Holy Spirit Part 4
He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you.
This verse will lead us into the next few weeks study. Jesus is talking about the Holy Spirit and what He will do when he comes and we will look at the Spirit's person and His work in the New Testament very closely. This one verse sums up so well what the Spirit is truly here to do in this age. He will bring glory to Christ by taking what is Christ's and making it known to us. I just love that. One of the commentaries on this verse that I read this week said the Spirit guards the honor of the Son and refuses glory for Himself. That sound like something that every one of us should be doing? Guarding the honor of the Son and taking none for ourselves. How many times have I not defended the honor of Jesus when I should have? How many times have I taken credit for something He did through me instead of giving all honor to Him alone? I know exactly...too many. Food for thought.
Up to now we have concentrated on who the Spirit was and what the Spirit's role was in the old testament. This week we look at several passages that link the old testament to the new testament. Some by direct quotation and some by actions. I read this week that the old testament was quoted in the new testament 855 times. Don't worry we won't be looking at every one of them today. :o)
The first thing I want to look at is the Spirit's foretelling of Christ in the Old Testament. The Spirit had a huge role in foretelling of Christ in the Old Yestament. The greatest reference to this is in.....
1 A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse;
from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.
2 The Spirit of the LORD will rest on him-
the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding,
the Spirit of counsel and of power,
the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD -
3 and he will delight in the fear of the LORD .
He will not judge by what he sees with his eyes,
or decide by what he hears with his ears;
4 but with righteousness he will judge the needy,
with justice he will give decisions for the poor of the earth.
He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth;
with the breath of his lips he will slay the wicked.
5 Righteousness will be his belt
and faithfulness the sash around his waist.
Does any of this sound familiar? Does any of this sound like something we have studied before?
He will strike to earth with the rod of His mouth; with the breath of His lips He will slay the wicked. Righteousness will be his belt
and faithfulness the sash around his waist.
Is that perfectly tied to what we studied in Ephesians 6 or what? You know, the more I study this book that God gave us the more that I am amazed by it. It is truly an awesome thing how every part of it fits perfectly with every other part. Man could have never accomplished this. Only though the Holy Spirit could such a collection of authors over 2000 years write something this cohesive. Every time I open it up, God says something to me.
Another passage that tells us about Christ's coming is Isa 42. In verses 1-4 speaks of the direct indwelling of the Holy Spirit in Christ.
1 "Here is my servant, whom I uphold,
my chosen one in whom I delight;
I will put my Spirit on him
and he will bring justice to the nations.
2 He will not shout or cry out,
or raise his voice in the streets.
3 A bruised reed he will not break,
and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out.
In faithfulness he will bring forth justice;
4 he will not falter or be discouraged
till he establishes justice on earth.
In his law the islands will put their hope."
We'll see more in just a minute about the significance of these words about Christ. I want to look a bit farther into Isa 42 before we leave it. In verses 5-7 the Father actually speaks directly to Jesus.
5 This is what God the LORD says-
he who created the heavens and stretched them out,
who spread out the earth and all that comes out of it,
who gives breath to its people,
and life to those who walk on it:
6 "I, the LORD , have called you in righteousness;
I will take hold of your hand.
I will keep you and will make you
to be a covenant for the people
and a light for the Gentiles,
7 to open eyes that are blind,
to free captives from prison
and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.
I hope this morning that these verses speak to you as much as they did to me as I studied for this lesson. I hope you can truly feel like you have been blind and He gave you sight. I hope that you can truly say that you were in a dark dungeon before Christ freed you. What awesome words.
Ok let's explore the link Isaiah 42 has to the New Testament.
Let's look at what Jesus did and said in Matt 12. This same story is also told in Luke 6 and Mark 3 This is just after Jesus had healed the man with the withered hand on the Sabbath after being confronted by the Pharisees about doing such healing on the Sabbath being lawful. It was only legal to help someone on the Sabbath if their life was in danger. Jesus was healing such things as this man's hand that were certainly not life threatening. The Pharisees were looking for any foothold they could find to accuse Him. The Pharisees were plotting to kill him and He obviously knew it. He withdrew to avoid the danger but as Mark tells us a great multitude followed Him and He healed them all. Anyone think it's interesting that all the religious figures of the day were trying to kill Jesus but the people still followed Him by the thousands?
Let's look at these verses in Matt 12:15-21
15Aware of this, Jesus withdrew from that place. Many followed him, and he healed all their sick, 16warning them not to tell who he was. 17This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah:
18"Here is my servant whom I have chosen,
the one I love, in whom I delight;
I will put my Spirit on him,
and he will proclaim justice to the nations.
19He will not quarrel or cry out;
no one will hear his voice in the streets.
20A bruised reed he will not break,
and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out,
till he leads justice to victory.
21In his name the nations will put their hope."
Matthew clearly states that this was done to fulfill the prophesy that Isaiah had written about. The Jews of that time assumed that when the Messiah came he would be a king, a king like the ones that they had seen. They thought that He would restore the kingdom of David. Jesus was certainly a king but one of a different kind that what they were expecting. What was happening here was to show them...and us...exactly what kind of king he would be. A gentle ruler bringing justice, healing and mercy. I think that a lot of times we are like the Jews of that day. We expect Christ to come blasting onto the scene bringing great visible victories when more often than not he works quietly just as he did here.
Let's look at another passage in Isaiah .....
1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
because the LORD has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
2 to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
This is a very interesting passage. It is obviously Isaiah penning these words but he is not talking about himself. He is talking about Christ. Perhaps it is Christ speaking through Isaiah but it absolutely Christ speaking in these verses. The new testament link to these verses in Luke 4:14-21
14Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. 15He taught in their synagogues, and everyone praised him.
16He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. And he stood up to read. 17The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:
18"The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to release the oppressed,
19to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor."
20Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him, 21and he began by saying to them, "Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing"
What an awesome thing. Today the scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.
Now let's dig a little deeper.
I want us to look very closely at these verses....
28 "And afterward,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your old men will dream dreams,
your young men will see visions.
29 Even on my servants, both men and women,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days.
1When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.
5Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. 6When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard them speaking in his own language. 7Utterly amazed, they asked: "Are not all these men who are speaking Galileans? 8Then how is it that each of us hears them in his own native language?
What is prophesied in Joel comes to pass in Acts. The Spirit is poured out on us...yes us...in Acts 2 . While Christ was here, He was the Counselor and strengthener. Not until He went back to the Father would the Holy Spirit truly be needed. Christ was His own interpreter and witness and could repeat His teachings to His disciples and to the masses so there was no need for another to enlighten and bring His words to mind. But His leaving would mean that the Father would need to send the Spirit to take over these duties among the believers and that is what we see in Acts 2.
In the verses in Joel it says our sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. When the Spirit comes to live in us in Acts, people speak in every language. All through both testaments people are doing these sorts of things. We see references about people seeing visions, healing the sick and lame and so on after the Spirit came to live in us. I want us to spend a minute pondering why we don't see these things now. Why don't we see these sorts of thing in our everyday life? Could it be that we are not close enough to God to make these sorts of things happen? There are only 2 parts to this equation, us and god. I'm pretty sure that God is still the same God He was in Acts 2 and the same God He was in Joel so that leaves us. God has really had it on my heart lately that we need to seek more of Him. We need to get to the next level. I don't expect to be doing faith healing any time soon but I do expect to be able to get closer to God. Closer to what He expects me to be. Closer to what He expects us all to be.
God is calling us to give our whole life, our whole being to Him. Not just on Sunday morning, not just when it's convenient for us but ALL of it. We are not where we should be because we are not totally committed. I vow to change that in my own life and I hope you will also.