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Is That All There Is to the Spirit's Ministry?, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
September 23, 2022 7:05 am

Is That All There Is to the Spirit's Ministry?, Part 1

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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For some time now.

Chuck Swindoll has been guiding us through methodical study on God spirit called flying closer to the flame. Our objective is been clearly stated to develop a deeper passion for the Holy Spirit and his role in our lives. Doing so will invigorate our spiritual walk. As we learn to deploy the power that God has given every believer today on Insight for living. Chuck presents the 13th message in his 14 part series that will conclude shortly and he titled his message with the question is that all there is to the spirits ministry. So we come to the end of Marvel series on the sediment spirit of God all the way through. I have all asked questions relevant answering them as methodically and systematically is perhaps you wouldn't wish I would've gone. Or perhaps I wish I could have done. I simply left the question lingering in your mind because there is something about a good question that does its work, even though there may not be immediate or solidifying answer fact, I believe all of my adult life that one of the best ways to get to the right answers is to begin with the right questions. Maybe that's what attracted me to a little book that I was given several weeks away and it is called children's letters to God. It is absolutely disarming. It is charming.

It is full of statements and questions and notes that little children have sent to God. They have been intercepted by this publisher and been put into print and I have found these questions and statements absolutely delightful know that no one can ask a question like a child can, for example, little Lucy asks this question. Dear God, are you really invisible or is that just a trick that a good question, Norma asks dear God, did you mean for a giraffe to look like that or was that an accident dear God asks man, one of my favorites who draws the lines around the country's dear God, I will. I went to this wedding and they kissed right in church. Is that okay nihilistic question Lois asks dear God, I like the Lord's prayer. Best of all, did you have to write it a lot or did you get it right the first time is that she goes on to say, I always have to write over and over to get mine right :-) if you have that same problem. Joanne I would like to know why all the things you said are in red. Darla asks, did you really mean, do unto others as they do unto you, because if you did that. I'm going to fix my brother little Peter writes God. Would you please send Dennis Clark to a different camp this year. Anita asks is it true my father won't get in heaven. If he uses his bowling words in the house and on and on.

The questions go heaven you got a few don't you wrestle at times with questions that flip through your mind but snag in one of those creases. You can't let go of them. I hope so I hope you have an answer to all of the question or you haven't mistakenly convinced yourself you have most of the answer. I am not nervous about most people, but those I am most nervous about are those who think they have most of the answers. One more from this little book jumped out at me because it sort of ties in with some of the things we've been thinking about in this series on the Holy Spirit. Dear God, how come you did all those miracles in the old days and you don't do any now signed by this little child, even a child realizes there's something different now than in the days when he or she read of them in the Scriptures.

Why indeed having anybody who studies the lives of Moses or Elijah are certainly the life of Jesus and witnesses on the pages of this great book phenomenal events and miraculous occasions and then looks at life today has to say. Dear God, have things ended. Is this the and of the spirits era.

Have we reached the end we have been through a lot of the wonderful scenes in our messages together through the Scriptures. I did not set out to do a thoroughgoing theology of the Holy Spirit.

A lot of that is in print. Much of that has already been taught and taught better than I could ever do it didn't seem necessary to go back over territory that's been covered so well and so thoroughly and so I have sort of picked my way through the journey and stopped at some back roads and traffic along the blue highways of our minds and addressed things that very few people.

It seemed to me were addressing. If you have a Bible look.

For example, in John chapter 14, over the New Testament, fourth book 14 chapter, Jesus is about to leave the earth. He is only a few hours left before the cross, and his hands and feet get nailed to pieces of timber and he breathes his last and having revealed this to the disciples and seen the panic on their faces. He finds it necessary to reassure them that he will not leave them as orphan when he passes beyond this life. John 14 verse 16. I will ask the father and he the father will give you another helper see he's been there helper all along and when they needed anything. They've all had to do is say Jesus and he would be there certainly would be near to help Lord. We weren't able to cast out demons and he says will stand back, let me show you how this is done.

Lord we reach this impasse and we were unable to let me help you with that. He has been there helper and he says in verse 16. I will give you another helper, another of the same kind and he that he may be with you forever know we haven't reached the end of the spirits era. He said he will be with you forever. That is, now he amplifies the name helper by saying he is the spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not know him does not behold him does not know him but you know him because he abides with you and you will be in you, you been engaged to him during my earthly ministry, but when I leave, you're going to be married to him you're going to be one of your new relationship. It won't be like dating. It will be like marriage, it won't be like a distant relationship or you go home every night to different places will be in a must-see.

It will be a oneness. It'll be harmony, so that he will live in you forever and how that must've thrilled. He said in the next verse I will not leave you as orphan's back when he talks about coming back to them. He even links himself with the spirit so closely says I will come to you.

Look at this 16 chapter we've a look at these chapters before restorative reviewing where we were 16, seven I tell you the truth it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away this helper. He's back to the same subject, shall not come to you, but if I go I will send him to you. We we looked at that purpose we studied. Look at verse 13 when he the spirit of truth is calm, he will guide you into all truth.

What a wonderful thought when our troopship got to the harbor at Tokyo in 1958 January 1958.

The harbor was still line with underwater mines that were still very much charged and we watched as our troopship stopped and there got on board a pilot who would lead us through the Oklahoma harbor and get us all the way to land to the land of Japan and he wormed his way in and through these uncharted waters.

They all looked like the surface of water to us that the distant harbor was right there and you could you could go on straight ahead and been there in a matter of minutes but it took over an hour for him to work our ship through that harbor is.

He got us and guided us right to the place of safety and that's the thought here, he will guide you into all truth. He will speak on his own initiative, but whatever he hears he will speak and he will disclose to you what is to come right thought he will show you things that are on the horizon. So it's to your advantage. So we discovered that the spirit of God works deeply and intimately. We have looked at words that are often overlooked by people in our camp. If I may separate us from from various Christian groups.

We don't say much about the anointing of the Spirit or the function of the spirit we look at both. We say little about the healing work of the spirit. We looked at the link that that we don't talk much, even about the power of the spirit and we address that in the whole idea of his inner dynamic.

We have talked about his filling us with that dynamic in giving us movement and direction and motivation and and enthusiasm, passion, all of that is been a part of the series, and now we come to the final message in the series which asks this critical question, have we reach the end of the spirits era we've already answered the answer of course is no but since the miracles don't flow as they once did use it. Today's terms and since, in my opinion, as I understand the Bible look the work of the Spirit differs now from the apostolic era. Does this mean it's all over.

People who do not see these things is as we've interpreted them would say what you're just you're just throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

It sounds to me like a powerless life who would want to live in an era when there are not miracles. I have never said there aren't miracles I have never said God doesn't heal and I certainly never said that there were not evidences of his dynamic in power.

Quite the contrary. I'm just saying that it's a different type, and it's in a different volume and an intensity turn from John to Paul's first letter to the Corinthians in an all-out camp and one of verse or verses that are somewhat controversy first Corinthians chapter 13 is a course is great chapter on love the greatest treatise ever written on love and it helps me understand what is continued and what's what and that some things have ceased, and I don't think we ought to be afraid of saying that according to this section of first Corinthians 13 eight through 12.

There seems to be some waning weaning away from the miraculous part of the work of the spirit and leave the the exacting interpretation with each of you, but just listen to the normal reading of the verses. Okay 13 eight love never fails. But if there are gifts of prophecy. They will be done away. Hey, if there are tongs, they will cease. If there is knowledge, linking knowledge, somehow with the gift of prophecy or perhaps a gift of wisdom that it will also be done away. We know in part, we prophesy in part. But when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away and then he describes it in. In simple terms, we can all grasp what I was a child I used to speak as a child think as a child, reason as a child but when I grew up when I became a man I did away with childish thing. I think what he's getting at is rather obvious. There is a progression of life and as one goes through the process of living one leaves things one ceases doing things he or she did as a child and participated in as a child. I love the story Donald Barnhouse tells of playing marbles uses that he used it wonderfully well to illustrate legalism and and how that's not the way we handle life as a mature adult. He said when he grew up he just outgrew marbles and he said he never remembered as an older teenager or young adult going to circles of boys playing marbles, saying I don't believe in that. I don't think that's right.

He said I just walked past it. Thinking I just outgrew that is not a need for that in my life anymore. There was a period of time when certain things were needed. There wasn't a completed Bible people were at a loss to know who spoke for God and who didn't.

There were charlatans.

Then, just as there are now in their work wasn't a completed New Testament to turn to, to determine if that person speaks the truth or not or if he is a deceiver not and without the Scriptures. One was cast on miraculous things to authenticate the spokesman for example, when a person spoke as a prophet. He spoke ex cathedra, and everything he said came true. That's how you knew he was a true prophet. Deuteronomy teaches that it wasn't that he hit or miss. Like a weatherman.

Well tomorrow it's going to rain sure is a world of sunny I've said for years. That's the best job security in the world as being a weatherman you could just say I was wrong. Now today and then you wanted today and you're wrong about today, but prophets couldn't do that.

You know this stone prophets for teaching wrong predictions because if you were a prophet of God you did not make mistakes.

You spoke infallibly as the Scriptures speak but see there wasn't an infallible Bible, so there was the necessity for profits, prophecy would be the direct reception of revelatory information from God to the prophet without error so that he not only received it and apparently he spoke in errantly remarkable gift tied to this gift is the gift of knowledge. One very capable writer has put it this way, prophecy was a spirit mediated miraculous gift. Several factors demonstrate this. First, the primary characteristic involved was spirit motivated speech centering in direct reception of revelation from God. Second, spirit, supernatural discernment, insight and knowledge were frequently involved in conveying information that could not have been obtained by ordinary human means. Third, prophecy often involved prediction back in the early 1970s, I read from one of the so-called modern day prophets that more than one quote more than one third of the United States of America would be designated a disaster area within the next few years.

In the prophecy is not been true, that is a lie and call himself a prophet. All he likes the fact is, his statement is wrong.

Within a few years of one third of America was not designated a disaster area that's voodoo theology frightening work gets done intimidating people within the sphere of ministry. Norm Geisler has written in a working title signs and wonders. Many today claim to be receiving visions, dreams and revelations from God.

The problem is that there quote revelations are not infallible. Some are flatly wrong, but a fallible revelation from God is a contradiction in terms. You get that a fallible revelation from God possible contradiction of turn when God speaks it is without error. And so it was necessary before there was a Bible. While the church was being built. While the foundation was being laid for there to be gifts like tongs and apostleship and miracles, healings, interpretation of tongues all essential for authenticating the messengers and establishing the church and propagating the gospel rapidly through the various language but Ephesians chapter 2 turn their necks teaches us that there in this progress of revelation.

There is a passing of time where something cease and other things continued Ephesians to verse 19 so then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints, and/or of God's household.

Watch closely. Verse 20 having been built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets were talking building temple built upon the foundation of the apostles and the prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone in whom the whole building, being fitted together is growing.

ING is growing into a holy temple in the Lord in whom also you are being built together into a dwelling of God in the spirit drop down to verse two of chapter 3. I'm sorry verse three. Chapter 3 that my Revelation there was made known to me the mystery, which as I wrote before.

In brief, remember the word mystery.

The mystery and by referring to this.

When you read you can understand my insight into the mystery of just which in other generations was not made known. This mystery was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets in the spirit specifies a group before the mystery was not known, but now that there are apostles and prophets. The mystery has been unfolded, unveiled, revealed to be specific.

This is the mystery verse six that Gentiles are fellow heirs and fellow members of the body and fellow partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the golf that's the mystery. It wasn't known in the days of the Old Testament it came to be known in the first century and was in fact a part of the history of the church so that Gentiles were included. There was the inclusion if you will, of Gentiles with Jews in this wonderful universal body. The body of Christ.

It was a new thing. It was a mystery. It was revealed there is not yet another mystery that one is been revealed, it's done, it ceased being a secret. It's no and it's all been made known in that era when those things were revealed, and I think Ephesians 2 and three in those passages I have I referred to set forth the idea of apostleship and prophecy as times is a period of time when these things were necessary and needed her is now there isn't the necessity to reveal further mystery mysteries that are to be known or set forth in Scripture. What continues then all the things we've been talking don't think you'll be shortchanged because you believe that certain things cease or have run their course and play their role.

By the way, this is a real good time for me to to build up the body rather than helped her the enemy loves to get us sidetracked on issues like this so that we begin to refer to various people in the body waste is as them and as opposed to us. Try your best not to put those words in your try to see that were all in the same family.

We just see things a little different. Well were just midway through a message from Chuck Swindoll this is sermon number 13 to 14 part series on the Holy Spirit called flying closer to the flame to learn more about this ministry, we invite you to visit us online@insideworld.org before we close out our time together. I want to remind you that every Sunday insight for living is privileged to present a live worship service from Stone Breyer Community Church in Frisco Texas where Chuck serves as senior pastor. The sermon the chart presents on Sunday mornings doesn't run parallel with our current series on insight for living so it's material you've never heard before. Plus the live stream includes congregational singing and sacred music as well. So you get to participate in the entire worship experience for all the details on the live webcast go to insight.org/Sundays and then if you're looking for.

Reading material to deepen your walk with God.

Would like to recommend a classic from Chuck titled growing deep in the Christian life. Whether your new follower of Jesus, or been a Christian for decades. Chuck's book will help you grasp the major theological doctrines that define our faith look for the book called growing deep in the Christian life.

When you go to insight.org/store or ask for the book when you call us if you're listening in the United States: 1-800-772-8888 finally want to take a moment to say thank you to those who have given generously to insight for living in recent days. Perhaps you have no idea of the impact of your generosity, but we sure a day never passes without hearing from someone whose life is been touched because of the Bible teaching they received insight from the most sacred moments or make possible voluntary gifts from people like you. So thank you again to give a donation today. Call us if you're listening in the United States call 800-772-8888 you can get online and insight.org/travelers who want to take a tour to Israel have lots of choices, but if you measure up to the thoughtful journey prepared by insight for living ministries with the proper mix of historical information and biblical context. We provide ample opportunities to pause and let the wonder in our goal is to create special moment when you deepen your love for the Bible and draw closer to your Lord experience an unforgettable 12 day tour to Israel with Chuck Swindoll and insight for living ministries March 5 through the 16th 2023.

To help you grasp the significance of each slight you will be accompanied by handpicked Israeli guidance and we choose the best, along with seminary trained pastors and professors to enhance your spiritual journey, no organization I know of offers this level of exceptional in depth instruction and personal care for holy land travel to learn more: one 447-0444. Just imagine walking along sacred sites watching the Bible: the life make your reservation by calling 1-888-447-0444 or go to insight.org/events insight for living ministries toward Israel is paid for and made possible by only those who choose to attend my bill Meyer inviting you to join us. When Chuck Swindoll study called flying closer to the flame continues Monday on insight for living. The preceding message is that all there is to the spirits ministry was copyrighted in 1993 and 2003 and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2003 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. all rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited


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