The Holy Spirit: Working Behind the Scenes

The Holy Spirit: Working Behind the Scenes

Scripture: John 16:14, Ezekiel 37:5-9, Galatians 5:16-23
Date: 01/14/2017  Lesson: 2
"The Holy Spirit was not only present at the Creation of this world, He is also active in the process of our re-creation, where He gives us a new heart and new mind."
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Good morning, friends. Welcome to "Sabbath School Study Hour," coming to you here from the Granite Bay Seventh-day Adventist Church in Sacramento, California. A very warm welcome to our friends joining us across the country and around the world, our extended Sabbath school class. Also, I'd like to welcome the members and the visitors right here at the Granite Bay Seventh-day Adventist Church, so good to see you again this morning here ready to study.

Well, we've been started-- we started studying our new lesson quarterly on the Holy Spirit. And today, we are on lesson number two, entitled "the Holy Spirit: working behind the scenes." Now, I hope all of you here have a copy of the lesson quarterly. But for our friends who are joining us, if you don't have a copy of today's lesson, lesson number two on the Holy Spirit, you can download today's lesson at the Amazing Facts website. Just amazingfacts.org, and then click on lesson number two, and you can study along with us. We have a free offer that goes along with our study today, it's a book entitled "the flesh and the Spirit.

" This is our free offer for today. If you'd like to receive this, just call our resource phone number, and that number is... And you can ask for offer number 792. Well, before we get to our study, as normal, we like to begin by lifting our voices in praise, so I'd like to invite our song leaders to come and join me on stage. Jolyne simler: thank you, Pastor Ross.

As we're studying the Holy Spirit this quarter, we're going to sing this morning about "give me the Bible, holy message shining." And it's really what it's about. That is how the Holy Spirit speaks to us and God speaks to us, through His Word and through prayer. So, we're going to sing about that today. Hymn 272, "give me the Bible." We're going to sing all three verses. ??? ??? ? Give me the Bible, star of gladness gleaming ? ? To cheer the wanderer lone and tempest tossed ? ? No storm can hide that peaceful radiance beaming ? ? Since Jesus came to seek and save the lost ? ? Give me the Bible, holy message shining ? ? Thy light shall guide me in the narrow way ? ? Precept and promise, law and love combining ? ? 'Til night shall vanish in eternal day ? ? Give me the Bible when my heart is broken ? ? When sin and grief have filled my soul with fear ? ? Give me the precious words by Jesus spoken ? ? Hold up faith's lamp to show my Savior near ? ? Give me the Bible, holy message shining ? ? Thy light shall guide me in the narrow way ? ? Precept and promise, law and love combining ? ? 'Til night shall vanish in eternal day ? ? Give me the Bible, all my steps enlighten ? ? Teach me the danger of these realms below ? ? That lamp of safety o'er the gloom shall brighten ? ? That light alone the path of peace can show ? ? Give me the Bible, holy message shining ? ? Thy light shall guide me in the narrow way ? ? Precept and promise, law and love combining ? ? 'Til night shall vanish in eternal day ?? Jolyne: at this time, Pastor Ross will lead us in our opening prayer.

??? Dr. Ross: let us bow our heads for prayer. Dear Father in Heaven, what a privilege once again to be able to gather together to study Your Word. And as we open up the Scriptures, we ask the Holy Spirit to guide our hearts and our minds as we study about the Holy Spirit and his role in our lives. So, we pray for your continued guidance, and we pray for divine wisdom as we search the Scriptures, in Jesus' Name, amen.

Our study this morning is going to be brought to us by dr. David derose. Thank you. Dr. David derose: well, it's good to be with you this morning.

And we're continuing our study that we began last week on the Holy Spirit. We're on the second lesson, as Pastor Ross introduced us with, "the Holy Spirit: working behind the scenes." The Holy Spirit working behind the scenes. Perhaps, just perhaps you have one of these in your home. It's what they call an antique. Can you relate to this? Maybe it's an antique chair, maybe it's an antique desk.

Do you have such an article, any of you? I see some of you nodding your heads. Imagine you've got an antique chair, and it's tucked away in some remote place because this chair has been in the family for decades. And it's really not fit to sit in. Maybe it's tucked away in an attic or in a storage shed. Are you following along with me? And one day, you walk in where that chair is, and you say, "you know, it's a shame that this is just in storage.

I should have it restored, and then we could actually use it." And so, you go online, and you find someone that restores the antiques. By the way, you can't just go to the local hardware store and get some screws or nails, and fix an antique chair. You know how that works, right? I'm not an expert in antiques, but they tell me that will dramatically depreciate the value. So, you find a master craftsman who does restoration of antiques. And you know how it works.

Whenever you're looking for a specialist, you've got to drive miles to find such a person. Are you following along? And so you do that, and you know how your schedule is. You're rushed. You rush over there, you drop off the chair. And because it was put out of the way, you totally forget about it until some 3 weeks later, you get a phone call, the chair has been restored, but it's the same deal.

You've got to drive way out of your way, you go to the place and you--wow, when you get that chair back, you are-- I mean it's--you're just amazed. And as you're driving back with that chair, you're thinking, "wow, where can I put it now? This thing has been restored." But you know, it's possible if one of your friends ran into you and they asked you about the craftsman that restored the chair, you wouldn't be able to tell them anything about that individual other than that he does great work. And I tell you that story because if you'd been living some 2,000 years ago, and you'd been in the town of nazareth or in its environs, that master craftsman may have been Jesus. Isn't that possible? Turn your Bibles to Matthew chapter 13. In Matthew chapter 13, we get a glimpse of Jesus.

And you might be wondering, on a lesson on the Holy Spirit, where we're going, but I think we'll see how these dots connect before too long. I'm in Matthew chapter 13, and I'm going to pick up with verse 54, Matthew 13 beginning with verse 54. Here we're getting a picture of how Jesus' contemporaries, even after he was in his ministry, regarded him. He's back in his hometown of nazareth. In Matthew chapter 13, verse 54, we read these words, "when he had come to his own country back in nazareth, he taught them in their synagogue so that they were astonished and said, 'where did this man get the wisdom and these mighty works? Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not his mother called mary and his brethren James, Joses, Simon, and Judas? And his sisters, are they not all here with us? Where did this man get all these things?' So they were offended at him.

But Jesus said to them, 'a prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house.' Now, he did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief." Now, let's just think about it for a minute. Jesus, in his humility, for most of his life was totally unrecognized as the divine Son of God. Even during his ministry, that's what we just read about in Matthew 13. Those who had known him in the carpenter shop were still struggling with who this was. I point that out to you because Jesus was manifested in a way that we could, at least humanity could, physically see him, could interact with him.

But in his humility, he was largely unrecognized. And the question then is, when it comes to the Holy Spirit, how much more is it likely to misperceive the working of one who has not manifested himself in human form? So, as we're looking at this lesson, it is really about the mysterious working of the Holy Spirit. It is what actually Christians have struggled with over the centuries. I would like to suggest to you that this whole quarter is an extremely important series of lessons. And in fact, those who think the lessons are the least important are perhaps the ones who most need the lessons.

There's only one group who perhaps needs the lessons more. And those are those who think they don't need the lessons because they already fully comprehend the working of the Holy Spirit. And I'll try to flesh that out for you before too long. Let's spend just a moment looking at what was our memory text for this week because this will point us in a direction where we need to go. It's from John 16, verse 14.

The lesson has it in the new king James version. Why don't we read that all together? "He will glorify me, for he will take of what is mine and declare it to you." The Holy Spirit, as we'll see as we study together, is often described in terms of what he does. And because of that, the Holy Spirit has been misapprehended throughout history. He has been misperceived. Are you aware that many have rejected that there is a member of the Godhead known as the Holy Spirit, are you aware of that? But the Holy Spirit is very much a real person, and the Holy Spirit is very much one of the Godhead.

And we'll see that even in this week's lesson. Let's go first to Sunday's lesson, where it speaks of the elusiveness of the Holy Spirit, the elusiveness of the Holy Spirit. And we're going to go first to Ezekiel chapter 37. Ezekiel 37 is that famous prophecy of the dry bones. Ezekiel, of course, was writing during the time of the captivity.

God's people had been unfaithful, they had been brought to Babylon, and Ezekiel was being given messages that relate to God's people who seemed that they are without life, there's no more hope for the children of Israel. You remember that psalm where it spoke of the captors saying, "sing us one of The Songs of Israel." And they said, "how can we sing the Lord's songs in a strange land?" This is kind of where Israel is at in their experience. And so, in Ezekiel 37, the prophet is brought to a valley. And it says that valley in Ezekiel 37, verse 1 was full of what? Bones, what kind of bones? Dry bones. Now, for those of you that have some medical background, dried bones are totally lifeless.

There's no marrow, there's no hope in those bones. And as you read through the account, we come to verse 4. And God is speaking to Ezekiel, he says, "prophesy to these bones and say to them, 'o dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord God to the bones, to these bones, "surely I will cause breath to enter into you and you shall live. I will put sinews on you and bring flesh upon you, cover you with skin, and put breath in you and you shall live.

Then you shall know that I am the Lord."'" Now, that word there, "breath," it's from the Hebrew, ruach. And ruach is not only breath, but it's also accurately translated spirit. And so, as we're reading in the old testament about the Spirit, we're reading about this ruach, which also can be translated breath. And so, as you read through Ezekiel 37, you could be asking yourself a question. Are we reading about God's life-giving breath, or are we reading about the Holy Spirit? Because the terms used for God's breath and the Spirit are identical.

So, which is being talked about here? Well, exegetically from the Bible itself, just reading the text, you can't tell. You can't tell. We're going to go now to John chapter 3. And in John chapter 3, we're going to catch a glimpse of this interesting wordplay, if you will, that is occurring not only in the old testament with the word "ruach," but also in the new testament. And so, as we come to John 3 and that famous night meeting between the teacher, the great teacher of Israel, nicodemus, and the really great teacher of Israel, Jesus, we read this very interesting description.

And as we read from the translations in the english language, we miss some of the power of what's being shared here. So, in John chapter 3, the lesson calls our attention to verses 3 through 8. Let's look at those together, John chapter 3, verses 3 through 8, Jesus speaking to nicodemus. He says to him, "most assuredly I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God." Nicodemus said to him, "how can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?" Jesus answered him, "most assuredly I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the Kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

Do not marvel that I say to you you must be born again. The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit." Now, if you were to look at verse 8 in the Greek, and you were to translate it a little bit more freely, we could translate it this way. We could actually use the Greek word "pneuma," which actually is the word that could be translated spirit or breath. And it would read something like this.

"The pneuma pneumas where it wishes. You hear the sound of it, you can't tell where it's from. So is everyone that's born of the pneuma." The pneuma pneumas, so is everyone that is born of the pneuma. And you might be sitting there scratching your head. I mean, what's going on here? The wind winds.

And it says everyone who is born of the wind. Now, I think the translations are accurate. Jesus is drawing nicodemus' attention to the mysterious working of the wind. But the language in both the old testament and the new is actually blurring, blurring the identity of the Holy Spirit. So, it's not like Jesus, who humbled himself and came on this earth as a man and was misapprehended.

The Holy Spirit comes as something that we can't even grasp, like the wind, like God's breath? And I think it's because of this that many have misinterpreted who the Holy Spirit is and the work of the Holy Spirit. Now, many would say, "well, you know, we were just reading from Ezekiel, and that starts to--and we're talking about Babylon. I mean, do you realize, dr. Derose," someone might say, "that the whole concept of the trinity is a false notion? It comes from paganism?" Did the pagans believe in a trinity? They did, there are pagan beliefs in a trinity. So, because the pagans believed in something, we should reject it out of hand, what do you think? Go to Ezekiel chapter 8 just for a moment since our minds were in this historical context in Ezekiel chapter 8.

There, God is bringing a court case, some legal proceedings against his people. And he's speaking about the abominations of Israel. In Ezekiel 8, we are brought to the sanctuary. We'll come again to the sanctuary, God willing, before we finish our study today. But in Ezekiel 8, we read these words in verse 13 and 14, "and he," speaking of God, "said to me," this is Ezekiel writing, "'turn again and you will see greater abominations that they are doing.

' So, he brought me to the door of the north gate of the Lord's house. And to my dismay, women were sitting there weeping for tammuz." Now, who was tammuz? Tammuz was one of the Babylonian trinity. He was, in some renditions of the mythology, he was the boy king that came to deliver his people, and then died and was resurrected. Is this starting to sound familiar to some of you? So, because the pagans believed in a child king that died and was resurrected, we should reject out of hand anything that speaks about a boy king who would die and be resurrected, what do you think? Would this be a good approach? You say, "of course not." Are you aware that satan in his wisdom counterfeits things not only that have happened, but things that he knew prophetically that God had revealed would happen? Is it any surprise? And so, the fact that there is a real God head with three persons, it should be no surprise that there is a false trinity. And to say because the Babylonians believed in a trinity, therefore we should reject it, would be just as erroneous as saying because the Babylonians believed in a God that was resurrected, we should reject the resurrection of Christ.

In fact, there were some apparently in Paul's day who were not teaching the resurrection, considering themselves among the Christian fold, and Paul said they are most miserable. Do you remember that? Some of you I know are engaged in commercial activities. Some of you might even run your own business. Some of you tuning in can relate to this. How many of you are aware they counterfeit $100 bills? Are you aware of this? They counterfeit $100 bills.

I've heard that they do not counterfeit $1 bills. So, what do you think? Wouldn't it be safer if you were in business to say you only accept $1 bills? What would this do to your commercial experience? I would suggest you would--it would likely impoverish you. Are you following along with the metaphor? If we try to avoid anything that has any possibility of compromise in the Spiritual realm, we will likely impoverish ourselves in the Spiritual realm as well. And so, as we look at the Holy Spirit's work, it is a mysterious work. Just because the Holy Spirit is hard to pin down, just because he seems to be shrouded in mystery in the Bible is not a reason to reject his personality.

We'll be studying that throughout this quarter. There's a text that speaks with particular power to us, and I think someone actually has that for us. We'll look at it in a moment. It's from Deuteronomy chapter 29 and verse 29, Deuteronomy 29 and verse 29. But before we go there, I want to just point out one other thing for you.

And there's going to be an argument that some people will be using as we study this lesson. And they'll be saying, "I don't believe in the Holy Spirit as a person of the Godhead because the pioneers didn't believe in the Holy Spirit." Are you aware that back during the great advent movement back in the 1830s and 1840s, before there was even a Seventh-day Adventist Church, when there was a renewed spirit of inquiry as far as the Scriptures, many people were throwing off these false ideas that had crept into the churches. And they just wanted to take the Bible as it read. By the way, is that a good thing or not? That's a wonderful thing. And to that background, the Seventh-day Adventist Church traces its roots.

But in that period of time when they were throwing off everything, some good things got placed off to the side. And one of them was the truth of the trinity. And so, it is true that early in the history of the advent movement, before there even was a Seventh-day Adventist Church, many of those who became involved in this movement didn't fully realize the full working of the Holy Spirit, and that it was indeed God himself, one of the three persons of the Godhead. Now, I tell you that background because you know throughout scriptural history many good people sincerely led by the Lord had grievous misconceptions about what God wanted. Let me just give you one example, this is one that occurs a number of times in the old testament.

Turn in your Bibles to 2 Kings chapter 15, 2 Kings 15. So, I'm turning to this record of someone who, for much of his reign, was one of the great Kings of Israel, 2 Kings 15. This king known azariah or uzziah. We read something very interesting about him. In 2 Kings 15, we're reading about how he reigned.

And it gives an interesting commendation to him. Kings 15, picking up in verse2. And again, this is a king called azariah or uzziah. It said he was 16 years old when he became king, and he reigned 52 years in Jerusalem. In verse 3, "he did what was right in the sight of the Lord according to all that his father amaziah had done, except that the high places were not removed.

The people still sacrificed and burned incense on those high places." Now, here's the question for you. This was the same king that ultimately was so blessed by God, you read that in Chronicles that he took glory to himself, and sought to take the role of the priest, and was struck with leprosy. You remembering the story? But what does it say about him? He was doing right in the sight of the Lord, but he did not do something, what did he not do? He didn't remove the high places, these places of false worship. How could someone be so blind? Are you following along? Someone can be led by God, they can be blessed by God, but they can have blind spots. Don't let any human be your standard of comparison, no matter how mightily they are used by God.

Look to the word itself. As we look to the word this week and throughout this quarter, you're going to see the Holy Spirit as a person, as a member of the Godhead. And we'll get a glimpse of that in just a moment. We have a Scripture right now that is going to be read from Deuteronomy 29, verse 29. Female: the secret things belong unto to the Lord our God, but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.

Dr. Derose:so God, does he reveal everything to us? I have to--i had a struggle this week as I was looking at this because it struck me that the Holy Spirit was so humble. I mean, the Holy Spirit, when we looked last week, the Holy Spirit is the one who inspired the whole Bible. But there's no book that starts out, "written by John under the power of the Holy Spirit." The Holy Spirit is very much in the background, have you noticed that? In fact, so much in the background that we can lose sight of the mighty working of the Holy Spirit. And the struggle I had is I was starting to ask myself a really stupid question.

And that is, "who is the most humble among the Godhead?" You see, when Jesus was on this earth, he said, "if you've seen me, you've seen The Father," right? When we see any member of the Godhead, we're seeing the personality of the entire triune God. And so, the Holy Spirit in its humility. I was thinking about this in light of my background. As a physician, I had to go to medical school. And as I think back on those medical school days, now maybe some of my classmates were this way, but I'm just going to be honest with you, medical students, as I recount my experience, as I recall what I went through, they are among the most humble people in the world.

Now, it seems ironic because doctors have a reputation for anything but humility, don't they? But as medical students, really they seem very humble. Now, I guess, you know, in certain circles, they could've been arrogant that they were admitted into medical school or--but there's just something totally humbling about the experience. I remember one day sitting in my room, I think I was studying microbiology. And you have to realize if you got into medical school, you had a history of mastering your classes when you were in college, okay? You know, you got a finite amount of material to learn, and you would master that, do well on the test. And those are the kind of people who typically got into medical school.

But in medical school, I was sitting there with microbiology. I mean, I'd never heard of naegleria fowleri, or you know, citrobacter, or pseudomonas. I mean, these are all these strange--and I'm looking at this, and I looked at my notes, and I looked at all these textbooks, and I looked at my watch. And really, really, I said, "there is absolutely no way I could learn this." And I just--i just got so discouraged, I couldn't even study really. There was just too much material, it was impossible.

The national boards could test you on any aspect of microbiology, and biochemistry, and anatomy. How could anyone learn it all? Fortunately, the Lord said, "David, you don't have to learn it all. Just learn something in the hour that you have." I think that was the next day that I came to that realization. And I tell you that story because, to me, it strikes me a lot of how the Holy Spirit is. We can learn about the Holy Spirit, but it seems like God has never fully revealed all we'd like to know.

So, instead of me feeling like, "I've mastered the Holy Spirit. Oh, I'm so glad I'm here at the Granite Bay church 'cause they've mastered the Holy Spirit here. And we're just going to come, and in a quarter, we're going to--you know, we're just going to know everything about the Holy Spirit. And then the whole church will have to come to us because we know all about the Holy Spirit." But the Holy Spirit is shrouded in mystery. And I believe it's partly because the only way we can fully receive the Holy Spirit is if we realize how needy we are.

We have to come humbly. So, the study of the Holy Spirit doesn't increase my sense of how much I know, but it increases the sense of my need. And so, God does not reveal all the details about the Spirit, but we see glimpses in how he works. Let's look at Monday's lesson as the Holy Spirit first appears upon the scene of the canon. As the Bible is being given, the very first book of the torah, the book of Genesis, we are introduced to the Holy Spirit.

In Genesis chapter 1, as we read the creation account, it's a fascinating account missed by many who read the account in the english. But we're going to read it in the english anyway, and we'll try to draw out some of the Hebrew nuances. The history of creation, it begins in Genesis 1, verse 1. "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

" Now, what we don't pick up in the english is that the God of Genesis 1 is introduced differently as the God of Genesis 2. In Genesis 1, the name for God, the Hebrew term for God in Genesis 1 is elohim, as opposed to the perhaps more familiar term for God that we'll usually translate into the english as jehovah or yahweh. So, jehovah or yahweh, that's self-existent, eternal God, the I am. On the other hand, in Genesis 1, it's elohim. Elohim is a plural, it is a plural term for God.

In fact, the very name used for God in Genesis 1 is telling us, it's giving us a clue that God is only understood in plurality. And so, we see in this plurality that God is creating. And not only as we read through Scripture do we see that Jesus is often displayed as the active agent of creation, we find that in places like Colossians 1, but we also see in the very beginning that something is hovering over the waters. Who is that? It's the Spirit, it's the ruach, it's the breath of God. And so, as we're reading that, our mind might be going in several directions, but we want to just focus on this creation account a little longer.

Because if you haven't looked at this in a while, if you're missing the plurality of God in the account, look at verse 26 of Genesis 1. Because it says there, "then God said," again elohim, this plural God, "let us make men in our image, according to our likeness." Verse 27, "so God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him. Male and female he created them." So, when God is creating in his image, he must create in what? In plurality. And so, man and woman are created to--you say, "wait, wait, wait, wait, wait." You know, this isn't really advanced math. You've got man and woman, that's how many? Two.

And we've got The Father, The Son, and the Holy Spirit, that's three. So, why does God create two if we're being made in his image and he's three?" Okay, I see a number of you have the answer, and I'm glad you got it all straightened out because I'm not sure I understand all the dimensions of that. But here's the point, here's the point. From the very language of Genesis 1, God is creating in plurality. There is something interesting, and maybe I should mention it because this has been misunderstood about the creation.

Some of you may be thinking of one of the beautiful poems in American history that speaks of God being lonely and saying, "therefore I will create a world." But in the triune God, there was perfect fellowship and harmony. God didn't create out of need, in a sense. He created out of love, his desire to share the fullness that was already in the Godhead. So yes, there's a certain sense in which God needs each one of us, he loves each one of us as individuals. But there's also a sense in which God doesn't create out of need, he creates out of abundance.

And so, I believe that that's what that triune God expresses to us. But let's look a little bit more about this imagery of the Holy Spirit hovering over the waters. I appreciate this comment in the lesson. You find it there in Monday's lesson. And it brings us back to the Hebrew for hovering.

It says it's the very same word that is used in Deuteronomy 32:11, where God is compared to an eagle hovering over the nest of young. So, this terminology that's used is that the Spirit is actively engaged, even though it's not a--it doesn't appear to be a hands-on engagement. Now, if you think that settles the question, someone is going to be reading for us from Psalms 8 in just a moment. But before we go to Psalms 8, we want to go to a new testament illustration that's going to give us some insight into this very topic. And the new testament, if you turn with me to Matthew chapter 12, we're going to Matthew chapter 12 for a few reasons.

Matthew chapter 12. I can remember when I was back in--well, I won't tell you where I was so as not to implicate anyone, but I was in a place where there's a very strong group of Bible believers who rejected any notion of a Holy Spirit that was really a person. And in fact, instead of strengthening their ministry, it seemed to only undermine it. And I read these very sobering words, Jesus' words in Matthew 12, verses 31 and 32. Jesus said that he did his great works through the power of the Holy Spirit.

And so, here he says in verse 31, "therefore I say to you every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven man, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven man. Anyone who speaks a word against The Son of man, it will be forgiven him. But whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come." And of course, we usually apply this terminology of the sin against the Holy Spirit to a sin of totally rejecting the work of the Holy Spirit on the heart, rejecting God's wooing of us, closing the doors to repentance. And I think that's very accurate. But as we think about the work of the Holy Spirit, what was really happening in Jesus' day is the work of the Holy Spirit was being undermined.

What was being done by the Holy Spirit was being said to be done by an unHoly Spirit. Now, look just a few verses above that in verse 28. Jesus was being accused of casting out demons by demons. He said in verse 28, "but if I casted out demons," by what? "By the Spirit of God, surely the Kingdom of God has come upon you." Now, when we're reading the Gospels, I don't know if you have this habit, it's a valuable one if you've not developed it, but look at the parallel passages in the other Gospel writers. Have you done that? In the old days, we used to have to have a book, I have one on my shelf, it's called "the harmony of the Gospels.

" And it would put side by side what Matthew said about an account, and what Mark said, and what Luke said, for example, okay? All side by side, and you can read and compare them. Let's do that right now. You may not have a "harmony of the Gospels" with you, I don't either, but I'm going to turn in my Bible to a parallel account. And I'm going to guess where? Luke chapter 11, verse 20. Some of you have study Bibles, and it told you that that parallel account is found in Luke 11.

And in Luke 11, we're going to find something very interesting about the language that Luke recorded. And we might make a comment or two about that. Luke 11, verse 20, very same account, Jesus being accused of casting out demons through satan's power. And look what he says in verse , "but if I cast out demons," what did it say in Matthew, do you remember? By the Spirit of God or by the Holy Spirit. Here he says, "if I cast out demons with the finger of God, surely the Kingdom of God has come upon you.

" Now, we're going to go to Psalms chapter 8, verse 3 and 4, Psalms 8, 3 and 4. Listen carefully to the words. Male: "when I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars which thou hast ordained, what is man that thou art mindful of him, and The Son of man that thou visitest him?" Dr. Derose: very interesting, isn't it? God in Psalms 8 creates how? With his finger. Did God write anything with his finger? He wrote the 10 commandments, it says, with his own finger.

The Holy Spirit inspires the word to be written. The Holy Spirit is active in creation. And then we read about God's finger creating the world. We say, "well, wait, but he created everything by the breath of his mouth." Have you read that too? That's the Spirit. Do you see? As we study about the great acts of creation and then we'll see in salvation, we see the Spirit kind of blurred in his identity, but we catch these glimpses throughout the Bible of God having an active agency, the Godhead working through the Spirit.

Let's hasten on as we look at Tuesday's lesson, "the Holy Spirit and the sanctuary," the Holy Spirit and the sanctuary. And the key text there is found at the beginning of that day's study, where it says, "let them make me a sanctuary, that I may dwell among them." By the way, what is a sanctuary? Where does it come from? Where does the word even come from in english? Just like in the Hebrew, it comes from a root that refers to holy. If you sanctify something, you make it holy. So, the sanctuary is literally a holy place, a holy thing. So, God is asking for a holy place that just happened to have a special holy place in it, and then a most holy place within it.

Are you following along? And so, God is revealing that all that has to do with him is holy. And so, one of the themes in the sanctuary is holiness to the Lord. What is the name for the Spirit? What is the name given to the Spirit? The Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit. Could people be possessed by unclean spirits in the old testament? We won't look at examples, I think they immediately come to mind. Were these unclean spirits, did they have personalities? Or was it just an ethereal evil power? No, sometimes the unclean spirits even spoke, right? And they gave their names, at least on one account.

"We're legion." So, why should it be surprising that the Holy Spirit would be a person that could take possession of those who are surrendered to his working? Turn in your Bibles to Isaiah chapter 57. Isaiah 57, a very interesting Scripture that ties together some of these themes of humility and God's Spirit filling work. Isaiah 57, verse 15. Isaiah 57, verse 15, "for thus says the high and lofty one, who inhabits eternity, whose name is holy, 'I dwell in the high and holy place,'" we could say the sanctuary, "with him who has a contrite and humble spirit to revive the Spirit of the humble and to revive the heart of the contrite ones." God is showing us the qualifications for us to be his sanctuary. And so, when John in chapter 1 is speaking of Jesus coming to the earth, it says he came and dwelt among us.

It's literally he tabernacled among us. He made his sanctuary among us. He made his holy place among us. So, the Holy Spirit is revealed, if you will, in the sanctuary. And the Holy Spirit, if you had a chance to study Exodus 31, is the individual who gives skill in the construction of the sanctuary.

Very interesting connections. Go with me now to Wednesday and Thursday as we really focus on the most powerful manifestation of the Spirit. Now, one of the things that we have to do in medical circles, and you may be aware of this, sometimes this is not a noble characteristic of physicians, but we're taught to be very critical in our thinking. And if we're not--if we don't do that, we can miss diagnoses. Just this week, a patient came to me with a diagnosis that they had self-diagnosed themselves with, and we always have to be very careful that we don't just go down the path of what the patient thinks they have.

We don't just dismiss that, I don't, but we listen and we try to analyze things. So, we have to think critically. Sometimes that's a bad thing because we get overly critical about things we shouldn't be critical of. And if you need to remind me of that sometime, you have perfect permission to do that, okay? Okay. But here it makes a statement.

In Wednesday's lesson, it says the Holy Spirit was active during old testament times. I'm reading from the very beginning of that lesson study. Though it does not appear that his work was as extensive as in the new testament era. And so, I was asking myself the questions, is this right? Was the Holy Spirit less active in the old testament than the new? Well, you can say at least as far as the volume of Revelation, as far as the amount of Scripture we have, the old testament is longer than the new, right? But now granted, the old testament was written over a whole lot longer period of time than the new testament. But the bottom line is the Holy Spirit was active in both, the old and the new testament.

But the Holy Spirit takes front and center stage when we see the ministry of Jesus. And in Thursday's lesson, it calls our attention to some of these details in Jesus' life and ministry. Go with me first to Luke chapter as we're going to get there a glimpse of the origins of Jesus. In Luke chapter 1, we're going to start with verse 34. Luke 1, verse 34.

So, the Holy Spirit may have been taking what seems like more of a back seat, more of a less visible role in the old testament, but you can't avoid the work of the Holy Spirit, especially in the writings of one who was trained and perhaps some skepticism if he was trained like me, and that's Luke, who also, you know, was a physician. It is interesting to point out that Luke had some of the clearest descriptions of the work of the Holy Spirit not only in his Gospel, but in the book of acts. And if anyone would be questioning the Holy Spirit of the Gospel writers, I would suggest that Luke's background as a Greek and as a physician would have made him the one most likely from a human perspective to question the work of the Holy Spirit. And in fact, he's the one who, in some respects, most illuminates the working of the Holy Spirit, which I think is relevant as we study this quarter together. So, in Luke chapter 1, beginning with verse 34, we have this account of the origins of Jesus.

The angel speaking to mary has already told her that she is going to be the mother, if you will, of the Messiah, the Savior Jesus. In verse 34, "mary says to the angel, 'how can this be since I do not know a man? I've not--I'm a virgin.'" Verse 35, "and the angel answered and said to her, 'the Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the highest will overshadow you, therefore also that holy one who is to be born will be called The Son of God.'" That holy one, like the holy sanctuary, this place where God meets with his people in the old testament. Now, God is meeting in the person of Jesus. And the Holy Spirit is the one who is bringing this to fruition. Just like he was active in the creation, just like he was active in the building of the old testament sanctuary, he's now active in the very origins of the humanity of Jesus.

And what's interesting to me, the application for us is, you know, sometimes we might be saying, "well, this seems all so theoretical. How is this practical? What difference does it make for us?" As we study through this lesson, one of the great texts about the Holy Spirit is this. And it's this idea that why does it make a difference whether the Holy Spirit is an individual or the Holy Spirit is a power? And the answer is given if the Holy Spirit is just a power, it's just a force, then our focus becomes on trying to possess more of this power. Whereas if we realize the Holy Spirit is an individual, our focus becomes being surrendered so that the Holy Spirit will fill us, so that we will be possessed of the Holy Spirit, not that we will possess a power. Do you see the difference? So, instead of an infusion of the Holy Spirit being some kind of ethereal power that gives us standing in the Christian church, the ones who have the largest measure of the Holy Spirit are the ones who are like mary.

What was mary's qualification? Look at verse 38, Luke 1. Mary says, "behold the maidservant of the Lord. Let it be to me according to Your Word." What allows us to have the Holy Spirit is humility and surrender, humility and surrender. And I love verse 37. If some of you are struggling right now with things in your life, verse 37, "for with God," what? "Nothing will be impossible.

" With God, nothing is impossible. And how does he bring the impossible, the humanly impossible to fruition? It's through the Holy Spirit. We're going to look at another text, and this text is found in John 14. Someone has for us John 14:16 through 17. And as we're preparing to go there, Jesus spent some of his longest personal instruction with the disciples, some would even say his longest concentrated instruction, in John, end of John 13 through John 16, the end of John 16, speaking to the disciples about what would happen after his departure.

And he talked about them getting a special blessing. But it wasn't just a blessing, it was a special personality. So, John chapter 14, verses 16 and 17. Female: "and I will ask The Father, and he will give you another helper to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him for he dwells with you and will be in you.

" Dr. Derose: so, the Holy Spirit was working during the ministry of Jesus, but the disciples even didn't fully appreciate the work of the Spirit until Jesus left. The Holy Spirit, his name in the Greek, parakletos. Para, alongside of; kletos, to call. Comes from the root to call.

It's the one called alongside of us. Are you looking for encouragement today? Do you need God's guidance? The Holy Spirit is a real person. The Holy Spirit worked throughout history. And that creative power, that power that infused Jesus with power for his ministry is the same Holy Spirit that wants to work in my life and your life today. If you want more on the subject of the work of the Spirit, our special offer is "the flesh and the Spirit.

" Anyone in North America can request this free of charge. It's offer 792, 792, and you can get it simply by calling... Next week, by God's grace, we'll continue our study of the Holy Spirit. I would encourage you to continue to dive into understanding more of something I don't think we'll ever fully grasp, but that God wants us to more fully recognize our need for because he longs to fill us with more of his spirit. Female: "Amazing Facts" has impacted my life.

Male: and I just praise God for "Amazing Facts." Male: "Amazing Facts" actually did have an impact on my life. Male: this whole process, getting to where I am today, I feel good about that. I did feel good at the end. Female: I began reading the Bible. Male: I realized that there had to be more to life.

Male: God is really doing this. Male: the life that he's given me. Male: this message was so powerful. Male announcer: "Amazing Facts," more than 45 years of proclaiming God's message around the world. Male: and then the logo pops across, "Amazing Facts presents.

" I've listened to a lot of different ministers, but this was the first time that he's actually saying something where I had to grab my Bible and actually pick it up, and, "I never heard this before. Let me look through and find this." Then I just couldn't get enough. Male: and so, I started doing Bible studies. Every single one of these guys started being changed, including myself. Female: my question was, why did that happen to me, God? the Lord was able to reach out, and I actually saw him as a father.

Female: I lost everything. And that was when I realized that it was God missing in my life. Male: I went to a prophecy seminar, which knocked me out. This message was so powerful and so irrefutable, and I just went, "this is real. This is--this is amazing.

" Male announcer: can't get enough "Amazing Facts" Bible study? You don't have to wait until next week to enjoy more truth-filled programming. Visit the "Amazing Facts" media library at aftv.org. At aftv.org, you can enjoy video and audio presentations, as well as printed material, all free of charge 24 hours a day, days a week, right from your computer or mobile device. Visit aftv.org.

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