Posts Tagged ‘Baptism of the Holy Spirit’

Westminster Short Catechism: “A man’s chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.”

“…walk worthy of the calling with which you were called.” Eph 4:1

“…walk in wisdom, redeeming the time, not being unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is…” Eph 5:15-17



You Have a Call

Every believer has a call, and the biggest questions are do you know what it is and do you know how to achieve it?

While there are many ways that the call of our life in God is manifested according to our giftings (e.g. preaching, teaching, etc.), I believe there is a call which we all have which is overarching every other call and is central to our life in Jesus Christ! This call and its fulfillment is what I want to explore here.

I believe the Westminster Short Catechism above is probably one of the most succinct yet undervalued insights to that most central of calls!

Your chief end in this life is to glorify God, and to enjoy Him forever!

You can find that purpose stated in various ways in 1Cor 10:31, Rom 11:36, and Ps 73:25-28.

Now ask yourself, does the world situation, its challenges and difficulties and conditions, or that of your personal life change that call in any appreciable way?  I would say no.  God’s call on your life is steady state regardless of things temporal and external.

But there is a key here that we often overlook to entering into a deeper understanding of that call…

Let us look at that:

To Glorify God

I found the most profound understanding of what it means to glorify God through Kay Arthur’s book, Lord I want to Know You, A Devotional Study of the Names of God.

In it she clarifies that to glorify God means to give an accurate estimate of Who God is and how He is.  In a sense we are, ourselves, mirrors which are reflecting the truth of God to the world.  The more we are moved to a greater understanding of Him by the word, the bigger and more clear is the image we carry and share of Him.

But really interesting is the fact that you and I can lean heavily on the Holy Spirit here, because it is the Holy Spirit Who lives to glorify Jesus.

You see, according to Scripture, we are all being transformed into the same image (of Christlikeness) from glory to glory, by the Spirit of the Lord. (2Cor 3:18)

And through the agency of the Holy Spirit, He takes what is Jesus’ and He declares and reveals and transmits it to us!!! (Jn 16:14-15AMP) It is the Holy Spirit’s primary function to glorify Jesus, and we can be His living chalkboards to carry that message to the world!!!

Now think about this further!

When I set my heart to know Jesus in truth and in Spirit, when I worship Him and wait on Him and have encounters with Jesus my Lord through the Holy Spirit, when I have been Baptized in power in the Holy Spirit and have the gifts of the Holy Spirit animated in me and the character of Christ being built within me continuously by my most holy faith…

Then I begin to fulfill the call on my life to glorify God and enjoy Him forever…

I submit to you, that without the Baptism of the Holy Spirit in power, I cannot really begin to glorify God in truth, nor can I enjoy Him…

And so that is what I share with you today…

Have you hit a wall, or impase, or dead end in your Christian walk???

Then you need to things to both glorify Him and enjoy Him. You need His Holy Spirit to fill you and increase you in Him so that the image on your life mirror is expanded and clear, and you need the enduement of the power that comes with the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, so that you can overcome your self-interest and self-focus, and be moved by love in ministry to others…

This is the Way!

“For now we are looking in a mirror that gives only a dim (blurred) reflection [of reality as in a riddle or enigma], but then [when perfection comes] we shall see in reality and face to face!  Now I know in part (imperfectly), but then I shall know and understand fully and clearly, even in the same manner as I have fully and clearly known and understood [by God].”  1Cor 13:12

Let all the perfection of Jesus Christ that can be revealed and transmitted to us by the Holy Spirit be ours even today, that we will fully glorify God in this moment and will enjoy Him forever, without delay!!!

and we will share this with the world…


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“… you are the slaves of him whom you obey, whether that be to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience which leads to righteousness (right doing and right standing with God)?”  Rom 6:16 Amp


A Slave to Lower Thinking?

As God was preparing Moses to be His Ambassador in Exodus 4, God changed Moses’ rod from a rod into a serpent. And then God had Moses take it by the tail and it is changed back into a rod.

God told Moses to put His hand into his bosom, and what was a normal hand suddenly was leprous and as white as snow.  And then God changed it back and the hand was restored as before.

These instances were not simply a change in perception or thinking.  God did not cause Moses to just believe his rod was a snake, or his hand was leprous… he got to experience the reality of those situations, and the reality of God’s authority…

Christ is the True Reality

When Nebuchadnezzar was changed from being the king into a wild creature that ate grass, had feathers and long nails, this was not just a change in his thinking – it was a change in his reality.  He became a beast of the field whose thinking and understanding were likewise crippled, until God intervened again. 

To live like a beast of the field for seven years I want you to see that Nebuchadnezzar’s thinking was not responsible for his growing feathers and long nails.  And as there were outward manifestations of physiological change, I believe we should expect that there were internal changes that made it possible for him to live in such a state – such as a stomach equipped to digest grass.

To try and explain away what Nebuchadnezzar experienced for seven years as some kind of psychotic state in which he simply believed he was a beast, places the reality of the situation into the realm of the soul (your perception or thoughts about it) and not the spirit (where full truth resides). It refutes the reality of the changes he underwent.

Evidence of Last Days Crisis

In 2Tim 3:1-5 a state of deterioration is described in those who profess to be believers in God.  It demonstrates a conscious resistance to the power of God’s Word, and consequently that resistance manifests itself as a form of religiousness that is counterfeit to real Christianity.

These people are completely lovers of self and self-conscious.  This is their true focus.  Conversely, true believers are Christ conscious – they continually lose sight of themselves and their lower lives, and focus on Christ.

They are without natural affection and thus they operate in loose morals and conduct.  A true believer is gifted with God’s love operating within his heart and bringing him to a level of moral excellence operating within his soul.

The description continues within verse four to describe the perverseness these people operate at — constantly in the realm of their soul which as they have given it the pre-eminence – their soul, in its state of depravity, rules over them.  All they are about is self: their needs, their desires, etc.

Verse five talks about them having a form a religion, but they deny and are stranger to the power of true Christianity.

What has happened? 

Everyone gets to set the watermark of God’s control and involvement in their lives.  Where we simply allow God to clean the outside of our cup of life, but give no access to Him for bringing change about within us, where we adopt a religious form externally with no abiding life of His inside — we set ourselves on the road to being counterfeiters of true belief in Christ.

The danger begins when we fail to allow our thinking to be transformed by the word of God.  Though once maybe having received God’s life, we are now trying to progress only according to our thinking – our soul which once was washed when we were saved, has become corroded for lack of cleaning and renewal by the word of God.

This is the purpose and function of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit!  Where salvation brings the residence of God through the Holy Spirit into my spirit, the Baptism of the Holy Spirit brings the enduement of power of the Holy Spirit over and throughout the functioning of the soul!  Over my real self!  Now there is power like never before, to choose to love, to die to myself and loose my lower life, and to be the witness in power that God calls each of us to be who have received Christ. 

Salvation begins at the door of the spirit, but the victory of Christlikeness and walking in Him begins when I receive His enduement of power, His clothing, His life, His armor, His light … as covering over my real self!

From Nebuchadnezzar to Crisis of Belief

The progression to a corrupted state as 2Tim 3:1-5 describes, begins with resisting truth.  We try and explain away something like the transformation of Nebuchadnezzar as simply his deranged thinking.  We absolutely fail to acknowledge God’s right or power to take someone through this process.

We dismiss Moses’ examples of the rod, or leprosy as colorful stories.  We completely fail to realize that belief resides in our heart, and that while we may read the word and even understand it – UNTIL WE GIVE THE WORD ACCESS AND A PLACE OF UNIQUIVICAL RULE IN OUR HEARTS AND SUBMIT TO IT AS TRUTH WE ARE SIMPLY TRYING TO CONTROL THINGS AT THE LEVEL OF OUR MIND. 

As you continuously surrender to your own thinking, believing it to be true, you become a slave to your own thinking and its limitations. You then do not possess truth, but a carefully crafted and restricted perversion which cannot yield life or transmit life to others.

So what is the remedy? Realize what you have been doing.  See the great distance between where you are and the fullness God has provided for. Repent of rebellion in your heart and idolatry – for you have been trying to be your own God.  Submit to God – resist all of Satan’s tactics and lies, and he will flee. Come to the Lord humbly, believing what His word says, and receive the Promise of the Father (Lk 24:49, and Acts 1:4- Acts 2:39), receive the Holy Spirit’s power upon and be filled throughout your souls and begin the journey of walking in the Spirit like you have never known.

Then, as you receive the truth without compromise, your experience of God’s Spirit operating on and through you will increase. He will make you what He wants you to become – in Him!

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