The Reality of Spirits

Assumptions

  • The symbolism taught by God in the Bible visually illustrates the invisible (spiritual).
  • Jesus taught in this way.
  • All teachings in the Bible are directly related to the invisible.
  • Faith is living according to our understanding of the invisible
  • If a teaching or practice fails to connect to the invisible, it belongs to the “right-wrong” mentality, which is sin.

We have an eternal part (a spirit)

Romans 1:9  For God is my witness, whom I serve in (with) my spirit in the gospel of His son…

Romans 8:16  The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God…

1 Corinthians 2:11  For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him?

1 Corinthians 5:4  When you are gathered together, along with my spirit…

1 Corinthians 7:34  That she may be holy both in body and in spirit…

1 Corinthians 14:14  For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays…

2 Corinthians 7:1  Let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of flesh and spirit…

2 Corinthians 7:13  His spirit has been refreshed by you all…

Galatians 6:18  The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. (2 Timothy 4:22, Philemon 25)

Ephesians 4:23  Be renewed in the spirit of your mind

Philippians 3:3  We are the circumcision who worship God in the spirit (worship the Spirit of God?)

Colossians 2:5  Though I am absent in the flesh, I am with you in spirit…

1 Thessalonians 5:23  May your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless

Hebrews 4:12  Even to the division of soul and spirit

Hebrews 12:23  To the spirits of just men made perfect

James 2:26  The body without the spirit is dead

1 Peter 3:19  And preached to the spirits in prison

1 John 4:2  Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God

God promised that He would live “in” us

  • The apostles were promised that the Spirit would be in them, as opposed to with them. (John 14:17)
  • God promised to give us this Spirit as a seal or pledge (2 Corinthians 5:5, 2 Corinthians 1:22, Ephesians 1:13)

 The Spirit that dwells in us has specific jobs

  • The Spirit gives life to our mortal bodies (Romans 8:11)
  • The Spirit aids in putting to death the deeds of the body (Romans 8:13)
  • The Spirit leads us (Romans 8:14)
  • The Spirit testifies of our adoption (Romans 8:16)
  • Strengthen the inner man (Ephesians 3:16)
  • Knowing that the Spirit is housed in us gives us motivation to preserve a holy body (1 Corinthians 3:16, 1 Thessalonians 4:8)
  • To perfect (Galatians 3:2-5) [note: many not refer to the indwelling Spirit]

How do we know the Spirit dwells in us?

  • Keeping His commandments is equivalent to the Spirit abiding in us (1 John 3:34)
  • Loving one another is equivalent to being given the Spirit. (1 John 4:13)

Do we have any control over the indwelling Spirit?

  • We should endeavor to be filled with the Spirit. (Ephesians 5:18)

Sometimes the jobs of the Spirit are not specific to the indwelling Spirit.

  • Assist in prayer (Romans 8:26, Ephesians 6:18)
  • Provide access to the Father (Ephesians 2:18)
  • Sanctify (1 Peter 1:2, 2 Thessalonians 2:13)
  • Fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22)
  • Lead (Galatians 5:18)
  • Give hope (Galatians 5:5)
  • Distribute miraculous powers (1 Corinthians 12:7)

The Dwelling Place of God

  • God had the Israelites build a sanctuary that He might dwell among them (Exodus 25:8, 29:45-46, Numbers 5:3, 35:34, Deuteronomy 12:11, 1 Kings 6:13, Psalm 68:16)
  • Shall God dwell upon the earth? (1 Kings 8:27-30)
  • Christians are now the dwelling place of God (Ephesians 2:22)

The Word (Note: the Bible records the Word, but the Word was with and in Christians before the New Testament was written)

  • Let the Word of Christ richly dwell within you (Colossians 3:16)
  • The Word abides in you (1 John 2:14)
  • If we lie, His Word is not in us (1 John 1:10)
  • Desire the pure milk of the Word (1 Peter 2:2, Hebrews 5:13)
  • Born again through the Word (1 Peter 1:23)
  • Receive the Word implanted (James 1:21)
  • The Word is living (Hebrews 4:12)
  • Study (2 Timothy 2:15)

The different facets of God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit, Word) are the same God, just illustrated to us in different ways.  Each one is said to dwell in us, each symbolizing a different way in which God interacts with us.

  • The Word in us represents the facts.
  • The Spirit in us represents the intangible (seal, overcoming, etc.)
  • The Son in us represents the reality of faith in the physical universe
  • The Father in us represents character

God lives in us in the same way that He lived in the Tabernacle and the Temple.  It was the place with which He was identified, the place at which He was worshipped, and the place from which He spoke.

The true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth (John 4:20 – 24)