December 9, 2011
We’ve been talking this week about our heart, our inner soul and spirit, the true essence of ourselves. We talked on Monday about receiving revelation knowledge in our hearts as opposed to knowledge in our minds. This is the knowledge that brings power with it and cannot be taken away. Revelation knowledge, knowledge in our hearts, changes us and transforms us.
For months I’ve been stressing the importance of learning to allow the Holy Spirit to lead and guide you in all that you do. He does that from your heart.
Because we are such beings that think and reason and processes stuff continually in our minds, it is a challenge to stop responding and functioning based on our own reasoning and begin to sense what is in our heart and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit.
In the bible we see on every page people doing one thing or another. Some did this or that because they were responding to what they wanted to do. They had reasoned out what they should do.
Others were being led by the Holy Spirit to do a certain thing. As I was studying scriptures on the heart I came upon something very interesting. Below is a scripture in 4 different versions. From the many I looked at these were the 4 variations in them all. As you read through them see if you can notice the difference.
New International Version(©1984)
“When Moses was forty years old, he decided to visit his fellow Israelites.
New American Standard Bible(©1995)
“But when he was approaching the age of forty, it entered his mind to visit his brethren, the sons of Israel.
Weymouth New Testament
“And when he was just forty years old, it occurred to him to visit his brethren the descendants of Israel.
King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
And when he was full forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren the children of Israel.
In the NIV version it would have you believe that Moses ‘decided’ on his own volition to visit his fellow Israelites. In the NAS version it would lead you to think that the thought to visit them just ‘entered his mind’. Then in the Weymouth you would believe that out of the blue ‘it occurred to him’ to go visit them. But when we go to the Greek the KJ (and many that I didn’t list here) has it more accurate. It ‘came into his heart’ to visit his brethren.
In all the translations I read there was a great mixture of all these different variations. But most of them did use ‘heart’ accurately. This is one reason that I believe we must take it upon ourselves to study the Word a little deeper.
To me it is very important to use the proper word to show that Moses was led by the Holy Spirit and not just by a random thought that came to his mind.
We have so many thoughts throughout our days. Many come in and in an instant we have evaluated them and acted upon them. This occurs continually throughout the day. But all the while deep in our heart, our soul and spirit the Holy Spirit is leading us and guiding us.
We must learn to evaluate our thoughts and be judge and jury over each one to verify if it lines up with what the Spirit is also leading us to do.
Let me give an example. While at work a thought pops into your head that you have a few minutes before going to lunch so you will stop and pay your personal bills which you have brought from home. In doing that you run out of stamps and are one short, so you ‘borrow’ one from the office stash. There now, you are all done with your bills and can go to lunch, feeling very satisfied with what you’ve just accomplished.
As a Christian you are free to do this. Jesus has paid the debt for all your sin, past, present and future. There is grace covering you for these actions. BUT – is that really what God prefers a child of His to be doing? What if when that thought came to our minds we stopped and sensed inside ourselves to see if that thought lined up with our heart rather than just acting upon it? I dare say that it won’t.
Remember when we studied about what the word children meant?
Anyone living in full dependence on the heavenly Father, i.e. fully (willingly) relying upon the Lord in glad submission.
Submission. Submission to the leading of the Holy Spirit within. You may think since that thought just popped into your head that it was what you were supposed to do, but not if it doesn’t align with the leading in your heart from the Holy Spirit.
The longer we walk with the Lord the more we know automatically what thoughts will line up with that leading and which ones will not.
2 Corinthians 10:5
overthrowing reasonings and every high thing that lifts itself up against the knowledge of God, and leading captive every thought into the obedience of the Christ;
This is the key to how we become transformed. As we take thoughts captive examining them one by one and bringing them under the scrutiny of the Holy Spirit and His leading we begin to cull out those thoughts that don’t line up. Through time when they come to our minds we can instantly reject them and move forward. Eventually those adverse thoughts become less and less.
Where we run aground is when we refuse to listen to that leading of the Spirit and act on those thoughts because of our own selfish desires. We don’t trust God to fulfill this or that desire, no matter how small, and proceed to fulfill it for ourselves. A mature child of God does not do this.
When we are first adopted into the sonship of Christ we begin a transformation process. Those new in Christ will still appear in many ways just as they did before they were adopted. We try to help them by giving them specific laws to follow to be pleasing to the Lord. These laws are based on scripture, but many times they are based on our own experience where God has transformed us. Therefore we assume that this is exactly what all people should do.
The problem with all this is that by teaching them the do’s and do not’s we are trying to expedite the transformation process and get straight to the correct behavior of a transformed person without the transformation process. We cannot circumvent the transformation process that the Holy Spirit is trying to complete within each person. It is detrimental to their spiritual health, their heart health.
We must teach others from day one to begin to listen to their heart. They should be taught to listen, gauging each thought by the sensing of the Holy Spirit deep in their soul. We have had far too little teaching on this and so much more on performing the actual behaviors. The trouble is that we don’t trust the Holy Spirit to lead them. We also don’t trust them to follow that leading accurately. So we give them the rules, to clear things up for them. The Holy Spirit doesn’t need our help.
This creates what I wrote about in my post The Punishment of the Imposters. They appear on the outside to be transformed but are merely performing on the outside when on the inside they are still the same. This is exactly what the religious rulers of Jesus day were and Jesus called them snakes and vipers for their pretense.
When we see in the Word where it talks about unacceptable or sinful behavior, these are indicators. If we are doing our job as mentors and teaching others to live by the sensing of the Holy Spirit each and every day and to allow that leading to transform them, then we will begin to see their behavior on the outside gradually change as well. Sometimes drastically the old desires drop away and they begin to automatically desire godly wholesome behaviors.
But there are other times that the change is slower coming. We all know this. If you will be honest with yourself there are things you feel that you have been struggling and have been for years. You mind/will wants one thing but it doesn’t line up with the leading of the Holy Spirit and so there is conflict. Many times we just force our behavior to come in line when the desire hasn’t changed.
If a person professes to be a child of God yet through the years there is no sign of transformation they may in all probability not be a child of God. Remember a child of God is someone living in full dependence on God. So when we see in the bible where Paul, and others, discusses adverse behavior, they are using these as indicators, not laws.
Is a person a drunkard, glutton, hater, gossiper, etc. then they have not yet been transformed in these areas. It should be that continual growth should be visible as one grows closer and closer to the Lord and continues every day to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. If there is no change then that is an indicator that that person is not a child of God and that is a serious problem. That problem, the one of them not being a child of God, needs to be addressed, not the outward behaviour.
The law or laws, rules, address the physical body and its behavior. It causes the person to appear transformed while still untransformed on the inside. The Holy Spirit sheds grace to cover so that transformation can take place on the inside which will show gradually day by day on the outside.
God gives us grace as an incubator for this transformation to take place within. We too must have grace with ourselves and with others as this transformation takes place. We must provide others a safe, graceful place to grow and transform.
When we mentor instead of telling them right from wrong let us point them back to what the Holy Spirit is telling them in their hearts. Teach them to sense Him. When they do you will see it occur to them that they really knew all along what to do, it was there in their heart all along.
Guard your heart more than anything else, because the source of your life flows from it.