THE TEACHING MINISTRY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT by Jim Cymbala
Just like any minister today, Jesus preached using only His voice. And just like any congregation today hearing a sermon, the disciples could hear His words only with their ears and process them with their minds. But the truth of God is different from mathematics or the laws of science. It can be understood and appropriated into our lives only when it is revealed to our innermost being: that is where its life-changing power works (see Matthew 13:18-23).
MERE FACTS IN OUR BRAIN CELLS
A divine book must have a divine teacher so that its message can be revealed on a spiritual level. Otherwise the message just crumbles into facts that reside only in our brain cells. That Jesus was born in Bethlehem is a fact. Understanding the glorious meaning of Immanuel, God with us, and the significance of His lying in a stable requires divine teaching. So it is absolutely necessary for the Holy Spirit to be our teacher if the Bible is to be truly understood. The Spirit can overcome the human limitations of voice, ear, and brain because He teaches in the classroom of the heart.
WHAMMO! IT COMES ALIVE
That is why we can read a portion of Scripture for years and then when we read it again, Whammo, it comes alive! We understand it in a brand-new way. We ask, Why didn’t I see that before? That is the teaching ministry of the Holy Spirit.
Of course, teachers play an important role, as do apostles, evangelists, prophets and pastors. But even when teachers do their best, the only way for us to be ultimately blessed by the Word is through the inner teaching of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit is faithful to help us know truth from error and keep us from satanic distortions. But for all of that to happen, we must come with humble, teachable hearts.
Jim Cymbala began the Brooklyn Tabernacle with less than twenty members in a small, rundown building in a difficult part of the city. A native of Brooklyn, he is a longtime friend of both David and Gary Wilkerson.