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Friday, June 19, 2015

The Inner Man of the Heart # 7

The Indwelling Nature of the Holy Spirit (continued)

In all the things which are out from God and therefore spiritual "the mind of the flesh is death," but "the mind of the spirit is life, and PEACE." This then is the nature of spiritual knowledge, which is the only saving knowledge. We said at the commencement that this recognition of the difference between the "inner man" and the "outward man" would be absolutely revolutionary. Perhaps we can see this a little more clearly now. A rich knowledge of the scriptures, an accurate technical grasp of Christian doctrine, a doing of Christian work by all the resources of "worldly wisdom" or natural ability, a clever manipulation and interesting presentation of Bible content and themes, may get not one whit beyond the natural life of men and still remain within the realm of spiritual death. Men cannot be argued, reasoned, fascinated, interested, "emotioned," willed, enthused, impassioned, into the Kingdom of the heavens, they can only be born, and that is by spiritual quickening. This new birth brings with it new capacities of every kind, and among the most vital is a new and different faculty of Divine Knowledge, understanding, and apprehension. But some may ask, where does our brain come in? Do we understand you to mean that our human intellectual faculties are ruled out? No, not at all! But we do affirm again that this is not primary but secondary. The human intellect is not the first instrument of our apprehension of spiritual things, the things of God, but its function is that of giving them intelligent form to ourselves and to others.

Paul's intellectual power was not that which gave him his knowledge  of truth, but it was joined to the spirit for passing that truth on to others. Someone has said that the brain may act as a prism and give a spectrum of the Eternal light, but it is not the first organ of spiritual knowledge.

The spirit of man is that by which he reaches out into the Eternal and unseen. Intuition, then, is the mental organ of the spirit. It is in this sense, that is,the deadness of the spirit Godward, and the going on with religion in its manifold form of expression merely from the human mind, that God says, "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways," and the measure of the difference is the heaven from the earth; the heavenly and the earthly. One of the chief lessons that we have to learn, and which God takes pains to teach us is that spiritual ends demand spiritual means. The breaking down of our natural life, its mind, its resources, its energies, in the bitterness of disappointment through futility, failure, ineffectiveness, and deadlock in real spiritual achievement, is a life work, but the truth mentioned above is the explanation and key to the whole thing. What is true of spiritual knowledge is true in every other connection and direction as we shall see.

~T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 8 - The Underlying Truth of the Prodigal Son)

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