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#4 of 7 - Bible Study and the Spirit's Filling

The doctrine of the Holy Spirit is an essential Christian truth. Biblically understanding His person and works is crucial both in Church’s orthodoxy (doctrine) and orthopraxy (practice). When it comes to the Bible, He is both the author who speaks and the illuminator who enlightens. The Church’s doctrinal soundness and practical goodness depends on Him. Therefore, the necessity of His infilling should never be neglected or misinterpreted.

According to Paul, Christians should “walk in the Spirit” and “be filled with the Spirit.” (Gal. 5:16 cf. Eph. 5:18). The mood and tense of these statements are in the imperative and present active. In other words, it is a daily discipline and pursuit of the believer to live under the guiding presence of the Holy Spirit. By biblical analogy, it is compared to the Shekinah glory of divine presence during Israel’s journey in the wilderness. The Israelites saw it as a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night (Ex. 40:34-38). That’s how the Christian should live under the guidance of the Spirit. But the question is: how can a Christian walk in the Spirit? How can he experience the filling of the Spirit? Some answer this question in a mystic, monastic, and ascetic way. But by carefully reading the biblical data, we can find that the proper, practical, and spiritual way of walking in the Spirit is to be filled with biblical truths. Paul himself taught us the way when he said in Colossians 3:16,

Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.

Most biblical scholars believe that this verse is parallel with Ephesians 5:18. In other words, being filled with the Spirit and being filled with the word of Christ are congruent. The Spirit and the Scripture are always connected. Therefore, when we read and study the Bible, the Spirit uses the truth of the Scripture to fill us with the reality of who He is and how He works in our lives. He can fill us truly because we know Him properly.

In the final analysis then, to walk in the Spirit simply means a life saturated and driven by the truth of Christ – biblical truth. Using the context of Paul’s letter to the Colossians; when the believer truly and duly reads the Bible, the Spirit empowers him to…

1. Have a proper and worshipful view of Christ as His Lord (1:15-23)

2. Follow apostolic example and ministry (1:24-2:7)

3. Refute errors with biblical teachings (2:8-23)

4. Live with good manners and right conduct (3:1-17)

5. Manage his family with godly wisdom (3:18-4:1)

6. Communicate with biblical intelligence and grace (4:2-6)

7. Value Christian friendship and environment (4:7-18)

That’s what happens to you when you read the Bible heartily under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

From: Christian PLR Products

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