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Bob Young

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Thanks for visiting our website! Picture of the Month: sharing the word in Pilanqui, Ibarra, Ecuador; a view of part of the crowd, two baptisms. [Click picture to enlarge.]

Preaching in Pilanqui

Ministry is always a team effort--Jan and I have shared the work of ministry and missions for 48+ years! Countless others have encouraged us, supported us, loved us, and prayed for us. In addition to the customary "Brother Bob," I am also known as dad and papaw. My favorite breakfast is huevos fritos, frijoles, and tortillas, with a good hot sauce and a cup of quality coffee! My greatest joy in life is being part of the kingdom; my #1 priority is to advance "kingdom things" and help develop authentic "kingdom people." I seek to serve and share the good news about Jesus everywhere I go, helping people find Jesus and helping people mature in Jesus. One of the greatest blessings of my life is to be loved by countless people around the world!

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Study Three: The Holy Spirit Brings Spiritual Words [1 Corinthians 2-3]

A careful study of the Holy Spirit in the book of Acts focuses on three aspects of the work of the Holy Spirit — confirmation, empowerment, and expectation. This lesson explores the way the Holy Spirit worked in fulfillment, to confirm and validate God’s word for the first century believers.
[If you have not already done so, now is time to read my extended essay about the activities of the Holy Spirit in the Book of Acts: Role of the Holy Spirit in Acts and in the Early Church.]

One aspect of the confirming role of the Holy Spirit in the Book of Acts is fulfillment—-the Holy Spirit speaks with God’s authority to confirm, to reveal, to communicate, and to instruct.

The HS is a divine person. When the HS speaks, God is speaking. The words of the Father, the words of the Son, and the words of the HS are the same words. Therefore, the words of the HS have authority. The words of the HS were given to the apostles. Since the apostles are not physically present to speak to us directly, where do we find the “words taught by the Spirit?”

Many today expect the HS to speak directly. Some believe the HS will somehow be understood by carnal people who are controlled by natural impulses. In 1 Cor. 2:11-16, Paul says that the only way to know and understand God’s wisdom is by the revelation received from God, which God has freely given by giving us his Spirit. The spiritual things of God cannot be explained by human wisdom. The context of 1 Cor. 2:13 clarifies the meaning: explaining spiritual things to spiritual people, in spiritual terms or concepts, i.e. with the words the Spirit gives. Considering the contextual reference to the natural person, v. 13 is most likely a reference to spiritual people. The natural (unspiritual) person does not receive the things of the Spirit because they are foolishness to such a person. The lack of understanding is because the things of the Spirit are spiritually discerned. The spiritual person evaluates (discerns) all these things, and is not evaluated (discerned) by others.

When Paul describes the work of the Holy Spirit in 1 Corinthians 2-3, he uses a powerful contrast between carnality and spirituality. He answers the question raised above: “Since Paul and the other apostles are no longer here to speak to us directly, where can we find these ‘words taught by the Spirit’?” We turn to Scripture, seeking understanding.

In 1 Corinthians 2-3, Paul explains the contrast between the spiritual and the natural (physical, carnal). (See also Gal. 5:16-18). The basic idea of the adjectives is that of sharing the nature of something, or having the characteristics. Spiritual and carnal relate to one’s nature or characteristics.
• The Spirit’s power is demonstrated in the message and preaching, 1 Cor. 2:4
• The powerful words that reflected the Spirit’s power were the basis of a faith that rested on God’s power and wisdom, and not on human wisdom, 1 Cor. 2:5
• The Spirit participates in God’s communication, giving words that communicate spiritual meaning. These words communicate God’s truth, and are authoritative because they are divine. They reveal and instruct, 1 Cor. 2:6-10
• The words of the Spirit are not understood as long as one tries to understand them with human wisdom or in physical, natural thought patterns. In fact, such spiritual things are considered foolishness by the natural or unspiritual person, 1 Cor. 2:12-14
• The lack of understanding is due to the fact that spiritual things are discerned with spiritual concepts or orientation, 1 Cor. 2:14-15
The early believers saw in the work of the Spirit the confirmation that Scripture was being fulfilled. They saw the confirmation of God’s purpose and plan, and the confirmation of God’s word as revealed in the prophets.

Spiritual vs. carnal (1 Cor. 3:1-4)
• Solid food or milk
• Ready to receive, or incapable of receiving
• Spirit of Christ, or worldly striving
• Spiritual character, or that of mere men
• Christ followers, or followers of men

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