There is too much imitation of life than what is actually in existence in the Church today. Most of what we call life is nothing more than human animation, emotional and a lot of activity and is not resurrection life as administered by the Spirit. The absent of life is evident in many local Churches and probably is one of the main reason why so many leaders and pastors are leaving their local churches because of burn out. Life in us is effortless, much emotion and religious activities is a product of human effort and certainly will tax the strength of those who move in this direction. Another area that human effort does not belong is the knowledge of Christ. The Apostle Paul explained to the Philippians what His intent is and what his pursuits are.
But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my lord,…the righteousness which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection…
Though many are tempted to pursue the knowledge of Jesus Christ solely through methods of study, formal education, or intellectual rigor, need to be reminded that it is the Spirit who gives Life, the flesh profits nothing. Today, in America’s secular and religious teaching institutions there exist an inordinate level of intellectual scrutiny and skepticism of an historical Jesus, and His personal claims; that He is the Son of God and the only way to the Father. However, every faithful Christian should take pause when tempted to listen and believe their rhetoric, for it is the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, which dwells in us, who reveals and gives understanding regarding Jesus Christ; giving knowledge of the living, risen Christ, who is seated at the right hand of God.
“For the Lord gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding”
What we should understand, is that God is Spirit and His things are revealed solely in our spirit; for God has created us body, soul, and spirit, and in the coming of the Spirit of Life, He brings regeneration and renewal to our spirit.
As Christians, we must understand that God, by His grace, has given us two profound and superlative gifts, His word as given by and demonstrated in His Son, and recorded by trusted servants, and His Spirit. The Holy Spirit bears witness of the word and gives understanding ordained from above. In giving these gifts by His grace, Gods intention is that His children possess a level of understanding, whereby, they can maintain their personal salvation, and not allow anyone, including themselves, from undermining or minimizing it. Therefore, the understanding of Jesus and His words, through the Holy Spirit, is paramount in the maintenance of our personal faith, without which, many have fallen away, or have descended into unrecoverable error. Every sincere Christian, who hungers and thirsts to know the Son and understand His words, would be well advised, and bear in mind the Apostle Johns words regarding our primary source for what is true and is not a lie,
“These things I have written to you concerning those who try to deceive you. But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.”
We need the ministries in the church, but it is the Spirit in us, who discerns between what is coming to us as a lie or deception, or coming to us as the truth. Whether it is a book we are reading, a charismatic personality who is standing in front of us teaching, or the next door neighbor, the Spirit, in us, will bear witness to what is truth, and expose a lie, remembering that He is the author and interpreter of the text.
Therefore, you might ask, if the Holy Spirit dwells in Christians, why then is there is so much scriptural error, deception, and doctrinal confusion in this world, and in the church; there is an answer. One answer is the self-life of many sincere Christian men and women continues to remain in control, persisting in its central position as one’s intellectual center, relying upon thought, reason, and logic as a means to know the Son and understand scriptures, subsequently neglecting and overshadowing the union of the word and Spirit. Although ones memory and mental capacity increases proportionately with effort spent however, the knowledge one gleams from this effort is only the letter of the word, yes, there is a level of understanding, but it is only in reference to ones intellect having no inherent power for change or growing our faith, it is not Spirit given knowledge. Notice that there is a stark difference between what is Life, and what is letter, for the letter kills,
“…not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.”
What is meant here is simply, the letter is something that impacts the mind, but it has no avenue into the spirit, whereas the Holy Spirit, who is the Life giving Spirit, quickens our innermost part, and when the inner man is in union with the Life giving Spirit, we possess Life and where there is Life, there is also revelation and light,
“…the eyes of your heart being enlightened…” and spiritual understanding, “…that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding…”
The letter cannot produce Life, or subsequent change, because it is by disposition dead, i.e., the letter kills.
To rebuff the self-life, and it’s predisposition for personal independence, God has chosen and works to this end, that we might possess a heart that knows and recognizes its spiritual inadequacies in light of what God has given to us, in and through His Spirit.
Without poverty of spirit we will continue in our self-reliance and dependence upon the self-life and its manifold natural yet fallen capabilities as our means to knowledge of the Son, however this knowledge is inanimate, but the knowledge we seek is living. Jesus on His throne glorified, set over His Church, is not an inanimate idea, nor concept, or theological presupposition, nor is He just another historical character, but He is risen, living, the Son of God, willing to reveal Himself to us, through His Spirit and word. Jesus explained His words are Spirit and Life, i.e., there source is the Holy Spirit and the eternal Father.
Therefore, possessing a God given, progressive, realization of our personal spiritual insufficiency, we can become more and more proficient in our hearing and communion with the Holy Spirit, relying upon Him, to teach, remind, interpret, and reveal the Son and His kingdom,
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all…”