Spiritually Lead Or Emotionally DrivenSeries: Emotions. James Dewhurst July 19, 2020
Spirit Lead or Emotionally Driven
Def: Emotion – A strong feeling that arises spontaneously
(Latin – To set in motion.)
Feelings are both the bane and blessing of our existence! At times, excitement and joy are the flavors of the day, while at other moments discouragement and depression set the course. Our emotions, no matter how hard we try and regulate them, seem to always reflect the delights and disasters of life. While these unbridled feelings do not in any way authenticate truth, they clearly reveal our own understanding of the truth!
Since feelings follow thoughts, feelings also reveal thoughts!
Where did these uninvited moods, that rush in without any warning, originate? God! The Bible tells us in Genesis 1 that we were made in God’s image, an image that includes emotions. You see, we have emotions because God has emotions. While our emotions may be a divine gift, how we manage them determines whether or not they become a curse. Most of us struggle with our emotions because we can’t separate ourselves from them. We cannot flee from our own feelings, so we must learn how to deal with them. The stewardship of our emotions is critical to a healthy spiritual life, and since God created us with emotions, he wisely sent us the emotional part of himself, to help us manage ours. What most Christians don’t realize is that when they become saved, a rich emotional presence enters their lives, we must learn to cooperate with daily.
The most fundamental theology of the Christian faith is the doctrine of the Trinity. The Bible teaches us that God is 3 (The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit) in 1. The best way to understand this is to consider water. Water is one substance that can become liquid, solid, or gas. We serve one God who expresses himself to us in three persons, with 3 different roles. The Father is God for us, the Son is God with us, and the Holy Spirit is God in us. The Holy Spirit, who lives on the inside of us, works as a spiritual trainer to mature us into spiritual shape, so that we start acting, looking like and reflecting the one we were made in the image of. People who live controlled by their emotions end up resembling a lot of different things, but God is not one of them!
11 A fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back. (ESV)
Someone stated: “Feelings are like waves. You cannot stop them from coming but you can decide which ones to surf.”
A wise person said: “Never make permanent decisions based on temporary feelings.”
Oscar Wilde (the famous playwright from London) said: “I don’t want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.”
16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. (ESV)
If our lives do not look like this, we are not being Spirit-led, we are emotionally driven!
I feel God-like has more children who don’t resemble him, than any father in history!
The devils not afraid of people going to church. He’s afraid of people looking like Christ!
The existence of the Holy Spirit in our lives is what makes all the difference! Our spiritual growth and maturity are directly related to our submission to the Spirit’s work in our lives. When you read the book of Acts, you will find that on the day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit fell, there was a transformation in the lives of the disciples. Before, Peter was impulsive, fearful, and emotionally driven. But after Peter was touched by the Holy Spirit, he became courageous, committed, and constant! The Spirit changed him!
Peter, who was famous for denying Christ 3 times before Pentecost, changed:
-From following his feelings to declaring his convictions!
-From making popular decisions to taking principled positions!
-From running when problems arise to rising when problems arise!
-From deflecting personal responsibility to taking personal responsibility!
-From following the demands of the crowd to declaring the truth to the crowd!
Although Christians receive the Holy Spirit at Salvation, we also need to be filled by him!
1 Corinthians 6:19-20
19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. (ESV)
14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. (ESV)
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. (ESV)
8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (ESV)
+The Greek word for power is dynamic, which is where we get the word dynamite.
+The Anglo Saxon translation for Holy Spirit is “guest”. God sent us a Divine Guest!
5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. 6 For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. (ESV)
Spirit-lead people live in freedom but emotionally controlled people live in chaos!
The great Joyce Meyer said – “Self-control is a freedom, not bondage. You’re free to use wisdom, free to obey God, and free to follow the leading of the Spirit. You’re free not to be pushed around by your feelings. You don’t have to do what you feel like doing. You’re free to do what you know is wise.”
Part-time time Christians will never defeat a full-time devil!
I want to close today with two critical things Holy Spirit does in all of our lives:
(1) The Spirit helps guide our decisions!
16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, 17 even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. (ESV)
+The Greek word for Holy Spirit is Paraclete and is translated to mean: counselor, helper, advocate, intercessor, mediator, encourager, defender, and legal advisor.
+In ancient warrior times, when Greek soldiers entered battle they would stand back to back covering each other’s blind spots. Their battle partner was called a Paraclete!
(2) The Spirit protects us from deception!
Without supernatural help right now, Christians will fall prey to 3 areas of deception:
> Satanic Deception: 2 Corinthians 4:4 “The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.”
> Spiritual Deception: Matthew 24:4-5 “Watch out that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many.”
> Self Deception: James 1:22 “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
God has sent Christians a gift that empowers us to walk in truth and live in victory!
How do we activate this Divine Gift in our lives? You simply ask for it!
13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. 14 He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 15 All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you. (ESV)
13 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” (ESV)