Thought for the Week - 8th MayPastor Gareth Watkins
John 16: 7
But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I am going away. For if I do not go away, the Advocate will not come to you, but if I go, I will send him to you.
John 16: 8
And when he comes, he will prove the world wrong concerning sin and righteousness and judgment…
John 16: 12-14
“I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now.
But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. For he will not speak on his own authority, but will speak whatever he hears, and will tell you what is to come.
He will glorify me, because he will receive from me what is mine and will tell it to you.
The Mysteries of God
On Monday, Mercury – the smallest and least understood planet in the solar system – completed its transit across the sun. Even though it’s the closest planet to the sun and has temperatures over 400 degrees Celsius, at night the temperature plummets, going down to almost minus 200 degrees Celsius. How can that be when it’s so close to the sun? It also has an elliptical orbit… it’s a mystery to the scientists.
We accept these facts and mysteries of science, even though they might be strange, simply because the scientists have told us. Yet when it comes to the truth of the Gospel, we don’t have that trust! We won’t accept the things that are true in the Gospels, and we don’t always want to accept the mysteries. We struggle with both the explained and unexplained facts in the Bible.
For example, we accept the trial and crucifixion of Christ, yet then struggle with the fact of the resurrection. Even though we read in the Gospel that twelve separate groups of people saw Christ after He stepped out of the tomb, we struggle to say that Christ was risen from the dead! Christ ascended into heaven. Another is Christ’s ascension into heaven. Christ had to rise from the dead and had to ascend; there couldn’t be a second death on this earth for Him. Yet we struggle to say that Christ is risen from the dead, that Christ died for our sins and ascended into heavens. That’s the truth of the Gospel!
The fact that He ascended into heaven says that He would send the Holy Spirit, so that He could lead you and I into truth. There’s a reason behind these things that we don’t always see… one of the big truths behind why Christ ascended is that He would send the Holy Spirit, who would share the truth of the Gospel and the truth of life with you and me. Sometimes we’re more than happy to believe the science stuff, like Mercury, but what about these things? The Church at large doesn’t say much, even though there’s a day called Ascension Day, which marks the end of Easter and ten days before Pentecost.
In John 16 above we read about Christ’s ascension and His sending of the Holy Spirit to you and me. If Christ hadn’t ascended, the Holy Spirit wouldn’t have come to convict us of sin, bring us a relationship with God, and mature our relationship with God. Here we read the spiritual and historical truths… the absolute truths!
The Holy Spirit when He comes will convict the world (you and I) of sin. God speaks to us through the Holy Spirit. He convicts us of our right position and our right standing. The Holy Spirit takes us into truth, and as we read into the scriptures that the truth shall set us free (John 8:32). The Holy Spirit brings us to a place free from generational curses, freedom from our weaknesses, freedom from bindings, troubles and addictions. The Holy Spirit brings us the truth of Christ, and freedom from the judgement that belongs to us because of our sins.
Do we see the Holy Spirit rightly? Do we see Him as a person who we should be closer to and more desiring of? Or is he for someone else? Are we desiring to be close to him? The Bible tells us that it’s an advantage and desirable to be close to Him. He’s going to come and He’s going be God’s representation to us. He comes to the people who come together for His own purposes. He gives Glory back to God, and therefore comes to those who give Glory to God. He is God’s representative on Earth; everything that God has is Jesus’… but it’s the Holy Spirit that reveals it to us.
In John 16:13 we read that the Holy Spirit guides us into all truth. He doesn’t speak on his own authority… He brings hears and speaks those things that are eternal and belong to God himself! He guides us into the truth and tells us of the things that are going to come. We all need that truth in our daily lives.
In John 16:14 we read that He will glorify God. What if our lives don’t glorify Him? Will we still be blessed and filled by the Holy Spirit if we don’t glorify Christ? If we glorify God and Christ, the Holy Spirit will glorify God through your life. If you don’t align with scripture, then how can he glorify God through your life? We need to be careful in our life, align with scripture and glorify Christ in our lives – we need to stand, walk and grow in the Holy Spirit. There’s two lives – that of the flesh and that of the spirit.
As members of God’s father, we are meant to grow! We’re not meant to remain as children or babies, but grow and mature as brothers and sisters in Christ. In Romans 8: 14 we read “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God”. Men and women in God are people who’ve been fed by God, filled by the Holy Spirit and keep being filled. We are not meant to stay children, but grow and mature in God. We need to learn to carry the authority! The Holy Spirit enables us to be mature, and carry this authority and anointing. In 1 Peter 2:2 we read “crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation”. We’re not meant to stay still, we’re meant to grow and mature in Christ.
Where do you stand? Are you asking God to grow? Are you asking God about your direction? Trust God for your future. Let the Holy Spirit lead you, and live that you will carry His authority! He brings truth, freedom, and makes a way where there is no way.