Rejected by His own
"if the Holy Spirit be God than worship Him and treat Him as the Lord God"
The Holy Spirit is treated today like a second class Divinity and in some denominations a non-Person and irrelevant. There is no sense of reverential fear for Holy Spirit. He is sought after for what He can give to the Church rather than to know Him intimately. The very One Who was sent to replace Jesus Christ after His ascension to Heaven has been rejected by His own.
How true is that scripture regarding the treatment of the Christ which has also been fulfilled by The Church regarding the treatment that The Holy Spirit has suffered. It reads, in John 1:9-11:
n Is. 49:6
2 Or That was the true Light which, coming into the world, gives light to every man.
o Acts 13:27; 1 Cor. 8:6; Col. 1:16; Heb. 1:2
p Is. 53:3; [Luke 19:14]
3 His own things or domain
4 His own people
The New King James Version. 1996, c1982 . Thomas Nelson: Nashville
The Scriptures says that Christ came to His own people but was rejected because they did not know or recognise Him. For centuries many Christian denominations have bitterly blamed and accused the Jews for crucifying the Christ. But, the fact is, The Church has also done exactly the same to The Holy Spirit for the last 2000 years and still does. If the Holy Spirit had been a physical person, it very highly likely that He would have been persecuted and like the Lord Jesus Who sent Him, would have been put to death.
There are whole denominations and movements that refuse to even recognise Him as a Person let alone recognise Him as a Divine Person. Large sections of The Church even Pentecostal churches treat Him like a second rate Divinity. It is all Jesus and The Father, but as for The Holy Spirit, He is used like the make me have the spiritual and supernatural experience machine that you have to pay a few seconds of lip service to.
This pervasive and deeply seated rejection of the Divinity, Person and substitution for The Lord Jesus Christ role of The Holy Spirit has not only grieved the Holy Spirit no end, but has angered the Lord Jesus and The Father to the extent that many churches and entire denominations have been sent to spiritual death becoming nothing more than cold, empty buildings.
Direct parallels between Jesus Christ and The Holy Spirit
When Jesus Christ was on earth He was God in the flesh
· “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.” Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works. Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves. "John 14:6 – 11)
· “In that day you will ask in My name, and I do not say to you that I shall pray the Father for you; for the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God. I came forth from the Father and have come into the world. Again, I leave the world and go to the Father.” (John 16:26-28)
· “But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me.”(John 15:26)
· “However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, he will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears he will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.” (John 16:13-15)
“Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, he was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:9-11)
The Lord Jesus is now seated at the Right Hand of The Father in Heaven having completed His Redemptive work. The only Person of The Godhead now on earth is The Holy Spirit.
This means that trying to talk to Jesus Christ is not practical or possible because of His current location. Christians who look upwards to Heaven to pray to Jesus or The Father are faced with the same sense of distance that the Israelites had in the Old Testament. To the Israelites God was a long way up in Heaven and they had to call out with faith in the hope of Him hearing them. That sense of distance was always ever present with them. In fact, when they offered up sacrifices at the altars they believed that the smoke went up to God in Heaven Who then would answer them.
God has now removed the distance and the sense of distance by giving us The Holy Spirit Who not only dwells within us but also all around us. We do not need to strain our necks and hands towards Heaven in order to be heard. We can now bow our head in reverence while picturing in our minds The Holy Spirit standing in front of us as Saviour, Father and Guide.
1. The greater our knowledge of the Holy Spirit the greater will be our understanding of The Lord Jesus and The Father
The Lord Jesus said that The Holy Spirit would take what is His and make known to Christians. Also that The Holy Spirit will speak only what He receives from The Father. Since only The Holy Spirit is the one here on earth, therefore, the greater our intimate knowledge and relationship with Him the greater we will discover is our knowledge of both The Lord Jesus and The Father.
2. We should be praying to the Holy Spirit (Who is God (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) in the Spirit) asking in the Name of Jesus
Christians choke on the very thought of praying to the Holy Spirit because they are so caught up in theological dogma since there is no reference to praying to The Holy Spirit given by Jesus. And yet Christians have no second thoughts about praying to The Lord Jesus even though Jesus never taught the disciples about praying to Him. These theological chokes prevent Christians from truly understanding the utterly complete role of the Holy Spirit here on earth. He is the Saviour, The Father and the Lord of the Church. To pray to Him is to pray to The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit.
Without Christians and the Church at large coming to a full and thorough grasp of this basic role of The Holy Spirit on behalf of God it will be impossible for Christians and the Church to experience the fullness of Christ as The Lord Jesus has envisioned.
3. The Holy Spirit is the Head of the Church here on earth on behalf of The Lord Jesus Christ
4. There can be no revival without the Holy Spirit
Most churches I have been to, whenever a revival occurs, seem to suddenly be caught up in the revival without having been prepared. Normally this occurs when their Pastor invites a preacher who is currently associated with bringing revival wherever he/she goes. The congregations are rarely ever spiritually prepared for the expected revival. The length and impact of the revival therefore tends to be directly related to the number of times the revivalist(s) visit the church. On occasions there is only half-hearted attempt by leadership to motivate the congregation in preparation for the expected revival. For this reason, most church revivals have a predictable life span. The church then goes through a period of slow growth at a rate determined more by actual spiritual growth of the key leadership until the next new thing.
Very few churches ever initiate a genuine revival where there is a sudden explosion in the number of people becoming Christians with accompanying miracles, signs and wonders. There is a sense of helplessness and acceptance that perhaps this is how things were meant to be in the church. Yet in contradiction, it seems that many within the church are longing for revival. Very few are actively praying for it while many hope and expect it will happen one day when some revivalist will come to their church.
Tragically, the answer, The Holy Spirit, is right before their very eyes but they are caught up in religion and traditional beliefs that prevent them initiating a revival as a church.
The Holy Spirit is the originator of ALL revivals starting at the day of Pentecost when He arrived to replace The Lord Jesus’ ministry. He arrived dramatically and had a dramatic and immediate impact on the earth by bringing over 3000 people to Christ. He shook up traditional views of how to relate to God.
It is therefore, impossible to get a revival without allowing The Holy Spirit to be the ChairPerson of the organising committee. This is a very hard thing for most church leadership to understand because they do not have a relationship with The Holy Spirit. It is automatically presumed that when a committee is set-up that a brief prayer to God to bless the efforts of the team will mean that they have the endorsement of The Holy Spirit. The results of such efforts are self-evident. By contrast, The Holy Spirit is very dramatic when He comes on the scene to take charge of anything. He is God and Lord, and Head of the Church here on earth and will make significant changes to the way things are done something which most church leaders find very hard to accommodate.
The most significant change He is likely to demand is that the local church, led upfront by the leadership, repents for the sins of the local church. This includes repentance for having kept Him out of the local church Lordship.
The second significant change will be a period of intercession for a revival, again, led upfront by the leadership and not relegated to some church member(s). The leadership must take up the fight for souls and show the compassion needed to bring them in.
5. The Holy Spirit is Lord of the Church here on earth
· The Lord Jesus has already completed His ministry here on earth and is seated in Heaven waiting for the day of His return to earth
· The Lord Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to take on His task of leading the Church until His Second Coming. In effect, The Father and The Lord Jesus have sent The Holy Spirit to be Lord of the Church just as Jesus was Lord of the disciples while hear on earth.
· Since anything that God wants to be done here on earth will be accomplished by The Holy Spirit the Church must refocus her attention on the Lordship of The Holy Spirit
· The Church needs to invite The Holy Spirit into her heart to become Lord and Saviour. This would mean surrendering every aspect of her life to The Holy Spirit if she is to experience the fullness of His revival power
6. The Church must, firstly, repent to the Holy Spirit and then to God for ignoring The Holy Spirit
· I have yet to here a church leader preach or teach about the need for a corporate repentance to the Holy Spirit for ignoring and grieving Him. Significantly, for treating Him like He was not a Person, but rather some kind of spiritual force or thing. This repentance must not be a superficial exercise but must be a deeply felt and intended one based on a clear understanding of the seriousness of this requirement by The Holy Spirit before a close relationship with Him can be achieved by the Church.
· There must be a deep and fundamental commitment by the Church to re-educate their congregations about the Lordship of The Holy Spirit over the Church and commitment to submission to His Will for both individuals and the Church
7. Secondly, the Church must repent and intercede on behalf of the communities around them before revival can come.
· Revival is preceded by repentance. The local church as the priest of the Lord is able to intercede on behalf of their local community for a revival. This repentance and intercession must happen only after repenting to the Holy Spirit and to God as in no.5 above.
· Repentance and Intercession must be committed to until a revival arrives. These are spiritual wars fought for the souls of unbelievers. Battles may be won in a day but wars rarely ever are won in a day. One-off prayer meetings therefore cannot be considered effective in winning a spiritual war.
8. Individual Christians must cultivate an intimate relationship with The Holy Spirit
· Without intimacy a Christian cannot understand the ways of The Holy Spirit. This is not about head knowledge. This is about personal relationship with Him in the process of which the Christian gets to feel what The Holy Spirit is feeling. See what He is seeing. Hear what He is hearing. And having a deep understanding of how The Holy Spirit is likely to react to different issues both natural and spiritual.
· Intimacy that ensures that a Christian can always hear and distinguish the voice of The Holy Spirit from the many voices around them and in their heads.
9. The Church Leadership must develop an intimate relationship with The Holy Spirit in developing Church programs
1. How can you say you only worship Jesus as the Christ and Saviour and then reject the One Whom He has sent? Those who reject The Holy Spirit also reject the One Who sent Him.
2. How can you say you have fellowship with The Lord Jesus who is in Heaven and reject the One Whom He sent and is here on earth? His works being clearly evident among you.
3. Is not Christ dishonoured when you call The Holy Spirit a drunkard, a rebel rouser, disorderly like those found in pubs and hooligan sports fans? You claim His behaviour is like that of eastern religions, and witchcraft. He seems to be more in company with those than with what you expect Him to be in Church. You say "We have said no such thing!" But The Holy Spirit says "Wisdom is known by her fruits". Even if you do not believe Him, at least believe The Holy Spirit because of the works in people's lives that testify of Him that He proceeds from The Father and is sent by The Lord Jesus Christ.
4. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ but He has His own Personality when He does His works. He is like the wind, rain, fire, clouds, water, rivers all of which can be manifested as powerful torrents or quiet moves. He can be grieved, sinned against, quenched.
5. The Holy Spirit faces great theological minds today, even more numerous than those whom The Lord Jesus faced in His day. The Theologians of His day had rationalised that the Messiah was to come from a particular family line, from a particular place and there was to be a particular sign or style of His operations. They expected a Moses type military General. They expected an Elijah type prophetic spirit.
What do the theological intellectuals of today expect of The Holy Spirit?
- A spiritual General who will overwhelm the forces of evil and give the Church increased power and influence in the world's affairs
- Someone whose very persona is like a Dove, gentle and soothing
- A Spirit Who speaks not a word audibly for He has already spoken it all in Scripture
- All He does is to illumine the mind even as a person reads the Bible. The responsibility of the individual in this dispensation of The Holy Spirit, according to the great theological minds, is to read, study, reflect and meditate on the written word and slowly over time accompanied by practice they will understand the Voice of God. There is a heavy reliance on the scholarly works of current and past theological interpretations of the written word.
Differences between the "three" Moses (Representing the GodHead)
1. The Old Testament Moses (representing The Father Almighty) rescues and leads the Israelites only to the promised Land. He is symbolic of the Redemptive Moses of the New Covenant and Israelites are symbolic of humanity
2. The New Covenant Moses is The Lord Jesus Christ and Messiah. He rescues humanity by shedding His blood and rising from the dead. The Lord Jesus is the Redemption Moses of the New Covenant
3. The Holy Spirit is the End-time Moses who will lead God’s people to the Promised Land. Just like in the Old Testament when the Israelites tested God’s patience and suffered judgment it seems the Church is doing the same and over the centuries have faced many judgements. However, The Holy Spirit will succeed in taking into the Promise Land all those who are obedient to His Voice
The Holy Spirit wants to prepare The Church for the return of The Lord Jesus Christ. This means that all churches in all denominations are going to be significantly impacted by this preparation effort. The Holy Spirit will carry out this exercise on a scale that only The Lord God can do. It will be large in scale, it will be fast in speed of execution, and it will have category-9 earthquake impact proportions on local church traditions. What church leadership would be willing to take this risk and impact and accept it wholeheartedly? For this reason the confrontations between what The Holy Spirit wants to do and the local church leadership are willing to do will be like that of Elijah confronting the prophets of Baal.
The Holy Spirit will use the end-time Elijahs (that is, having the same prophetic anointing Spirit of Elijah) to prepare the way for the return of The Lord Jesus Christ. These Elijahs will be sent to churches as well as to non-believers accompanied by signs and wonders to demonstrate the power of the saving work of the Gospel.
Differences between the "three" Elijahs (Representing the GodHead)
1. The Old Testament Elijah from Tishbite (The Almighty Father type of Elijah) operated in the standard way in which OT prophets operated - He was a prophetic preacher, teacher, foreteller to Israel only. He performed signs and wonders before the entire nation of Israel even as God used him to draw His people back to God.
2. The Gospel Elijah - that is, John the Baptist - (The Son of God type of Elijah) operated in like manner to the coming Messiah. He was a prophetic preacher, teacher, foreteller to Israel only. However, for the first time he also baptised in water something that none of the OT prophets did. This was a sign of what The Messiah was going to be doing. He had followers or disciples something which was practiced in the Old Testament. The prophets in the Old Testament directed all the people to the Temple and the Ark of the Covenant where God's Presence dwelt
3. The End-Time Elijahs – that is, New Testament prophets - (The Holy Spirit type of Elijah) will operate differently from the Old Testament and Gospel Elijah. They will also be prophetic preachers, teachers and foretellers but this time it will be both to Jews and Gentiles because of the new dispensation. They will proclaim to the Church that they need to return to the God and Lord of the Church - The Holy Spirit - Who is the only One able to prepare them for the return of the Lord Jesus Christ. While the Gospel Elijah did not do any signs and wonders in order to ensure that only The Messiah was magnified before the Israelites, the End-Time Elijah will do greater signs and wonders than the Old Testament Elijah as a sign of the greater dispensation achieved for us by The Christ and also of His Glorious imminent return when the End-Time Elijah task will be complete.
The Old Testament Elijah restored the people back to their God by challenging them to make a decision whether they will serve the Lord God or serve Baal. The Elijah ministry (spoken of by Howard Pittman) will also challenge Church leaders to make a decision whether they will allow The Holy Spirit to be God and Lord of their local church or whether they will continue to control and run things as normal.
Those leaders who accept the Lordship of The Holy Spirit will be led to repentance and then intercession and worship resulting in a genuine large scale, lasting, overflowing revival within their local church that will impact their communities and beyond. The Holy Spirit will either remove those leaders who reject the offer of The Holy Spirit to become Lord of their local church from their positions or The Holy Spirit will allow that church to become dead.
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