What The Holy Spirit is Saying To The Church: Word and Spirit
This is a follow-up from last week. I wanted to give you the outline and scriptures to follow up and begin our journey together as a church of both word and Spirit. Before we start, would you take a brief moment and pray with me:
"Father, there is so much we need in adjustment in the way we see things and respond. Your ways are higher than our ways and Your thoughts are so much higher than our thoughts. Shape us, transform us, transfigure us through Your word and encounters with Your Holy Spirit. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"
This topic is not just for Fusion, but for the entire body of Christ. Many have put at odds two things which have never been: the Word of God and the Spirit of God. The Word and the Spirit are meant to create a divine, prophetic tension in us, as the Word challenges us to see encounters with God and His ways which we haven't entered into and the Spirit pulls us towards seeking out in the Word the context of the experiences we have with Him. This prophetic tension is more like the banks of a river, which moves along the life of God for the healing of the nations! We must have both to be a kingdom people seated in kingdom power and promise.
And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. (Revelations 22:1,2 - see also Ezekiel 47:1-9)
The Word has Never Been Separated From the SPirit
In the beginning of creation, God began with His Word - Jesus, the very agent of creation. (John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:15-18). He spoke and the worlds, the very fabric of reality was created. Also, at the beginning of time, the Spirit of God was present in creation. It was He that hovered (a wave-like motion moving back and forth - Genesis 1:2) over the face of the formless, void that would become the stage for the drama of God's love story with mankind. You see, it is both the word and the Spirit that give shape to things and prophesy what is to come from their origins.
The Word and the Spirit Are Meant to be in the Center of our Lives as Believers - When We Gather and When We Are Dispersed
The Word of God is designed to lead us to encounters with Jesus and the Holy Spirit, and axiomatically, the Spirit and His encounters are meant to take us back to the Word.
Jesus said to the disciples that His words are Spirit and they are life (John 6:63). When He speaks we glean meaning and sense to things we scarcely understand. This is why it is important to continually read the Bible, even if we feel we get nothing from it, for it feeds us on totally different levels of being. Ask for understanding and understanding will come!
The Scriptures are given to direct us headlong into Jesus! They woo us to Him and encounters with His ways and kingdom. They also enrich our worship and understanding of Him - scriptures to Spirit and Spirit to scriptures. (John 5:31-47)
Read the Word with and in the Holy Spirit.
Invite the Holy Spirit to read with you, even try speaking in tongues before and after you read. God reveals things in the word through His Spirit (1 Corinthians 2:6-16). He designed it that way. If you don't remember what you read, don't worry, you probably don't remember what you ate for breakfast last week, but it nourished you anyway.
Hunger and thirst in the kingdom of God is different than hunger and thirst in the natural world. In the world, if you don't eat or drink, you get hungrier and thirstier, but in the kingdom, if you don't eat or drink, you lose your appetites. In the kingdom, the more you eat and the more you drink the hungrier and thirstier you become. This is true for all kingdom activity: healing, worship, reading the Word, prayer, encounters with the Holy Spirit and more.
Also, He never designed the word to be an end in and of itself, which can create a dry, proforma doctrine that literally will kill off life in you. It is the ministry of the New Covenant, which has the Holy Spirit in the very center of it that gives life as you read the scriptures! (2 Corinthians 3:1-17)
As we move forward as a family, we must embrace both the word and the Holy Spirit and put them in their rightful place in our worship, our practice, our preaching, our life, and application. We must be people of orthodoxy (right belief), and orthopraxy (right practice). From that, we have one message, that we have been given through the scriptures and applied through the power of Holy Spirit, who confirms the word with signs and wonders, (1 Corinthians 2:4 & Hebrews 2:1-4)the kingdom of God has come! Repent and believe the good news! ( Mark 1:14,15) (See also - Matthew 28:18-20).
Let's go and practice the kingdom!