WHAT YOU RECEIVED WHEN YOU WERE BORN AGAIN
Now, we’re going to tackle something that every Christian has to get a handle on - and then, even more so, as we get older. Unfortunately, many Christians have not been taught about what really happened when they believed and received Jesus as their Savior and confessed with their mouths what they believed in their hearts. Most just view it as just getting your ticket to Heaven instead of Hell - and, of course, that is part of it also - BUT THERE’S A WHOLE LOT MORE. Therefore, many, many Christians just go through their lives without experiencing a huge amount of what God has made available to them.
Now, many of us here in this room, know there is more, but, as we get older, it seems to get harder and harder to walk in it. The Lord has shown me that we need to talk more about this.
First - everyone needs to understand that the spirit and the soul are two separate things - so many Christians think that the soul and the spirit are the same thing. THEY ARE NOT!
I want to share a Scripture with you. It’s Hebrews 4:12. “For the Word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intints of the heart.” Now I suggest that. when you get alone, that you read that verse in your Bible over and over and ponder on it. It is very powerful and full of insight and wisdom. THE WORD OF GOD WILL SHOW YOU THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE SOUL AND THE SPIRIT - ABOUT WHAT YOU NEED TO SEE ABOUT YOUR BODY - AND WILL HELP YOU UNDERSTAND YOUR OWN HEART AND WHAT IT IS WANTING YOU TO UNDERSTAND. WOW!!
We are three-part beings. Spirit, Soul, and Body! I say it this way - YOU ARE A SPIRIT, YOU HAVE A SOUL, AND YOU LIVE IN A BODY! Now everybody is very aware of their body. They kinda’ know that their soul is where their emotions are, what their personality kinda’ is. But really few people really understand truly about the spirit.
When Adam and Eve gave in to Lucifer in the Garden of Eden, and went against what God had said, the spirit (which came through birth to all mankind) died. It had been alive. It was through their spirits that they had been in fellowship and communion with God. I have heard it said that the verse in Genesis 3 where God comes walking in the Garden and says, “Adam, where are you?” is the saddest verse in the Bible.
Just so we’ll all understand - at that moment, the spirit of mankind lost its eternity, its fellowship with God, its awareness, enlightenment - the spirit was dead, even though the soul and the body were still alive. The body could still walk and talk, had a brain, had blood flowing through it, could take in food and drink, and on and on. The soul could still receive information from the brain, it could still learn how to do things, could still feel sadness and happiness, could still respond to other souls and it could continue all that until the body died. However, the SPIRIT was not alive to the spiritual world, like it had been.
SO - when you were born again, YOUR SPIRIT CAME ALIVE!!!!! The Bible has all kinds of references to that moment. I love all the verses that talk about us being brand new creations, alive to God and lots of other ways of saying it. There are lots of verses that also tell us that we are to walk in the spirit, love in the spirit, not to walk in the flesh but in the spirit, etc. I have discovered that a huge majority of Christians do not have a clue about the difference between the soul and the spirit - and they try to do what the Bible says but they’re trying from their soul - not their spirit - and they get discouraged. In other words, as an example, you can’t love with Agape love (the God-kind of love) just like all humanity loves, from the soul. The only way you can love with the God-kind of love is from your spirit. Thus - the question I have heard many, many times is, “How do you do it?”
So - as simple a way to understand it is this! When you believed deep within yourself that Jesus was truly the Son of God, had come to earth in a human body - born as a baby in a miracle birth, had taken all the sin of the whole world into His being and paid the price for all your sin, and you said from your own mouth that you believed and wanted to receive Him as your Savior, at that moment - YOU WERE BORN AGAIN! That means that your spirit was made alive - clean and pure - free from the guilt or penalty for sin. The price had been paid. Your new spirit was like the spirit of Jesus. Not only was your spirit clean and pure, but it also had all the promises that God has given to His children.
Now I want to talk about these things which have been given to us in our new spirits - and how we can access them. First, let’s talk about the FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT. Gal. 5:22-23 - “But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such, there is no law.”
Each one of those fruits is already in your spirit if you are born again. But you have to access them. God does not force you to do anything. Remember, back there in the Garden of Eden, God gave mankind dominion (or authority) over all the earth. ALL MEANS ALL! Mankind has been given authority - God doesn’t just whoosh down and do stuff - or change stuff - or heal - or give love, joy, peace, or any of those fruits of the spirit.
Born again human beings must access what is already in the NEW SPIRIT and use his authority to bring those fruits of the spirit out into the physical world.
That means that human beings, who are born again, must take the WORD OF GOD seriously, with all the promises, and use the God-given authority to speak it out into the physical world.
Those fruits of the spirit will not just come out of your spirit without you believing that they’re there, and you speaking them out - because you have authority to do so.
Brothers and sisters - that takes spending time in the WORD - thinking about it - pondering on it - until it becomes more real to you than the physical world that you can see, taste, hear, smell and feel!
NOW - Here’s some powerful verses. 1 Cor. 2:16 says, “For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.” 1 John 2:20 says, “But you have an unction from the Holy One, and you know all things.” Then 1 John 4:17 says, “Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the days of judgement because as He is, so are we in this world.”
Well - we know the mind of Christ has to be in our spirit; that knowing all things has to be in our spirit; and us being AS HE IS has to be in our spirit.
We know it’s not in our brain (that’s physical), and sometimes we can’t even remember something that we just were thinking about 5 min. ago. It’s in our new born again spirit. But - we have to believe it! Then, we have to access it by talking to the Lord - thanking Him for placing these wonderful powers in our spirit - worshiping Him - and then telling Him we desire to have these wonderful gifts operating in our lives. Brothers and sisters - if we don’t believe it, we won’t be able to access them. AND ACCESSING THEM IS SPEAKING WORDS OUT OF OUR MOUTHS THAT WE BELIEVE DEEP WITHIN US. That’s the way salvation and everything else works in the Christian life.
Now - one of the things I have learned as I myself have grown older, and been around many, many others who are in my age realm - our bodies scream so loud to us with weakness, pain, problems, ………. that we just don’t want to put all the effort into SOAKING in the WORD to the point that what the Word says is louder to us than our bodies.
Now - here’s one more powerful verse - Romans 8:11 - “But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwells in you.”
I suggest you read that verse over and over and over - in every translation available to you. The word, ‘quicken’ in King James means ‘to make alive’. In other words, if your back is screaming at you with pain every time you move around, you have the power within you, IF YOU BELIEVE IT, to tell your back that you have been given authority in this earthly domain to tell it what it has to do. Therefore, you can command it, in the NAME OF JESUS to be healed because 1 Peter 2:24 says, “By His stripes you were healed.” AND, If you were healed, then you ARE healed. Therefore, pain must stop because YOU ARE HEALED, of course, all in the name of Jesus!
See - so many older Christians just feel that because they are getting old, their bodies are just giving out on them and it just doesn’t do any good to pray. Well, I’m not talking about begging and pleading with God. Just because we are in our 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s or more - we don’t have to feel like it’s too late to get healed. Adam lived over 900 years on this earth. Lots of others lived hundreds of years also. Like I’ve said before, we don’t have to be sick and in pain to move to Heaven. Just because we’re older, it doesn’t mean that God doesn’t want to still use us. BUT YOU HAVE TO BELIEVE IT!! We all have to believe it. That’s the reason He wants us all to get ahold of this deep within us.
Now - I want to read another portion of Scripture - from the Bible - Starting at Eph 1:15 - 21 - it was too long to type in my notes - giggle - I’m going to read it slow. I suggest that you fix your attention on these words. READ
Brothers and sisters - All that power is in YOU AND ME. The power didn’t get weaker as you began to get older. That same power that raised Christ from the dead is just as strong in you as it was when Jesus came out of that tomb! That same power didn’t get weaker when you had your last birthday. I am going to suggest to everyone in here that we all read Eph. 1 over and over again - maybe in every translation you have available. It is the WORD OF GOD that makes what He had already given us in our born-again spirits come alive in us - to the point that we believe it more and more and MORE AND MORE. It’s there - but unless we believe it and speak it out of our mouths - taking authority over the problems (or mountains), our bodies will continue to tell us that it’s just too hard - and we’re just too old and weak. Remember that verse - John 1:14 where it says that “the WORD became flesh” - referring to Jesus! All those words in the Old Testament, from all the prophets about a Savior coming - well, the Word became flesh. God’s will must be spoken out in words, from believing in the Truth of God’s Word.
Now, let me make this as clear and simple as possible. I MUST TAKE IN THE PROMISES AND TRUTHS IN THE BIBLE ABOUT WHAT IS AVAILABLE TO BORN AGAIN CHILDREN OF GOD - TO THE POINT THAT THEY ARE REAL TO ME - SO THAT I REALLY BELIEVE THEM. I MUST SPEAK THEM OUT OF MY MOUTH SO THAT MY OWN EARS HEAR MY VOICE SAYING WHAT I BELIEVE IS TRUE. I MUST BELIEVE THAT GOD HAS ALREADY PROVIDED THIS FOR ME AND I ABSOLUTELY WILL NOT BACK DOWN OR GIVE UP. GOD THE FATHER, JESUS THE SON & SAVIOR, AND THE HOLY SPIRIT - THE TRIUNE GOD AGREES WITH ME - I BELIEVE IT IS MINE AND I WILL ACT LIKE IT AND TALK LIKE IT. I WILL NOT MOAN AND COMPLAIN AND BEG AND PLEAD - BECAUSE IT IS ALREADY MINE.!!!!!!!
My Beloved Brothers and Sisters - just because we’re getting older, it doesn’t mean that God has limited His blessings for us. We can experience more of God’s blessings in our lives than we did before - because most of us have more time to spend in His Word and communicating with Him than we used to be able to. He loves us just as much as He loves our younger brothers and sisters. Okay - so somebody might be thinking, “Well, I think my brain is a little more rusty than it used to be.” Okay - then tell your brain, in the name of Jesus, that it must obey you - and command it to work well and be healthy!!!!!!! AND BELIEVE IT WHEN YOU SAY IT. And - don’t give up!!!
I know this is a lot to take in but the Lord loves every single one of us so much and He wants the last years of our lives (however many there are) to be wonderful. He still wants to use all of us. Yes - there are more struggles - but He is bigger than the struggles (or mountains). He wants us to live these years of our lives closer to Him than ever before. An attitude that I have worked on in my thinking is this - “If He’s done all that to make life easier for me in my latter years, then I need to take advantage of all that He has made available to me - I need to show my love to Him by taking in His Word, and by spending time with Him - praising Him, singing little songs to Him, worshiping Him - talking to Him, quoting His promises outloud so my own ears can hear them!!!! I really believe that the Lord delights in His children giving more and more attention to Him. He also loves us praying for others. In fact, I believe that He counts on we older ones to pray for all those ones who need prayer.
So - brothers and sisters - let’s bring delight to the Lord by soaking in His promises and LIVING IN THEM.
Scriptures used for this lesson
1 Corinthians 2:16
1 John 2:20
1 John 4:17
1 Peter 2:24