THOUGHTS ON PRAYER 5
THE HOLY SPIRIT, OUR SOURCE OF POWER FOR EFFECTIVE PRAYING
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you:…
For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God… ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
So, what has prayer got to do with the Holy Spirit? We are already accepted by the Father as His adopted sons and we have the Redeemer, our able Mediator, the Lord Jesus, at the Throne of God, interceding for us. So, what more does the Holy Spirit have to do for us? We want to study the role of the Holy Spirit in effective praying in this section.
But first, Who is the Holy Spirit?
The Holy Spirit is probably the most enigmatic of the Godhead because He is only interested in what will bring glory to the Father and the Son, even though He is God Almighty Himself; eternal in existence, co-equal in power and authority. In the divine Trinity, we are simply seeing the same God revealed in three personalities, in line with His differing functions; much like the story of the six blind men examining an elephant – the one touching a leg said ‘Surely, this thing is the trunk of a tree!’ The one holding the tail begged to disagree and said, ‘No! It is too thin and flexible! I am sure it’s a snake!’ The one standing under it said, ‘What are you two talking about? It is far too high and wide to be any of those; and I am standing right under it!’
God is just too great, too mysterious and too multi-functional for the human mind to grasp all of Him at once; and that must be why He revealed Himself to us in those three different personalities – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. As well, each glorious personality of God is far too multi-faceted for us to grasp at once and therefore they are revealed to us according to the function they are performing at a particular time, as we saw in the earlier study posted as ‘The God to Whom we Pray’. In that post, we studied the revelation of the Father by His numerous Names found in Scripture which are by no means exhaustive because all peoples of the world have various native names by which they extol The Almighty.
Suffice to emphasize here again that The Godhead is one single, glorious Entity and they are never separated. It is in only four places in Scripture that we see Them manifest in different separate forms on earth, but They were working together to achieve the same singular purpose. Let’s examine those instances –
- At creation, in Gen.1:1-3, we see God as Elohim, speaking creation into being; we see Jesus as His Word and the Light that came forth, and the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
- At the Red Sea. The Son was the Passover Lamb inside the bodies of the Israelites, working the wonders of healing through the night such that there was not one feeble person among their tribes by morning when they came out of Egypt and throughout the forty years sojourn in the wilderness! Psa.105:37; Deut.29:5. The Holy Spirit was the Pillar of Fire and Cloud, separating the Israelites from the pursuing host of Pharaoh. The Father manifested thus, …in the morning watch the LORD (Jehovah) looked unto the host of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and of the cloud, and troubled the host of the Egyptians… Please read the whole riveting story again in Exodus chapter 14. The Lord told me once that the Godhead rises up as one and fights the same battle for every single son of God that must leave spiritual Egypt and be received into the Kingdom of His dear Son, Jesus.
- When the Lord Jesus was baptized in the River Jordan, as recorded in Matthew 3:16,17; we note that the Son was dipped in the river, the Holy Spirit descended upon Him in a visible form and the Father spoke from heaven! The wonderful Three had to come to usher the Son of God into His earthly Ministry to show us that They were in it together!
- At the Crucifixion – The Son hung on the Cross, spoke to the Father in Heaven Whose pain was manifested in the darkening of the sun and the earthquake and the Holy Spirit manifestation was seen in the opening of graves and resurrection of those who had died and their relations saw them physically! The divine Trinity manifested again at the close of the Lord’s earthly ministry to usher Him back to heaven, a magnificent conquering Hero! See Matt.27:45,50-53.
The Beloved Apostle John put it this way, in 1Jn.5:7,8 –
For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. 8 And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.
The water here in V8 is The Lord Jesus who is the Word of God. Eph.5:26 says “…with the washing of water by the word”. The Blood here in V8 is the Blood of God. Acts20:28 says “…feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
Who then is the Holy Spirit?
The Holy Spirit is the Power given to we Believers to be able to do whatsoever God asked us to do on earth. He was sent after the Lord Jesus ascended into heaven, to give birth to the Church of the Lord Jesus on the day of Pentecost. The Holy Spirit achieved this feat physically by descending with the sound of a mighty rushing wind and visibly resting as tongues of fire on the one hundred and twenty Disciples who were tarrying for Him in the Upper Room; thereby setting them on fire and empowering them to go forth and bring others into The Fold. Thereafter, the Holy Spirit would, by the Word of God, prepare us all into a spotless Bride for Christ.
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.
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost,…
Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
Pray this prayer now – Holy Spirit, I love You. I recognize You as God Almighty. I need You in my life in a deeper and higher dimension, baptize me now, in Jesus Name. Teach me all things, show me things to come, remind me at the appropriate times, those profitable things I have learnt, in Jesus Name. Amen.
Let us now study the operations of the Holy Spirit in the life of a Believer in relation to prayer. How did He work in the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus when He walked the earth? That is how He would work in our lives too, if we yield to Him. We will take our bearing from a concise description of the workings of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Lord, as revealed to us in Isa.11:1,2 –
And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: 2 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;
Note – the underline is added to highlight the seven manifestations of the Holy Spirit in the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus, enumerated in that Scripture; and we shall simply take them one by one and study them to see how they would empower our prayer-life if we yield to Him. We shall not study them in the order given above but in the order that we need to receive them into our lives.
The Seven-fold operations of the Holy Spirit in a Believer’s prayer-life – Isa.11:1&2
There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of Jesse, And a Branch shall grow out of his roots. 2 The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon Him, The Spirit of wisdom and understanding, The Spirit of counsel and might, The Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD.
- The Spirit of Knowledge – For us to pray effectively, we need to have proper knowledge of what we are praying about. We have to know what God thinks about the matter at hand – Is this His will for us? If it is His will, then why is it being withheld from us? Is it God or the devil that does not want us to have that thing? Maybe God wants us to wait a little. Or is it because we have incurred His wrath by sin? If it is the devil striving with us for what God has freely given us, then what legal right does he have for striving with us in that area? We need to know all these truths before we can pray targeted prayers and not pray amiss. We will be pleasantly surprised to know the amount of information God will release to us through the Holy Spirit once we start asking these probing questions.
I have discovered that this is the part that takes a while in a Believer’s prayer-life – the gathering of truths concerning any matter we are praying about, especially if the matter is serious and has resisted prayer for a while. This truth-finding time is what the Word of God calls ‘seeking His Face’ or ‘waiting upon God’; and it is usually done with fasting.
If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; 14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
Why sayest thou, O Jacob, and speakest, O Israel, My way is hid from the LORD, and my judgment is passed over from my God?…. 31 But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
Underline added by me
Remember the following two frightening Scriptures?…
Therefore my people are gone into captivity, because they have no knowledge:..
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge:…
There you have it, Beloved! When challenges persist, it will not be because the adversary is too powerful for God to make us conquer him, but because of lack of knowledge on our part. We must therefore do all we can to get knowledge and beef up our spiritual data-base of information about God and His ways; as well as learn about the adversary and his crafty ways. We must read and meditate on the Bible daily and also read good Christian books, especially books on prayer and spiritual warfare. We must attend Bible study in Church and also seek to attend Bible seminars and workshops, both in our local assemblies and in other Bible-believing Churches, carefully asking the Holy Spirit to lead us.
Pray like this – Holy Spirit of the Living God, baptise me afresh and stir up in me that Spirit of Understanding that rested on the Lord Jesus so that I shall be enabled to receive all the information I need to live a good Christian life and to prevail in the place of prayer, in Jesus Name I pray. Amen.
- The Spirit of Understanding – Now, the information that God releases to us will need to be understood by us, as He is spirit and we are flesh, and He has His Own ways of communicating with man. God communicates with us directly or in dreams and visions. He said so plainly in Nu.12:6 –
…Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, I the LORD will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream. 7 My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house. 8 With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches;…
With Moses and Joseph, the earthly father of the Lord Jesus, God spoke plainly maybe because their roles in the scheme of divine plan were so crucial that God could not risk any human error in the interpretation of His instructions to them. However, when God showed Joseph his ultimate destiny at the age of seventeen, it was in two dreams and they were in metaphors though in pictorial forms; but he also received the meaning – that is, the truth, the message behind the dream – by the Spirit of Understanding. So did his family and that triggered their vain attempt to truncate the will of God for the life of the hapless teenager!..
And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it his brethren: and they hated him yet the more. 6 And he said unto them, Hear, I pray you, this dream which I have dreamed: 7 For, behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and, lo, my sheaf arose, and also stood upright; and, behold, your sheaves stood round about, and made obeisance to my sheaf. 8 And his brethren said to him, Shalt thou indeed reign over us? or shalt thou indeed have dominion over us?…
Then he dreamed still another dream and told it to his brothers, and said, “Look, I have dreamed another dream. And this time, the sun, the moon, and the eleven stars bowed down to me.” So he told it to his father and his brothers; and his father rebuked him and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall your mother and I and your brothers indeed come to bow down to the earth before you?” And his brothers envied him…
It is the Holy Spirit Who teaches us to understand the truths that God reveals to us. He teaches us as we study the Word of God; because it is in the Word of God that we will find the pattern God uses in communicating with man through the ages. He has not changed.
We will note that the Lord Jesus used to the same method as God did to communicate truths to His Disciples when He walked the earth as a man – He would speak plainly, but mostly He would use pictorial language which was usually in metaphorical format but He would explain the truth behind His words to His Disciples by the Spirit of Understanding given Him when the Holy Spirit rested upon Him as He was water-baptised at the start of His Ministry. Matt.3:16.
For instance, the Lord said ‘Follow Me’ to Simon Peter and his brother Andrew when He called them and He added a pictorial metaphorical bit, ‘and I will make you fishers of men’. Matt.4:19. Now, for the simple fact that they were both fishermen, they immediately had some measure of understanding… I guess they reckoned that, at the very least, if they caught men, the men they caught would serve them as fishermen and reduce their labour at their trade of fishing for fish! This understanding was enough to propel them to promptly leave all and follow the Lord. They had not received Holy Spirit by then and therefore had no understanding at that point in time, that they would be fishing for men into the Kingdom of God, and that it would cause them great suffering. They probably would not have followed the Lord if they knew. By the time their suffering started, as recorded in the Book of Acts, they had been given the Holy Spirit baptism and they rather rejoiced to be identified with the Lord’s suffering. That is the Spirit of divine Understanding working in them!
Therefore, we can safely conclude that it is not enough for us to receive knowledge from God but we must receive understanding as well because this will determine our mind-set and inform what steps we need to take thereafter.
Pray like this – Blessed Holy Spirit, let Your Spirit of Understanding rest upon me now so that I will not be a shallow, half-informed Christian who will lack proper understanding of the things of God, in Jesus Name. Amen.
- The Spirit of Wisdom – This is so very important because by the operation of the Spirit of Wisdom we receive the ability to know what to do with truths which we have gathered and have gained full understanding of. Without the Spirit of Wisdom, we can still make terrible mistakes and end up being as foolish as someone who lacks knowledge and understanding. Nebuchadnezzar, the Babylonian king, is a case in point … When God revealed Himself in a dream to him as the Sovereign LORD Who will eventually destroy and rule over all other kingdoms – including his kingdom, Babylon – he received understanding from Daniel and took the right step immediately, he moved with fear; and, in wisdom, he bowed before that mighty God. See Daniel Chapter 2. However, much later, Babylon expanded and became greater and mightier; but this time, when God warned the same Nebuchadnezzar of his arrogance and pride in thinking that he was the source of power for his elevation, his proud mindset was not changed by the interpretation of his dream and the wise counsel given to him by Daniel. He rather continued in his arrogance and God then severely punished him until he learned wisdom in the wilderness and finally accepted God as The Almighty and the only source of all good things. See Daniel Chapter 4.
What, or shall we say, Who, then is the Wisdom of God? The wisest king who ever lived, Solomon, told us in Proverbs chapter 8. I quote in parts –
Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice?… 6 Hear; for I will speak of excellent things;… 7 For my mouth shall speak truth;… 8 All the words of my mouth are in righteousness;… 9 They are all plain to him that understandeth, and right to them that find knowledge…. 11 For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it… 15 By me kings reign, and princes decree justice. 16…even all the judges of the earth. 17 I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me… 20 I lead in the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of judgment:… 22 The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old…. 34 Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors. 35 For whoso findeth me findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the LORD…
Underline is added to highlight the words that describe Wisdom in this Scripture; and when we study this passage closely, we can see immediately that Wisdom is a Personality and not a mere thing we acquire. When we note all the words that describe Wisdom here, we will accept that only one Person can possibly fit into the glorious image they conjure! And Paul tells us plainly in 1Cor.1:24 –
….Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
Wow! The Lord Jesus Himself! This would mean that when we have the Spirit of Wisdom, we would be enabled to take steps like Jesus would; armed with the knowledge and understanding that we have about any matter. And, without any doubt, we would get divine, desired results – just as the Lord would. It means that we will be praying the same prayers that Christ is praying over the matter at the Golden Altar before the Throne of God, and we will therefore be praying according to His will; and desired answers will come from God, just as He promised us –
If ye abide in me (Wisdom), and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Jn.15:7
What are we waiting for, Beloved? Let’s pray! Lord Holy Spirit, let Your Spirit of Wisdom rest upon me so that I will take decisions like the Lord Jesus would; and pray the same prayers that He is praying at the Throne always, in Jesus Name.
- The Spirit of Counsel – I strongly believe that the Spirit of Counsel works both ways – He enables us to receive wise counsel and also to give wise counsel. We can only operate in this Spirit if we have received the other three manifestations of the Spirit of God which we studied above. Let’s face it; nobody can give what he does not already have! We must have knowledge, understanding and wisdom to be able to give wise counsel and also to be able to recognise demonic counsel and reject it. We cannot afford to operate in the counsel of the world because it is usually at variance with the counsel of God. For instance, hear what Peter said to the Lord when He began to tell them of His Passion and death for the first time –
Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee. Matt.16:22.
That means that the divine, eternally carefully laid down plan for our salvation would have been aborted if Peter was the only counsellor the Lord had! Remember that Peter had a very close relationship with the Lord and even recognised Him as the Christ, the Son of God; but that was the extent of Peter’s knowledge and understanding of the Christ at that moment! He just could not imagine that the Son of God would allow Himself to be brutalised by mere men! He likely had knowledge of the prophecy of Isaiah in Chapter 53 of the Messianic Prophet’s book, but Peter did not understand that it referred to this glorious Person standing before him! You remember, of course, that the Holy Spirit had not fallen upon Peter by the time he gave the Lord this counsel.
Blessedly, the Lord Jesus was operating fully in the seven-fold ministry of the Holy Spirit so He recognised Peter’s counsel as Satanic and, by the Spirit of Wisdom, rebuked him accordingly. Remember that the Lord had received the fullness of the Holy Spirit as He was baptised in the Jordan BEFORE His earthly ministry started. It was also by the fullness of the operation of that baptism of the Holy Spirit that He prevailed over Satan during His temptation in the wilderness. See Matt.4:1-10.
The point has been made above, during the discussion about case of Peter and the Lord, that we must possess the three Spirits of God – knowledge, understanding and wisdom – to be able to give wise counsel to others. It will be a disaster if an untrained person takes it upon himself to work as a medical Doctor and treat patients and counsel them about diseases he has no knowledge of. Greater is the tragedy therefore, if we, as Children and Servants of the Most High, cannot counsel people with the Mind of God, in the knowledge, understanding and wisdom of His Holy Spirit! So much is expected of us and we must not let God and His People down. Remember, our Lord is called ‘Counsellor’!
…his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Let’s pray then – Holy Spirit, I need You! Please give me Your Spirit of Counsel and teach me receive and to give wise counsel at all times like Jesus does, in Jesus Name.
- The Spirit of Might – As we allow the Holy Spirit to take residence in us and operate through us more and more by the Word of God, we become automatically filled with His Power. When we operate in the knowledge, understanding, wisdom and counsel of the Lord, we become partakers of His Holiness and His Power. The two go together, you see – the Holiness of God and His Power.
The Spirit of Might causes us to operate in the realm of the miraculous, when God would demonstrate His power visibly through us as He did in the life of, notably, Moses and Samson, the Prophets Elijah and Elisha, and the Apostles. Through Moses, God brought down the greatest dynasty of that era – Egypt – with great and mighty judgements upon all Egyptian gods; and the whole staggeringly spectacular process was seemingly wrought through a shepherd’s rod! And a whole nation of slaves was set free from another nation within weeks, after four hundred and thirty years in captivity! That was The Spirit of Might in operation, Beloved.
The man Samson was so anointed from his mother’s womb by the Spirit of Might that it was clearly seen visibly that ‘’….the Spirit of the LORD began to move him at times….’’ as he grew up! He was used of God as a one-man-army to break the power of the intimidating terror of the Philistines upon the Israelites. At some point, he single-handedly uprooted their city gate and carried it away! Judg.16:3. On another occasion, he killed a thousand Philistines with the jawbone of an ass, after the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him! Judg.15:14,15. Unfortunately, Samson did not operate in the first four Spirits of the Lord which we have studied above, therefore, his ministry did not last, and he died with those he was sent to defeat; though it was said of him that the dead which he slew at his death were more than they which he slew in his life. Judg.16:30c.
There is one exciting place in Scripture where it was recorded that the Spirit of Might fell upon a woman and that simple house-wife slew a deadly army General called Sisera!! This feat is recorded in Judges chapter 4, verse 21 –
Then Jael Heber’s wife took a nail of the tent, and took an hammer in her hand, and went softly unto him, (Sisera) and smote the nail into his temples, and fastened it into the ground: for he was fast asleep and weary. So he died.
Observe that she had also made use of the Spirit of Wisdom earlier on; in that when Sisera came to her tent, she must have recognized him as a deadly enemy but she was hospitable to him and that lulled him to sleep. Then she struck!
And Jael went out to meet Sisera, and said unto him, Turn in, my lord, turn in to me; fear not. And when he had turned in unto her into the tent, she covered him with a mantle. 19 And he said unto her, Give me, I pray thee, a little water to drink; for I am thirsty. And she opened a bottle of milk, and gave him drink, and covered him.
However, Beloved, we are not called to fight physical wars but spiritual wars in the Name of Jesus and in the power of the Holy Spirit. Isaiah the Prophet put it this way –
For every battle of the warrior is with confused noise, and garments rolled in blood; but this shall be with burning and fuel of fire (in the Holy Ghost).
We are given the same mandate as the Lord Jesus to go forth and destroy all the works of Satan and enforce the rulership of God in every nook and cranny of the world for which Jesus shed His Blood. He told us in Mk.16:15,17,18 –
…Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature… 17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
Even if we pray until we are blue in the face, we cannot possibly achieve all that if we do not have the Spirit of Might, through Whom the power of God is physically demonstrated to authenticate our divine calling. That is why the Disciples were told to wait for the baptism of the Holy Spirit before they started their ministry.
And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.
We have nothing more to do now than to pray, Beloved – Holy Spirit of God, fall upon me now by the Spirit of Might and endue me with power from above, as the Father promised, in Jesus Name.
- The Spirit of the LORD – When ‘Lord’ is written in all upper-case as ‘LORD’, the Name means ‘I Am’, ‘I Am that I Am’, ‘Yahweh’ or ‘Jehovah’. As we saw earlier in the study, ‘The God to Whom we Pray’, this is the redemptive Name of God by which He covenanted Himself to Moses and the Israelites when it was time for Him to set them free from Egyptian bondage of four hundred and thirty years. Moses put it this way in Deut.26:28 – ‘’And the LORD brought us forth out of Egypt with a mighty hand, and with an outstretched arm, and with great terribleness, and with signs, and with wonders.’’ The LORD disgraced Pharaoh’s famous conquering army and sank them all in the Red Sea – horses, chariots, armour, weapons of war, soldiers and all. We are told none survived. And the singular visible weapon used was a shepherd’s rod in the hand of Moses; so it was obvious that the war was fully strategized and fought by God Himself. At the end of it all, Moses concluded that, The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name. 15:3.
We can safely conclude here that the Spirit of the LORD is the Spirit of the warrior. Prayer is all about war, spiritual war. The goal of prayer is singularly to enforce the will of God on a particular situation; and the adversary will not put up with that! Like Pharaoh, he will fight tooth and nail to maintain the status quo and keep his retinue of captives. And that is why enforcement of the Will of God is by war, Beloved!
Say this prayer quickly and aggressively – Satan! That does not include me and my family, in Jesus Name! We demand our freedom now, in every area of our lives, by the Blood of Jesus our Lord, in Jesus Name.
Beloved, prayer is sent in two directions – towards God and towards Satan. This is what is inferred in The Lord’s Prayer, because answers to some parts of that prayer cannot manifest without warfare!
…Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
Here is the Lord’s Prayer and the parts that cannot be accomplished without contention from Satan have been underlined. If you desire to have the kingdom of God and His will to be established in any situation, be ready for war; because the devil will whine and shout and insist, ‘’No! The earth has been given over to me by Adam!’’; as he cheekily told the Lord Jesus in the wilderness temptation, recorded in Lu.4:5,6 –
And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. 6 And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it.
Beloved, don’t be surprised to hear this bitter truth that, for many families on earth today, to get their daily bread is by war! And so it is in other areas of life for others. Simple expectations of life become contentious, like getting married, having children and so on. Therefore, God inspired James, the Lord’s brother, to tell us the synopsis of what prayer is in Ja.4:7,8 –
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.
Let’s just break that down for a moment –
i. We must clean-up our act with God, toe the path of holiness and be in His good books by *cleansing our hands and keeping from sin, *purifying our hearts from fear and allowing faith to take charge, *submitting to God (the Holy Spirit) to lead us in our walk with Him, including in our prayer-life.
ii. We must be ready for spiritual warfare against the devil and resist his attempts to have his will entrenched in our lives. This is where the Spirit of the LORD comes in, for Jehovah is the Field Marshal of all the armies of heaven and earth, and the Lord Jesus is the Captain of our Salvation. We must be ready to join His army because everyone that He rescues from spiritual Egypt automatically becomes a soldier. A Christian is not a civilian, Beloved! Hear this –
But Pharaoh shall not hearken unto you, that I may lay my hand upon Egypt, and bring forth mine armies, and my people the children of Israel, out of the land of Egypt by great judgments.
And this was confirmed in Ex.12:51-
And it came to pass the selfsame day, that the LORD did bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their armies.
Bishop T.D. Jakes once said that a captor will never let go of his captive unless the captive demands for it. Let me add that if the captor is Satan, then the captive must demand for his release violently and persistently and consistently until he gets his liberty! Blessedly, we have the LORD on our side! He says in Isa.49:24-26 –
Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captive delivered? 25 But thus saith the LORD, Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away, and the prey of the terrible shall be delivered: for I will contend with him that contendeth with thee, and I will save thy children. 26 And I will feed them that oppress thee with their own flesh; and they shall be drunken with their own blood, as with sweet wine: and all flesh shall know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob.
Let’s pray then – O Spirit of the LORD, Yahweh, the Man of war! Fall upon me now and give me the heart of a warrior that is not afraid of war, knowing You are fighting for me all along. Let me never be weary or give up until total victory is won on all fronts, in Jesus Name. Amen.
- The Spirit of the Fear of The LORD – This is the last operative Spirit of the Holy Ghost mentioned in this 11 passage which we have been studying; and it is the most expedient and, without this Spirit, we cannot operate in the other six! Why? Because by the Spirit of the Fear of the LORD we learn humility, meekness, brokenness and total submission to God. By the Spirit of fear of the LORD, we recognise that even with all our knowledge, understanding, wisdom, counsel, mighty power released to us as warriors in the army of the LORD, we are nothing without Him and can achieve nothing without submitting all that we have to Him. We must admit that all those great attributes belong to Him and were released to us by His Spirit to use only for His glory and according to His will and instructions and strategy. No soldier in any army dares to move without instructions from his commander; or he risks being court-marshalled for insubordination/rebellion!
Our Field Marshall demands implicit obedience and He is worthy of it because He does only good deeds, He sees the whole picture which we do not; and any form of disobedience will seek to derail His plans and purposes for the whole of mankind. He will not tolerate that!
A case in point – If king Saul had killed all the Amalekites as God instructed him to do (See 1Sam.15:1-9), there would not have been someone called Haman the Agagite, obviously a descendant of king Agag. Although King Agag was killed by the Prophet Samuel, it is possible that Saul had allowed an offspring or more to escape! We suddenly read about a man called Haman the Agagite in the Book of Esther, centuries later, a man who hated the Jews with a passion and carefully planned to have them all exterminated in one day in Shushan where they had been taken captive! He had obviously been nursing a revenge mandate handed down his family line all those centuries – ‘’You must kill Israelites whenever you can because they tried to exterminate our people a long time ago!’’
The Spirit of the Fear of the LORD is clearly linked in Scripture to some of the other Spirits we have studied above –
Psa.111:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom:…
Prov.1:7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge:…
Isa 11:3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD:…
What then is the fear of the LORD? How do we show that we fear God?
The fear of the LORD is not a terror of evil, but a reverential awe for God, our loving, compassionate Father Who has been so good to us. The fear of the LORD is to appreciate His love and sacrifice for us as a responsible Father Who is also the ultimate King and Judge of the universe. We also appreciate all His glorious attributes and are humbled by the fact that He stoops to care about us as individuals. When we put all that together, we would love Him and really, really hate to hurt Him by doing evil; for we are also conscious of the fact that He is with us always and is a witness to whatsoever we do, and can also hear all that we say or think. We would fear God when we remember also that He does not overlook sin, but will punish us accordingly. If He punished His beloved friends, Moses and David…who are we to take His wrath for granted?
Prov.16:6 …by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil.
The Lord Jesus showed that He feared God by the reverential way He would address Him in Prayer. See the Lord’s Prayer quoted above and His famous chapter of Intercession – John 17.
Let us pray then – Holy Spirit, infuse me totally with the Spirit of the Fear of the LORD and give me a heart that loves and fears the LORD, in Jesus Name.