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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

He Teaches Us

This is the covenant I will establish with the people of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. No longer will they teach their neighbor, or say to one another, 'Know the Lord,' because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more."  (Hebrews 8:10-12 NIV)
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.  (John 14:16-17, 26 NIV)

I will send you the Spirit who comes from the Father and shows what is true. The Spirit will help you and will tell you about me.  (John 15:26 CEV)

The way we know God changes after we receive Him.  Think about this for a moment.  After Adam and Eve sinned, they were kicked out of the Garden.
Talking with God just got more difficult.

When Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt, the people were so terrified by the power of God that they did not want to communicate with Him directly.  Instead, they let Moses do the communicating and they listened (sort of) to Moses.
Talking with God just got more difficult.

Before Moses died, he gave us the parameters to look for in prophets who would come after him.  They had to perform a sign or miracle and they must teach in accord with what has been previously revealed by God.  Testing prophets to see if they are from God or not became the norm.  You never knew (at first) if the prophet was true or false, speaking for God or not.
Talking with God just became more difficult.

Now Jesus comes to earth, learns the Word and becomes a rabbi, passes all the tests of prophecy, fulfills the prophecies about the Messiah, and reveals that he is, in fact, God in the flesh.
Talking with God becomes much easier...at least for His disciples.

Jesus leaves, sends His Spirit back to his disciples and promises to do the same for "all who are far off...all whom THE LORD, our God will call." (Acts 2:39)
Believers...talking with God just became easier than it's ever been!

Now we can talk to Him without going through an intermediary.  We have conversations with Him.  We can ask His advice.  We can ask for His wisdom.  He gladly answers.  (James 1:5-6)

This truth is difficult for someone like me who believes that my primary calling is to teach people about Him through His Word.
Those who don't believe still don't have His Spirit.  There's some work I can do.  
Believers don't really need teachers like me.  They already have Him to teach and guide them.
Most of us, however, don't really know how to listen.
When we do listen, we don't recognize when it's Him and when we are being deceived.
When we do recognize His still small voice and listen to what He says, we often don't follow His direction.
Teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness from His word?  I guess my calling to teach is still secure...at least for a little while longer. ;)