Posts tagged ‘Holy Spirit’

March 18, 2015

Daily Devotionals: (March 18th) The Dreams of Patrick II

by Aaron Dunlop

Patrick of Ireland: A Devotional History

Reading: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” Romans 8:14

Patrick refers a number of times in his Confession to spiritual guidance through dreams in the night. He was either a zealous mystic with a wild and vivid imagination or a man in touch with God—a man, like Enoch who walked with God and like Moses with whom the Lord spoke as to a friend. I will let Patrick speak for himself concerning his devotional life: “I would wake to pray before dawn in all weathers, snow, frost, rain; and I felt no harm and there was no listlessness in me—as I now realise, it was because the Spirit was fervent within me” (Confession, sec. 16). Notice his wording here—“the Spirit was fervent in me.” He is not speaking of his activity but of the activity of the Spirit in him.

Patrick speaks of dreams in the night in which he heard the voice of God. He says he woke out of his sleep “overjoyed” (Confession, sec. 24). As he slept again, in the dim and misty figures of a dream, he says he saw one “praying there powerfully and groaning; and meanwhile I was dumbfounded and astonished and wondered who it could be that was praying within me, but at the end of the prayer He spoke and said that He was the Spirit, and so I awoke and remembered the apostle’s words: ‘The Spirit helps the weaknesses of our prayer; for we do not know what to pray for as we ought; but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with unspeakable groans which cannot be expressed in words’ (Romans 8.26) and again: ‘The Lord our advocate intercedes for us’ (cf. l John 2.1)” (Confession, sec. 25).

Believer, does this seem foreign? It does, sadly. Perhaps it is because we are so far removed from primitive and vital Christianity. Beware of limiting the Holy Spirit; don’t let the modern Charismatic chaos make you skeptical. Don’t be content with a sterile and lifeless intellectual religion. Pray for personal revival. Walk with God, talk with Him, and “covet earnestly the best gifts”—the Spirit of God, not just dwelling but working in you.

“There is a way in which the Spirit leads the sons of God, a way that others do not know. He enlightens them with respect to their duty, by making their eye single and pure, whereby the whole body is full of light. He enables men to understand the commands and counsels of God’s Word, and rightly to apply them.”—Jonathan Edwards

All quotations from the Confession or Letter of Patrick are taken from the edition by A. B. E. Hood, 1978.

June 6, 2014

Daily Devotionals (June 6th): The Supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ

by Aaron Dunlop

philippians

After hundreds of years and numerous church councils the doctrine of the trinity was finally formulated with the final statements made on the person of the Holy Spirit. The Nicene Creed of AD 325 stated simply: “We believe in…the Holy Spirit.” This was enlarged at the First Council of Constantinople (381)with the words “the Lord and Giver of life, who proceedeth from the Father.” What is significant about this is that the Spirit was said to proceed only “from the Father.” But in 589 at the Council of Toledo, in Spain, the church added the clause “and from the Son.” This was the famous filioque (from the Latin; “and from the Son”) clause that would cause so much division between the Eastern (Orthodox) and the Western (Roman) Churches.

Why is the filioque clause so important? It is important in our understanding of the nature of the Trinity. But it is also important in our understanding of the application of redemption and the building of the Church of Christ. Having ascended up into heaven Christ had accomplished redemption (John 14:22), silenced the accuser of the brethren (Revelation 12:10) and appeared victorious at the right hand of God. Only now could the Spirit proceed from the Son and take on a distinctly different role than before. This was the “supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ” given at Pentecost. This was the promise that Jesus made to His church—to us. The promise was that the Holy Spirit will continue the work of Christ in the hearts of men and teach us what we ought to say in the time of difficulty (Matthew 10:19-20; Luke 12:12).

Our strength to stand for Christ and not bring shame of the gospel comes, as it did for the imprisoned Paul, from “the supply of the Spirit if Jesus Christ” in answer to the prayers of God’s people. May this thought be as “settled [in our] minds” (Luke 21:14-15) as it was in Paul’s and in the Philippians.

Reading: For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.”—Philippians 1:19-20 

April 23, 2014

Daily Devotional (April 23rd): The Authority of the Holy Spirit

by Aaron Dunlop

MIS85-2

“I had learned in a rich and organic way that the Bible webs into all conversations and cultures, like active verbs in sentences or oxygen in the atmosphere. I had learned that Christians need to follow the complex and counterintuitive ways that the Holy Spirit leads. I had learned that being a hero for Jesus was noble work, especially when no one but Jesus himself knew the stakes of the sacrifice at hand.”  (p. 67) .

Reading: Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. —John 16:13

Selections from The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert by Rosaria Champagne Butterfield (Pittsburgh: Crown & Covenant, 2012). Used with permission.

 

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March 18, 2013

Daily Devotionals: (March 18th) The Dreams of Patrick II

by Aaron Dunlop

Patrick of Ireland: A Devotional History

Reading: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” Romans 8:14

Patrick refers a number of times in his Confession to spiritual guidance through dreams in the night. He was either a zealous mystic with a wild and vivid imagination or a man in touch with God—a man, like Enoch who walked with God and like Moses with whom the Lord spoke as to a friend. I will let Patrick speak for himself concerning his devotional life: “I would wake to pray before dawn in all weathers, snow, frost, rain; and I felt no harm and there was no listlessness in me—as I now realise, it was because the Spirit was fervent within me” (Confession, sec. 16). Notice his wording here—“the Spirit was fervent in me.” He is not speaking of his activity but of the activity of the Spirit in him.

Patrick speaks of dreams in the night in which he heard the voice of God. He says he woke out of his sleep “overjoyed” (Confession, sec. 24). As he slept again, in the dim and misty figures of a dream, he says he saw one “praying there powerfully and groaning; and meanwhile I was dumbfounded and astonished and wondered who it could be that was praying within me, but at the end of the prayer He spoke and said that He was the Spirit, and so I awoke and remembered the apostle’s words: ‘The Spirit helps the weaknesses of our prayer; for we do not know what to pray for as we ought; but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with unspeakable groans which cannot be expressed in words’ (Romans 8.26) and again: ‘The Lord our advocate intercedes for us’ (cf. l John 2.1)” (Confession, sec. 25).

Believer, does this seem foreign? It does, sadly. Perhaps it is because we are so far removed from primitive and vital Christianity. Beware of limiting the Holy Spirit; don’t let the modern Charismatic chaos make you skeptical. Don’t be content with a sterile and lifeless intellectual religion. Pray for personal revival. Walk with God, talk with Him, and “covet earnestly the best gifts”—the Spirit of God, not just dwelling but working in you.

“There is a way in which the Spirit leads the sons of God, a way that others do not know. He enlightens them with respect to their duty, by making their eye single and pure, whereby the whole body is full of light. He enables men to understand the commands and counsels of God’s Word, and rightly to apply them.”—Jonathan Edwards

All quotations from the Confession or Letter of Patrick are taken from the edition by A. B. E. Hood, 1978.

March 18, 2012

Daily Devotionals: (March 18th) The Dreams of Patrick II

by Aaron Dunlop

Patrick of Ireland: A Devotional History

Reading: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” Romans 8:14

Patrick refers a number of times in his Confession to spiritual guidance through dreams in the night. He was either a zealous mystic with a wild and vivid imagination or a man in touch with God—a man, like Enoch who walked with God and like Moses with whom the Lord spoke as to a friend. I will let Patrick speak for himself concerning his devotional life: “I would wake to pray before dawn in all weathers, snow, frost, rain; and I felt no harm and there was no listlessness in me—as I now realise, it was because the Spirit was fervent within me” (Confession, sec. 16). Notice his wording here—“the Spirit was fervent in me.” He is not speaking of his activity but of the activity of the Spirit in him.

Patrick speaks of dreams in the night in which he heard the voice of God. He says he woke out of his sleep “overjoyed” (Confession, sec. 24). As he slept again, in the dim and misty figures of a dream, he says he saw one “praying there powerfully and groaning; and meanwhile I was dumbfounded and astonished and wondered who it could be that was praying within me, but at the end of the prayer He spoke and said that He was the Spirit, and so I awoke and remembered the apostle’s words: ‘The Spirit helps the weaknesses of our prayer; for we do not know what to pray for as we ought; but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with unspeakable groans which cannot be expressed in words’ (Romans 8.26) and again: ‘The Lord our advocate intercedes for us’ (cf. l John 2.1)” (Confession, sec. 25).

Believer, does this seem foreign? It does, sadly. Perhaps it is because we are so far removed from primitive and vital Christianity. Beware of limiting the Holy Spirit; don’t let the modern Charismatic chaos make you skeptical. Don’t be content with a sterile and lifeless intellectual religion. Pray for personal revival. Walk with God, talk with Him, and “covet earnestly the best gifts”—the Spirit of God, not just dwelling but working in you.

“There is a way in which the Spirit leads the sons of God, a way that others do not know. He enlightens them with respect to their duty, by making their eye single and pure, whereby the whole body is full of light. He enables men to understand the commands and counsels of God’s Word, and rightly to apply them.”—Jonathan Edwards

All quotations from the Confession or Letter of Patrick are taken from the edition by A. B. E. Hood, 1978.

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