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Supernatural Revelation

John 16:13



When Billy Graham was a young preacher he got lost in a town in which he had travelled to preach.  He was trying to mail some letters, and couldn't find the post office.  He rolled down his window and asked a kid on a bicycle for directions.  "Oh sure, it's just down this way, mister."  Graham said, "Thank you, and if you'll come to the crusade tonite I'll tell you how to get to heaven."  "I don't think don't even know the way to the post office!"


The Holy Spirit is our guide, given us by God to show us the way.  In this church age He does not just 'come upon us' like in the OT.  He's not just 'with' us.  He is 'in' us!  Our body is His temple!


Why does God place His Spirit in us when we get saved?

1.     As a mark of ownership.

Ephesians 4:30
And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.

We are stamped with His seal of ownership. [like a brand]


2.     As a promise of heaven.

It's not presumptuous to say you know you are going to heaven, so long as you base that on what Christ did for you, and not what you have done. 

Ephesians 1:13-14
13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
14 Which is the earnest [down payment] of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

God:  "I'm so sure THIS ONE is going to heaven, that I will advance you the Holy Spirit as a down payment [earnest money]"

        For God to send me to hell He would have to send the Holy Spirit to hell.  [not gonna happen!]


3.     As a means to overcome our flesh.

Galatians 5:16
This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

We don't get victory over sin by mere willpower, but by the power of the Spirit.  When a believer continues to live a life of sin, it is not because he HAS TO, but because he WANTS TO.  Anytime we choose we can draw on the Spirit's power ... the power to say no!


4.     As an intercessor for our prayers.

Romans 8:26
26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

Sometimes there's no words, but the feelings are there, and we can lay those burdens on God's back as well.  Tears are a language that God understands!


5.     As a fruit bearer.

Galatians 5:22-23
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

These aren't qualities we must seek to possess.  These are the fruit which we naturally bear when filled with the Spirit. [not simply indwelt, but surrendering full control]


ill.--an apple tree bears apples by its very nature.  It does not struggle to produce, so long as it has nutrients to draw on and deliver.  So, don't be a sap ... let the Spirit of God flow thru you.  He is the vine, we are the branches!


6.     As our teacher and guide.

We don't have to be super smart or highly educated.  We just have to be teachable.  Are you?  If not, your growth stops right there.

ill.--we should honor all our teachers.  They exist to help us learn.  Let's show them appreciation now!

        I only had one mean teacher, Ms. Madden [mad dog].  She was so mean.  We put tacks on her chair and snakes in her drawer.  She was really mean!

        A girl in our class brought her a boxed gift for teacher appreciation day.  Her dad owned a flower shop.  Ms. Madden sniffed it and asked, is it roses?  No. Lilies?  No.  What is it?  Tulips!

        A boy whose dad owned a candy shop brought a box.  She smelled the box and asked, is it chocolate covered cherries?  No.  Buckeyes?  No.  What is it?  Chocolate covered almonds!

        Another boy whose dad owned a Starbucks brought up his box and a little warm fluid was leaking out.  Ms. Madden licked her fingers and asked, Is that French vanilla?  No. Is it hazelnut?  No.  What is it?  It's a puppy!

That didn't really happen, but if it did, it couldn't have happened to a nicer person than Ms. Madden!


v. 13        The deep truths about God are concealed from the world and revealed to His people.


We live in a postmodern society where the masses place much importance on reason and understanding.  They believe that "You can know all there is to know with the power of your intellect."

ill.--Bill Maher is a devoted atheist, motivated anti-Christian, and capital J Jerk.  He said, "We are unenlightened because of religion...I believe it stops people from thinking."  He is saying that you can either be an intellectual or a Christian, but not both.  He continued, "Christians, infected with delusional beliefs, think and reason like schizophrenics or temporal lobe epileptics, their morality is dictated by an invisible friend called Jesus."

        He paints us as being stupid people who set our brains on the shelf and choose to believe in a fairy tale because it makes us feel better.


Why does he genuinely believe this?  Because everything God reveals to us about His nature is contrary to the philosophies of this world.  Worldly wisdom and Godly wisdom are always at odds with one another.

        The deep truths about God are concealed from the world and revealed to His people.  Only the Holy Spirit can guide us into all truth, as v. 13 says.


"Supernatural revelation"  [turn to 1 cor. 2]

1 Corinthians 2:10-11
10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.

No one knows a man like he knows himself.  You can't know what's truly inside like that person knows. 


It matters not how high your IQ is, you can't know what's inside of me.  The only way you'll know what's inside is if I choose to reveal it to you.

ill.--I'm thinking about something right now...guess what it is.  [several have guessed, but they were all way off]


In the same way, just as I have the ability to conceal or reveal things, God has the same ability.  Back up one verse and we see...


The limitations of man's wisdom

1 Corinthians 2:9
But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

This is often misunderstood in regards to heaven and eternity.  It's a good application, but that's not the interpretation.  In context, this is talking about the wisdom of God's truths...the deep things of God!


There is a realm of truth that you will never see with human eyes or hear with human ears or understand with the human heart.  [these things are beyond observation/information/contemplation]


ill.--the advent of the telescope and microscope opened up new worlds to humanity, but no lens can reveal truths about God.  It takes an entirely different focus to see it, and we don't possess a strong enough prescription unless we have the Spirit within us to guide us to those truths.


ill.--imagine you are witnessing to someone about God and they say, "I just can't see it."  Don't be disappointed in them...they speak the truth.  They CAN'T SEE IT!  They need spiritual eyes.

        Trying to win them to the Lord without the Spirit opening their eyes is like trying to explain how the world looks to a man born blind / explain music and sound to one born deaf.

John 6:44
No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him...

1 Corinthians 2:14
But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

And so, they can't see it with salvation.  Also, you'll have the same trouble when explaining any spiritual belief to them...such as the sanctity of life.  You say, "I believe abortion is wrong, EVEN in the case of rape or incest."  And the world gasps!  They go berserk at how ridiculous we are thinking!  "How could you subject a girl to giving birth under such reprehensible circumstances?" 

        But when you have your eyes opened to Godly wisdom you realize it runs the opposite of worldly wisdom.  "The circumstances surrounding the conception of a child do not determine the value of the innocent child."


Try to get them to agree with your position on homosexuality and see if they can understand.  Do the same with evolution and creation, or any spiritual subject.  You'll spin your wheels a long time unless and until the Spirit of God opens their eyes!  They need a supernatural revelation.  No amount of proof, facts, logic or reasoning will make the difference.

        This is how a man can be a genius, intellectually speaking, and be spiritually ignorant.


ill.--John Lennon of the Beatles was a genius.  He was a musical, poetic genius, no question about it.  But here is what he had to say about spiritual matters:  "Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. I needn't argue about that; I'm right, and I will be proven right. We are more popular than Jesus now; I don't know which will go first -- rock'n'roll or Christianity."  Folks, Lennon has been dead for decades, and Christianity lives on!

        He was a genius, and yet had no spiritual understanding. 


ill.--in John 3, Jesus is talking to a very smart man, Nicodemus, a ruler/judge who was in line to replace Gamaliel, the great teacher of Israel.  He was the equivalent of a double PhD.  Many believe that Nicodemus engineered the elaborate water system of Jerusalem.  He was brilliant with an IQ off the charts no doubt, and when Jesus told him he had to be born again he couldn't grasp it.


This is the limitation of man's wisdom. 


2.     The revelation of God's wisdom.

1 Corinthians 2:7-8
7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

'Mystery' in the Bible is not what we think today, like a mystery novel where you're trying to figure out 'who dunnit'.  Because a Sherlock Holmes with a keen intellect can unravel a mystery like that.  In the Bible, a mystery is a sacred truth which remains hidden until God chooses to reveal it.  It is unsearchable! 


For instance, the church age was a mystery, never alluded to in your OT, and only revealed when God showed it to the Apostle Paul. 


Early in Jesus' ministry He asked His disciples, "Who do men say I am?"  They said, some say you're John the Baptist or a resurrected Elijah or Jeremiah.  Peter stepped up and said, "Thou art the Christ, the son of the living God!"  Jesus said, you're right Peter, and you didn't figure that out on your own.  You had help from the Father in heaven!  [supernatural revelation]


Our text says the Spirit guides us into all truth.  That's our only hope of being right, and our only protection against error! 


Now, spiritual illumination...1 Corinthians 2:14  


What's the difference between supernatural revelation and spiritual illumination?  One is God revealing truth to man, the other is God giving man the ability to comprehend and apply it to life.  It's the difference between knowledge and wisdom.  Wisdom is the ability to take knowledge and apply it correctly to life.


ill.--remember school?  A lot of knowledge was imparted, but between spit balls, passed notes, naps, and pranks on the teacher, there wasn't a lot of illumination.  That seems to come more from life experience.  True wisdom is a whole other level.


Spiritual illumination happens in the human spirit by the Holy Spirit.  Only man has a spirit.  Animals do not.  Sorry!  This is one reason evolution cannot be true.  Man is not just a highly evolved animal.  My body connects with the environment and my soul connects with others...but my spirit communicates with God!


        If I can't know another human without them opening up to me, [1 Cor. 2:11] how can I expect to know a supernatural God without help?

Isaiah 55:8-9
8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

How much higher is heaven than earth?  We can't get to Him, so He came to us.  He mingles His Spirit with our spirit, and we are illumined.


ill.--you don't really know a person until you marry and move in to the same house.  And when you got saved, God took up residence in you!


You hear a lot of professors today saying, I have this degree and that, and written all these papers, and I can't understand the Bible.  I say, that's what they get for reading someone else's mail!

        They don't want it to make sense, and God gives them just what they want.  But in the end, will they want what they got?


The Word of God was inspired by the Spirit of God, and it takes the Spirit of God to help us accurately understand it.


Don't think you have to know all about God in order to know God.

When I got saved, I knew God eyes were opened...the blinders fell off.  And yet I knew very little!  Now, I've learned a lot with my head, but sometimes it feels like my heart relationship is somewhere far south of where my salvation moment attained!

ill.--I trusted my dad before I knew his middle name.  I would jump off the top bunk into his arms and never doubted that he would catch me.  I loved him before I ever knew him enough to discover any criticisms about him!


On day one of salvation we can know God, and what a blessing that day by day we have the opportunity to know Him better!


ill.--go to the ocean and fill a bucket from it.  The bucket is full of ocean, but you don't have the ocean in the bucket.  It is full to the brim...full of ocean, and yet there is much more ocean outside the bucket than inside of it.

        Let the Spirit of God grow your bucket, step into the water, wade out deeper, immerse yourself in His knowledge and illumination.

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