Youth Sunday School Lesson – January 10,2010
So we have a new sport to participate in out at Lee’s Chapel #1 these days – Wednesday Night Water Polo! I’d like to thank those of you who showed up last night to help us clean up the water from the broken pipes and you also need to know that you made a big difference for the church when you did so. Don’t be surprised if God blesses you for the help you provided as He has been known to do just that.
Our lesson this week revolves around the Holy Spirit and how He works in our lives, specifically in the area of when/how we study our Bibles. Our text this week is taken from John 16:1-16 and Acts 16:7-9. We will look at the verses in John to give us an explanation from Jesus on the purpose of the Holy Spirit, and then we'll get an example of the Holy Spirit in action and how He guides from the verses we will read in Acts. Read those verses and see if you can grasp what we will study in class, but in the meantime I will blog today on how the Holy Spirit works on a day to day basis in a Christian’s life.
In Romans 8:13-14 Paul writes: “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” By the way, it is not a coincidence that I always seem to get a lot of the scriptures I use out of the book of Romans – the book is a great starting point for anyone who wants to fully understand the Bible and what Jesus did for us on the cross. But I am digressing here, and we are talking specifically about being ‘led by the Spirit’ in our daily lives.
Notice that Paul speaks of us being ‘led’ by the Spirit. Our lives should not be lived in a way in which we are pulled or dragged by the Spirit. The Spirit does not work in that manner, because in our verses in John where Jesus describes the Holy Spirit, look at the verbs in the text. Jesus uses guide, speak, and tell to show that God has chosen to persuade us rather than force us to do the right things each day. Followers of Christ still need to do something on our own – we will need to make choices and set our will on doing the right thing when called upon to do so. When we do not take this part of our life seriously, there is no way the Holy Spirit will be guiding us. In fact, when we live within our own will and do the things that only seem right to our carnal minds, it is a safe bet that we will find ourselves being led by someone or something else. Our spiritual lives will suffer as a result. When we find ourselves in this condition, we will also find it very hard or extremely difficult to study God’s Word.
As a teacher, I know that I cannot impose my will or my knowledge on those I would teach without a little cooperation in the process from my students. Without the help of my students in class, if they choose not to listen and make no effort to understand on their own, then my efforts to teach are fruitless. In much the same way, we should submit ourselves as the Spirit of God suggests, influences, and in many ways dominates how we live our lives. That sounds like a rough term to use, but think about it – God is good, therefore allowing His Spirit to dominate our lives is a good thing for us to do. When the Holy Spirit controls our manner of thinking and how we live our lives, much fruit will be produced as we in turn will become more and more faithful to God.
So how about you and me this morning? Can we feel the divine influence of the Holy Spirit drawing us away from things that might corrupt us and would have you and I fall by the wayside in our daily walk as Christians? Are we aware of a desire in our hearts to yield to that influence, and instead of our own will, to be transported along a path of righteousness with the goal of being as close to Christ as possible? Or are we resisting the influence of the Holy Spirit and in so doing, seeking to find our own way to becoming closer to God, and alternately maybe becoming closer to something else?
God will never lead us astray. As Christians, the only real love, joy, and peace we will ever find in our lives will be uncovered when we submit to Him - by following the Spirit which He has sent to guide us. Last of all this morning, notice how the parts all fit together: To be led by the Spirit is to choose voluntarily and consciously to submit to the Word of God. By submission to God’s Word, and allowing ourselves to be led by the Spirit, we will be drawn closer to God.