Spirit – Baptism – BT8
More about God’s will and the Holy Spirit in the context of Ephesians 5:18
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Let’s look at what Paul has said so far about God’s will in Ephesians. It’s pretty darn clear that Christians are to routinely look to the Holy Spirit to “completely-fill themselves up” with “the abundant-fullness of God’s riches in glory,” which is “the abundant zoe genuine-life that is Christ’s prophetic rhema words and Spirit (a) instead of getting filled up with booze that leads to sin. Being filled to drunkenness by booze is a waste of your valuable time, especially to resultantly continue in the darkness of this world. However, being completely-filled by the means/instrument of the Holy Spirit leads us to using our valuable time to please the Lord while living in the light of Christ, leading us to routinely do such things as personal and community worship, thanking the Lord in all situations, and submissively, unconditionally-loving others. <Notes> a) John 6:63, 10:10.
Long after I did this study, one night the Lord gave me an all-night dream where I saw myself drinking really good nut-brown ales at a local bar. As I “filled myself” I heard the Lord say, “Every time you drink, you choose between these ‘spirits’ and My Holy Spirit.” Then I looked down and saw rows and rows of bottles of booze and remembered seeing the sign “spirits sold here” in so many bars and liquor stores. Then I saw myself drinking in evil spirits with each gulp. I couldn’t believe that I was making that choice! It made me sick that I was choosing liquor in one form or another instead of the Holy Spirit. Since then, I have had much less desire to even taste wine, beer, or ‘the hard stuff’ – and I used to pick wines out with the owner of a restaurant! That is the Spirit-power of directly-spoken/heard prophetic rhema words of God – it really gets your attention and it alone is inherently powerfully-enabling enough to cause you to obey the Lord. Reading bible commandments has never resulted in this ability! But how do we really “drink from the living water” of the Holy Spirit, to “be filled, even get drunk on God, by the means/instrument of the Holy Spirit?” I asked that question for a long time!
Let’s see if what we have concluded so far fits into the context of what Paul was saying earlier. Ephesians 5:1-6 talks about imitating God as beloved children by walking/living unconditional, sacrificial love just as Christ did for us. Certainly this is God’s will clearly stated, as unconditional-love is one of only 2 NT commandments! We are repetitively warned to turn our backs on the lifestyle of this “dark” world that will certainly bring God’s wrath: sexual immorality, impurity, covetousness, filthy language and crude joking. According to Ephesians 4:17-32, this futile thinking, darkened understanding, hardness of heart, alienation from God’s life, sensuality, impurity, deceitful desires, lying, stealing, corrupt speech, bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, malice, and slander is how we lived BEFORE we “learned Christ, heard of Him, were taught the truth by [the means of] Him – not through a bible about Him – and put off our old self and put on the new self, which was created after the likeness of God in holiness.” The Holy Spirit is the only way we can become holy ourselves! That seems obvious! But that doesn’t stop the religious from trying!
As Christian musicians, “routinely being completely-filled with the abundant-fullness of God by the means/instrument of the Spirit” is what actually leads us into discovering God’s will, not by reading, studying, or memorizing scripture! But “how do we get this,” you may ask? I’ve been told a 100 times, “by fasting, by daily reading and studying your bible, by regularly tithing, and be faithfully serving your church.” But the New Testament actually doesn’t say this!
Certainly scripture tells us some things about God’s will: It warns us to flee from the evil of this world because of the wrath facing it and tells us some things of what to embrace, especially the only 2 NT commandments of trusting-relying-faith in Christ and unconditionally-loving one another just as Christ did for us. However, as we’ve seen most of what it says about God’s will is that you will have to practice discerning between good and evil by the means/instrument of the Holy Spirit – see New Covenant Ways – BT16?
But does the NT tell us the “how-to” for this discernment? Or how to “routinely being completely-filled with the abundant-fullness of God by the means/instrument of the Spirit?” We will explore that in the next BLOG!