Tag Archives: Spirit

Romans 8:1-6 (King James Version)

 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:
 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.
 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.

From “The Selected Writings of Joseph Philpot”

“And this is my prayer — that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight (margin, sense).”Php_1:9 Love is especially the effect of knowledge; and love we know is a fruit of the blessed Spirit. As then the Lord the Spirit is pleased to open up the precious truth of God to the soul, love embraces what the Holy Spirit reveals. Thus there is a knowledge of the only true God by the teaching of the Spirit. But our love is to abound not only in knowledge, which is the foundation of it, because if there is no knowledge of the Lord there can be no love to the Lord or his people, but also in all feeling, in all sense, in all experience.

Spiritual knowledge, therefore, and experimental feeling are the two nourishers of Christian love; the two streams, as it were, that run side by side out of the very throne of the most High, and meet and melt into that boundless river, love. And it is by this union of knowledge and experience, of divine light and heavenly life, of the Spirit’s teaching and the Spirit’s testimony, of truth in the understanding and of feeling in the affections, that love is maintained in the soul, and flows out towards the Lord and his people.

This spiritual knowledge differs very widely from carnal, intellectual, barren head knowledge. The one is a flowing river, the other a stagnant pool; the one fertilizes the heart, and makes it fruitful in every good word and work; the other leaves it a barren swamp, in which creeps and crawls every hideous thing, and out of which ever rise miasma, disease, and death. Thus the union of knowledge and experience as sustaining love distinguishes the work of the Spirit from every imitation of it, and where there is the true work of the Spirit there will be gracious knowledge and experimental feeling.

This, then, is the peculiar blessedness of living experience that it goes hand in hand with gracious knowledge to sustain heavenly love; and that Christ is the end and object of both; the end and object of all saving knowledge, and the end and object of all true experience; for in this as in everything else he is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.

From “Evening Thoughts” by Winslow

“Christ Jesus; who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” Php_2:6-8

There could have been no restoration and no satisfaction to law and justice, but in the humiliation of the Son of God. The very necessity of the case demanded it. The Divine government had been dishonored-that dishonor could only be removed by the humiliation of one equal in dignity, holiness, and glory-even an infinite Being. The humiliation of every angel in heaven would not have effaced a single stain of its reproach, nor have restored a single beam of its glory. The law of God had been humbled-justice demanded, as a price of its reparation, the humiliation of the Lawgiver Himself. The incarnate God did humble Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Thus it was Jesus “restored that which He took not away.” He restored holiness to the law-satisfaction to justice-dignity to the Divine government-honor to God, and happiness and immortality to man. “Then I restored that which I took not away.” Oh, what stable foundation is thus laid for the full salvation of every believer.

The humiliation of the Redeemer opens a fountain of infinitely great and ever-glorious grace. Nothing could we have known of the glory of His person, nothing of the character of God, and all the things of His hidden love must have remained forever sealed, had He not so humbled Himself. His coming forth, invested not with the dazzling robes of His infinite Majesty, but wearing our degraded nature, descending to our state of deep abasement-yes, sinking infinitely deeper than we-throws open a treasury of grace as rich in its glory, and ample in its supply, as were the dark humiliation and deep poverty which made it ours. Here is glory springing from His abasement-it is the “glory of His grace;” “We beheld His glory, full of grace.” This fullness of grace in Jesus includes all that a poor sinner needs, all that a necessitous believer requires, all that the glory of God demanded. Here is the grace of pardon in all its fullness-the grace of justification in all its fullness-the grace of sanctification in all its fullness-the grace of consolation in all its fullness-the grace of strength in all its fullness. “It pleased the Father, that in Him should all fullness dwell.” Grace is poured into His lips, and gracious words proceed from His lips. Hearken! “Come unto me, all you that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Hearken again! “Him that comes unto me, I will in no wise cast out.” Does He not bind up the broken heart? Does He not preach glad tidings to the meek? Does He not “satisfy the hungry soul, and satiate the weary soul with goodness”? Has He ever sent the poor empty away? Was He ever known to turn His back upon one humble comer drawing near, bowed with guilt, disconsolate with sorrow, oppressed with trial? Never! never! Oh, it is with infinite delight-delight, the depth of which we can form no conception-that He welcomes poor sinners. He thinks of His own humiliation for sin-He remembers His own sorrows and tears, agonies and death, and throwing Himself, as it were, into the very center of a bosom storm-tossed with godly grief, He seeks to soothe and hush it to a calm. And how does He allay the tempest? He pours the oil of His own love upon the waves; He sprinkles the conscience with that blood which cleanses from all sin, and bids the soul go in peace. Dear reader, where least we should have expected it, Jesus is set before us the “door of hope,” even in the deep valley of His humiliation. “I will give the valley of Achor for a door of hope.” The gospel of this precious promise is found in the wondrous theme we are now contemplating-the humiliation of the incarnate God. To that humiliation we must sink; into that valley we must descend. Convinced of sin-separated from all self-reliance and creature trust-emptied, humbled, laid low in the dust before God, we shall then find Jesus to be the “door of hope” set open for us in the deep and dark valley of our poverty, hopelessness, vileness, and abasement. Just the Door we need, is Jesus. A door to a Father’s forgiving heart, a door to God’s reconciled love; a door to the sweetest, closest, holiest fellowship and communion; a door into heaven itself; a door so wide, that the greatest sinner may enter-so free, that the penniless may come.

 

From “The Word For You Today” by Bruce Christian

PRAYER (5)

Prayer works like the 911 emergency system.  All you need to do is dial those numbers and your instantly connected to a dispatcher.  In front of the dispatcher is a readout that lists your telephone number, address, and your name.  Also listening in are the police, the fire department and the paramedics.  You might not be able to say what the problem is.  Perhaps a loved one has just suffered a heart attack and you are so out of control that all you can do is scream into the telephone.  No problem.  The dispatcher doesn’t need all the details.  He knows where the call is coming from, and help is on the way.  There are times in our desperation and pain when we pray 911 prayers.  We’re overwhelmed.  Sometimes we don’t know the words to speak.  But God hears.  He knows our name and our situation.  Help is on the way; He’s already begun to bring the remedy.  “Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses.  For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groaning that cannot be uttered.  Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.  And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose” (Rom 8:26-28 NKJV).  Speaking of prayer, John Bunyan said, “In prayer it is better to have a heart without words, than words without a heart.”

My Prayer to the Father, August 5, 2012

Heavenly Father
I come to You, Father in
Humble spirit, in
Worship and praise;
Exalting Your name with
All  my strength, all my love
As I kneel before Your
Eternal throne.

Heavenly Father
Oh, how I love You, how I adore You,
And yet I realize
It’s only a drop of rain
Upon a parched earth
In comparison to the
Love I wish I could give You,
And that only You are
So worthy of.

Heavenly Father,
I come to You so filled
With gratitude, so thankful
For all the many ways
In which You have blessed
My life, and that of
Countless others.

Oh, the manifold blessings
You shower upon us
In the way of love.
You, who have given us countless
Representations of
The image we bear
In who You are
In spirit and truth.

You, who showed in
All creation
What is written upon the
Heart of man to know
Though he do his
Best to deny
And proclaim
That it isn’t so.

You, who have made it
Perfectly clear
In the form of human flesh
While still retaining
All the rights and privileges
You enjoy.
You, who could have at any time
Called down
Your wrath upon a people
In denial
Chose instead to show love.
You, who could have called
Down ten-thousand angels
Chose to go
Through hell on earth
Alone.

Heavenly Father
I Thank you
From the bottom of my heart
For all that You are,
For all that You have done,
For all You have
Given us
In Your Son, Jesus.
Oh, if we could only accept
And acknowledge
All that we possess
At this very moment
Because of the
Nails thrust into
His flesh
And the crown of thorns
Which He wore.

Heavenly Father
I come to You
And I lay my claim
To what I have been given
When I put my faith
And trust,
And all that I am
In Him.
And, Father, I take
Something else
The responsibility that goes
Along with it.
The responsibility
To proclaim You to all
As You are, in all truth
In all Holiness
In all justice
In all of Your loving Perfection;
To spread Your
Decreed word as You deem so
As the only way You provide
To save the soul of man.

Heavenly Father
I come to You with a plea upon
My lips.
You, Father who have all power
You, who can make
The sun to shine,
And the moon to illuminate
The darkness
Can if You so desire
Bring rain upon this earth
So scorched and dry.
Is it, Father, as I believe
A representation of
Your people’s failure
To declare You
As You are
And Your word
As Your ultimate truth?

Heavenly Father,
I beg mercy, I beg compassion;
I plead with You, Father
To give us water and thus life,
Not for myself, and not for
Those who have scorched
That which you have created
And those You love
With their selfishness and hatred,
But so that Your name
Shall be exalted
And the promises You have given us
Will remain true.

Heavenly Father,
You have told us in Your Holy Word
That if we shall obey
And walk in the light of Your truth
That You shall protect us
With Your might arm.
You will keep us in the secret place;
Will hide us in Your pavilion;
Will place us upon the Rock
That can not be moved.

Heavenly Father
I come to You on behalf
Of a country and a people
Who are unworthy and undeserving
Of what You and only You
Can give, water and life.
We have sinned greatly, Father.
We have done that which
Is perverse and abominable
And that which has
Brought dishonor
To Your Holy name.

Heavenly Father,
Please I implore You, I beg You
To remember those who
Have remained faithful
To Your calling,
Who are true,
And who try to follow as You lead
And do as You desire.
Father, remember these,
And for their sake,
And for the sake of Your name
Give witness that You have
Not forgotten;
Nor ignore
The  cries of Your children.

Heavenly Father
I pray that Your will be done,
Above all,
And in truth, and in the Spirit
Of who You are,
I know that all will be as You decree.
You, Father, by Your word
Have told me that if I pray
 And have all faith
You shall give me the
Desires of my heart.

Heavenly Father,
I pray for those who have lost so much;
For those who are in the midst of the storm,
For those who are living in the shadow
Of doubt.
Father, show them Your mercy,
Show them that You can be tender
And compassionate even
In Your Righteous and Holy anger.

In Jesus name, I pray,
Amen.

My Prayer to the Father, August 2, 2012

Heavenly Father,
I come to You, Father, with a grateful heart
In sincerity, in worship and praise
Knowing my position before You
As I kneel before Your throne
In humble adoration.
You, Father, who are Spirit,
You, who have the power,
Beyond anything ever known,
Beyond anything that can be
Conceived of in my humanness.
Indeed, Father, I know that
Even when I am living
In the light of eternity
I shall never know
All that You know
And are.

Heavenly Father,
Creator of the stars, Author of their every name,
Maker of the heavens that continually
Stretch forth their boundaries into infinity
How can I ever begin to understand You?
You who have not only created the heavens,
But You who were before…
You, who made something out of nothing
For that is what defines a Creator.
You, who Your created ignore
And mock, and try to imitate
As if they can in any way
Create apart from You.

Heavenly Father,
Were it not so tragic, it would be amusing
To see how like little ants
We march to and fro in our busyness
Feigning such importance as we
March along paths made by others
Subsisting on what others have provided
Glorying in our strength and intelligence
And totally dismissing the truth
That You were there first to make the path;
That You created the source
Of our provision.

Heavenly Father
I can only think of myself and others
As being amusing to One so great.
Yet, I know Father, that You
Are not amused
As You watch from Your
Exalted place
As we scurry forth in our
Never-ending quest to make of
Ourselves what we can never be
Or achieve…You;
The true God, the only God,
You,
The Eternal and forever God.
We who live within a thin
Veil of flesh
Composed of water, air, and dirt,
With a heart and mind
Brought to ecstasy
By such tiny contrivances
As mere men can make
When they are nothing
Of consequence to You.

Heavenly Father
How it must have saddened You
To see that which You made
Act in such a way
When You made them for so much more.
To see and to know that the shadow
Of darkness would come
To cloud their minds and hearts.
To make them simple and empty
Of the beauty
Of Your perfect Love.

Heavenly Father
That is what built the bridge
No man or woman can cross,.
How foolish we are to think
That our works, our possessions,
Our wealth and monuments
Could ever buy us passage
To eternal life.
How ignorant we are to strive,
To explore and search,
To create and build
A way…
When the way is here
Waiting to be embraced.

Heavenly Father
It is here that I lay down before You,
With tears of joy inexpressible in my eyes,
As I contemplate all that You
Have given me.
Your name is Wonderful,
And You have made my life so
Because You provided the Way
In Your Son,
In Your one and only,
Son,
My Savior,
My Lord,
Jesus

Heavenly Father
This night, Father, I make a request.
Father, Glorious and True,
Make Your people brave;
Make then bold.
Make then, Father, give
What in their selfishness they cling to:
Their lives.
Make them know the truth
Of what Your Son proclaimed
That those who lose their
Lives for My sake
Shall find it.

Heavenly Father
Most of all, Make me.

In Jesus name, I pray.
Amen.

My Prayer to the Father, July 31, 2012

Heavenly Father,
I come to You, Father, with praise in my heart,
To worship You, to give You honor and glory,
To give You all I have in the way of love and adoration
For all the many wonderful blessings
You have given to me.
You who have given me so much;
You who have taken me into Your bosom
Into Your very heart
And loved me so profoundly
That I cannot find the words to truly express
All that I feel and all that I know
Because of You.

Heavenly Father,
You have given me the Word of life.
You have given Him to me
In Truth, in Love, in Word, in Spirit
In Flesh.
You have given me all these
In the incarnation of Your beloved Son,
In the birth. Life, death, and resurrection
Of my Lord, my Savior
Jesus Christ.

Heavenly Father,
I know that You are God Almighty;
That You are the Maker
The Creator
The Sustainer
The Revealer
That You are the Beginning
And the End
And that All things, All life
All knowledge
Everything
Came from You, is in You, and is fulfilled
In You.

Heavenly Father,
I come before You knowing that I’m not worthy;
That in no way am I deserving;
Of this privilege.
I am nothing more than dust,
A speck, a tiny dot
In whom there is nothing of value;
Nothing to be looked upon
Nothing to be given so much;
Nothing to have been given everything
By such sacrifice, such Love.
You, who didn’t have to do anything;
Who owed me nothing except
Condemnation
Chose to give me All
You held dear
In the life of Your Son.

Heavenly Father,
How can I live with this knowledge;
Understand it with my heart
And not cry knowing the price You paid for me?
How can I know this,
knowing that even today, and
Everyday that I have lived and drawn breath,
That I have done that which
Put my precious Lord,
Your Son
On the cross to bleed and die?

Heavenly Father,
I come before You, Father, and I offer You
the only thing I can; me.
Not just the little me, the sometimes me,
The maybe me, the once in a while me.
No, Father. I offer You all of me.
I give You all that I’m capable of giving,
And I’m ashamed that it’s so little.
I beg You, Father, to grow me;
Not for my own vanity, Not for anything I may gain,
But so that I might have more to give;
More to give You,
More to give my family,
More to give my friends,
More to give my neighbors,
More to give to the stranger,
More to give to the poor,
More to give to the oppressed,
More to give to the persecuted,
More to give…

Heavenly Father,
I come to You with a plea in my heart;
A request that only You can give;
Father, I pray for Your children,
For those who are like myself,
For those who have spent the majority
Of their lives in uselessness.
Who have spent their days,
Their precious time
In the pursuit of pleasure and gratification.
Who have taken the gift,
Who have seen and beheld it’s beauty,
Who know it’s true purpose, and
Who have left it on the shelf
Only to be admired,
And spoken of.

Heavenly Father,
I pray, I plead with You to make me useful.
Not in the way of the world,
But in the way of Your Kingdom.
Empty me of all that is petty and worthless,
Of all that is dross and poor,
Until there is nothing left except that which
Is useful and pleasing to You;
That leaves only that
Which brings You great honor and glory
And magnifies Your name above
Every other name.

In Jesus name, I pray,
Amen.

From “Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening”

     How many of us are like this?

“Ephraim is a cake not turned.”  Hos_7:8

A cake not turned is uncooked on one side; and so Ephraim was, in many respects, untouched by divine grace: though there was some partial obedience, there was very much rebellion left. My soul, I charge thee, see whether this be thy case. Art thou thorough in the things of God? Has grace gone through the very centre of thy being so as to be felt in its divine operations in all thy powers, thy actions, thy words, and thy thoughts? To be sanctified, spirit, soul, and body, should be thine aim and prayer; and although sanctification may not be perfect in thee anywhere in degree, yet it must be universal in its action; there must not be the appearance of holiness in one place and reigning sin in another, else thou, too, wilt be a cake not turned.

A cake not turned is soon burnt on the side nearest the fire, and although no man can have too much religion, there are some who seem burnt black with bigoted zeal for that part of truth which they have received, or are charred to a cinder with a vainglorious Pharisaic ostentation of those religious performances which suit their humour. The assumed appearance of superior sanctity frequently accompanies a total absence of all vital godliness. The saint in public is a devil in private. He deals in flour by day and in soot by night. The cake which is burned on one side, is dough on the other.

If it be so with me, O Lord, turn me! Turn my unsanctified nature to the fire of thy love and let it feel the sacred glow, and let my burnt side cool a little while I learn my own weakness and want of heat when I am removed from thy heavenly flame. Let me not be found a double-minded man, but one entirely under the powerful influence of reigning grace; for well I know if I am left like a cake unturned, and am not on both sides the subject of thy grace, I must be consumed for ever amid everlasting burnings.

From the Pen of Wil Pounds

     One of the struggles for new christians, and even some old ones is understanding the doctrine of santification.  This is important to know and believe, and helps us realize that learning and loving is a process.  May this help all who struggle from time to time in our walk with the Lord.

Our Old Carnal Sinful Nature

The Christian makes progress in sanctification in his daily life as he yields to the Holy Spirit.  He is in perpetual war against the old nature or flesh.  The greater power in the conflict is the Spirit of God who indwells the true believer.  The indwelling and filling of the Holy Spirit is the secret to our spiritual growth in the likeness of Christ. 

The apostle Paul recognized the true believer’s battle with sin in Galatians 5:16-17. The flesh and the spirit are in continuous war.  The human body is not evil per se, but we do have an old nature with its continuing tendency to sin and rebellion against God.  It is this old flesh nature or self that wars with the Spirit.  “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please” (Galatians 5:16-17). 

We have an old nature that has a continuing tendency to sin and rebel against God. The born again believer does have within him contrary desires and urges. The old fallen instincts of the Adamic nature are not yet destroyed. They constantly distract us from doing the will of God and cause us to sin. 

However, we do have the indwelling Holy Spirit who constantly wages war against this old fallen nature. He is progressively working within us to renew us in the likeness of Christ.

When we are born again, a new nature or disposition is created within the soul. The work of the Holy Spirit in our progressive sanctification affects both this new disposition as well as the old self.

We have a responsibility to cooperate with the gracious operation of the Holy Spirit by which He delivers us from the pollution of sin, renews our whole person according to the image of God, and enable us to please Him in our daily lives.

It is by the work of sanctification that this “pollution” or corruption of our nature is in the process of being removed. Of course, it will not be totally removed until we see Jesus in His glory.

It is by progressive sanctification that God cures our sinning precisely by curing our sinful nature. He makes the tree good that the fruit may be good. Our personal sanctification is a progressive and gradual process, not an instantaneous one. In fact, it is a lifetime process which began with our spiritual regeneration and will continue until we see Jesus in glory.

The Holy Spirit lives within us in order to change us in the inner most depths of our person, not merely to influence our emotions and behaviors. He works in order to eradicate our sinfulness and not merely to counteract its effects. He is working toward a radical change in us (2 Cor. 5:17; Rom. 12:2).

God’s way of cleansing the stream is to cleanse the fountain. The Holy Spirit goes to the source of our problem. He is not content to attack the stream of our activities; He goes directly to the heart out of which the issues of life flow (Mk. 7:20-23).  The Bible does not give us any promise that the fountain will be completely cleansed all at once, and therefore no promise that the stream will flow perfectly pure from the beginning. There is no promise of a once-for-all eradication of our old nature in this life. It does, however, teach a progressive sanctification of the believer in this life.

When we were born again, a change in direction and disposition took place in our lives. We are now a “new creature” (2 Cor. 5:17).  We now have a new direction, new disposition, new attitudes, etc. toward God.

Even though we are a new creation, we are not totally new. We still have in us an inclination toward sin, and we will until that day when “we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him just as He is” (1 John 3:2).

We do have “native tendencies toward evil” which consists of  those old characteristics or attributes which incline the believer toward sin.  It is our old nature or old self that we still retain even though we have experienced spiritual regeneration.

In the work of the Holy Spirit, this old nature is progressively being eradicated and the new nature is being “nourished” and perfected.

The more we can mature and grow in Christ likeness, the more we become aware of sin in our lives.  This is the work of the Holy Spirit.  But He also comforts our hearts with the knowledge that “there is now no condemnation for those in Christ.”

The apostle Paul is emphasizing a continual habitual action on the part of the believer as he conducts his daily “Walk by the Spirit.”  Let this be your habitual manner of life.  When we are under the controlling influence of the Holy Spirit, we “will not carry out the desire of the flesh.”

Verse seventeen stresses the continual opposition of “the flesh against the Spirit and the Spirit against the flesh.”

Selah!

Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006