It is a fact of human experience that sometimes God does not seem to answer prayer, and this may indicate that our prayer has not been according to the will of God. 5:9). 22. I pray that He may grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power in the inner man through His Spirit, and that the Messiah may dwell in your hearts through faith. To what extent does the Bible provide God’s philosophy of history? Against such an enemy whose wisdom and power far exceed the resources of an individual Christian, there could be no victory apart from the power and grace of God. Christians soon discover the necessity of reading the Bible every day. ... After examining key essential tools for spiritual transformation—prayer, Bible study, meditation, fasting, repentance and the … 3. 1 Corinthians 12 states that spiritual gifts are given to God's … John F. Walvoord, long-time president of Dallas Theological Seminary, was one of the most prominent evangelical scholars of his generation. One of the great privileges given to a Christian as a child of God is his access to the throne of God in heaven. SPIRITUAL ROCK (pneumatike petra): Having a spiritual significance: supernatural, manifesting the power of the Divine Spirit; allegorically applied to Christ as fulfilling the type in the smitten rock in the desert, from which water miraculously burst forth to nourish the Israelites. In Daniel 10, for example, an angel struggled against a demonic adversary the entire time Daniel was praying and fasting. How much of God’s attention do we have moment by moment? 2. Some companies that write checks today require two signatures, and the check is only good when both signatures are affixed. As we contemplate the death of Christ and all He did for us, it serves to remind us of God’s holy purpose and His desire that we might be examples of His righteousness even in our daily lives. When believers pray to God, they are joining a prayer meeting already in session, and the object of their prayers is to fulfill and coincide with what God desires for them. Christians, accordingly, are exhorted to “be self-controlled and alert. 119:9). What are some of the conditions that relate to God’s answer to prayer? We first examine the crucial tool of prayer—a key to communication with our Creator. It is only by the power of the Spirit that a lost soul can see and understand the gospel and believe. If He signs it, it does not make any difference how great or impossible it is—that prayer will be answered in keeping with what has been asked. Ephesians 6:13–18 is a description of the spiritual armor God gives us. It is a marvelous truth of Scripture that God continuously gives His attention to us, and Christ is interceding on our behalf. As both completeness and attainment are relative terms, so is also the concept of perfection. A second aspect of perfection relates to spiritual maturity which is relative. It sometimes means "authority." The warfare with Satan is very real for anyone who attempts to lead a Christian life, and Paul bears witness to wrestling not with flesh and blood but with satanic powers in Ephesians 6:11-18. What is the effect of the world’s system upon a Christian? Any being made in the image of God who is a Spirit (), and thus having the nature of spirit, is a spiritual being. In addition to the confrontation of both the world and Satan, a Christian is faced with his own inner weakness. It is the power of the Holy Spirit revealed in salvation which delivers a person from his lost estate and makes him a new creature in Christ, possessing eternal life, indwelt by the Holy Spirit, and made one with the saints. These Principalities, Powers and Spiritual wickedness in High places just laugh at most that call themselves Christians because; 1. they are not really saved and God does NOT hear their prayer. In it He declares infinite truths that acquaint us with God and His purposes in the world. Does debt affect giving in modern times in light of the Israelite tithe and slaves? Our adversary or enemy, the devil, refers to Satan, who is a real entity, not a mythical creature or invention. The emphasis in sanctification is that we already have a perfect standing or position, and it is on this basis that we are called to bring our experience as far as possible up to the standard. Instead, the exhortations of Scripture constantly take into consideration that this is impossible and that victory over sin requires yieldedness to God and walking by the Spirit. The psalmist asked the question, “How can a young man keep his way pure?” (Ps. Nothing should be more clear in the New Testament than the fact that the spiritual life is one of ceaseless warfare. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour" (1 Peter 5:8). The Old Testament book of Isaiah, in prophesying of the Messiah, speaks of a deep spiritual darkness that enveloped the people: “The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned” (Isaiah 9:2). 1. James also expresses the problem of failing to pray, “You do not have, because you do not ask God” (James 4:2). One of the contemporary erroneous concepts of holiness is the theory that it is possible for a Christian to die completely to self. After further discussion of this problem, Paul concludes “What a wretched man I am! In the darkness of the night a lamp will show enough of the path ahead to guide us in the next step. Even though we are born again and have a new nature in Christ, the sin nature resists the desires and goals of the new nature. 4:4-7), Contemporary Issues in the Doctrine of the Holy Spirit. Positional holiness by far has the most references in the New Testament and is the thought in the use of the word “saint” which appears some sixty-five times. Christians need to realize that within them is the omnipotence of God and that there is no problem that God cannot solve. The concept of ultimate perfection is, of course, found in passages like Philippians 3:11-12, contemplating the results of resurrection from the dead and presentation in heaven. Why is the shedding of blood essential to the sacrifice for sin? Accordingly, the life of victory is a life of faith as we live day by day, relying on the Holy Spirit to give us power to serve the Lord effectively. How does flying in an airplane illustrate the Christian life? He is deceptive, often appearing as an angel of light (2 Cor 11:14), and according to Christ is both a liar and a murderer (John 8:44). By this he is disclaiming the right of the sin nature to rule over him in view of the power of God released through the death of Christ upon the cross. The obstacles confronted by the Christian in the Christian walk are massive and frontal. In addition to the world itself, the Christian also encounters Satan as his arch enemy. Notice that what we need comes “through our knowledge of Him,” which is the key to obtaining everything we need. It is only thus that holiness can be achieved and the fruit of the Spirit realized. 6. A few Scriptures refer to progressive sanctification as in John 17:17 where Christ prayed, “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” The same thought is found in Ephesians 5:26 where the present ministry of Christ is revealed to be that of sanctifying His church by cleansing it by the washing of water by the Word of God (cf. Prayer for Spiritual Power - For this reason I kneel before the Father from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named. Happy New Year: Past, Present, and Future Perspectives, 4. 9. 14. A Christian is living in a world system which is utterly contrary to the things of God. How does the Word of God affect a person’s purity? Now that our request has been made, the problem remaining is in the will of God, at least for the present. Each step is an incipient fall, as the body is supported by one limb and then the other. The result would be that if the Word of God has its full effect upon us, the individual Christian is equipped for the work that God has called him to do. Q. Just as God fought the battles for His people in the Old Testament, so will He fight our own spiritual battles today. Likewise, a Christian faces the impossible task of honoring God on his own, but as he rests in the power of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God can support him and carry him moment by moment in his service and testimony for the Lord. The secret of drawing on His power is one of faith so that we live by the Spirit. ... Fasting: A Spiritual Power Tool. The verb is not in the present tense but correctly translated the passage reads, “Knowing this, that our old man was crucified with him.” The same is true with Galatians 2:20 where the perfect tense is used, signifying that we not only are crucified with Christ already, but also that we have been crucified with Him ever since Christ died upon the cross. In the purpose of God it is also clear that salvation thus purchased by Christ is made effective by the Holy Spirit. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.”. A Lasting Legacy: Choosing A Wife For Isaac (Gen. 24:1-67). Spiritual maturity can also be viewed as progressive as in 2 Corinthians 7:1 where perfection is viewed as a process with the gifts bestowed upon the laborers being used for the perfecting of the saints (Eph 4:12). Found in the 1894 Northfield Echoes (Volume 1), a report of the Northfield Conferences for 1894. Man in his natural ability is not able to serve God acceptably; and even if he has been renewed through salvation by the Spirit, this in itself does not assure him spiritual power in his life. In Scripture there is a revelation of who God is, His holiness and righteousness, His infinity, His omniscience, His omnipresence, His love and grace. Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!” (Rom. God in His own time and in His own way will fulfill our request even as He honors and glorifies Himself in our prayer life. The power of the Holy Spirit convicts, teaches, equips, and empowers the people of God to grow in grace and spread the gospel to the nations to the glory of God. (Ephesians 6:12) For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. In seeking to realize the holy life in Christ and to translate the power of the Holy Spirit into living experience, it is all too easy to go to excesses in one direction or another. This is stated more clearly in 1 John 5:14-15, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. Proverbs 3:5-8 ESV / 42 helpful votes. Bible Study For Spiritual Power "If ye abide in My word then are ye truly My disciples." What is the secret of gaining victory over the sin nature? He is under constant influence to love the world, to compromise with the world and to conform to the world. The verb “walk” in Galatians 5:16 is in the present tense and has the thought of “keep on walking” or continuously walking by the Holy Spirit. He would give them no sign to satisfy their unbelieving curiosity, remarking that a wicked and adulterous generation sought after a sign, and … The Search OF the Savior: Why Jesus Came, Part 2 (Gal. Jesus gave the Church legal jurisdiction over Satan (serpent) and the rest of his demons (scorpions). Happy New Year: Past, Present, and Future Perspectives, 4. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. What is Satan’s desire in regard to a Christian? [John F. Walvoord, President, Dallas Theological Seminary, Editor, Bibliotheca Sacra. Appropriating the spiritual power that God has provided is an important factor in a believer’s life and service. How do wrong motives hinder answers to prayer? ], [Editor’s Note: This series of articles is now available in book form: The Holy Spirit at Work Today (Chicago: Moody Press, 1973). 119:105). Walking by the Spirit is also aided by fellowship with other believers who also are seeking the work of the Spirit in their lives. Whatever he does prospers.” Just as a tree planted near water can draw water and prosper even when the rest of the area is dry, so a Christian living in a world that does not support his spiritual life can draw upon the deep springs of the Word of God and in that truth be able to live above the standards of the world. The Pharisees and Sadducees had been tempting Jesus to show them a sign from heaven. Who will rescue me from this body of death? For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. The same verse gives us the answer, “By living according to your word.” Knowledge of the Word of God and the availability of divine power does much for a Christian and enables him to lead the kind of a Christian life that will be an honor to God. Sharper than any doubled-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart” (Heb. Depending on the version of the Bible being used, the words "principalities" and "powers" occur more or less frequently. Walking implies progress and direction. What do Scriptures teach that the precious blood of Christ accomplishes? While it is true that the believer is walking in the sphere of the Spirit, the thought is rather that it is by the Spirit’s enablement that the believer is able to accomplish the high standard of the Christian walk. The recognition that absolute perfection is impossible in this life should not deter the believer from doing all he can to measure up to the highest divine standard, and it is for this purpose that the enablement of the Holy Spirit is provided that the believer may be empowered to serve God and attain personal holiness. The first word translated as “power” (G1849) was spoken to us (the church) and it means spiritual “Authority”. It is possible for man to avoid willful sin, at least for a time, or to be free from known sin; but the sin nature itself cannot be eradicated, and it is inevitable that attainment of the standard will be marred by imperfection. As James expresses it, “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures” (James 4:3). 25. 3:25). This article was taken from the Theological Journal Library CD and posted with permission of Galaxie Software. In sanctification there are three main ideas presented in the Bible—that of consecration or being set apart for holy use; separation, that is, distinction from that which is unholy; and purification, or the result of the cleansing process. How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!”. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law” (Gal. 12. The Christian life as a whole is so constituted that not only our salvation is completely dependent upon God and His grace, but also our daily victory is moment-by-moment possible only as the reservoirs of divine power are released in the life of the Christian. As Jesus told His own disciples, “I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. To what extent are we joining a prayer meeting already in session? Exhortations are sometimes made to the Christian to crucify himself. The power of salt in the Bible is outstanding based on the bible reference mentioned below. The Bible also speaks of the power of the blood of Christ that was shed upon the cross. In Scripture, maturity is viewed in respect to various aspects of the will of God, such as knowing the will of God (Col 4:l2), love (1 John 4:17-18), personal holiness (2 Cor 7:1), patience (James 1:4), and various good works (Heb 13:21). What do these verses say about the Holy Spirit? In the light of the New Testament standards for the Christian life which are far beyond anything which the natural man could attain, it is obvious that only by the grace of God and the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit can a measure of attainment be achieved in keeping with the will of God for the believer. It is for this reason the believer is commanded to “walk by the Spirit” (Gal 5:16). In addition to the Word of God itself, the Holy Spirit interprets the Word and applies it to our particular need and gives us even more direct instruction. 13. It is the walk by the Spirit that produces contagious Christian experience, holiness of life, and a glorifying of God. Scriptures are a work of the Holy Spirit. In the great program of God for the redemption of the lost human race, the Scriptures make clear that Christ’s death on the cross is God’s provision for fallen humanity. The Christian is faced with a world system that is contrary to serving the Lord. The second word (G1411) translated as “power” is in direct reference to a symbolic serpent and some symbolic scorpions. Just as the deliverance from sin and condemnation and our new position in Christ is made possible by the Holy Spirit, so the daily walk of the believer who experiences deliverance from sin and achieves a quality of life which brings glory to God is possible only as the Holy Spirit fills and empowers. It provides a way of correction and shows how we should be living, and then it gives us training in how to live a righteous life before God. spir'-it-u-al (pneumatikos, "spiritual," from pneuma, "spirit"): Endowed with the attributes of spirit. By J. R. Mott . Bible Reading--Matthew 16. Salt was used for purification in the Bible. Similar passages are found in Ephesians 5:27 and Romans 8:29. It may not give us guidance regarding ten years from now, but it does give us guidance concerning what we should do day by day. 27. 24. Explain how a check with two signatures illustrates prayer. Hence perfectionism defined as the doctrine that a state of complete freedom from sin is obtainable in earthly life, is an ideal which is never attained by man except in a relative sense. It’s a constant. One of the pitfalls to the holy life is the concept that it is possible to attain sinless perfection in this life. 21. 4:4-7). How can the Christian draw on the power of the Holy Spirit? 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