Why do we Need the Holy Spirit?

Here are some thoughts I wrote down this week, on what the GLORY of God is, and Understanding the Holy Spirit  – inspirations from Piper, Munroe, with a little bit of my own, sprinkled in:
Glory – what is it? John Piper says it is the public display of the infinite beauty and worth of God (based on Is. 6 – where the angels sing, Holy Holy Holy Holy is…, the whole earth is filled with his glory). They are describing his goodness, perfection, love, radiance – made manifest for all of us to bear witness to it.
We will behold – we will see, feel, be changed by – his glory – His Godly attributes in fullness, on display.

Understanding the Holy Spirit – according to one of our favorite (now late) preachers of deep faith, Dr. Myles Munroe:
Acts 1:1-6 (written by Luke) John baptized you in water but in a few days you will be baptized in the Holy Spirit. Jesus calls the HS “the promise of the Father” – relating to the 1st promise the Father made in Gen. 3:15 What Adam lost when he first sinned was the Holy Spirit. He lost the Kingdom of God – The King’s dominion. The dominion of the rulership of God. When you lose the Holy Spirit, you lose the kingdom. When Adam lost the kingdom, he lost the dominion over the earth. So He made a promise.
Matthew 4:17 Jesus, right after his own baptism, was baptized by the HS (it descended upon him in bodily form like a dove and a voice came from heaven, saying, You are my Son, My Beloved! In you I am well pleased and find delight!” – Luke 3:22). In his first sermon preached after his 40 days in the wilderness, he declared – Repent, for the Kingdom of God has come near (is at hand). He was speaking of himself, for he was the only carrier of the fulness of the Holy Spirit. All of the Kingdom was IN him. He was FILLED with it without measure. And his primary message was on the Holy Spirit – the Kingdom of God.
Man’s #1 need, he communicated, is the Kingdom.
The Spirit of God – all of the Holy Spirit and his fruit.
Law enforcement are equipped to handle broken laws. Crimes committed. But the only person equipped to handle SIN, is the Holy Spirit. We may have information, or news of sin and the affects of sin in this world, but our solution is not in simply enforcing laws, or in behavior modification. It is to be filled with the Holy Spirit. To have his Spirit inside of our bodies.
Spirit is invisible. It cannot contain blood. A physical body must be the agent or carrier of blood. Since blood is the only thing that can truly free and forgive us of sin, according to the way God established covenant from the beginning of time. We’ve either got to shed the blood of animals, or accept the blood of Jesus as our new and improved sacrifice for sin – of our past, present and future.
 
*(My view: there is another sacrifice of blood and that is in the act of suicide…in essence, a physical declaration that Christ’s blood was insufficient to free you from your sin or pain. His sacrifice did not fully do its work, and therefore the sin and shame and pain inside became so overwhelming that a lie was believed – the lie that spoke, not even Jesus and his blood and his resurrection power is enough to bring hope for a new start, forgiveness, or relief. This is also the lie believed by those who cut themselves. They are deceived. The blood cutters release out of their body releases only temporary relief. It is a counterfeit, and a distortion or perversion of the truth that is found in the shedding of Jesus’ truly cleansing blood). 
Jesus said it’s better that I go, so that the Holy Spirit in me can come out of me when I leave, and go – or be released – into YOUR bodies. But he cannot fill an unholy body. So Jesus imparted the Spirit to US, but not until His work was finished – that is, until his body was used by the Holy Spirit until the job was completed in Him. He had to let the work be finished in Him and leave his earthly body before the Holy Spirit was let out of him and able to enter into OUR bodies.  Jesus was saying – you need MY body to prepare YOUR body. My blood to completely cleanse your sin, your body of its weakness, sickness and sin.
So, the promise of the Father from Gen.3:15 was fulfilled – that He would restore what was lost – the Spirit of God. The baby came through a woman and he was spotless, he shed his blood unto death. And now we have His blood that cleansed us (past tense).
Why was blood necessary to cleanse us? By Moses’ law, nearly everything was made pure by blood. The tabernacle and all the things in it were mere copies of the things of heaven and had to be purified by blood. But the real things in heaven had to be purified with far better sacrifices than the blood of animals. Without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sin. (Heb.9:22). He entered into heaven, and appeared before God on our behalf. Not to offer himself over and over and over, like Priests used to do w/animals.  vs. 26 – but now ONCE for ALL time, he has appeared at the end of the age to remove sin by his own death as a sacrifice.
*Jesus tells us about his Kingdom & says that it will begin when we receive the fullness of the Holy Spirit. We are living in the Kingdom of God now – the power of the Holy Spirit. The Kingdom of God will BEGIN when you rec’v the power of the HS.  To exercise the power available in the Kingdom of God, we must release the power of the HS.
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raising the bar, pt.2 “bless those who curse you”

luke 6:27, 28; romans 12:20, 21

“But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” “…if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head…Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.”

raise the bar:

we are “set apart”! we are sanctified. we can’t afford to treat people who’ve have done us wrong (or for that matter, like mike guglielmucci, shamed the Christian faith), how the world would treat them. then what makes us any different than the world!? for Christ’s sake! literally. for the sake of Jesus, who gave up his throne in heaven and eventually gave up his dignity & his very life-blood. for the sake & glory of Jesus who forgave us our every sin, we need to strive as one body to live above the standards of your average joe…even your average Christian joe.

one major way we can do this is by forgiving beyond what we think we can, by praying. how about somethin’ like, “Lord, i wanna see _____ the way you see them. even though they did this, give me compassion for them & help me see past my own hurt. give me your eyes for them. your heart for them. forgive them.” or if you can’t muster up all that with sincerity, then heck, start with a simple, “God, show ____ your love today”. what if two weeks of that consistent prayer leads to actually meaning it…which leads to real forgiveness…which leads to freedom and maybe even restoration and salvation?! itellyouwhat. get ready to take the limits off of His blessings when you act in obedience.

Q 4 U:

when’s the last time you blessed someone who cursed (or mistreated) you? do you think it’s tougher, the closer that person is to you?

we’ve all been judged or shamed. we remember the pain. or do we? does the extent to which we give grace to others depend on how long ago it was given to us?

does the blood of Jesus cover the blood of suicide?

thanks, dad, for your permission to write about gramma.

my gramma was so wonderful to be around. she was kind, always had a hug. she loved “the peoples’ court’ and ‘hee-haw’ and ‘mama’s family’. we used to camp with her in her pop-up at wallowa lake & roller skate on her wood floor. she nursed my first bee sting i got (in my belly button) while lounging in a hammock in her backyard. she baked us a bunny shaped coconutty cake every easter. she wasn’t afraid to speak her mind & boy, could she be blunt (i got that gene). she doted on her weiner dog, trudy (sister to ours) was devoted to the Lord & loved her husband. she lost grampa ted after over 50 years of marriage. that next year brought with it the greatest test of endurance.

emotional stress turned physical & chemicals in her brain started getting off-balance. no one knew her depression had gotten severe. no one knew about the thoughts. not the cuban refugee family she took in to her home, not her pastor, not even her two sons. they would’ve removed the guns from the home.

i was called with the request to drive to her house as “there had been an accident”. i pulled up in my white vw jetta & my mom held me & told me then…gramma was gone. i was confused. i sat on top my car hood with my knees up to my chin & rocked back & forth. there was no accident. she’d stripped her life from herself probably not b/c she wanted to die, but b/c she no longer wanted to live…and in doing so, stripped her life from everyone else who loved her. the tears just streamed as i watched her pastor & the elders haul off the carpet they’d ripped out of that tiny room. i’m just glad it was dark out. i’m even more grateful i wasn’t the one to discover her. i loved my gramma & respected her. i honor her even today. i just wish she was still with me & i could share my life & family with her, like we do w/rick’s grandmas (that seems like a selfish reason, doesn’t it). she sure loved family. there are so many great memories i can recount, that the awful details are usually overshadowed in my mind…

but for the sake of discussion, honest reflection, & hopefully peace to a reader who’s lost someone this way, let’s bring the topic out into the light.

do people who do this go to heaven? to seek some answers (cause i know i have far from all the answers), i went to the Bible, God’s Word. it says that to be absent from our bodies is to be present with the Lord, and there are so many that display his abounding mercy…but i didn’t take much comfort in this passage: he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames. Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him; for God’s temple is sacred, and you are that temple. ~ 1 Corintians 3:15-17.

this is the only place in the Bible where it refers to what may be suicide, although, it doesn’t even state it as such, specifically. no where else in the Word {Christians’ one & only true source of God-breathed, Holy Spirit inspired ancient text} does it state or even imply that suicide in & of itself, is a sin worthy of eternal damnation…an unpardonable sin. sheesh, even in judges 16:28-30, samson is granted by God the strength to do this. suicide, if unpardonable, would be not just mentioned as such, but woven throughout text.

i know from experience about the kind of God i serve. i don’t care if people call me biased or subjective. everyone of us is, really. God is just & merciful & kind. he is the essence & exemplification of love. he reaches to us beyond the point of our carnal death & gives us a chance to be judged, for the good, bad & ugly. not one of his kids will escape accountability. committing suicide? yeah, that too. they’ll have to answer for it to their Creator himself. sin cannot go unpunished. it was his life to make, & his to take, in his time. but for him to ‘sentence’ hell because of this would be unjust & uncharacteristic.

our lives are so valuable…often underestimated…& extremely important to God! read Psalm 139. to me, suicide can be the ultimate act of selfishness…but i think our Father looks beyond the sin at the time of death, & sees what mere man cannot: the whole person, their lifestyle, their love for him. he takes into account their suffering from mental illness or severe depression & applies the blood of his Son, Jesus to that final sin. so what if they aren’t alive to ask for it!?! his grace reaches beyond that technicality. his grace always looks at the heart.

his blood is not partial. it does not flow down our hearts full of sin avoiding a few choice acts. it cleanses all. that’s why i love to sing songs about it. the suffering & the blood of Jesus is worth squat if we humans can determine that some sins it does not cover (“how could he forgive a child molester or murderer?” “how could he forgive one who doesn’t ask for it because they’re dead now?”), & some it does cover. what if i’m saved, (i’ll use a lame example for lack of time) i’m driving & completely envying the person driving next to me. i end up rubber-neckin’ & crashing into a pole & i die? would a gracious God just look at my last sin of envy & say to me at the throne, ‘well in spite of your life of obedience & humility and your heart of love toward me & toward the least of these, you never repented of that last sin…so, since the wages of sin is death…’

absurd. that clearly goes completely against his character displayed throughout the entire Bible.

we all tend to ‘heirarchy’ the wrong we commit to help us feel better about our ‘little pet sins’, but to God, it is what it is ≈ that which separates us from him, and calls for a perfect atonement. envy, greed, suicide, homosexuality (sexual sin is different, but not worse to God. see 1 corinthians 6:18-20), disobedience, slander, drunkenness…you name it, it’s all sin. if we live this way, refusing to acknowledge/accept Christ’s atonement, it is serious business (see 1 corinthians 6:9-11).

the Word states there is o n e sin that’s unforgivable, unpardonable & results in hell: blaspheming the Holy Spirit ~ (my paraphrase: completely & permanently denying Christ, even after you know the truth in your spirit). this may seem contradictory to the scripture above naming many sins that can lead to eternal separation from God, but this one refers to a blanket statement, covering all of those listed, as examples. hell is for the unrepentant of heart that denies Christ. anyone who has guilt for their sin, confesses with humility & repents…(“such WERE some of you” oh, please don’t miss that part!)…he is immediately restored to right standing with God. my heart leaps for joy to read this again.

Christ words on this sin can be read in mark 3:22-30 & matthew 12:30-33 . dr. henry morris & author & theologian, dr. f.f. bruce shed some further light on that ‘unpardonable’ sin ~ to read their insights on the subject, click here (but come back!).

so yeah, i’m biased here. i miss her. but not so biased, i’m blind. i have faith (evidence of what i can’t see) that the saved don’t have to worry about heaven vs. hell when they die. they are free of every pain in their new bodies, enjoying the gift of eternal life. in my humble opinion, this is the bottom line: whether it was a life of a Christian taken by God in his timing, by someone else or by their own hand, that life…that blood is covered by the blood of their Savior. period.

oh…my gramma’s name?

grace.

now, as for whether or not we know if someone’s really saved before they die?! …well, that’s a topic for another day. i’m way past my wordcount on this one, but i’d loooove to read any comments on today’s.