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Stir up the spirit of God

In 2 Tim 1:6 Paul is giving Timothy an admonishment...

2 Tim 1:6 Wherefore I put you in remembrance that you stir up the gift of God, which is in you by the putting on of my hands.

We have another reference to the same idea from Paul in 1 Tim 4:14...

1 Tim 4:14 Neglect not the gift that is in you, which was given you by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery.

Seems Timothy was in need of this admonishment from the looks of things, and of course, we can certainly apply this admonishment to our personal lives as well.

In 1 Thess 5:19 we see another reference to interaction with God's spirit...

1 Thess 5:19 Quench not the Spirit.

We know these scriptures are discussing the Holy Spirit which God gives His people who He calls, but what exactly are these scriptures telling us? How does one "stir up" God's spirit, or neglect or quench it?

The very fact that these warnings are given shows us that these things can be done, and that "we" have a part to play in stirring up God's spirit. God's spirit is NOT some sort of an "automatic behavior module" God inserts in us. It is His power which He provides us and expects us to USE, or "activate," so to speak. But HOW is this done... what are the ways it is done?

Throughout the bible, we have continued commands on what we should and should NOT be doing in our lives. God's 10 commandments and other principles of behavior run throughout the bible. The Sabbath day, the Holy Days, instructions from Christ and the apostles ALL provide us the means by which we can stir up the spirit of God within us and actually grow and bear fruit in our lives.

Some believe the "Laws" of God have been done away with. Others believe they have little or nothing to do with the salvation process, and that it doesn't matter WHAT you do to "honor" and worship God, as long as you do it with Him in mind.  Some believe the laws and other commands are just some sort of "busy work" God dreamed up just to keep us busy but which don't really have anything to do with salvation.

God has something to say about that kind of worship practice:

Deut 12:30 Take heed to yourself that you be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before you; and that you inquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise. 31 you shalt not do so to the LORD your God: for every abomination to the LORD, which he hates, have they done to their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods

Common "Christian" practices we have today all stem from pagan religious ceremonies and gods. Such things as Christmas and Easter go back long before Christ, and were adopted by the developing false Christianity of the early 200-300 AD era. This adoption was a means of bringing into "Christianity" the pagans who did not want to let go of their coveted practices, so their practices were "transformed" into "Christian" practices, with different names so they could be brought under control of the large "church" which was taking over.

Keep in mind that there is a very real and powerful "False Christianity" at work in the world... one which Satan made sure developed as a countermeasure against true Christianity.

Matt 15:9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

Christ warns us that He can actually be worshiped IN VAIN... that is, worshiped in a useless and wrong way. How can this be if God isn't concerned about HOW we worship Him?

There is a growing number of people who are embracing a "grace only" doctrine of worship of the true God. The belief embraces the idea that salvation comes from grace and forgiveness alone. This is a perfect example of HOW people worship God in vain. Grace and forgiveness are vital to salvation, but they are NOT the only thing needed for salvation.

At the beginning of this article, we discussed things that we are to be involved with to stir up God's spirit and to NOT quench or neglect that spirit. By removing the law of God from the Christian belief system, along with the Sabbath, Holy Days and other commands, Satan has effectively removed the very tools God has provided and blessed as a means for us to STIR up His spirit and accomplish the goals He wants in us.

Remember what scripture says about the Sabbath?

Ex 20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: (Saturday) wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.

God actually makes holy the very day He included as one of the 10 commandments. The fourth commandment covers this, and by neglecting this day, and not applying it in our lives, we miss the Holy blessing and the power that blessing has to change our lives.

The same is true for ALL of God's Holy Days. They are ALL Holy time, blessed by God for a purpose. By removing these days from Christian thought, we lose not only the blessing and power IN these days, but we also lose the story these days tell and remind us of regarding what God is doing with humanity and the destiny we have before us.

Is it not quenching God's Holy spirit in us by neglecting these tools in our lives? How can we stir up the spirit of God in us by avoiding the very tools He provides for us? The apostles, decades after Christ's crucifixion, were still keeping the Sabbath and other Holy Days. They observed these days and taught them as well. They taught about the laws of God and their importance. They taught about obedience, overcoming, resisting sin, repenting of sin and the ongoing fight which Paul himself mentions...

2 Tim 4:7 I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:

without the tools God has provided us, we cannot possibly grow in grace OR knowledge, something we MUST do to endure to the end and receive salvation.

Are there other ways in which we can stir up the spirit? How about:

  • Prayer
  • Bible study
  • Resisting sin
  • Overcoming sin
  • Serving others
  • Submitting to God
  • Denying our carnal nature's resistance to God 
  • Fasting
There are many ways we can stir up the spirit in us, and we MUST be doing this in order to better understand God's plan...
 
Ps 111:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endures for ever.

Prov 2:1 The Value of Wisdom My son, if you receive my words, And treasure my commands within you,  2 So that you incline your ear to wisdom, And apply your heart to understanding;  3 Yes, if you cry out for discernment, And lift up your voice for understanding, 4 If you seek her as silver, And search for her as for hidden treasures;  5 Then you will understand the fear of the LORD, And find the knowledge of God.  6 For the LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding;

Those who have a love for the truth, and want to be in line with absolute reality MUST apply the right tools... MUST apply the laws that govern the creation of the right character and mind of God...
 
Eph 4:13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;  14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,
15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head -- Christ --
 
Do you see the vital importance for applying all the laws and commands of God in our lives?  I order to become perfect as Christ was perfect, to be like Him, we MUST be applying ourselves in the right direction using the very power God has supplied, and we must utilize that power according to law and absolutes that exist because God created it that way.
 
God has a purpose for mankind that is far greater than most could imagine, but He also requires from us our cooperation and our free-willed submission to Him in belief, faith and trust that HE knows what is best for us and HOW to bring us to His own image.  By submitting our wills to THAT, and using the tools He has provided us to stir up the spirit, we can look forward to an eternity beyond imagination.

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Godkind web pages created and material written by Jeffrey T. Maehr. Common Law Copyright © 2012. All rights reserved. Reproduction allowed if credit to this website is listed with material. Off site material and some articles authored as stated.