BE YE SEPARATE – 6
As we think of separating ourselves from the world and living for Jesus, the Holy Spirit will give us the help we need for He is living within us. By ourselves we are weak and unwise. However, we have to allow the Holy Spirit to work in our lives.
Have you ever had a child or anyone that you wanted to help so badly, but they refused? We can quench the work the Holy Spirit would do inside us. 1 Thess.5:19 We know what it means to quench a campfire. We put it out. So how could we “put out” the Holy Spirit? Maybe some other versions might help our understanding. The Amplified Version gives these words: suppress or subdue. The NCV translates quench as “hold back.” We want to be in control and not give in to the work of the Holy Spirit. We think we can do it all.
Another quotation tells us not to grieve the Holy Spirit. Eph.4:30 If someone we love won’t accept our help, it grieves us. It makes us extremely sad when we love them so much. Guess what? The Holy Spirit loves us just as God loves us and Jesus loves us. We may not understand the love of the Holy Spirit but He is one with the Father and the Son. God loved us so much He gave His Son for us. Jesus loved us so much He died a horrible death for no wrong He had done but just for us that we could be saved from a horrible eternal death ourselves. When we don’t allow the Holy Spirit to work in our lives, it causes a deep grief to the Holy Spirit.
We are to resist the devil. Jam.4:7 In other words we are to strive against or refuse to comply with him. If we do this against the devil, that is the Lord’s will. But there are times we resist the Holy Spirit. We strive against Him or refuse to comply with Him. That is not God’s will. Acts 7:51 This was in Stephen’s sermon before he was stoned to death. In the NCV version Stephen says, “You are always against what the Holy Spirit is trying to tell you.” We are told through Scripture, our mind which should be on the things that are of the Spirit, and our conscience should speak to us unless it has been seared. 1 Tim.4:2
How we need to study and listen or meditate on the Word! David’s first psalm gives us such a contrast for those that are separated for the Lord as opposed to those who follow the world. If we are living a separated life, we don’t seek counsel from those of the world. Neither do we stand in the path of sinners. We’ve read how Peter likens the devil to a roaring lion. 1 Pet.5:8 Are we going to stand in its path? Ps.1:1; Prov.4:14 There are so many that scoff at the Bible. We should not want to situate ourselves with them. Ps.26:4
Ps.1:2 Where is our delight? An honest answer to this question might reveal to us if we are really separated from the world. There are many things of the world that Satan holds as a lure before us. What does a lure do to a fish and for a fisherman? The lure is shiny or looks tasty—so good, even worthwhile. Satan has his hook ready and hidden in the lure. The word, “alluring,” comes from lure. Looks good but it is only looks.
If we are truly separated, we will meditate on the things of God and on things that are wholesome and godly. Phil.4:8 In former lessons we have called this verse our filter. A filter in our car sifts out the dregs as does the filter in a coffee pot. If we follow this verse, we will filter out the things that are ungodly and of the world and thus be separated.
The rewards of being separated are numerous. Ps.1:3 gives us some of these. We will be able to stand strong. Jer.17:8; Ps.92:12 Standing strong is something we have been enjoined to do. Gal.5:1 Paul also urged the Philippians to stand firm in the Lord. Phil.4:1 A person that cannot stand on their legs very well will become less and less separated from things of the world and eventually fall from their faith. They will wither and blow away.
If we stand strong and separated from the world, we can become fruitful for the Lord. Col.1:9,10 We cannot take pride in ourselves for our fruit is produced with the help of the Holy Spirit and to the glory of the Lord. Alone, we can do nothing. Matt.19:26
Not only will we be fruitful but we will prosper. Josh.1:7 Success in the Christian life is dependent upon our stand in faith, our separating ourselves from the world and those things that oppose godly attributes. Scripture is very plain in exhorting us or urging us strongly to separate ourselves in order to be God’s friend. What could be more important for our eternity? Jam.4:4