I was in prayer the other day, asking the Holy Spirit about what was on His mind. In prayer I believe He told me that the biggest thing He was dealing with right now was people’s hearing and obedience. The reason for this is because the Holy Spirit uses people to get things done for the Kingdom of God, just as a general uses a soldier to fight his battles. In the Kingdom, we are the soldiers and the Holy Spirit is our general. But no matter how good the general is, if the soldiers won’t listen to and obey the general, they will also lose the battle. So I feel the need to write a post about hearing and obeying the Holy Spirit. Let’s get started.
In the early church, much of what happened was lead by the Holy Spirit. In fact, many of the big developments and decisions came from the Holy Spirit. This of course allowed the church to thrive and grow rapidly. So let’s go over some ways that the Holy Spirit had guided the early church.
Then the Spirit said to Philip, “Go up and join this chariot.”Acts 8:29 NASB1995
This verse is taken from the story of Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch. When Philip was on the road that an angel had directed him to go on, the Holy Spirit then directed him to talk to this Ethiopian man. This then became a baptism experience and a powerful man came into the Kingdom of God. This whole event was orchastrated by the Holy Spirit. And it was because of Philip’s obedience and hearing, that made this happen. Imagine if God asked you to join a random stranger and talk about God with them. That could be you, if you would learn to be a good soldier. If we want to Kingdom of God to advance, like it did in the early church, then we need to learn from the early church fathers and obey the Spirit.
When they had placed them in the center, they began to inquire, “By what power, or in what name, have you done this?” Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers and elders of the people,Acts 4:7-8 NASB1995
This verse comes from a passage where Peter is testifying of Christ to the rulers and elders in Jerusalem. He is filled with the Holy Spirit and begins to speak to them about Jesus. What he says is lead by the Holy Spirit, and in fact the Spirit actually gives him the words to say. This is another function of the Holy Spirit, that He gives us words to say in select times. I know fro my own personal experience that I have times where I am lead to speak by the Spirit. It is a strange feeling and I actually can tell now when the Holy Spirit has something to speak through me. It is an honor and priviledge when that happens and I often times surprise myself in what I say. But this is the power of the Holy Spirit to speak through people. He uses humans to give instruction and guidance to the Church.
One of them named Agabus stood up and began to indicate by the Spirit that there would certainly be a great famine all over the world. And this took place in the reign of Claudius. And in the proportion that any of the disciples had means, each of them determined to send a contribution for the relief of the brethren living in Judea.Acts 11:28-29 NASB1995
The Holy Spirit will also use people to speak of future events and will guide the Church in how to respond. This is why the prophetic office is so important. Because with it we can see into the Spirit and through God’s eyes. We can prepare and act accordingly to what is coming. The Holy Spirit is a good general who wants to grow the Kingdom and protect the people. If we want to start walking in miracles and grow the Kingdom, then we must learn to hear and obey the Spirit. For me personally, I have found that in order to hear the Spirit better, you have to spend more time with Him. I pray in tongues often, and I have found that the more I do the clearer I can hear the Holy Spirit. I have also found that the more I saturate my environment with the Word of God, the better I can hear His voice. That means more of the Word and less of the World.
“You men who are stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears are always resisting the Holy Spirit; you are doing just as your fathers did.Acts 7:51 NASB1995
We need to make sure that we are not being a stiff-necked people. We need to learn to hear and obey. If we can all work together to follow the commands of the Holy Spirit, then we can change the World!