While I was studying Ephesians 6 the other day, the Holy Spirit made a very strong emphasis on the word ‘whole’. Ephesians 6:11 says “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” (NKJV). Observe the word ‘whole’. The Holy Spirit made it clear that for us to win the fight of faith, none of the armours must be missing – they are all important! It is either we have all, use them and win or we lack one and lose. God gave the Believer the whole armour to live protected in this evil world where we are pilgrims accomplishing His purpose for our lives. The only part of the Believer not covered is the back part which simply implies that the devil was never meant to see our backs – no retreat, no surrender and no backing out! It is a matter of fight or die! You must face him strongly with faith in Jesus Christ and He’s Words, thereby enforcing the victory of Christ on the defeated foe.Remember that we are not fighting to be victorious. No! We are more than conquerors already even before the fight (Rom. 8:39). We are fighting from the stand point of victory to enforce the victory of Christ on the enemy – the devil – in every areas of our lives. So it means if we are not well armed, we become vulnerable. Even though we are already victorious in Christ, the devil would still take advantage of our unprotected areas to afflict us. You can be sure that the devil is always watching out for our unprotected areas. So we must ensure that we are always fully armed. See, because the Bible says that by Jesus’ stripes you were healed does not mean that the devil wouldn’t try to force sickness on you. You must personally and consciously take God’s Word and stand on it for yourself in spite of the opposing circumstances – that’s the fight of faith! Refuse to back out! Refuse to bow! We win in the Name of the Lord!
Friday, July 2, 2010
There are many definitions to the word ‘inspiration’ from the dictionary. But I want to limit the meaning to ‘the divine influence on a human being’ just for the purpose of this article. In a way it also means ‘empowerment’. If you are a bit conversant with Scriptures from Genesis to Revelation, you would discover that every person God ever used to accomplish things – either great or little – received divine inspiration. It is most important at this point for me to state that the Holy Spirit is God’s inspiration, influence or empowerment on the earth today to get any worthy task accomplished. Anything outside the inspiration of the Holy Spirit is fake. I’ve tried doing things in moments when I wasn’t inspired to do them; they just looked dry, unreal, powerless and mechanical. I can’t venture to even write an article when I’m not inspired – it just doesn’t work! The Psalmist says: “My heart is overflowing with a good theme; I recite my composition concerning the King; My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.” (Psalm 45:1, NKJV). That’s Divine inspiration at work there. Prophet Isaiah says: “The Lord GOD hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.” (Isaiah 50:4, KJV). This is Divine inspiration at work here.
Job 32:8 says “But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding.” (KJV). Take note that man is a spirit being. Then also observe the word “inspiration”, it speaks of the Holy Spirit. The New King James version makes it clearer and particular: “But there is a spirit in man, And the breath of the Almighty gives him understanding.” The Holy Spirit is the Breath of God. (Note: The Holy Spirit is not a thing but a Divine Person. In Scripture He manifests as the breath of God – Job 33:4; John 20:22). Man is a spirit being created in the image of God Who is a Spirit (John 4:24). God breathed creativity into the human spirit – not the mind. God put it there in every man’s spirit from the first man – Adam. To be creative, you need inspiration. But the unfortunate thing is that many people seem to want to get this inspiration for creativity through devilish means (counterfeits) such as drugs, smoking, drinking, etc in order to get high enough to perform. Divine inspiration is in the recreated human spirit and it further affects the mind thereby producing mental ability to do things.
Just as there are two kinds of wisdom according to James 3:14-17, there are also two kinds of inspiration; Divine inspiration and devilish (perverted) inspiration. The difference between Divine inspiration and devilish inspiration is outlined as follows; Divine inspiration enables us to do good works, but devilish inspiration influences the world to do evil things. The saints use that Divine inspiration to glorify God by helping humanity, but the world uses theirs for selfish purposes. The inspiration that comes from the Holy Spirit produces love but that which comes from the devil is built on selfishness. Just as Believers are inspired to give the life of God through preaching the Gospel, unbelievers are inspired by the devil to steal, kill and destroy (Acts 5:20; John 10:10). For instance, terrorism is an inspired venture. No normal human being would want to consciously end his/her life for the valueless cause of destroying other people – one has to be inspired to do that – it is demon-inspired.
Therefore, it matters what you read, watch or listen to because they are inspired by someone either by the Holy Spirit or by the devil. That is why you don’t have to listen to ungodly songs, watch ungodly movies, read ungodly books, have ungodly folks as your role models etc., because they are inspired by the devil who is the god of the system of this world (2Cor. 4:4). Here is the key: whatever doesn’t edify you (build you up) as a Christian has the wrong inspiration and must be discarded. If not, you’d find yourself sowing to the flesh and reaping corruption (Gal.6:8). But when you give your attention to only those things inspired by the Holy Spirit, you’d be sowing to the spirit and reaping the zoe-life of God (Gal. 6:8). So always check the source of the inspiration. So many saints would say things like “I just like the sound and it feels good to listen to it” or “there is nothing wrong about listening to circular music” or “they didn’t really say anything bad in the song.” Whatever the excuse you must remember that there are a lot of Divinely inspired songs that could encourage and build you up. There are many good voices out there but what they communicate are demon-inspired. Don’t let the enemy fool you. Any song not based on the Word of God might sound good but are still likely to communicate the world system (ideology) into you which would make you to dwindle in your walk with the Lord. What the Lord says in Philippians 4:8 about what should be the pattern of our thought-life still applies in helping to determine what we permit into our spirits. It says “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things.” (NKJV).
So then, how do we access divine inspiration? As Believers in Christ, we flow with the Holy Spirit when we are yielded to Him. It’s our responsibility to totally trust and depend on His ability to help us in our day to day walk. It is not possible for one who is absolutely yielded to the Holy Spirit to fail. The inspiration of the Holy Spirit emboldens you, it helps you know what to do at ever point in time; enlightens you, gives you spiritual and mental excellence, etc. The Holy Spirit can help you present a speech you never prepared for so articulately such that everyone is amazed at the kind of intelligence you possess. Many saints have testimonies along this line. The Lord Jesus told the disciples and us in extension that we should expect this in Luke 12:11,12 “Now when they bring you to the synagogues and magistrates and authorities, do not worry about how or what you should answer, or what you should say. For the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say.” (NKJV). You can stir up that inspiration from your spirit by spending time in God’s Word (studying and meditating on it), praying in the spirit by the Holy Spirit or speaking in other tongues and by fellowshipping with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the ever present Helper you can always count on. One of the secrets of Jesus’ ministry on earth is DIVINE INSPIRATION. So get inspired!