by Paul Tautges | July 11, 2012 8:59 am
The past two days we have been thinking about the spiritual disabilities that result from our position as sinners. We have thought about our blindness and our greatest disability of all—inability. Today, we deliberately think about the healing that belongs to believers in Jesus Christ by virtue of our new position as saints (1 Cor 1:2). Ponder with me how God has provided all this for us in Jesus Christ our Savior and the gift of the Holy Spirit and let us counsel one another with these amazing truths.
In Christ, Our Spiritual Blindness is Replaced by the Holy Spirit’s Illuminating Light. The spiritual blindness that accompanies our state as sinners descended from Adam, which we considered a couple days ago, is broken through by the Holy Spirit’s piercing light and replaced with His ministry of illumination. As a result, believers in Jesus Christ are able to behold Him and consequently be transformed into His image (2 Cor 3:18). The Spirit replaces our heart of stone with a heart of pliable flesh (Ezek 11:19) and applies to us the death and resurrection of Christ who defeated the devil’s blinding power (Heb 2:14). This illumination is also accompanied by divine empowerment so that we may “walk in the light” (Eph 5:8; 1 Jn 1:7).
In Christ, Our Spiritual Hearing-Impairment is Replaced by Ears that Hear the Spirit. As stated above, our depravity renders us stubbornly hard-of-hearing, but God, in Christ and through the Spirit, has softened our hearts. More than that, He has given us new hearts. These spiritual hearts include spiritual, unseen ears. We can now hear the Word of God internally. However, this new hearing carries with it the obligation to be doers of the Word, not hearers only. Otherwise, we delude ourselves; we deceive ourselves concerning our true spiritual condition (James 1:22-24). Like the wise man who built his house upon the rock, we must—through obeying what we now can hear—build our lives on the rock of obedience to the words of Christ (Matt 7:21-29). Praise the Lord that we can now hear what the Spirit says to the churches (Rev 2:7)!
In Christ, Our Ignorance is Replaced by a Mind that Is Being Renewed by the Holy Spirit. According to the apostle’s teaching to the Ephesians, before our conversion to Christ we walked “in the futility of [our] minds” and were alienated from God because of our “ignorance” (4:17-18). But now that we have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit and have “learned Christ,” we are “to be renewed in the spirit of [our] minds” (4:20-23). The divine Author of Scripture—the Holy Spirit—now indwells us, which results in the ability to know the thoughts of God revealed in Scripture because we now possess the mind of Christ (1 Cor 2:11-16). Our new self “is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator” (Col 3:10).
In Christ, Our Helplessness is Replaced by the Ability to Serve God in Righteousness and Truth Empowered by the Spirit. The divine empowerment of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8) enables us to now be witnesses for Christ and His priceless gospel. Additionally, no longer must we be servants of sin, for that is now our past. “But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness” (Rom 6:17-18). The gift of new life in Christ and restoration to usefulness to God are only possible by virtue of our unbreakable union with the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior. Change is now not only possible in Christ, but expected as God who began this good work in us “will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ” (Phil 1:6).
All glory to God the Father, who chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world; and to the Son, who redeemed us by His precious blood; and to the Holy Spirit, who applies the gifts of God to our hearts thus healing the greatest disabilities of all—the natural-born spiritual inabilities that would otherwise have forever kept us from knowing Him!
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