How can we be sure? Part 2
Last week we have talked about fearlessness that complete absence of fear and power the type that brings glory to God as things that are evidences of the Holy Spirit being alive in you. This week we will talk about two more because these too are things the devil and the flesh are incapable of really make happen
2 Timothy 1:7
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
Mahatma Gandhi – I like your Christ I just do not like your Christians, your Christians are so unlike your Christ!
Gandhi was on a search for truth, he found it in the words of Christ but not in the followers of Christ because of two things, peace and true love among Christ-followers
1 John 4:7,8, 14
Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. 8 But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love…..such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear.
Fear, one of the enemies greatest tools is destroyed by the power of the Holy Spirit in us…if God is love then the Holy Spirit is love
The fruit, characteristics of God’s nature start with love
Love is at the root of fearlessness, and it is certainly the basis of real legitimate power to change the world
In many ways we control love, we choose to love!
Yes, love is who God is and it is always the leading fruit of the Spirit
The love Paul is talking about is the purest form of love, the kind described in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
“Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 5 or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6 It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7 Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.”
The reason many have not been able to live up to this level of love is a lack of the fullness of the Spirit alive in them, only the Holy Spirit, who is God, living in us can love this way through us.
Because love is part of the fruit of the Spirit it must be something we surrender to and allow to work it’s perfect work in our lives.
In some ways it is easy to think about working to love others. To see them and say, I will choose to love them, or asking, “God help me to love them!” But the Love the Holy Spirit pours through us is much more freeing than that!
The devil can’t love, he only hates so the Holy Spirit fully empowering us enables us, if we choose to really love.
John 8:44 “You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”
Hatred, murderous, liar is the character make up of the devil…real love is just the opposite
Part of love that is not demonstrated as much as it should be by Christians is complete forgiveness…how often does someone hurt us, reject us wound us and we hold a grudge, how often does someone not like our idea, not value our opinion and we hold bitterness toward them, how often have we been passed up for a promotion or position that we thought we deserved and we become bitter and angry…
Real love forgiveswe realize forgiveness is the key to our freedom, our freedom at a minimum and may mean real freedom for others as well. It doesn’t mean we need to put up with abuse or behavior that is not Christ-like in the name of love but we choose to not allow and offense to continue to hurt us over and over again through unforgiveness and on top of that, true love prays for the offender to come to freedom as well.
Matthew 5:44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, (NKJV)
– Real love doesn’t mean you are walking on egg shells around people
– It doesn’t hold a grudge bringing up failures from the past always
– It doesn’t look for people to get the come uppin’s
– it isn’t jealous of what others have in position, stuff or anything else
– it isn’t prideful feeling more important than others that is why it doesn’t demand its own way, it may demand God’s but not their’s
– it always desires the truth to come out not their opinion to be right or their feelings to be right but the truth in every instance because real loves highest desire is freedom for people and the truth makes people free
– love endures, never fails and never gives up that someday people will get it but once again that never means you are to put up with abuse
Until we learn to totally forgive others we can not flow in all the Holy Spirit has for us because Christ did the same for us….once again we don’t have to put up with people that continue in broken behavior or be around them but we must choose to forgive.
But total forgiveness means not repeating to others how someone hurt you over and over, stop making others feel guilty and pointing the finger, letting others save face rather than rubbing their noses in what they did, when you protect people rather than expose them, when you pray for them….this is a sign of real love, the kind only the Holy Spirit can give
Josif Tson, Corrie Ten Boom, Wan Ming Do all men and women that suffered loss of family, material wealth, health, freedom under Russian Communism, Nazi’s, and Chinese Communism respectively as you read their stories you find one under lying truth….they chose to forgive! The result: God brought freedom and used them to change the world
This is the definition of the love we can have through the power of the Holy Spirit and only the power of the Holy Spirit based on 1 Corinthians 13
How many people are out of there are out of their minds that you know?
When people believe a lie to be true and continue to promote it as truth.
When people are willing to die for a drug habit or alcohol habit rather than get the help they need
When someone is being abused and rather than get help they would return to the abuse
When people know they don’t have enough money to buy this thing or that and it will get taken away from them but they purchase it anyway
When you say you love someone but continue to verbally, physically or emotionally abuse them?
When you know you are broken and your refuse to get help?
All these things are signs of brokenness, a lack of a sound mind that needs healing
Here are the promises of God
You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!
“the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
John 14:27 (NLT)
“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.”
This soundness of mind and the fruit of peace we are talking about here means living in a calm, no anger, being able to handle every situation without havoc, fearing nothing, feeling safe and secure at all times, living in prosperity of mind, heart and position, living in harmony with other believers.
Because of the Holy Spirit you don’t ever need to lose your peace, your sense of security or clarity of mind and thinking because the Holy Spirit promises soundness of mind
God provides the sound mind but we must choose to have it. A sound mind is right thinking and right thinking leads to right living…making us different than the world
Optimistic and hopeful
2 Timothy 1:12
That is why I am suffering here in prison. But I am not ashamed of it, for I know the one in whom I trust, and I am sure that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until the day of his return.
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
Lives a life of Christian virtues
And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.
A sound mind is established on the Word of God
But they delight in the law of the Lord; meditating on it day and night.3 They are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season. Their leaves never wither, and they prosper in all they do.
These aspects of a sound mind are all things the Lord will do in us through the power of the Holy Spirit but they are things we have control over receiving of not.
Fearlessness and power are only things God can do we can pray but he makes it happen. He provides Love and soundness of mind but we must choose t walk out love and soundness of mind in all aspects
However as you have been filled with the Spirit and you nurture that relationship in your life you can expect, as you walk in the Spirit (Galatians 5:16), to see these evidences alive in you
Pray for those who desire to be filled with the Spirit r refilled but where not here or comfortable last week