The Holy Spirit in I Corinthians 2:1-5, 10-16; 3:16; 6:11, 19; 7:40; 12:1

This coming Sunday, January 24, 2021, I will teach the fourth in a series of lessons about the Holy Spirit at The Sanctuary UPC in Hazelwood, Missouri, where Mitchell Bland is pastor. These lessons are drawn from my book The Holy Spirit: A Commentary, published by the Pentecostal Publishing House. The book is available in hardback and as an e-book at pentecostalpublishing.com. It is available from Amazon as a Kindle download and as an Apple Book.

The study guide for January 24 is posted below. I plan to post the video of the lesson no later than Monday, January 25.

If you would like to read the previous study guides and to see the videos of the lessons, you can do so here on this blog. The study guides and videos were posted on the following dates:

Lesson 1: The study guide was posted on January 2 and the video on January 3.

Lesson 2: The study guide was posted on January 8 and the video on January 10.

Lesson 3: The study guide was posted on January 15 and the video on January 17.


The Holy Spirit in I Corinthians 2:1-5, 10-16; 3:16; 6:11, 19; 7:40; 12:1

January 24, 2021

Daniel L. Segraves, Teacher

danielsegraves.com

Twitter: @danielsegraves

Paul’s ministry was characterized, wherever he went, by the confirmation of the word with signs following. In his letter to the church at Rome, Paul said his ministry to the Gentiles included “word and deed, to make the Gentiles obedient—in mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God, so that from Jerusalem and round about to Illyricum I have fully preached the gospel of Christ” (Romans 15:18–19). In much the same vein, he wrote to the Corinthians, “And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God” (I Corinthians 2:1–5, ESV).

[2] In I Corinthians 2:10–16 Paul interacted with a paraphrase of Isaiah 64:4, which appears in I Corinthians 2:9: “But as it is written: ‘Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.’” The New Covenant is not characterized by the kind of obscurity to which Isaiah referred. Instead, the Spirit makes the New Covenant an era of revelation:

These things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual. The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. . . . For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ (I Corinthians 2:10–16, ESV)

[3] The comparison in I Corinthians 2:11 between human knowledge and God’s knowledge provides insight on the oneness of God. No man is distinct from or separate from his spirit. One’s spirit is an integral part of who a person is, one’s identity. Likewise, the Spirit of God is essential to who God is, not distinct or separate from God in any way.

[4] The Holy Spirit is a teacher, further confirming that the Spirit is not a force, influence, or merely an attribute of God. To the natural man, that is, a person who is not led by the Spirit, the things of the Spirit of God are foolishness, for they are spiritual.

[5] Paul’s conclusion of this section is remarkably clear: “But we have the mind of Christ.” With its contextual references to the revelatory work of the Spirit, the “mind of Christ” is parallel with the Spirit of God. To have the Spirit of God is to have the mind of Christ, and the mind of Christ is the mind of the LORD.

[6] To compare I Corinthians 3:16 with I Corinthians 6:19 is to see that the term temple of God is synonymous with temple of the Holy Spirit: “Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” (I Corinthians 3:16); “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?” (I Corinthians 6:19).

[7] The role of the Spirit in transformation is seen in I Corinthians 6:11. After identifying the kinds of behavior that bar a person from the kingdom of God, Paul wrote, “And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.” Both the name and the Spirit are essential elements of regeneration.

[8] In his response to a letter from the church at Corinth that asked various questions concerning marriage, Paul said a widow “is happier if she remains as she is, according to my judgment—and I think I also have the Spirit of God” (I Corinthians 7:40). In this chapter, Paul gave his opinion about matters Jesus did not address. (See, e.g., I Corinthians 7:12, 25–26.) In the case of a widow, Paul thought his judgment was in agreement with the Spirit of God. We should keep in mind here that some of Paul’s judgments were influenced by “the present distress” (I Corinthians 7:26). We may not know the nature of this distress, so we should remember that in God’s creative work, He said, “It is not good that man should be alone” (Genesis 2:18). Marriage is a gift from God, and even Paul noted that a widow is free to marry (Romans 7:1–3).

[9] The questions from the church in Corinth were not limited to matters of marriage. A clue as to what these questions were and where Paul began to answer them is seen at places in I Corinthians where Paul wrote, “Now concerning.” The first is at I Corinthians 7:1. The second is at I Corinthians 7:25, “Now concerning virgins.” Next is at I Corinthians 8:1, “Now concerning things offered to idols.” Fourth is, “Now concerning spiritual gifts” (I Corinthians 12:1). Fifth, “Now concerning the collection for the saints” (I Corinthians 16:1). Sixth and final is, “Now concerning our brother Apollos” (I Corinthians 16:12).

[10] Some of their questions required a lengthier response than others, and the most comprehensive seems to be their question about spiritual gifts. Paul’s answer requires three chapters, I Corinthians 12–14.

(c) 2021 Daniel L. Segraves

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Daily Wisdom 254: Proverbs 12:7

Proverbs 12:7 (NKJV) — 7 The wicked are overthrown and are no more, But the house of the righteous will stand.

The fate of the wicked; the future of the righteous. Continuing the theme of Proverbs 12:2-3, this verse reveals that the wicked will be overthrown. The house they have built will come down. But the structure erected by the righteous will endure. No storm will be able to destroy it.

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Logos 9 Discount Ends February 1, 2021

I have recommended Logos Bible Software several times, both here and on Facebook. It is the software I use for research and writing. It is, in my opinion, the best in today’s market, offering the most advanced level of resources and technology.

If you are interested in the latest iteration of Logos, known as Logos 9, you can click on the link below to check it out. If you decide to make a purchase, a 15% discount is available until February 1. In addition to the discount, you can select five free books.

https://partners.faithlife.com/click.track?CID=431490&AFID=47

 

 

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Daily Wisdom 253: Proverbs 12:6

Proverbs 12:6 (NKJV) — 6 The words of the wicked are, “Lie in wait for blood,” But the mouth of the upright will deliver them.

Words tell all. How is it possible to discern if people are wicked? Their conversation betrays them. They constantly discuss “getting even” with someone or taking advantage of someone. The theme of their conversation will be to “lie in wait for blood.”

How is it possible to discern if people are upright? Their conversation will reveal them also. The theme of their conversation will be how to rescue another or how to help some person in need. And their honest and proper speech will deliver them from much trouble.

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777 views!

Today’s email included an advertisement from the Pentecostal Publishing House for “Resources to Teach the Resurrection.” I noticed the Discipleship Series included a series of lessons I was privileged to write titled “Thriving in Babylon.”

While I was on the PPH website, I thought I would check to see what had been going on with my newest book, The Holy Spirit: A Commentary. I was interested to see that the video of my interview with Caleb Saucer had precisely 777 views! I won’t attach any theological significance to this, but for those who haven’t seen the interview yet, I am posting it here.


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Daily Wisdom 252: Proverbs 12:5

Proverbs 12:5 (NKJV) — 5 The thoughts of the righteous are right, But the counsels of the wicked are deceitful.

Right thoughts, wrong counsel. Righteous people start at the right place: the thoughts. Not only are their words right, but their inmost thoughts are right. All else is born of the thoughts. An old adage declares: “Sow a thought; reap a deed. Sow a deed; reap a habit. Sow a habit; reap a character. Sow a character; reap a destiny.” It all begins with the thoughts. If our thoughts are right, our actions will be right. If our actions are right, we will be right. This is why every thought must be brought into captivity unto the obedience of Christ (II Corinthians 10:4-5).

While the righteous think right thoughts, the wicked not only think evil but also speak evil. They give wrong and deceitful counsel. In the multitude of godly counselors there is safety (Proverbs 11:14), but wicked counsel simply compounds wickedness. While there is safety in the multitude of right counsel, there is destruction in the multitude of wicked counselors.

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Daily Wisdom 251: Proverbs 12:4

Proverbs 12:4: A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband: But she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.

The virtuous woman. The phrase “a virtuous woman” appears three times in Scripture: here, and in Proverbs 31:10 and Ruth 3:11. In the Hebrew Scriptures, the order of the books often serves an interpretive purpose. That is the case here. The Book of Ruth follows the Book of Proverbs, offering Ruth as an example of the virtuous woman described in Proverbs 31:10-31.

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The Holy Spirit in the Book of Romans 15:13, 16, 18-19, 30

This next Sunday, January 17, 2021, I plan to teach a lesson at The Sanctuary UPC that examines the work of the Holy Spirit in Romans 15:13, 16, 18-19, 30. The study guide for this lesson is posted below. It is excerpted from my book The Holy Spirit: A Commentary.

As I have done with the previous two lessons in this series, I plan to post the video from this class by Monday, January 18. The study guide for the first lesson in this series was posted on January 2, 2021; the video followed on January 3. This lesson covered Romans 8:8-27. The study guide for the second lesson in the series was posted on January 8, and the video on January 10.


The Holy Spirit in the Book of Romans 15:13, 16, 18-19, 30

January 17, 2021

Daniel L. Segraves, Teacher

danielsegraves.com

Twitter: @danielsegraves

[1] The only way believers can abound in hope is by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13). Nothing can develop biblical hope apart from the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. Hope is not positive thinking, positive mental attitude, or possibility thinking. It results only by relying on the power of the Holy Spirit within.

[2] Paul’s reference to “the offering of the Gentiles” seems intended to remind his Jewish readers that the Gentiles’ salvation was accomplished by the will of God (Romans 15:16). Thus, there was no reason for Jewish believers to hold Gentile brethren at arm’s length. If Gentiles were acceptable to God, they should be acceptable to Jewish Christians. (See Romans 15:4-12.) If Gentiles were sanctified, or set apart unto God, by the Holy Spirit, no legitimate reason remained for Jewish Christians to reject them.

[3] How Christ accomplished the conversion of Gentiles through Paul was “in word and deed . . . in mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God” (Romans 15:18-19).[1] Paul’s ministry was not limited to a vocal declaration of the gospel; it included confirming the word with signs following. Nothing in Scripture suggests God intended to restrict this kind of ministry to the first century.[2],[3]

[4] Paul was apparently in Corinth when he wrote his letter to the Romans. He knew difficulties awaited him in Jerusalem. (See Acts 20:22-24; 21:4, 10-14.) Even though Agabus, a prophet, and other believers warned Paul about the consequences of going to Jerusalem, he did not hesitate to pray for deliverance. He was not unwilling to face whatever was in store, but he was no fatalist. Since no man is omniscient, there is always a place for prayer for deliverance from difficulties – even those that are foretold, unless God specifically declares His refusal to remove the obstacles. So Paul appealed for prayers “through the Lord Jesus Christ,” or based on the believers’ unity together in Him (see Romans 6:3-8; 12:4-5), and “through the love of the Spirit,” meaning the love that results from the indwelling Holy Spirit (Romans 15:30).

Summary of the Holy Spirit in Romans

  1. The Spirit declared Jesus to be the Son of God by the Spirit’s role in His resurrection from the dead.
  1. The Old Testament practice of circumcision symbolized New Testament realities involving the Spirit.
  1. The Spirit produces hope and love, and believers are to be led by the Spirit.
  1. The kingdom of God does not involve what believers eat or drink. It involves the Holy Spirit.
  1. Signs and wonders accomplished by the Spirit play a vital role in the spread of the gospel.

[1] The phrase “For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ hath not wrought by me” (KJV) is not the way we would typically express this idea today, so Paul’s point is somewhat obscured. Today’s translations tend to render this phrase something like this: “For I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me to bring the Gentiles to obedience—by word and deed” (Romans 15:18, ESV). Compare this verse with Acts 15:12; 21:19 to see that what Paul attributes to Christ in Romans he attributes to God in Acts.

[2] See Mark 16:17-20; Acts 13:9-12; 14:3, 8-10, 19-20; 19:11-12; 20:9-12; 28:1-8; I Corinthians 2:1-5; II Corinthians 12:12; Hebrews 2:3-4.

[3] My Master of Arts in Exegetical Theology thesis is titled “That Which Is Perfect (I Corinthians 13:10): A Non-Eschatological Approach.” This thesis, which I submitted in June 1993, examines the claim that the spiritual gifts have ceased. It is available at pentecostalpublishing.com for $2.99.

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Daily Wisdom 250: Proverbs 12:3

Proverbs 12:3 (NKJV) — 3 A man is not established by wickedness, But the root of the righteous cannot be moved.

No stability in wickedness. As a continuing development of the theme begun in Proverbs 12:2, this verse declares that wickedness will never establish a person. As Asaph realized at last, though the wicked may seem to prosper for a time, their feet are in slippery places. (See Psalm 73, especially verse 18) But righteousness roots people so that they cannot be moved. It may take some time before the evidence of a deep root is visible. The wicked may, during that time, appear to be accomplishing more than the righteous, for the wicked spends little time developing a root system. What they do is on the surface, visible only to the human senses.

This truth is illustrated in the story Jesus told of a foolish man who built his house directly on the sand, while a wise man took the time to build on a solid foundation. While the house of the wicked may have gone up quickly, it was destroyed just as rapidly. (See Matthew 7:24-27.)

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