Bible Study On 1 Timothy 2:9-14 The Role Of Women In The Church

9 I also want the women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, adorning themselves, not with elaborate hairstyles or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, 10 but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God.

11 A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. 12 I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. 13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. 15 But woman will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.{2tim2:9-14}

Apostle Paul talks about the position of women in the body of Christ being the Church. I believe that Apostle Paul If I dare say is being a male chauvinist in his approach towards women within the body of Christ that is the Church.

Not being a feminist and taking these verses from their cultural point of view it is said that these women used to take great pains in their  outward appearance.

This is the year 2011 and women in this age too take great pains in their outward appearance going to the gym, make-up, plastic surgery and like me braces  as a teenager and now a yo yo dieter still trying to get the slender frame of my youth but I just got to tell myself “ Lady you are approaching middle age you ain’t no 16 anymore” If my Jewish sisters took such pains that Apostle Paul noticed 2000 years ago how much more now.

What Apostle Paul tried to say is let your personality and your inward spirit take pre-eminence. Not all women are quite and contrite, you got all sorts of women now as it was 2000 years back.

Apostle Paul seems to contradict himself when he says “ There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male nor female for we are all one in Christ Jesus” (Gal 3:28)

Therefore the rhetorical question is Why did apostle Paul state so vehemently the proper way for women to dress, behave and the give them a lower role than the men in church? Fascinating what is actually going on this immensely brilliant, most radically called, transformed and saved Apostle’s mind?

Now I think in this context one should use the Holy Spirit discretion and direction in understanding in this scripture and the context of this scripture in the cultural point of view 2000 years back.

I vehemently oppose taking scripture out of context and building intellectual castles of theology based on that particular scripture.

I am now looking at this context of scripture from a scriptural point of view if you my dear brother or sister are brethren you are going to be very happy with what I am going to say.:)

Why did God create woman out of man. God could have created women first we are more attractive, more complex and can also give birth to new life. But God created MAN first.

Now let us go back to our bible study God used a number of women in scripture like the prophetess Deborah, The prophetess Anna now this will blow your socks away God even used a prostitute Rahab whose name was mentioned in the lineage of Jesus but Jesus was conceived of the Holy Spirit. Now we read 1tim 2:14 which portrays woman as fickle minded and naïve. But I believe the contrary that God ahs bestowed man and woman with equal amount of intelligence. When we read in Genesis 3:6 That the woman took the fruit and ate it and gave some to her husband Adam who was right beside her, he could have prevented her and this led to the fall of mankind.

Man and woman differ emotionally, psychologically, physiologically and emotionally because of their constitution and the way they are made.

If we take into account Paul’s previous letters ( Dear  brethren sister and brother this is the part you will agree with me whole heartedly) Women ought to be submissive to the man that is her husband but man don’t get too happy you got to love your wife as Christ loves the church..

In a marriage covenant man is the head of the woman. Why is the male figure the head? Because God ordained it that way and we know this through the word of God the bible.

Now if we take the five fold ministry into account there are certain gifts bestowed on men and certain gifts  universally.

I believe the gift of the apostle and pastor are specifically for men. Jesus our good Shepard and pastor was a man to guide and Shepard the flock. Logically speaking Jesus came in the form of a Shepard or pastor to guide the  flock the lost of Israel. Therefore the pastor should be a man to guide the and equip the flock, the congregation.

Now let us take the ministry of the apostle the sent one, the one who plants churches Jesus chose 12 apostles not one was a woman. Jesus had women disciples but no women apostles. The gift of the apostle is specifically for the men.

Now coming back to our present time 21st centaury women now consider themselves equal to men in all respects but Christian women need to show the world that we are not equal in all respects once a Christian woman marries her head is her husband.

Now the church the bride of Christ is looked as feminine awaiting her heavenly bridegroom.

In conclusion I would like to say God did not create woman out of a man’s head to Lord it over him. God did not create woman out of a man’s foot  for him to make her his doormat and trample on her but God created woman out of man’s rib close to his heart to love her and cherish her as Christ loved the church

Application

Thank you God for making me a woman

Bibliography

The Bible

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Exegesis on Galations

Exegesis on Galatians 4:26-29

 

 

26 But the Jerusalem that is above is free, and she is our mother.  27 For it is written:  “Be glad, O barren woman, who bears no children;  break forth and cry aloud, you have no labour pains;  because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband.” 28 Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.  29  At that time the son born in the ordinary way persecuted the son born by the power of the Spirit.  It is the same now.

 

 

Galatians is an epistle written by Paul to some group resident in the Province of Galatia which was an area stretching right across the middle of Asia Minor.  The time is not certain but it may have followed almost immediately after a visit to the area.  The Galatians had a history of pagan worship and after converting to Christianity, they were bothered by Judaizers who were troubling these Gentile churches in Galatia with their insistence that to be a good Christian, one first had to become a good Jew.  They believed circumcision and law keeping were necessary to salvation.  This was a denial of the gospel preached by Paul that salvation was by faith in Christ alone, and not by faith in Christ and obedience to the law.  Paul had previously shown that to win salvation by keeping the law was to enter into a hopeless and fruitless bondage.  As long as they looked on law as a possible means of salvation, such slavery was inevitable.  The key therefore to Paul’s thought in Galatians is his doctrine of inclusion of uncircumcised Gentiles.

 

Paul argues this doctrine through the use of rabbinic argument.  He had a long and thorough training in Jewish tradition and rabbinic argument was natural to him.  This style of thought may have been used because the Galatians were interested in Rabbinic exegesis of the law.  In these verses, Paul does not choose an obscure passage to make his point, but one with a familiar background and sometimes he used his opponent’s terms and even adopted their position to show that it was untenable.

 

To support his argument, Paul uses an Old Testament story from the life of Abraham.  This is significant because the Legalists all claimed to be sons of Abraham and all Jews traced their ancestry to Abraham, who was the founder of the Jewish nation.  Previous to this passage, Paul reminded the Galatians that Abraham had two sons, Isaac and Ishmael.  Isaac was born of Sarah, the free woman, and Ishmael was born of Hagar, the slave woman.  Ishmael was born in the ordinary way, requiring no miracle and no promise of God.  Isaac, on the other hand, was the result of a promise from God that Sarah, who was beyond the age of childbearing would bring life out of the deadness of Sarah’s womb.

 

In verse 26, Paul says Sarah stands for the Jerusalem above, representing freedom from all physical and fleshly constraint which is the divine reality proposed by God.  This heavenly city, which one day will come to earth (Rev. 21:2) is now the “city of the living God’ (Heb. 12:22).  This was in comparison to the present city of Jerusalem (Jerusalem below) in slavery to elementary forces.  This freedom is something already experienced by Christians who have learnt they need be under neither elemental forces nor law.

 

“For it is written” is a usual technique in constructing a theological argument.  Paul proceeds to quote from Isaiah 54:1-4:27 which was appropriate although there was no direct evidence it applied to Sarah.  In the passage, Yahweh comforts the exiled Judeans by reassuring Israel that Yahweh would take her again to wife (Isa. 1:4-8).  There was the prospect of a new beginning like that following the flood and this was a powerful image of the hoped for new age.  Paul applied this passage to Sarah, who though previously barren, was later blessed with a child and would ultimately have more children than Hagar.

 

After an exposition on the significance of the two women, Paul returns to the principal subject.  “You, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise”.  Like Isaac was a fulfillment of the promise to Abraham, their birth into freedom was the effect of divine grace;  like Isaac, they belonged to the children of promise.  The Jewish tradition understood that the covenant promise ran through Sarah, not Hagar;  through Isaac, not Ishmael.  As children of promise, Christians are in a distinct category and should not live as children of bondage.

 

Why was it then that if this could be shown so clearly from the Torah did their Jewish “brethren” persecute them so.  Paul’s answer to this was drawn from a traditional rabbinic exegesis of Gen. 21:8,9 “The child grew and was weaned, and on the day Isaac was weaned Abraham held a great feast.  But Sarah saw that the son whom Hagar the Egyptian had borne to Abraham was mocking”.  Ishmael was mocking Isaac.  This was also the attitude of Judaism to the church.  Paul compared Ishmael’s persecution of Isaac to the false teachers’ opposition to believers.

 

This concluding passage in Galatians 4 is crucial to 20th century Christians because we face the same problem the Galatian saints did in the first century.  How does the New Testament believer apply the Old Testament which was written principally to the Jews.  A principle is found in Paul’s use of an Old Testament passage which should guide every Christian in their use of Scriptures:  to interpret the passage literally, in the light of context, background, culture, grammar and Biblical theology;  to determine the principles which the interpretation reveals;  then to seek to apply the principle as you consider the parallels between the Biblical passage and your own situation.

 

 

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY

 

 

Chadwick, Henry, General Editor, The Epistle to the Galatians, A. & C. Black (Publishers) Ltd, London, 1993.

 

Coggins, R. J. & Houlden, J. L., Editors, A Dictionary of Biblical Interpretations, SCM Press, London, 1990.

 

Cole, R. A., The Epistle of Paul to the Galatians – An Introduction and Commentary, The Tyndale Press, Rochester Kent, 1965.

 

Freedman, David Noel, Editor-in-chief, The Anchor Bible Dictionary, Doubleday, New York, 1992.

 

Howard, George, Paul:  crisis in Galatia – A Study in Early Christian Theology, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1979.

 

Jobling, David, Day, Peggy L., Sheppard, Gerald T., Editors, The Bible and the Politics of Exegesis, The Pilgrim Press, Cleveland Ohio, 1991.

 

Kern, Philip H., Rhetoric and Galatians, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1998.

 

Prayer

PRAYER

 

What is prayer?  Prayer, I believe, is our communion with the Almighty.  There are numerous ways of communion with the Almighty.  The bible says when my saints shall humble themselves and pray then shall I forgive their sins and heal their land.  This is what this essay is all about.  Our intercession and supplication laid before our heavenly Father.

 

There are different kinds of prayer.  One of the main points is praying in the holy ghost and having the spirit of God direct us in our prayer.  Secondly, praying with faith as Mark 11:24 praying with faith is believing with faith we have received the answers to our prayers according to the will of God.  Praying with thanksgiving we must learn to thank God for our answers (Luke 17:17).

 

Prayer is petition (John 16:23-24).  God is our Provider.  He is Jehovah Jireh as John 16:23-24 tells us.  We must learn to ask according to the will of God.  Once in our home, when I was about 9 years old, we were living in Singapore during that time.  We had no food in our home so we decided to pray for food.  Miraculously, the next day, a lady from our prayer group came home with large packets of food because as she and her friend were praying, God gave her a vision of our empty refrigerator and told her and her friend to fill it up.  God is good.  We petitioned God and He answered our prayer.

 

Prayer is intercession.  Intercession is when we share the burden of Christ for a person, circumstance or need anywhere in the world.  We have become partakers of Christ’s suffering.

 

Prayer                          Need in               God’s love

Answered                    the world            and feelings

Get the                        or an                   for that

Victory                         individual            particular

Need or emotion

 

God places the

Burden in the

Heart of the

Intercessor

For that particular

Need or individual

 

Therefore, intercessor fills the bridge between Christ and the need.  Through Christ gaining victory in prayer.  Prayer is therefore praise and worship, waiting on God, confession, intercession, petition and thanksgiving.

 

In conclusion I would like to say that God has bestowed on us this awesome gift of communing with our Creator, thanking our Provider, worshipping our Creator, loving our Heavenly father and listening to Him.  Above all, experiencing His love and growing to be more like Him.

Call of God

INTRODUCTION

We will abandon it all for the sake of the call, no other reason at all but the sake of the call, wholly devoted to live and to die , for the sake of the call,

Not for the sake of a creed or a cause, not for a dream or a promise, simply because it is Jesus who calls and if we believe we’ll obey.

(Taken from the song, For the Sake of the Call, by Steven Curtis Chapman)

Rom. 8:30:  And those He predestined, he also called, those he called, he also justified, those He justified, he also glorified.

I believe every Christian has a call on their lives.  We are all chosen by God and God has a specific plan for our lives and we can either accept this plan and purpose and go His way;  or we can reject it.  If God calls us for a specific task, God will confirm this call through the scriptures, through His people and provide for that specific call.  Where God calls and guides, God provides.

WOMEN CALLED BY GOD

RACHEL JOY

“I am not going to apologize for speaking the name of Jesus.  I am not going to justify my faith to them and I am not going to hide the light that God has put into me.  If I have to sacrifice everything .. I will.  I will take it.  If my friends have to become my enemies for me to be with my best friend Jesus, then that’s fine with me.”  (Extracts of a letter by Rachel Joy, p. 96)

Rachel Joy was a teenager from America who was killed for her faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.  Through her life millions have been blessed.  Jesus had a call on her life.  The journal in which she wrote her prayers to God indicates the intimate relationship she had with the Almighty.  This girl has made a big impact not only on my life but on the lives of people all over the world, especially the young people.

Joan D’ Arc

Her martyr’s death the Living God repaid

A girl, she speaks to us from History

A well-armed slyph she led a vast crusade

The world recalls the tale of Joan the Maid.

(Extract of the poem, Joan the Maid, written by Michael Fountina)

Joan d’Arc was a teenager who died a martyr’s death.  According to the Catholic Encyclopedia “her simplicity, piety and good sense appear at every turn, despite the attempts of the judges to confuse her”.  God had an awesome calling in the life of Joan d’Arc expressed in one of her letters written to Sire de Rotslaaer written from Lyons on 22 April, 1429.  According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, he reports the maid said “that she would save Orleans and would compel the English to raise the siege, that she herself in a battle before Orleans would be wounded by a shaft but would not die of it, and that the King, in the course of the coming summer, would be crowned at Reims, together with the other things which the King keeps secret”.  Joan d’Arc, with a call of God on her life, not only led a vast army of men in battle but also fulfilled the call of God on her life.

MOTHER TERESA

“There is a terrible hunger for love.  We all experience that in our lives – the pain, the loneliness.  We must have the courage to recognize it.  The poor you may have right in your own family.  Find them.  Love them.  Put your love for them in living action.  For in loving them you are loving God himself” (by Mother Teresa).  Mother Teresa was born Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, and she was the youngest of three children.  When Mother Teresa was 18, she joined the order of the sisters of Our Lady of Loreto in Ireland.  It was on 10 September, 1946, God enlightened Mother Teresa with his call on her life while traveling on a train to Darjeeling, a hill station in the Himalayas. In quiet, intimate prayer with her Lord she heard distinctly what she referred to as “a call within a call”.   According to Mother Teresa, “I realized that I had the call to take care of the sick and the dying, the hungry, the naked, the homeless – to be God’s love in action to the poorest of the poor.  That was the beginning of the missionaries of Charity.”  She was aware of what she had to do, but she did not know how to get there.  She had previously been called to the religious life but God further called her to another kind of work and service in the religious life.  Mother Teresa’s life and call has touched the hearts of people all around the world.  She embodied the love of God on earth.  Her selfless giving nature has been an eye opener to a selfish materialistic world.  According to Mother Teresa “I see God in every human being.  When I wash the leper’s wounds, I feel I am nursing the Lord Himself.  Is it not a beautiful experience?”

AMY CARMICHAEL

The love that leads the way,

The faith that nothing can dismay,

The hope no disappointments live,

The passion that will burn like fire.

(by Amy Carmichael)

Amy Carmichael was an Irish missionary who spent 53 years in South India.  She founded the Dohnavaur Fellowship, a refuge for children in moral danger, especially young girls from the age of four who were sent to the temples to be used as prostitutes by the priests.  These girls were taught to sing and dance and bring pleasure to these temple priests.  The call of Amy Carmichael was to save these girls, and sometimes even boys, from this kind of life and Amy Carmichael became a mother to these girls.  She was called Amma which means mother.  Amy Carmichael, a beautiful woman of God with a definite call and purpose for her life, never married.  Amy Carmichael states “Do I regret now that for your sake I chose to do without that which nature desires, what was pressed upon me, so that I might serve ‘without distraction’, as Paul puts it?  No indeed I do not.”

Amy Carmichael had an impact on the lives of thousands of children in South India Dohnavur.

GRANNY BRAND

I realize now it had to be

Before He taught my soul to pray

Before the glory I could see

The Glory He promised me.

(by Granny Brand)

Evelyn Constance Brand and Jesse Brand came to India as missionaries on 28th August, 1913.  Evelyn had responded silently to a call of God on her life when Jesse spoke at a missionary meeting in St John’s Wood chapel speaking about his work in India.  She told her family she wanted to be a missionary and the Mission Board accepted her application to work in India where she again met up with Jesse Brand whom she later married.  Jesse Brand died of blackwater fever in 1928, and Evelyn Brand with a definite call on her life brought Christianity to the low caste inhabitants of all five mountain ranges of South India.  The ministry and call of Granny Brand was unique because she was a nurse, teacher and preacher to the diseased and poverty stricken hill people of South India.

Joni Eareckson Tada

Joni Eareckson Tada broke her neck in 1967 during a diving accident in which she became a quadriplegic.  The call of God came on her life.  Joni sensed God speaking to her saying “Joni, I want you to live life without use of your hands or legs and learn to smile while doing it.”  God also seemed to tell her “I want you to be my audiovisual aid of how My strength shows up best in weakness.”  Joni Eareckson is truly a testimony of God’s strength showing up in weakness and her life after her accident has accomplished much for God;.  God calls and uses us when we least expect it, when we are least prepared, when we are not termed perfect by worldly standards.  Moses felt the same way, yet God chose Moses to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt.  He was a poor speaker yet God made him the greatest leader.

MEN WITH A CALLING

MAHATMA GANDHI

“Austerity implies external renunciation, endurance and sometimes even hypocrisy.  But saintliness is an inner quality of the soul.  My mother’s austerity was only an echo of her inner life.  If you notice any purity in me, I have inherited it from my mother, and not from my father.  Mother died at the early age of forty.  I have been a witness of her behaviour in the flower of youth, but never did I see in her any frivolity, any recourse to beauty aids or interest in the pleasures of life.  The only impression she ever left on my mind is that of saintliness.”

Mahatma Gandhi definitely had a calling on his life.  He preached Satyagraha, or in other words, non-violence.  Mahatma Gandhi has definitely played a major role in the nation of India.  Practising satyagraha or non-violence, he brought about freedom to India.  Practising swaderhi or buying only Indian made goods, he boosted the economy.  Gandhigi was really a role model to the Indians – one frail, puny man accomplished the independence of a nation.  Yet my only regret being an Indian myself is that he did not have a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.  Rumours have it that he was an avid reader of the word of God yet he did not know God.    Hypothetically speaking, if Mahatma Gandhi was a Christian, the whole of India would have been saved.  Gandhi had a call on his life – not a holy, higher calling, but a calling to bring about freedom and independence to India.

MARTIN LUTHER

“Although I lived an irreproachable life as a monk, I felt that I was a sinner with an uneasy conscience before God, nor was I able to believe that I had pleased him with my satisfaction”.  At last, God being merciful, as I meditated day and night on the connection of the words ‘the righteousness of God is revealed in it, as it is written’, ‘the righteous shall live by faith’, I began to understand that righteousness of God.” (Martin Luther, Theology of the Cross)

Martin Luther, this incredible man with an incredible call and purpose, I believe is the father of Protestantism.  Martin Luther plays a significant role in the reformation or, in other words, the purpose of reformation and had the courage given by God to stand up for the authority of the word of God.  This man, I believe, was predestined for this specific call on his life.

MY CALLING

When I was nine years old, I was miraculously healed of asthma in a healing crusade.  When I turned ten, my father, who is now a missionary pastor in Egypt, spoke about preaching the gospel to the people.  In that service, I dedicated my life to God to serve Him.  I came home and wrote a poem which says “I want to be a servant of God, you may ask me why, that’s between God and me and nothing can destroy, the love of God for me.  He saved me from the pangs of death when I was about to die and this is not a lie, for He has a purpose and this purpose is I”.

God has blessed me with a good singing voice and other talents.  Yes, I do know God has a plan and purpose for my life and God has a call on my life.  What that specific call is I do not know.  What I do know is whatever way He is willing to use me, I am willing and I will be obedient to Him.  If God wants me to be a light that shines in the corner, I will;  if He wants me to be on a pedestal, I will.  My heart’s desire is that the glory of the Lord will be manifested in me and through me, through my life and through my testimony.

I would like to conclude with a poem I wrote sometime back while I was in Egypt.

Who am I?

That thought in my heart I ponder

What am I meant to be

Oh God, the future I just can’t foresee

Yet you care for me.

You didn’t just let me be,

You have a place and purpose

Thy Word is the key.

I came into the world a little seed,

Curious about the world so mysterious,

Bombarded with emotions hilarious,

At times delirious, at other times, furious

As I started to grow and mature to the tree I was meant to be,

I faced the storms of life

Into temptations I was tossed,

Yet through thy divine grace at Calvary

To temptation I was no longer held in slavery,

You set me free, enabling me to grow in sanctity,

Your word says, You shall bear fruit in season,

Seasons have come, seasons are gone,

Oh God, I feel so alone, why was I ever born,

Yet you on me never did frown,

The veil to enter the holy of holies was torn

By thy divine blood on the cross which was no loss,

At thy feet I place my supplication,

Oh Christ, on me make a divine transformation,

This season, let me see my life has a reason

Let me bear fruit at a dozen

Change my heart, my attitude

As I grow and mature in thy attitude,

As I pray I feel thy presence come as a ray

I feel the power of thy awesome presence like rain on me does spray

Father, when will you use me

Is it today?

I feel the rain come on me washing all my doubts and fears without a trace

Speaking to me through a gentle breeze

Thy love for me will never cease

I hear they voice saying my plans for you will be fulfilled come what may

All your have to do, daughter, is to pray.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Catholic Encyclopedia

Chanda, Yogesh, Rediscovering Gandhi, 1997.

Elliot, Elizabeth, The Life and Legacy of Amy Carmichael – A Chance to Die, 1961.

Le Joly, E., We do it for Jesus, Oxford University Press, 1977.

McGrath, Alister E., Luther’s Theology of the Cross, 1985.

Scott, Darrel and Nimmo, Beth, Rachel’s Tears – A spiritual journey of Columbine Martyr Rachel Scott, 2000

Wilson, Dorothy Clarke, Granny Brand Her Story, Paul Brand Publishing, Seattle, 1976.

Yancey, P., Lucado, M., Maxwell, John C., Hayford, Jack, Eareckson Tada, Joni, Barnett, Tommy, Boa, Kenneth, Wells, Thelma, Destiny and Deliverance – spiritual insights from the life of Moses, 1998

Anthropology from a religeous perspective

What is anthropology and what aspect of anthropology are we studying/

Anthropology is the study of mankind and in this particular context we are studying anthropology from the religious perspective.

According to Glazier and other evidence, we are in the golden age of anthropology of religion.  Karl Marx (1818-1883) was concerned for the “spiritual alienation arising from socio-economic deprivation and with the marking of economic inequality by religious activity”.

Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) articulated a full and intellectually inspiring reduction of religious experience to biological and social drives (taken from internet).  Luis Berkhof says that “the transition from theology to anthropology (that is from the study of God to the study of man) is a natural one.  Man is not only the crown of creation but also the object of God’s special care.

Darwin talks about the survival of the fittest, but when we speak of a fit person from the Christian view, I would say a person who is prosperous financially, spiritually, physically and mentally.

When God created man, God created a complex creature.  Physically man has a mind, a heart and a body.  Spiritually, man has a spirit and a soul.  Emotionally and mentally, man has a conscience and feelings.  When we put all this together we get a man.

Futility of mind and action.  J. Rodman William says that “the very coming together of man and woman as ‘one flesh’ is a kind of parallel to the spiritual relationship of man and his maker.  When that spiritual relationship is distorted, distortion may set in on the human level

We can clearly see, as men and women are torn between materialism, futility of their thinking and feeling, only Jesus can fulfil and fill that empty void.  As men and women deviate from each other to their other interests, their relationship is torn apart.

So what should our role be in this world?  The answer is simple evangelism and prayer.

discussion questions

  1. How would you describe a fit person in the spiritual sense?
  1. How do you think our mind and actions are co-related?
  1. How would you reach out to the world?


BIBLIOGRAPHY

Williams, J. Rodman, Renewal Theology, Michigan, Zondervan, 1990

Pneumotolgy

T

Whatever is true of the triune God is true of the holy spirit … a considered perusal of the sacred text yields an impression that the holy spirit is the mighty executive of the Godhead and by so much his relation to both father and son is a theme of great proportions.”  (L. S. Chafer)

Christlikeness is the primary manifestation of the filling of the Spirit.”  (Charles C. Rynie)

The holy spirit has graciously connected Himself with two things – truth and prayer.”  (C. H. Spurgeon)

According to the Oxford Dictionary of English, “The branch of Christian theology concerned with the holy ghost and other spiritual concepts”.

What is the trinity?  We have God the father, God the son, and God the holy spirit – the three in one. The age old examples are a hard boiled egg.  We have the egg shell, egg yoke and egg white.  We have ice, water and water vapour.  Three in one.  Gen. 1:2 tells us that the spirit of God was hovering over the waters.  Who is this spirit of God who existed before anything existed?  In Gen. 2:7, God breathed into the breath of man.  When God created man in his image, did man have life in him.  No, the life came when God breathed his breath into man.  In other words, man now has a spirit.  God is Triune.

We can go deeper into this subject but there is no time.   Eg  what is the difference between soul and spirit.

Where does the holy spirit dwell in the life of a born again believer?  The holy spirit dwells in the heart of a believer.  The holy spirit is omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent.

How does the indwelling of the holy spirit change our lives?  According to Acts 2:104, when the holy spirit came on the believers in the form of tongues of fire, it did not just stop with the gift of tongues.  There seems to be a radical transformation in the personality of Peter as He boldly spoke to the crowds.  The holy spirit, through him, convicted the crowds and many put their faith and trust in God.   (see diagram over)

  1. How has the infilling of the holy spirit impacted your life?
  2. What is more important, baptism of the holy spirit or baptism of water?
  3. How do you think you can renew your relationship with the holy spirit?  or how do think you can have a closer communion with the holy spirit?

One new perspective that I gained while studying the subject of pneumatology was that the Holy Spirit prepares us for ministry.  After Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, the holy spirit came on Jesus and Jesus, already anointed, was specifically anointed for the task ordained for Him.  The question I now put forward is did Jesus commence His ministry as soon as He was empowered?  Luke 4:1-12 tells us Jesus was led by the spirit of God to the desert where He was tempted by Satan.  I would like to add that God tests us.  God allows certain trying times in a person’s life .. but God never tempts us.  If we take the story of Job, God allowed Job to go through a very horrendous experience but Job, because his faith in God was firm, was blessed beyond measure in his later life.  Now, coming back to the former question, I believe God prepares us before ministry for the specific task or tasks appointed for us.

Take the life of Elisha.  Elisha waited ten years for the double portion of anointing.  Those ten years were the processing time and the preparation time for Elisha.

Why was apostle Paul two years in the desert before he went up to Jerusalem to meet the other apostles.  Because it was his preparation time.  It was his processing time.

How does the holy spirit prepare and process us?  I believe He sometimes allows us to go through trying times.  He sometimes allows us to see how weak we are so that we rely more on His strength and His wisdom.  He sometimes allows loneliness in a person’s life which enables us to have a closer relationship with Him.  He sometimes just gives us the green signal and tells us, you are ready, go for it.  It is up to God to map our life and it is our duty as His children to walk in His way.  But God never forces us;  God never pushes His call down our throats.  We can either choose to obey or disobey.  The holy spirit is our comforter, our guide, our teacher, our healer, our best friend.  It should be our duty as His children to say, “Holy spirit, have your way in me”.

Why do the Pentecostal churches attract the most amount of Christians?  Is it because it is more fun?  It is because of the move of the holy spirit.  According to statistics taken from the book, The Holiness Pentecostal Tradition, by Vinson Synan, the global Pentecostal/charismatic membership was:

1901 – 40 members

1975 – 96 million

1995 – 460 million

2000 – 550 million

Praise God, the membership is still growing.


BIBLIOGRAPHY

Duewel, Wesley, Revival Fire, Michigan, Zondervan, 1995

Synan, Vinson, The Holiness – Pentecostal Tradition, Michigan, Zondervan, 1971

Williams, J. Rodman, Renewal Theology, Michigan, Zondervan, 1990