Text: “And when He (the risen Jesus) had said this, He breathed on them (His disciples) and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost.”
Good morning, Spirit-filled Christian! Faith is the key to your being Spirit-filled; for faith looks with the eyes of the Spirit, and the Spirit of God fills the obedient seeker with that full measure of faith. Are you and I thus filled today?
“And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; speaking to yourselves in Psalms and hymns and Spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; giving thanks always for ALL things unto God and the Father in the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Ephesians 5:18-20)
There’s no stopping us IF we are filled with the Spirit in this manner!
The verses of our Journey in John’s Gospel for today have caused many deep debates since the Lord Jesus spoke them. Many are the interpretations of these two small verses of Scripture. Many also are the erroneous doctrines that have been formed by religious legalists through a wrong view of Christ’s spoken words. Spirit-filled Christian, beware of false doctrine!
“Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed.” (2 John 9-10)
The same beloved disciple John who spoke these serious words in his Second Epistle, recorded the two verse Bible reading selected this morning from his wonderful Gospel account. John knew the Eternal curse of false doctrines.
“For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an anti-Christ.” (2 John 7)
Roman Catholicism, for example, has misused John chapter 20:, verses 22-23 to teach the lie that Roman Catholic popes and priests have been given the authority to forgive (absolve) an individual’s sins! They call it ’St Peter’s Keys of Heaven’ This is gross error! Flee from it, Christian friend!
Even a plain and cursory reading of the Scriptures will immediately ascertain the fact that God alone can forgive sins. Even the hated Scribes of the day knew this much!
“But there were certain of the Scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts, Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God only?” (Mark 2:6-7)
From their own mouths, these Scribes are judged. They knew not Jesus as the Son of God - God the Son - Whom, alone, has the power to forgive sin.
It is also notable what the Lord Jesus here says on the doctrine of ’receiving the Holy Ghost…’ - “And when He (Christ) had said this, He breathed on them (His disciples), and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost…”
This teaches us the wisdom that the Spirit of God, or the Holy Ghost, is imparted unto all who might be granted faith to believe in Christ Jesus; repent from our sins; and be willing to be sent out to serve the risen Lord.
“Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you; as My Father hath sent Me, even so send I you…receive ye the Holy Ghost…” (Vs. 21-22)
We Bible-believing Christians teach the truth that ‘…all Scripture is given by inspiration of God…” (2 Timothy 3:14-17)
By this we realise that all 66 Books of canonically recognized (KJV) Scripture is God-breathed and, by God’s grace, is God-breathed into all those elected by Him to be saved! We cannot receive Spiritual life unless the Lord God Himself ‘breathes’, or ‘inspires’ His Word into us and, of course, grants us faith by that Word!
Dictionary definition: (verb t) Inspire - to breath in or blow in (air etc.); to draw or inhale into the lungs; to infuse into (the mind), especially with an encouraging or exalting influence; (of Divine influence) to instruct, guide…to bring about; to animate or quicken with life. (The Chambers Dictionary page 832)
Just as God breathed His breath into Adam and gave him life; God’s Word breathes faith into us; we believe the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and we receive Life Eternal in Him.
Wow! Breathe upon us, oh Lord, our Living God!
Thought: “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” (Romans 10:17) God Divinely breathes His Spirit into us, by His Word. God’s Word, Jesus Christ, came to give us Eternal life. Glory to His gracious Name!