesis chapter 1 we find the creation as it took place in such a beautiful passage as almost every verse, primarily every one there in Genesis chapter 1 continues to talk about God, about how that God said or God made or God called or how God did this and that in the creation of the world and how He made it and the things of it. But if you'll notice again in verse 1, a very familiar verse, "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth." So we know right off the bat the discussion, the theme that the ideas of the Bible are centered around this individual, this being that created all things.
But now if you'll look at God and we ask the question "Who is God?" Well, we've seen over the past several weeks that the Father is God and the Son is God and then we've seen even today as we will look at the concept that the Spirit now is God. All of these can be clearly seen even in the creation. In fact, if you'll notice there, there's very, very clearly said that all of the avenues of God are mentioned here. In fact, if you'll look for instance in verse 2 with me. It talks there about "the earth being without form and void" and continues to say "and darkness was on the face of the deep and the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters." Now we see here that the Spirit of God was there in the beginning. Notice before creation, the Spirit of God was there hovering over the waters that had just been created by God. What other part of God? Well, the part that we looked at even last week in Jesus Christ, the part of God is mentioned there in John chapter 1 verses 1 through 4, "Jesus who was God and was with God and made all things in that nothing was made without Him that was made." So there is Jesus created according to the will of the Father God, the Spirit was there, and He was hovering over the face of the waters involved in the creation. So again we see the three here in Genesis chapter 1. Not only there but you might also go down to verse 26 in Genesis chapter 1 and it says there, "Then God said, (notice carefully) 'Let us make man in our image according to our likeness.'" Now if you'll notice here the reference is very clearly in the Hebrew are to a plurality concept. The idea that there was something to God more than just the Father alone. But here again, "Let us in our image, in our likeness." What would this refer to? Clearly as the Bible shows us the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, all being a part of the Godhead, the one God. Yet again, individual personalities that are a part of it.
Now I want you to go with me to the New Testament because we want to also look there and probably most of our verses will be taken in the New Testament because there the writers do such a good job of trying to help those under the New Law to understand the entirety of God, or the whole real of God. Under the Old Law, they generally referred to Yawah or God the Father in understanding Him really and not understanding clearly about the Son and the Spirit. But in the New Testament, these things were completely revealed and they were speaking about the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit very independently one of another, yet still showing them to be one.
You might remember there the story though in Acts chapter 5, the man, Ananias and his wife Sapphira, who had been told to do those things according to the will of God. Well, they had sold their possessions in order that they might give to God of their means but you'll notice there that they had held back part. In fact, telling the apostles that they had given all that they had received from the selling of their land. They held back part to deceive in some way and to do something for themselves. If you'll notice there in chapter 5 and verse 2 though what was said in this text, that it says, "He kept back part of the proceeds. His wife also being aware of it. And brought a certain part and laid it at the apostle's feet. But Peter said, 'Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the price of the land for yourself?'" Notice here clearly that it says that he lied. Ananias had lied to the Holy Spirit. Now verse 4 tells us something else about who this Holy Spirit was that had been lied to. Verse 4 says, "While it remained, was it not your own? After it was sold, was it not in your own control? Why have you conceived this thing in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God." Notice here the synonyms that are being used, God and Holy Spirit. IN verse 3 it says, "You lied to the Holy Spirit." And in verse 4 it says, "Not to man did you lie, but to God." So again, we see clearly as in the beginning, let us make man. The spirit of God hovered over the water that the Holy Spirit is a part of the Godhead. He is a part of God as we know it from the scripture.
Also I think that it is very fitting that we read from the book of Matthew. In Matthew chapter 28 here not in anyone else's words but the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, which even if you have a problem understanding the Holy Spirit to be God or being of God, when you might truly then know that Jesus is of Him. Many more accept that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. So if you'll think about that concept, in His own words, what was it that Jesus said to His disciples? What was it that He said as He told them that they should go and teach and preach about God? What was it that he told them there in Matthew 28 and as we'll notice there in verse 19? He said, "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." What is the significance again of these three being mentioned here that you be baptized or that you acquire a faith in and that finally all three of these are involved in that final conversion. Well again the significance would be that they're all God. As we've clearly been able to establish that the Father and Son are God, Jesus here didn't say that you baptize in the name of the Father and the Son and he stopped there, but He said you baptize in the name of the Father and the Son and of the Holy Spirit. And the reason again being because the Holy Spirit truly is God. He is one that can be known to be God, not only with God in the beginning but also God Himself.
Now we might also want to look at and consider what some other writers there talk about the Holy Spirit and really say in reference to Him that again would clearly show us that the Holy Spirit is divine, that He is divinity, that He is one who is not just a creation of God but rather He is God Himself. I want you to go with me to what the Hebrew writer had to say in Hebrews chapter 9. In Hebrews chapter 9 and verse 14, notice what it said in reference to the Holy Spirit. "How much more shall the blood of Christ who through the eternal spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the Living God?" Here we notice that it says that the Holy Spirit and notice what reference is used there, the adjective put before the concept of the Holy Spirit and the God that is being spoken of here. It says the eternal Holy Spirit. Now you and I in the past weeks have seen that God the Father is eternal and the Son is eternal, meaning that He has no beginning and they have no end. Here again, it says that the Spirit is what? Eternal. The Spirit is and eternal being again. Again, showing that He has to be God. Don't you think that's maybe why David in Psalm 139 and verse 10 said that "Where can I go from your spirit?" Notice there, "Where can I go from your spirit?" He understood that the Spirit of God was real, that it was significant, that it was something that had to be understood, that it was something that had to be followed by those who were obedient to the cause of Christ.
Paul said to the Corinthians something very similar to help them understand the need to understand the Spirit of God once again. In 1 Corinthians chapter 2 and verse 10, he says there, "But God has revealed them to us through His spirit for the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God." Notice here that we know things by who? The Holy Spirit given by God. "For what man knows the things of the man except the spirit of man which is in him even so one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God be in Him." Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. You see, it is the Spirit again that really helps us to know not only God but to know the things of God. Why? Because He is God. He is God. He was sent by the Father just as the Son was. Yes, Jesus showed His submission to the will of the Father, but we see that yet He was still considered by the Father as having all authority and being God. The Spirit was the same. The Spirit was one sent of God but yet still did not count it robbery as the text tells us according to Jesus to be equal with God and to be God Himself. Micah put it this way. He said, "But truly I have full of the power by the Spirit of the Lord." He said there "the power had come from the Spirit of God Himself," in Micah chapter 3 and verse 8. So truly I hope we've been able to clarify that the Spirit is mentioned to be eternal, to be carrying the characteristics of God and to be God Himself in order that we might truly know what He is and what He is all about in relationship to the Godhead.
Furthermore, we might look at some ideas about how He is referred to in His actions with man. We'll just read through several of these ideas. We will not have time to read the text itself but if you will write them down and read them later.
It tells us that the "Spirit speaks" in 1 Timothy chapter 4 and verse 1. We also find there in the book of John 14 and verse 26 that "He was the witness that was sent," the helper if you will. He was that which was sent by Christ according to the will of the Father to teach them into all things, to help them to know all things that they needed to know, the complete revelation that was of the Father. I want you also to notice there in Romans chapter 8, if you'll write down verses 26 and 27, that it says there that "the Spirit knows our minds." Not only does He know our minds but it tells us further that "He intercedes on our behalf." So here again we find that the Holy Spirit is an intercessor just as Jesus Christ is that one man between God the Father and us. Then we see here that the Spirit is also involved in interceding on our behalf. He is one that approaches the Father on our behalf in areas such as prayer and the needs that we have in life. "He also is one that has a great knowledge," 1 Corinthians chapter 2 and verse 11. Again, Paul in the Roman letter in chapter 15 and verse 30 said that "the Spirit was affectionate because He loved. He loved the followers of God." In Ephesians 4 and verse 30, we read there that "the Spirit grieves, that He grieves on our behalf again and intercedes before the Father in heaven." Here again, showing the emotions, showing the emotions just as we have just seen in the one true God, that is the Father there again and the Son and now as we are introducing the Holy Spirit.
What has the Holy Spirit's mission been, as is recorded in the word of God? Well again, not only has He shown Himself to be like God in all of these attributes, but what are the areas that really show Him to again be God among us? Besides Him being at creation, we can see that He indwelled many men of the Old Testament. Samuel was one to have been speaking to the Spirit. David, Joshua, many of the prophets were also known to be those who were lead by the spirit of God and not only that but also the judges were those who were guided by the spirit in leading the people of God.
Yes, the writers of the Bible were those who clearly show us that those in the Bible were those who were lead of and by the Spirit. In the book of Peter we again find the activity of the Spirit, not only in the lives of those earlier in the faith, or that is maybe those before the Bible was established, but there in 1 Peter we find that it tells us that "the Bible is from God," rather that is 2 Peter chapter 1 and verses 20 and 21, as it talks there about how holy men of God were lead by the Spirit. In fact, it confirms for us there that the Bible, that is the book that we have today is not by any private interpretation, not by man's will, but by God's will as again those were lead by God to record it. What part of God? Specifically there Peter says again in 2 Peter chapter 1 and verse 20, "The Holy Spirit guided those faithful men."
Not only that but we also see that the Spirit had a direct relationship to Christ. Besides what we've mentioned already in John 14 and actually chapters 15 and 16 deal with the same idea when the helper was sent by Christ. We also see that Christ prophesied about the Spirit and the need to be in the Spirit. We see also that "He was in conceived in the Spirit," there in Matthew 1 and verse 20, that "the seed was put in Mary by the Spirit of God." He was also there at the baptism of Christ as we have understood there as the dove ascended in the form of a Spirit. He was at the resurrection there of Jesus Christ in Romans chapter 8 and verse 11. He also will be involved in the return of God, when God comes again from heaven to take us home to be with Him forever. He has a relationship to the church. We find there that in the New Testament, especially primarily the book of Acts that one of the gifts that we would receive is the gift of the Holy Spirit after repenting and being baptized in Acts chapter 2 and verse 38. We also see that He was involved in giving miraculous gifts to many such as the apostles and those that the apostles laid hands on. You might even remember a man named Simon the Sorcerer there in Acts chapter 8 and verse 13 who wanted to pay for those gifts. He had already been baptized. He was already a Christian but he wanted to acquire those gifts by paying for those gifts. So the Spirit was involved in somehow guiding men that would know the word and need to know the word and follow the word, but He was also involved in a miraculous sense with many of those that have been bestowed on these things, special things of God.
But finally, I might mention things such as in Galatians 5 and 22 the fruits of the Spirit. We see today that through the word of God and in conjunction with God's word as the Spirit is in us, as He is a part of us as we read in the scripture, that He helps us to do those things that are according to the will of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, that we are able to exemplify concepts and attitudes and characteristics like joy and peace and love. All of those things that are godly. Why? Because of the Spirit. And how does He do it? Well, the Bible tells us again that He does it by being in us and He does it by guiding it through the word that He helped deliver to us. Obviously God is going to work together always to help us to know His will through the word and through His Spirit that is in us. Let's always know the Spirit and know that He is with God and a part of God.
(SONG # 3 - "Walking Alone At Eve!")
Again, let me thank you for choosing to be with us this morning. I hope we all have been encouraged through our time spent together. Please remember, you are invited to join us every Sunday morning at 7:30, as we commit ourselves to this service of God.
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As we teach this world more about God, let's always be clear about the Holy Spirit. So that all may know Him as being from God, of God, and actually God Himself!