As I continue to labor in ministry I have to make a startling admission. It might surprise many. I get it about God, the Father. I totally grasp Jesus, the Son of God. However, when it comes to the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity, I have to say I understand him less and less.
I know the theological book definition. I can read the Scriptures. However, when I meld the Scriptures with what I see in life, it makes me wonder.
At the same time I grow more and more bewildered about the Holy Spirit I become more and more convinced that the depravity of man is sure uglier, evil and deeper than any preacher likes to admit.
Possibly it is the interaction of the Holy Spirit with the powerful depravity of the world, self and devil that confuses this peewee brain. Just the fact in the book of Daniel that an angel was in battle for 21 days by evil forces to deliver a message straight from God baffles me. He had to call on Michael the arch-angle to win the day. It sounds like a fantasy story straight out of Disneyland.
Open to the book of Job and get a little more confused. Oh, don’t worry, God wins the day but the process is mind-boggling. We see a little more of strange God stuff that is unexplainable in the book of Acts as the Holy Spirit makes his presence in the heart of man after the resurrection of Jesus.
There is this side of the work of God attributed to the Holy Spirit that leaves me with a flat out “I don’t know, answer.” I don’t doubt the amazement of the Holy Spirit. I simply don’t know how it works.
How is it that one addict can boldly call on God and never touch his idols again while another addict pleads for the mercy of God believing in Jesus only to fight the urges for the rest of his life? How is it that a miserable, friendless alcoholic can abuse his body and soul day in and day out only to have a great friend of the faith killed in a horrible accident? What makes the light bulb go on for one man and the other to be blind as a bat; yet, they both claim Jesus as their only hope?
Are you ready for this? I can give you the logical sovereignty of God, Holy Spirit driven, glory of God answer. It may appease the burdened soul. If pressed beyond that…”I don’t know.”
We are told that we don’t know the thoughts of God and his ways are not our ways. But than the preacher gets up and declares “know the will of God.” How is that even possible? I’m not too sure anymore.
It isn’t that I doubt God. I know the Internet works. I don’t know nor will I ever understand how it works. Cyberspace is as foreign to me as living on the planet Mars. But, I can save this very article in someplace I can’t touch or feel and retrieve it at a later date.
Maybe we aren’t to know exactly how God works. I don’t think we can handle it. When John closes the book of Revelation there is a sense that we can’t handle what John saw about God and his ways.
So in the end of the day, we seem to waste a lot of time trying to figure out God so it can make sense to us but…it isn’t supposed to. God sending his beloved Son to take our sins defies all logic. Our depravity would find a way to warp God if we could figure him out. A sense of awe is the very essence of turning to Him. Jeremiah said that the people of God turned their back because they lost their awe of Him. Well, the more I realize I don’t understand instills a sense of the awe of God in my soul. Why? The story from Genesis through Revelation makes so much sense but at the same time is so profound it leaves us where Job was…who am I, I’m not God. Ahhh, the very essence of salvation.