The Spirit’s Voice
The greatest need of the church today is not money as many had been made to believe. Striving to make money as a great prospect in ministry is nothing but a bash misplacement of spiritual priority. When you have money, they claim, you can purchase sophisticated musical or sound equipments; you can also hire the best or most qualified workers; with money you can still erect a pleasing to the eye cathedral, Schools, hospitals, universities and other edifices; with adequate finances, one can travel far and wide; you can organize programs like crusades, seminars, conventions… But critically speaking, it does not mean much nor a big deal to succeed by ordinary natural methods, because all these do not first and foremost make a ministry with divine backing or approval. Without God’s back up, all one can do is to only imitate others or take after worldly fashions and give the ministry a superficial outlook and name. What a tragedy of ministry with so much earthly initiatives, focus and abundance; but deficient of God’s power! That is why our Lord Jesus ensured a clear direction to successful service in God’s kingdom only in Spirit and Truth (Jn 6:24). And in His discourse to the disciples before His ascension, He also made it clear that they only need to depend on the power of the Holy Ghost as they journeyed into ministry without His physical presence.
6 Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” 7 And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. 8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” NKJV
Here the first apostles received assurance of the fulfillment of an enduring and everlasting promise of the Father; the Holy Spirit. He had intimated them about it in John 16:6-11
“Because I have said these things, you are filled with grief. But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world of….”
Although they were still being held bound and ruled by the worldly orientation; being obsessed by its deceptions and man-made approach to life and government, they curiously asked; “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” However, understanding their limitations to divine arrangements and provisions, Jesus drew their attention to the earthly and eternal necessities of both life and His rule over all; “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me…” As for God, to His people, the greatest need is to bless us, and we should be ruled or controlled by the Holy Spirit. That is why we are call upon to shun the worldly approach to seeking material things; but we should “…seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”
In fact He considers this as the topmost priority that can never be compromised and be substituted with any of the best earthly blessing or achievement. In other words, there can never be connection with God without the Holy Ghost; “God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” (Jn 4:24)
But the greatest mistake Christians had faced throughout decades had been to listen to contrary and misleading voices. It was the same problem or false attraction that made the first created humans to fall into the terrible sin of rebellion against God (Gen 3); which all of us had suffered its spill over (Rom 5:15-17); this is what is still keeping many captives and under the rule of darkness even in the church. “Now there was a man in their synagogue with an unclean spirit.” (Mk 1:23).
One is always comforted with the words of our Lord Jesus which He uttered in John 14:12 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father” (NKJV) It is faith in God and in His Son Jesus Christ that forms the basis for effective imitation of Him by the power of the Holy Spirit! Many people’s faith had failed them; many had resorted to looking at everything about God in the bad light or as a damned flop; in fact spiritual issues had become too alien to them. At the end of the day, since they cannot accomplish much by human strength, they run to every so-called power packed places for solution to their problems. Jesus said we can believe the Father and also have faith in Him because He goes to the Father (Jn 14:1,12); after which the promise of the Father will be showered on the believers (Jn 14:16; Jn 15:26; 16:7).
Oh only if we would believe; the works of Christ and even His greater works will be done by us (Jn 14:12); unbelief is the worse sin ever; a much terrible hindering force than the devil himself. The book of Hebrews 11:6 says, “But without faith it is impossible to please him…” Faith is the Holy Spirit’s gift; “But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all… to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit (1Cor 12:7,9).