Spiritual Growth; October 27, 2020

Acts 18:25 He had been instructed in the way of the Lord, and he spoke with great fervor and taught about Jesus accurately, though he knew only the baptism of John.

This one verse should quiet those Pentecostals who put down their non-Charismatic brethren. On the other hand, it should at least soften the objections of some people to manifestations of the Holy Spirit. One totally unexpected outcome of the political mess that has been triggered by the Chinese corona virus has been the rapprochement between John MacArthur and Pentecostal leaders. When MacArthur was attacked by the California state government for holding services and he stood up to them, Che Ahn and others suddenly found themselves on his side, and it was a very unfamiliar feeling! I even saw a secular news broadcast with MacArthur and Pentecostal pastors together in the studio, talking about how unconstitutional Governor Newsom was being. This is simply further proof that God indeed works everything together for good! (Romans 8:28) That is not to say that ignorance of the things of the Spirit is a good thing. As the next verse tells us, Apollos was instructed in the things of the Spirit, and he obviously took it to heart, and became a great help to the Church at large. I personally think he was the author of Hebrews, though that is a relatively unimportant detail. What is important is that we are not to consider those who are ignorant as enemies. The devil is a very persistent and persuasive liar, and sometimes ignorant people can speak and act in hurtful ways, but we shouldn’t think of or treat them as enemies. After all, when God could turn Saul into Paul, who knows what He might do with that person who is opposing you?

I have had various people oppose me over the years. Some I have indeed chosen to avoid, but thankfully I haven’t been much tempted to enter into a vendetta against any of them. Some have accused me of spiritual pride, to be so sure I was right and they were wrong, and that is an area where I am well aware I am vulnerable. However, when the Lord has given me peace in the assurance He has given me, I am ready to extend grace to those who oppose. I am to remember that however correct my knowledge/beliefs might be, they aren’t the whole picture, (1 Corinthians 13:12) and be willing to learn from God through those who don’t seem to agree with me.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Thank You for all You did yesterday. There were many things, large and small – and You are the judge of what was large and what was small. Help me keep my eyes on You, yielding everything into Your hands so that You may indeed work it all together for good, and for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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