This past weekend, I traveled back home with my fiancé, Riley, and his brother, Ramsey. While the trek back home is an easy drive, it leaves plenty of time for discussion. On this particular road trip, Riley asked me a question that he and Ramsey had discussed earlier, in their small group.
“Is the Bible necessary for faith?”
As the conversation continued for the majority of the trip, the three of us were hardly agreeing on any type of answer.
Before you scroll straight to the comments and accuse me of heresy, hear me out on this. Obviously the Bible is vitally important and useful in our faith.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 NIV
My goal is not to get caught up on this question, I honestly haven’t made my mind up completely about it yet either. Instead, I would like to look at one argument brought up during the discussion: the Holy Spirit is necessary for faith, not the Bible.
Having grown up in the Christian Church, I will be the first to admit that my knowledge of the Holy Spirit was very limited before attending Bible college. Even still, I have much to learn on the subject, but I found this particular thought very intriguing. How incredible the power of the Holy Spirit.
Before Jesus went back up to heaven after his resurrection, He comforted his disciples by saying these words:
On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” Then they gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1: 4-8 NIV
Seriously, the most incredible thing in all of history has just happened and Jesus asks his disciples to wait? Jesus refers the Holy Spirit as a gift, something to wait for. What the disciples couldn’t understand was that the power of Christ was soon to be living inside each of them, and with this power, they would be able to accomplish immeasurably more than what they could on their own. With the power of the Holy Spirit, they would be his witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and to the ends of the earth.
After thinking about the power of the Holy Spirit in my own life, I realized that I may not be called to witness in Jerusalem, but I am called to witness wherever I am. For me, that means at work, at school, to my friends and family. I know that more times than not, I am not tuned in enough to the Holy Spirit to take advantage of the opportunities that sometimes hit me right between the eyes.
A few weeks ago, at work, a coworker of mine came up to me very excited. She wanted to show me a ring that her mother gave to her that had the Lord’s prayer on it. She proceeded to explain to me that her mother had given her the ring because she knew that she was having a rough time. My coworker said she wanted to show me the ring because she knew that I would appreciate it.
A few thoughts crossed my mind as I pondered on the interaction I shared with her.
1. I don’t remember ever having a conversation with her about God. Why in the world not?
2. Even never having had a conversation with her about God, she knew that I would appreciate her ring.
Besides having a few Bible verses tacked up in my cubical, I have done very little to show the love of Christ to my coworker. Even still, God provided me an opportunity to connect with her.
Often times I feel like I’m on auto pilot. I go to class and go to work. I do what I have to do to get by. Have I trained my heart and mind to be sensitive to the promptings of the Holy Spirit in my every day life? Even more important than that, do I have the courage to respond to the promptings of the Holy Spirit?
Some how, some way, God reveals himself to people through the verses of scripture hanging in my cubical. But really, is that the best I can do? Christ beat death! We have the same power available to us! His desire to use me in his story still blows me away.
I have been challenged this week to tap into the power of the Holy Spirit in my life and I want to challenge you to do the same. How many lives would be changed if we would just realize and utilize the power of Christ in us?
I want to end this post by sharing lyrics to one of my favorite songs, The Same Power.
Meditate on the words and be encouraged.
The grave could not contain
The power of His name
Death, You overcame
Once and for all
Mighty Savior, lifted high
King forever, Jesus Christ
Crowned in glory, raised to life
The same power lives in us