Day 30 – Primed and Ready

Hebrews 2:1-4 (ESV) Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. 2 For since the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and every transgression or disobedience received a just retribution, 3 how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, 4 while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.

Did you catch that last sentence? Let’s read it again, “4 while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.” I for one, don’t want to neglect such a great salvation (v3). I believe, that when we neglect the presence and power of the Holy Spirit, we disrespect God and put ourselves outside of the realm of “signs, wonders and miracles”. Maybe just maybe, the reason we don’t experience the presence and power of the Holy Spirit is because we have been careless with this accept of God’s grace. Let’s then be very careful how we talk and even think about the awesome person of the Holy Spirit, lest we find ourselves rejecting the very one and the gifts He brings to bless those around us. Be open, be respectful and be ready for the Holy Spirit to flow through you, so that you can be a vessel primed to do the Lord’s work here on earth.

 

Day 29 – Sealed by the Spirit

2 Corinthians 1:21-22 (ESV) And it is God who establishes us with you in Christ, and has anointed us, 22 and who has also put his seal on us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.

Here’s the thing, you cannot separate the Holy Spirit from the Gifts of the Spirit, nor can you separate the Gifts from the Holy Spirit, both are inseparable. This is the principle reason why any notion that the Gifts of the Spirit are no longer necessary or needed in the church of today must not be heeded. Yes, those folk are free to have an opinion, but I just choose to disregard it. And I’m not alone…millions upon countless millions are also on the same page, for we, as just read, have been “sealed”. Seared deep within us is a knowing that the Holy Spirit longs to release the power of His presence in and through you, the church. I personally will not back down and nor should you. In fact, the gifts are a sign to the world around us that God is alive and well and lives within His followers. Yes, there should be a marked difference between a Christian and non-Christian with the deviation being the seal of the Spirit and I for one want to shine His light brightly to all who care to look.

Day 28 – Death, sin and mortality…defeated.

1 Corinthians 15:53-58 (ESV) For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:  “Death is swallowed up in victory.” 55 “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

As we labor, doing what God asks us to do through the power and might of His Spirit, remember it is Jesus Christ who gives us the Victory. The Holy Spirit at work in us, unleashing the full potential of Christ in us has no match. Death, sin, mortality…none can stand against the fortitude of a faith-filled believer. Victory has been secured at the cross and through the power of the Spirit at work in us we live it out. When the Gifts of the Spirit are manifest in a born-again believers life, they provide testimony to the power of God now at work within mortal man, giving hope to a lost and dying world. Let’s you and I continue to discover the more of who our God is, how He works in and through us and what we can do for Him when we choose to only believe.

Day 27 – Moving closer to understanding

1 Corinthians 15:3-4 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures.

Here’s the thing, if Christ Jesus our Lord functioned and committed Himself to live in full obedience to the scriptures, then how much more us. Serious, if Jesus Himself lived to honor His Father, don’t you think we should as well? I vote yes! How do we know if we are living in such a way that brings glory to God?  Through obeying to the best of our ability, the Holy Scriptures. Our lives should attempt to capture the essence of scripture and guess what, it can’t be done without the help of the Holy Spirit. He is the one who helps us live out the Word. Through Him and through His powerful gifts at work in us, we can have the power to live in obedience to scripture. I know what you’re thinking and no I’m not talking about perfection. There is no such thing as perfect people, just people trying to live in a way that honors God. Lean then upon the Spirit of the Living God and ask Him to help you live your faith in such a way that honors God. When we do, we move that much closer to fully understand the ultimate purposes for the Gifts of the Spirit.

Day 26 – More of Him and less of us.

1 Corinthians 14:1 (ESV) 1 Pursue love, and earnestly desire the spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy.

V12 So with yourselves, since you are eager for manifestations of the Spirit, strive to excel in building up the church.

V40 But all things should be done decently and in order.

In keeping with God’s design, the Gifts of the Spirit are to function within the lives of Born Again believers in accordance to a very particular order. The Gifts were never meant to function as an island unto themselves, nor are they to be worn as a badge of honor, announcing that the person has now arrived to a heightened state of Spiritual maturity. In fact, as a person begins to grow deeper into allowing the Spirit to flow through them, the more humble and selfless they become. More of Him and less of us. Yes, eagerly desire the gifts to be manifest in you, but allow the love of Christ to be your true north, always pointing you in the right direction. And…this is a biggy…we eagerly desire manifestations (v12) because we want to see the church strengthened. It’s not about being seen as someone spiritual or becoming a hotshot for Jesus, it becomes more about being a blessing to the church and world around us, then about us being made famous.

Day 25 – Various Kinds of Tongues & Interpretation of Tongues

1 Corinthians 14:12-16 (NLT)  And the same is true for you. Since you are so eager to have the special abilities the Spirit gives, seek those that will strengthen the whole church. 13 So anyone who speaks in tongues should pray also for the ability to interpret what has been said. 14 For if I pray in tongues, my spirit is praying, but I don’t understand what I am saying. 15 Well then, what shall I do? I will pray in the spirit, and I will also pray in words I understand. I will sing in the spirit, and I will also sing in words I understand. 16 For if you praise God only in the spirit, how can those who don’t understand you praise God along with you? How can they join you in giving thanks when they don’t understand what you are saying?

Various kinds of Tongues is: a supernatural utterance in an unknown Tongue

Interpretation of tongues is: The interpretation of what was said in an unknown tongue – specifically regarding the spiritual gift of diversity of tongues.

The gift of various kinds of tongues is not to be confused with the spirit-filled believer’s ability to speak in tongues. I Cor 14:12-19; 27-28. Those are two different and distinct manifestations of this aspect of the Holy Spirit’s work in our lives. One is mainly for our own private use, while the other is mainly for public use.

The Baptism of the Holy Spirit as found in Acts 2:1-4 and the subsequent speaking in tongues was a sign to the believer and the unbeliever that the Spirit of God had come, that the fulfillment of Joel’s prophecy had come true. One of the main purposes of tongues in our personal lives is to enhance our prayer life – Rms 8:26.

The spiritual gift of various kinds of Tongues which we are now looking at along with the spiritual gift of interpretation of tongues is mainly given for public use. The tongues we read about at Pentecost comes with the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and is personal in nature. The Spiritual gift of various kinds of tongues is public in nature. The gift of tongues flows as the Spirit wills: your prayer language of tongues operates as you will.

An example of these two gifts following would be: Someone speaks forth under the unction of the Holy Spirit in a unknown tongue. We, then as Christians should pray that someone would come up with the interpretation. The interpretation can come from the person who gave the tongue, but the optimum use of the gift is by another.

The interpretation of a tongue is just that, an interpretation not a translation. That is why a tongue may come forth that is long and the interpretation short or vice-a-versa.