THE WORD AND THE SPIRIT

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Gen. 1:1-3 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.

I saw the importance of the relationship between the Word and the Spirit from Dick Mills. Brother Mills memorized thousands of scripture passages as a young man, when he began to move in the power of the Spirit it became unusually powerful. He always spoke about the importance of the word and the Spirit and how they work together for the unveiling of God in our lives. Today, I try to build our church on these two pillars, the word and the Spirit. The word is the basic ingredient of our faith, the Holy Spirit makes it real. John Calvin was well none for his two fold emphasis, he taught that the word and the Spirit are the fountain of all divine revelation. Here are some comments from John Piper on Calvin’s emphasis.

“So two things came together for Calvin to give him a saving knowledge of God: Scripture itself and the inward persuasion of the Holy Spirit. Neither alone suffices to save. But how does this actually work? What does the Spirit do? The answer is not that the Spirit gives us added revelation to what is in Scripture, but that he awakens us, as from the dead, to see and taste the divine reality of God in Scripture, which authenticates it as God’s own word. He says, “Our Heavenly Father, revealing his majesty [in Scripture], lifts reverence for Scripture beyond the realm of controversy.” There’s the key for Calvin: the witness of God to Scripture is the immediate, unassailable, life-giving revelation to the mind of the majesty of God manifest in the Scriptures themselves.”

The gift of prophesy is the one gift of the Spirit that was emphasized by Paul. He said, “Covet earnestly spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy”. If Paul said it was something we should pursue it must be important. Think about it, what does prophesy consist of? Of course it is the classic picture of the combination of the word and the Spirit. If you want to follow Paul’s directive this is how you can do it, soak your mind in the word of God. Read it and chew on it incessantly. Next, be filled with the Spirit. If you do those two things, prophesy is not far away.

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