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Doctrine of the Holy Spirit – Part 6

Holy Ghost

VI. Sins Against the Holy Spirit

A. By Unbelievers

1. Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit – Matthew 12:22-37 “Then was brought unto him one possessed with a devil, blind, and dumb: and he healed him, insomuch that the blind and dumb both spake and saw. And all the people were amazed, and said, Is not this the son of David? But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, This fellow doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub the prince of the devils. And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand: And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand? And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore they shall be your judges. But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. Or else how can one enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house. He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad. Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come. Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit. O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.”

Mark 3:22-30 ” And the scribes which came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth he out devils. And he called them unto him, and said unto them in parables, How can Satan cast out Satan? And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand. And if Satan rise up against himself, and be divided, he cannot stand, but hath an end. No man can enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man; and then he will spoil his house. Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme: But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation. Because they said, He hath an unclean spirit.”

NOTE: A careful study of the above two texts (the only passages that speak of this sin) clearly show that Jesus was addressing unsaved people.

2. Resisting the Holy Spirit – Resist means “to fight against” – Acts 7:51-60 “Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which shewed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers: Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it. When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth. But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God. Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul. And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.”

B. By Believers

1. Quenching the Spirit – This is caused by not doing what the Spirit wants us to do. A sin of omission. 1 Thessalonians 5:19 “Quench not the Spirit.”

2. Grieving the Spirit – This is caused by doing what the Spirit does not want us to do. A sin of commission. Ephesians 4:30 “And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.”

3. Vexing the Spirit – To vex means “to wear down or to weary.” Isaiah 63:10 “But they rebelled, and vexed his holy Spirit: therefore he was turned to be their enemy, and he fought against them.”

4. Lying to the Spirit – Acts 5:1-6 “But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles’ feet. But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land? Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God. And Ananias hearing these words fell down, and gave up the ghost: and great fear came on all them that heard these things. And the young men arose, wound him up, and carried him out, and buried him.”

Keep your vows! – Ecclesiastes 5:1-7 “Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil. Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few. For a dream cometh through the multitude of business; and a fool’s voice is known by multitude of words. When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for he hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed. Better is it that thou shouldest not vow, than that thou shouldest vow and not pay. Suffer not thy mouth to cause thy flesh to sin; neither say thou before the angel, that it was an error: wherefore should God be angry at thy voice, and destroy the work of thine hands? For in the multitude of dreams and many words there are also divers vanities: but fear thou God.”

5. Tempting the Spirit – When two or more believers agree to do something together against the direction of the Holy Ghost. Acts 5:7-10 “And it was about the space of three hours after, when his wife, not knowing what was done, came in. And Peter answered unto her, Tell me whether ye sold the land for so much? And she said, Yea, for so much. Then Peter said unto her, How is it that ye have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord? behold, the feet of them which have buried thy husband are at the door, and shall carry thee out. Then fell she down straightway at his feet, and yielded up the ghost: and the young men came in, and found her dead, and, carrying her forth, buried her by her husband.”

NOTE: Numbers 4 and 5 above are examples of “the sin unto death.” 1 Corinthians 11:27-30 “Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.” 1 John 5:16 “If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it.”

6. Doing Despite unto the Spirit – Hebrews 10:29 “Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?” Despite means “to insult.” In this case – Hebrews 10:24-31 “And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. He that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses: Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace? For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” – it refers to insulting the Holy Spirit by a light, indifferent attitude towards church attendance and love for God’s people.

 

 
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Posted by on July 13, 2013 in God's Truth

 

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Doctrine of the Holy Spirit – Part 3

III. The Ministries of the Holy Spirit (Continued)

Holy SpiritF. Concerning Sinners

1. He convicts the world of sin and unbelief – John 16:8-9 “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me;”

2. He convinces those who are ignorant of God’s righteousness – John 16: 8, 10 “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more;” Romans 10:3 “For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.”

3. He convicts the unsaved of judgment and eternal punishment – John 16:8, 11 “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.” Revelation 20:10 “And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.”

4. He regenerates the believing sinner – Titus 3:5 “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;” John 3:1-8 “There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.” 1 Peter 1:23 “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.”

Church-of-the-Holy-Spirit-Jihlava2011interiérG. Concerning the Church

1. He helped form it –  Ephesians 2:19-22 “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”

2. He directs its Missionary work – Acts 8:29 “Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot.” Acts 13:2, 4 ” As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus.” Acts 16:6-10 “Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia, After they were come to Mysia, they assayed to go into Bithynia: but the Spirit suffered them not. And they passing by Mysia came down to Troas. And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; There stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us. And after he had seen the vision, immediately we endeavoured to go into Macedonia, assuredly gathering that the Lord had called us for to preach the gospel unto them.”

3. He inspires the church’s singing service – Ephesians 5:18-19 “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;” Hebrews 2:12 “Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee.”

4. He anoints it preachers – 1 Corinthians 2:4 “And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:”

5. He chooses its preachers – Acts 20:28 “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”

6. He warns its members – 1 Timothy 4:1 “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;”

7. He desires to make decisions for it – Acts 15:28 “For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;”

8. He speaks to it – Revelation 2:7 “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.” Revelation 2:11 “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.” See also Revelation 2:17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22.

9. He desires to head its visitation and evangelistic program – Acts 1:8 “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” Revelation 22:17 “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.”

Dove representation in the Baptism of Christ b...H. Concerning the Individual Believer

1. He regenerates the believing sinner – Titus 3:5 “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;” See also John 3:3-7; James 1:18; 1 Peter 1:23.

2. He baptizes the believing sinner into the Body of Christ – 1 Corinthians 12:13 “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.” Galatians 3:27 “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” It is a spiritual baptism into the body of Christ that saves us, not water baptism. Water baptism is our testimony that we have trusted Jesus as our Saviour.

3. He indwells the believing sinner – Romans 8:9 “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” John 7:37-39 “In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)” See also 1 Corinthians 2:12; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 1 Corinthians 6:19; Ephesians 3:16; and 1 John 3:24.

4. He seals the believing sinner – 2 Corinthians 1:22 “Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.” The word “seal” means “to stamp with a signet or private mark for security and preservation.” Compare Ezekiel 9:4 “And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.” And Revelation 7:3 “Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.” Revelation 9:4 “And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads.” Revelation 14:1 “And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.” Revelation 22:4 “And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads.”

5. He is the earnest of the believing sinner – 2 Corinthians 1:22 “”Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.” Ephesians 1:14 “Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.” 2 Corinthians 5:5 “Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit.” An “earnest” is a “pledge.” It is part of the purchase money or property given in advance as security for the rest. NOTE: These first five points are a “done deal” that cannot be undone! They assure us of having peace with God.

6. He desires to continually fill the believer – Luke 11:13 “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” Ephesians 5:18 “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;” New Testament Christians were filled often. There is one indwelling, but many fillings. Acts 2:4 “And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” Acts 4:8 “Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel,” Acts 4:31 “And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.” See also Acts 6:3; 7:55; 9:17; 11:24; 13:9; and 13:52.

This sixth ministry of the Holy Spirit assures us that we will have the peace of God. The filling of the Holy Spirit assures the believer of the following blessings:

Holy Spirit 27a. He will pray for the believer – Romans 8:26 “Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.” Ephesians 6:18 “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;” Jude 1:20 “But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost,”

b. He will guide the believer – John 16:13 “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.” Romans 8:14 “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.”

c. He will teach the believer – 1 John 2:20, 27 “But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things…But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.”

d. He will empower the believer for witnessing – Acts 1:8 “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” 1 Thessalonians 1:5 “For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake.”

e. He will impart the love of Christ to, and through, the believer – Romans 5:5 “And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”

f. He will change the believer into the image of Jesus Christ – 2 Corinthians 3:18 “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the LORD.” Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law..”

g. He will strengthen the believer’s inner man – Ephesians 3:16 “That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;” 2 Corinthians 4:16 “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.”

h. He will reveal Biblical truth to the believer – 1 Corinthians 2:10 “But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.”

i. He will assure the believer of his or her salvation – Romans 8:16 “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:” 1 John 3:24 “And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.”

j. He will give the believer liberty from sin – Romans 8:2 “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” 2 Corinthians 3:17 “Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.”

k. He will give the believer words to say – Mark 13:11 “But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.”

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Next Entry – The Names, Titles, and Symbols of the Holy Spirit

Holy Spirit 28Related articles

 
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Posted by on June 8, 2013 in God's Truth

 

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Jesus Pardons an Adulteress

I chose to use the word pardon here because I believe it is important for us to realize that when God forgives our sin, we are completely exonerated of our wrong-doing and made innocent through what Jesus did on the cross. It is as if we never sinned.

Satan knows that our human nature is to think back on forgiven sins and feel guilty and worthless because of them. He will bring the sins of the past to our remembrance in his attempts to hinder the work God wishes to do through us, but we must come against him. God assures us that not only does He forgive us of our sin, but he casts it as far away as the east is from the west – they never meet. When we listen to that stinking old devil and try to remind God, “Remember when I did that, I am so sorry.” God remembers it not. We must realize that when He forgave us we began anew and we now look forward, not backward.

Today’s Scripture – John 8:1-11

The book of John is my very favorite of the gospels. I will re-read it continuously while I have breath in me. I love that John shows how Jesus always won the great debates that he had with the Scribes and Pharisees. They were constantly attempting to trip Jesus up or trick him into stumbling, to no avail. They hated that he, as the Light of the World, revealed their Godless behavior. Re-reading this during times of attacks in my own life, gives me the peace of knowing that God is always in control and will always win over evil. Since my strongest spiritual gift is that of prophet, I strongly detest injustice.

In this passage, the Jewish leaders brought a woman “caught in adultery” without bringing the man she was caught with, as set forth in their own Law, to Jesus with the purpose of trapping him. If Jesus said the woman should not be stoned, they would have accused him of violating Moses’ Law. On the other hand, if he encouraged them to execute her, they would turn him in to the Romans who did not allow the Jews to perform their own death penalties.

Note in verse 2 that Jesus was sitting down as he was teaching. He “stooped down and wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.” It appears that Jesus was trying to ignore them, and he really did not want to get involved in this issue, but they continued to press him until he had to address it.

Go Jesus! “he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.” I do not believe that he meant if they were totally sinless in general; nor that if they had never broken the 7th Commandment that they could cast the first stone. It makes more sense that he may have been saying, “if there is one of you who is innocent of this sin, then let him cast the first stone at her.”

Then Jesus stooped again and continued to write on the ground. The thought has come to my mind that it is possible that he was writing the names of those men who had committed adultery themselves, perhaps with her. Rather, knowing Jesus’ compassion for all, he was more likely giving them the chance to slink away without having to face the all-knowing look in his eyes.

When Jesus stood again, the accusers were nowhere to be found. Their plot had backfired on them. They were the ones caught in their own trap! This is usually what happens when hypocrites impudently strive to point their fingers at others.

After asking her where her accusers were and seeing that they had fled, he said to the woman, “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” She had watched as Jesus craftily sent her accusers creeping off in the opposite direction, as she awaited her fate.

The door to salvation was opened when Jesus showed her unimaginable grace and gentleness instead of condemning her. This must have begun a burning desire to hang around and reverently learn more from the Master. I find it ironic also that the Pharisees’ intentions to trip Jesus up not only backfired on them, but if they had not brought her to Jesus this day, she probably would have continued in her sin until her heart was so hardened that she would not have been able to be saved.

GOD ALWAYS KNOWS WHAT HE IS DOING! PRAISE HIM!

1   Jesus went unto the mount of Olives.
2   And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them.
3   And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst,
4   They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.
5   Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?
6   This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.
7   So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.
8   And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.
9   And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.
10   When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
11   She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.

 
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Posted by on August 6, 2011 in Jesus' Encounters with Women

 

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The Samaritan Woman

English: Christ and the woman of Samaria at Ja...

English: Christ and the woman of Samaria at Jacob’s Well (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Jewish culture in the first century treated women as second-class citizens. They had very few of the rights that men of that time had. Jesus respected all people equally, but he showed a special care for women. In this category, I will be sharing from God’s word about some of the encounters Jesus had with different women during his ministry on earth.

This first entry will be of the Samaritan woman that Jesus met at the well. You will find this story in John 4:1-26. It begins with Jesus leaving Judaea and traveling to Galilee because of mounting opposition from the Pharisees. Most Jews of that era hated the Samaritans and avoided them like the plague. Jesus had no use for such cultural limitations, and since the route through Samaria was the fastest one to Galilee, that is the way he chose. I like to think that our Father in Heaven told him something like this, “Hey, Son, since you are going that way, there is this Samaritan woman who needs to know that we love her, and we have a cure for her sin.”

Before, I continue with the story, we must first understand the history behind the Jewish hatred of the Samaritans. Samaria was the capital of the Northern Kingdom before it was conquered by the Assyrians. When they invaded the Northern Kingdom, many Jews were exiled to Assyria and foreigners from Babylon, Cuthah, Ava, Hamath, and Sepharvaim were brought in to Samaria to settle the land and keep the peace (2 Kings 17:24). Most Jews who remained in Samaria married the foreigners and they became a mixed race.

The Jews from the Southern Kingdom considered themselves to be a pure race of Jews. They became very prejudiced against the spoiled blood line of Samaritans because they felt that they had betrayed their people and their nation by mixing their Jewish blood with foreign blood.

Now at Jacob’s well in Samaria: Jesus was weary from his journey “and it was about the sixth hour” or noon. Usually the women went to fetch water from the well in the morning and in the evening. This woman came at noon to steer clear of others, probably because of her poor reputation.

John 4:7-9 “There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink. 8. (For his disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat.) 9. Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.”

This woman must have been quite taken aback by Jesus’ (a Jew) request for a drink of water. First of all, she was a woman. Second, she was a hated Samaritan woman who was known to be living in sin, and she was in a public place. No respectable Jewish man would talk to a woman under such circumstances. But Jesus did.

Verse 10 “Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.”

I believe that Jesus knew full-well who this woman was and what her life was like. I can imagine him resting near the well, watching the woman looking this way and that as she approached with her water pot. His heart must have ached knowing the pain her sin was causing her. He offered her “living water.”

The Old Testament compares thirsting after God to one who thirsts for water (Psalm 42:1; Isaiah 55:1; Jeremiah 2:13; Zechariah 13:1). God is also called the fountain of life in Psalm 36:9, and the fountain of living waters in Jeremiah 17:13. When he told the woman that he could give her living water, he was laying claim to being the Messiah, the only one who could offer this gift that gratifies the very soul.

He also knew that if she accepted his gift, her life would change drastically for the better. He does not wish for any one to hurt or suffer, and a life of sin is very damaging to the human spirit.

Verses 11-15 “The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water? 12. Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle? 13. Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: 14. but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life. 15. The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw.”

No one had ever talked with her about her spiritual hunger and thirst before. She misunderstood and thought that Jesus could give her an endless supply of water so that she would never have to return to the well. He was teaching her that our souls hunger for spiritual food and water, just as our bodies do for physical food and water.

Verses 16-20 “Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither. 17. The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband: 18. for thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly. 19. The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet. 20. Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.”

The woman became uncomfortable when Jesus hit her sin square on the head. She was quick to shift the focus off herself by changing the subject. It was a smokescreen to keep Jesus from her deepest need. It happens to all of us at one time or another, especially when we are under conviction about something. Jesus did not let her get away with that tactic. He brought up the very important point that where we worship is not as important as our attitudes when we worship.

Verses 21-26 “Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22. Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. 23. But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. 24. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. 25. The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things. 26. Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he.

Wow! Can’t you just hear the authority ring from that passage?  When Jesus referenced “salvation is of the Jews” he was saying that only through the Jewish Messiah would the world be saved. Jesus knew that the woman was familiar with the passages in the Old Testament that foretold of the coming Messiah. He finally got through to her.

As we read on we see that the woman was so excited to share what she had found that she left her water pot at the well and told people to “Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?” (Verse 29) Then in verse 39. “And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.”

As we can see, Jesus spent not a little time with this woman because he cared about her. I know from experience that it does not matter how sinful we are, we are worth Jesus’ time. He stands waiting with open arms to give to each of us “living water.”

 
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Posted by on June 28, 2011 in Jesus' Encounters with Women

 

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