Because everything has conspired to try and get me off track this morning not to write this, I am feeling even more compelled to do so.
Yesterday, I got the pleasure of sitting through an online checkerboard-style church meeting to go over some concepts about how we can pull closer to God by reading the bible. Now, to be honest, I have felt uncomfortable about parts of the bible for a while now, and tried to dodge my uncomfortability by just telling myself that when I die, God will help me sort out my ambivalence.
But this has led me to feel almost estranged to faith. And it feels icky, and not the kind of strong faith that I need to make it in the world. So as we talked, something began to stir. I remembered the verse that said that the word of God is foolishness to man, because the Holy Spirit is not there (indwelling) to help make sense of it.
Hmm. Yep, makes sense. So, I spent the rest of the day not thinking much more about it, went to bed, and woke up with the same thoughts swirling about. And suddenly, the Spirit was shining a light on the answer. One, the Word is part historical. It is there to show us the ways in which God worked and spoke to people throughout past times. Two, the Word is a weapon, a double-edged sword, so it is to be handled with great care, because much like a surgeons scalpel it can be used for good and cause great harm. And third, it can only be understood through the interpretation of the Holy Spirit, which Jesus left behind.
Stick with me on this. Remember when Jesus was with the disciples and would tell them parables and great teachings? And they would have to ask Him to break it down for them? It’s because the Holy Spirit wasn’t there yet to help them decipher it on their own. Jesus had to do it.
The Spirit isn’t just roaming about, or causing people to speak in tongues, though that happens, it’s for wisdom and knowledge. When we care for each other and give counsel to each other, asking for God’s wisdom to say the right thing, and suddenly find ourselves saying things we didn’t even realize we knew, or that we needed to hear ourselves? Bam, that’s the wisdom of the Spirit. That is the wisdom in which the Word must be read and allowed to marinate in your heart. Otherwise you may, like me, wrestle in foolishness of your flesh, and much like juggling swords, it can wound.
With that in mind, I have great peace in my heart, because of God loving me so much that He wouldn’t rest until He found a way to answer my questions. So grateful for an awesome, loving, omniscient God.