What is God Teaching You?
by Tom Stewart
August 17, 2001
In this New Testament Age, it is the exalted purpose of the Blessed
Holy Spirit to teach His Saints to walk in His Commandments. "He through the Holy Ghost had given Commandments unto the apostles"
(Acts 1:2). "And
I will put My Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My Statutes, and ye shall
keep My Judgments, and do them" (Ezekiel 36:27). "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, Whom
the Father will send in My Name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things
to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you" (John 14:26). Each of us has a different physical circumstance
in which we are taught, but all of us have been blessed with the Divine Paraclete
as our Master, Teacher, and Mentor. "But
the Anointing [Greek, chrisma, meaning the Holy Spirit] 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" (1John 2:27). Unlike many earthly teachers, the Spirit
of God is satisfied with His pupils appreciating and understanding His teaching and
empowering function, but magnifying particularly the Person and Work of the LORD
Jesus Christ is His teaching goal. "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.
14 He shall glorify Me:
for He shall receive of Mine, and shall shew it unto you. 15
All things that the Father hath are Mine: therefore
said I, that He shall take of Mine, and shall shew it unto you" (John 16:13-15).
Why does the Spirit emphasize the LORD Jesus Christ as His teaching goal? The Holy Spirit knows better than any that Christ is the answer to all the needs of man. "Jesus saith unto him, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me" (John 14:6). All aspects of the life of the Saint are comprehended in a proper understanding of the many relationships of Christ to the Believer. "But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, Who of God is made unto us Wisdom, and Righteousness, and Sanctification, and Redemption" (1Corinthians 1:30). Though we may wrongly perceive that simply a better understanding of how to master our physical circumstances, e.g., how to maintain our health, how to promote our livelihood, etc., is our true necessity, the Spirit of Christ would quickly remind us that only as we seek the most important things of God, can we master the less important circumstances of our physical environment. "31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your Heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 33 But seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and His Righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you" (Matthew 6:31-33). If we can mentally and spiritually comprehend this precept of the primacy and superiority of God's things to even our everyday physical necessities, then we are prepared to continue our course of instruction with the Holy Spirit. "Therefore leaving the [first] principles of the Doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God" (Hebrews 6:1).
Further, our learning experience is attached to our following of the LORD Jesus Christ. "For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps" (1Peter 2:21). We are, therefore, providentially in just the circumstance that is best suited for our tailor-made schooling in the things of God. "Thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this" (Esther 4:14). Instead of making the struggle to transform our physical circumstances our main priority, we ought to be seeking to learn as much as we can about the LORD and His Promises that will better enable us to deal with those circumstances. "Through Wisdom is an house builded; and by Understanding it is established" (Proverbs 24:3). In other words, we need to be sure that we are putting first things first, while we balance our God-given necessity to control our environment. "God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the Earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the Earth" (Genesis 1:28). It is unnecessary to cast about for a mysterious sense of the Will of God for our lives, because the "Word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the Word of faith, which we preach" (Romans 10:8). As we seek to advance the Kingdom of God, it is clear that the Spirit of God places the right desires into our hearts to desire and choose those things that He intends to fulfill for us. "The desire of the righteous is only good" (Proverbs 11:23). "The desire of the righteous shall be granted" (10:24). Ours, then, is to flee from evil and cleave to the LORD, petitioning Him for the mercy to only perform the "good, and acceptable, and perfect, Will of God" (Romans 12:2).
The Providence of God in placing you into existence at this point in time, is entirely adapted by the Omniscience of God to Sovereignly place you in the position to learn what others may not yet know, but you have been divinely allowed to benefit by the understanding and teaching of those Saints who preceded you. "Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ" (1Corinthians 11:1). For this reason, we may with caution open ourselves to the instruction of teachers. "11 And He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 for the perfecting of the Saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the Body of Christ" (Ephesians 4:11-12). Though you read this from the hand of a contemporary teacher, it is your responsibility and necessity to "prove all things; [and] hold fast that which is good" (1Thessalonians 5:21), because you will stand alone before God at His Judgment Seat to answer for all that you have "done, whether it be good or bad" (2Corinthians 5:10). It is admittedly easier to find the testimony of Christian teachers who have already departed this life and who have already given a clear picture of the direction and purpose of their ministry, to listen to their illumination and exposition of the Word of God, as we have provided in the "Voice of Philadelphia" ---New Window section of our website; but still, you must consult the Infallible Director, Who is the Holy Spirit dwelling in you, to determine what to believe and what to reject. "To the Law and to the Testimony: if they speak not according to this Word, it is because there is no Light in them" (Isaiah 8:20).
You have been Divinely gifted with the Holy Spirit as your Teacher and His Word as your Text, in which you may find the very Words of our LORD Jesus Christ, Precepts from New Testament epistles, examples of Old Testament patriarchs and early New Testament Saints, Psalms of the heart swells of sweet singers, warnings of the prophets concerning things to come, prophecies from the Old and New Testaments, Proverbs to address every circumstance of life, and most of all, "Exceeding Great and Precious Promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the Divine Nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust" (2Peter 1:4). This kind of careful study can only be attained when we give ourselves to seeking the understanding that we must have, come what may. "I will not let Thee go, except Thou bless me" (Genesis 32:26). Holy diligence of this kind is smiled upon by the Almighty, Who is as He was to Abram, i.e., "I am thy Shield, and thy Exceeding Great Reward" (Genesis 15:1). "9 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the Judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether. 10 More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. 11 Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is Great Reward" (Psalm 19:9-11).
You cannot stand still in your learning about God. You will either be falling away from what you have been taught, or you will be going "on unto perfection" (Hebrews 6:1). Whether or not you will ever have the privilege or opportunity to communicate what you have learned to another human being, God has elevated your understanding to a higher level that you may now understand somewhat more of what He understands. Blessed meeting of the minds! Blessed communion! "13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, 14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you" (Philippians 3:13-15).
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