VIDEO Who is the Holy Spirit? How can we Know Him, A. W. Tozer Sermon

Jan 30, 2011

John 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

Still Waiting

Bethlehem . . . out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel. Micah 5:2

“How much longer until it’s Christmas?” When my children were little, they asked this question repeatedly. Although we used a daily Advent calendar to count down the days to Christmas, they still found the waiting excruciating.

We can easily recognize a child’s struggle with waiting, but we might underestimate the challenge it can involve for all of God’s people. Consider, for instance, those who received the message of the prophet Micah, who promised that out of Bethlehem would come a “ruler over Israel” (5:2) who would “stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord” (v. 4). The initial fulfillment of this prophecy came when Jesus was born in Bethlehem (Matt. 2:1) —after the people had waited some 700 years. But some of the prophecy’s fulfillment is yet to come. For we wait in hope for the return of Jesus, when all of God’s people will “live securely” and “his greatness will reach to the ends of the earth” (Mic. 5:4). Then we will rejoice greatly, for our long wait will be over.

We wait, comforting Spirit, for all the world to experience Your love.

Most of us don’t find waiting easy, but we can trust that God will honor His promises to be with us as we wait (Matt. 28:20). For when Jesus was born in little Bethlehem, He ushered in life in all its fullness (see John 10:10)—life without condemnation. We enjoy His presence with us today while we eagerly wait for His return.

We wait, Father God, and we hope. We wait, dear Jesus, as we long for peace to break out. We wait, comforting Spirit, for all the world to experience Your love.

We wait for God’s promises, believing they will come true.

By Amy Boucher Pye 


Christ’s second coming is also the theme of several New Testament passages. As Christ ascended into heaven, the angels told His disciples that Christ “will come back in the same way” they saw Him go (Acts 1:11). Jesus said His return would be unannounced and could occur at any moment; therefore, we are to “Be on guard! Be alert!” (Mark 13:33–37). The early Christians believed that Jesus’s return was “almost here” (Rom. 13:11–14). The apostle James encouraged believers to “be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near” (James 5:8; see also Rev. 1:3). The anticipation that Jesus could come any moment led some Christians in Thessalonica to become idle, quitting their jobs and waiting for Him to return. But Paul told them to get back to work and live meaningful lives (2 Thess. 3:11–13).

“While we [patiently] wait for the blessed hope” (Titus 2:13)—that wonderful day of Jesus’s return—we can ask the Spirit to help us to live “holy and godly lives . . . spotless, blameless and at peace with him” (2 Peter 3:11, 14).

In what ways can you enjoy God’s presence today as you wait for Jesus’s return?

Sim Kay Tee

A Healthy Heart

Psalm 26:2

Doctors recommend regular checkups to make sure our bodies are functioning properly. Though we might not even realize something is wrong, an undetected problem could potentially cause serious health issues. The same is true of our relationship with the heavenly Father. He desires that we seek His truth daily, allowing Him to shed light on anything that hinders our walk.

And, just as some people are nervous about seeing their physician, we might feel fearful of inviting the Holy Spirit to examine our life. It can be frightening to realize the truth about our sin and see ourselves as we actually are. What’s more, knowing that God will require our repentance and obedience may also cause us discomfort.

But the rewards are great. First, our Father removes any spiritual obstacles that impede a close walk with Him. Second, we gain greater intimacy with the Lord and with others. Third, as resentment, fear, and other ungodly attitudes stop draining us, our energy is renewed and serving God becomes a joy instead of a duty. Fourth, regardless of circumstances, we experience spiritual freedom through forgiveness. All of these benefits lead to deeper fulfillment, peace, and joy.

Maturity is a lifelong process. The heavenly Father will continue to grow His children until He brings them home. Seek the Lord’s wisdom and truth, and ask that He reveal anything holding you back from a beautiful friendship with Him. He wants to walk closely with you all of your days—and for all of eternity.

The Divine Designer

“Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?” (Isaiah 40:12)

The answer to this rhetorical question can only be God, the divine Designer of all the intricate interrelationships of His great creation. Four of the disciplines of natural science are implied here, and in each case a key principle of that science is anticipated.

The emphasis is on the precision of the divinely allocated quantities of each component. First, there is the precise balance of the waters of the earth between the oceans, rivers, groundwater, and atmospheric waters. Hydrology is the science of Earth’s waters, and life on Earth is dependent on the fine-tuning of the components of the hydrologic cycle. “He looketh to the ends of the earth. . . . To make the weight for the winds; and he weigheth the waters by measure” (Job 28:24-25).

The atmospheric heaven also has been carefully dimensioned in size and composition to make life possible, as formulated in the science of meteorology.

The “dust of the earth” is nothing less than the basic chemical elements out of which all things are made. The accuracy with which elements combine with each other is based on their valences, and all of this is involved in the study of chemistry. The principle of isostasy (“equal weights”) is the fundamental principle of the science of geophysics, involving the weights of mountains and hills, continents, and ocean basins.

God does not deal in chance and caprice, even with inanimate physical systems such as mountains and waters. Not even a sparrow can “fall on the ground without your Father” (Matthew 10:29). HMM

Wash, and be clean

2 Kings 5:1-14

2 Kings 5:1

In every lot there is a crook; no man can be described without a “but.” Naaman’s “but” was one which embittered his life, for his disease was loathsome, deadly, and incurable.

2 Kings 5:3

Who knows how this girl came to know of the prophet of the true God? Perhaps a holy mother had made her familiar with the true faith and its ministers. Mothers cannot tell where their children may be cast in after years; they ought therefore to prepare them for every contingency by storing their minds with the truth of God.

2 Kings 5:4

Naaman was a kind master, for all his servants took an interest in him: it is very pleasant when each one of the family seeks the good of the rest. Masters should care for the good of their servants, and servants should make their masters’ interests their own.

2 Kings 5:6

This was an error. The poor idolatrous king could do nothing.

2 Kings 5:7

He was alarmed, and feared that his powerful neighbour sought a pretext for another war.

2 Kings 5:9

Full of pomp and pride.

2 Kings 5:10

To cure Naaman of pride Elisha did not come out to him personally, but sent him a simple message.

2 Kings 5:11

He wanted rites and ceremonies, as many do now.

2 Kings 5:12

Just as those do who neglect the great gospel command, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ,” and go about to find out a way of being saved by their own doings, or by priestly ritual.

2 Kings 5:13

Good reasoning this! If Jesus had said to us, “Go on pilgrimage and be saved,” we would have traversed the world; shall we not obey him when he says, “Believe and live?”

2 Kings 5:14

God is always as good as his word, but he will have us obey him. Faith will save us; but if we will not believe neither shall we inherit eternal life. How is it with each one of us? Have we washed in Jesus’ blood or no?


The Servant of the Lord

2 Timothy 2:24

Many years ago, we had a staff member who moaned and groaned all the time because he was working so hard and was making such great sacrifices for the Lord. It was true that he was working hard, but so were all the rest of us. I agreed with this staff member when he told me that he and his wife were facing hardships they had never faced before. However, I also knew they weren’t alone in this predicament. We were all facing hardships because life in the former USSR was very difficult at that time.

The truth is, this man’s family was living at a much higher level of comfort and privilege than his neighbors or fellow workers at the office. But because he complained so much, everyone on the team rallied to help his family get over the hump they were experiencing. But no matter how much people did for this staff member and his wife, they continued to moan and groan about how bad life was and how much they had sacrificed for the Lord—and they rarely ever thanked anyone for what he or she did to try to help them.

Remembering how difficult it had been when our family first moved to that part of the world, my wife and I felt a need to do everything we could to help this man and his family adjust. We tried to comfort this couple as they worked through their transition. We knew they were having to get used to some very difficult living conditions while dealing with the normal feelings of homesickness that almost everyone experienced who had just moved to that side of the world. But after a while, we also realized that no matter how much we comforted this couple, they just would not be comforted!

Finally, the entire staff began to run out of patience. Everyone was getting fed up with listening to this couple sing the same sad song every day at the office. I could see that feelings of resentment toward these two were growing among staff members as appreciation for the couple’s work decreased. In the end, I knew I would have to sit down with this man and wife again to discuss their sour attitudes because they were adversely affecting so many people in our organization.

The day finally came when I pulled up my chair to the husband’s desk and said, “I need to talk to you about your attitude.” But before I could even get started, he had already put up a wall of defense that made it impossible for me to deal with him. Talking to that man was like talking to a brick wall! As he proceeded to be argumentative and defensive, I thought, Wait a minute! I didn’t come here to fight with him today! I came here to be a help and a blessing!

After a few minutes, I could see that my attempt to speak a word of correction into this man’s life was a total waste of both his time and my time. Had he opened his heart and allowed me to speak into his life, I could have helped him. But he wasn’t open to receiving input from anyone and was therefore destined to go through a series of mishaps and serious mistakes of his own making. However, all those mistakes could have been avoided if only he had allowed someone to be a friend and speak the truth to him.

Speaking correction into someone’s life isn’t a responsibility any leader relishes. Nevertheless, it is something leaders are required to do from time to time. This was Paul’s message to Timothy in Second Timothy 2:24. Paul wrote this letter to Timothy at a time when certain members of Timothy’s team were apparently demonstrating a rebellious attitude toward him as their pastor and needed to be corrected. In Paul’s letter, the apostle explained to Timothy how he was to bring correction to someone under his sphere of authority. This instruction is helpful to us as well for those times when we are required to speak correction into someone else’s life.

In Second Timothy 2:24, Paul said, “And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient.” Notice that Paul called Timothy “the servant of the Lord.” The word “servant” in this verse is the Greek word doulos. It describes a bondslave who is bound to do what he is told to do, regardless of what he thinks about it. This means that Timothy, as the bondslave of the Lord, was to hear what the Lord told him to do and then faithfully carry out His orders no matter what he felt or thought about them.

It is significant that Paul used this word when instructing Timothy to deal with problem-makers. It tells us that Timothy probably didn’t want to do it and that Paul was therefore reminding the younger minister that as a servant of the Lord, he didn’t have a choice regarding how he was going to handle such a situation.

Timothy was the chief leader of the church. Therefore, it was his responsibility to step into his leadership position and act with the authority and responsibility God had given him. No one else had the position or power to set things in order. Whether or not he wanted to do it, it was time for Timothy to step up to the plate and start playing according to God’s rules.

Likewise, if God has chosen you to be a leader in your church, your business, your organization, or your family, you must learn to see yourself as a God-appointed leader and accept the responsibility that goes along with this position. This is not a responsibility that you can shirk or pass off to someone else.

If someone under your authority is acting wrongly, it is your job to deal with it. Rather than shut your eyes and hope the problem simply disappears, you must love that person enough to go to him and deal with him in the spirit of Jesus. Do what you can to bring correction into his life so he can be set free from a wrong attitude that will negatively affect both his present and his future.

If that person chooses to listen to you and to submit to your spiritual authority, he can be changed. But if he chooses to ignore you and to reject your helpful counsel, you must then make a choice about whether or not to let that person remain as a part of your team. One thing is for sure, however—ignoring the problem will not make it go away and, in fact, may make it even worse.

You may dread the moment you have to sit down with that person to discuss what is wrong in his attitude. But once you finally deal with the problem, you’ll be so glad you did! The other team members will also be thankful that you took your leadership role seriously and refused to let a bad attitude negatively affect everyone else on the team. In the end, you’ll bolster your own leadership position in the eyes of others because you did the right thing. Your willingness to confront a problem will cause your team to respect you more, and hopefully you will have helped that person whose attitude needed to be corrected.

So if you are a leader, accept the fact that bringing correction to people under your sphere of authority is part of your responsibility. As you pray and seek the mind of the Lord, the Holy Spirit will show you how to speak to people in this kind of situation. He will teach you how to help them see what they need to change in their lives and attitudes so they can move up higher in God.

Never forget that bringing people higher is one of the primary goals of a leader. So if you are entrusted with the care of others in any arena of life, do everything you can to lead them to a higher level of excellence—even if it means correcting them in love!


First of all, Lord, I thank You for loving me enough to put people over me who were willing to bring correction into my life in the past. Although that correction was difficult to receive, I needed it and it ultimately benefited my life. For this, I am so thankful. Second, I ask You to help me now to be a blessing to those You have placed under my sphere of authority. When I see attitudes in them that need to be corrected, help me know how to approach them in a way that is positive and uplifting I ask You to give me the wisdom I need to challenge those under my authority to a higher level in every area of their lives.

I pray this in Jesus’ name!


I confess that those under my authority listen to me and submit to my spiritual authority; therefore, I am able to help them grow and mature in the Lord. I accept the fact that bringing correction to people under my sphere of authority is part of my responsibility. As I pray and seek the mind of the Lord, the Holy Spirit shows me how to correct people in love. He teaches me how to help them see what they need to change in their lives and attitudes so they can move up higher in God. I willingly make it my goal to bring the people under my care to a higher level in every area of their lives!

I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!


  1. Can you think of a time when someone sat down with you and spoke words of correction to you that ultimately produced great and positive changes in your life?
  2. Has there been a time in the past when you dreaded the moment you had to bring correction to someone, but afterward you were so glad you finally did it? What did your counsel produce in that person’s life? Did he listen to you, or did he ignore your counsel?
  3. Can you think of some positive ways you can speak words of correction to someone to make it a little easier for him or her to swallow?

If someone under your authority is acting wrongly, it is your job to deal with it. Rather than shut your eyes and hope the problem simply disappears, you must love that person enough to go to him and deal with him in the


Here Are Eight Reasons Why We Struggle To Maintain Our Ethical Edge

1. A belief that, to meet a specific deadline or a performance goal, some corners must be cut;


2. A lack of resources (human or otherwise) or time needed to accomplish a particular task, thereby necessitating some drastic or improper action;


3. Peer pressure;


4. Pressures from higher up the chain of command to produce and to get the job done no matter what;


5. A belief that the decision or act is not really illegal or unethical;


6. A belief that the decision or act is in the individual’s or the organization’s best interest and thus would be condoned by others;


7. A belief that the decision or act will never be discovered; and


8. Fear of authority.


Keep in mind that God, in His sovereignty has placed you in your situation to demonstrate His character to people in desperate need of a model. Job’s intense announcement of his determination to maintain his integrity should serve as an encouragement:


As long as I have life within me, the breath of God in my nostrils, my lips will not speak wickedness, and my tongue will utter no deceit…till I die I will not deny my integrity. I will maintain my righteousness and never let go of it.” (Job 27:3-6)



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