Saturday, June 30, 2012

Renewal of the Spirit and of the Heart

                 The above drawing illustrates what the topic of this post is about. Renewal of the heart and welcoming of the Holy Spirit. Eggs often represent rebirth, as well as butterflies. That is why the butterfly is on the human heart: rebirth of the heart. And candles often represent the presence of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, the heart welcomes the Holy Spirit.              
                 Some people misconstrue the fact that God loves everyone to mean that everyone will go to Heaven and God will not let harm come to us. They think that believing in God and Jesus, along with a bedtime prayer and reading the bible, automatically earns them a place in Heaven. But in believing this, they’ve removed many parts of the Bible like James 1:22, which says that you must not only read the Word but live it out.  John 3:3-7 clearly states that in order to be saved, you must be born again and have a renewal of your heart.

“In reply Jesus declared, ‘I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom
of God unless he is born again.’ Nicodemus asked, ‘How can a man be born when
he is old? Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!’
Jesus answered, ‘I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless
he is born of water and of the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives
birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying ‘You must be born again.”

-John 3:3-7

"The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness.
He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance."

-2 Peter 3:9

                You must be baptized in the water (…,having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. Hebrews 10:22) and baptized in the Spirit. I’m going to sidetrack for a moment so that I can discuss what baptism of the Spirit is with you. Many Christians have debated over what exactly baptism of the Spirit is. We need to know first that all Christians receive the Spirit upon their conversion and in this sense all Christians have been baptized in the Holy Spirit.  This means that they are saved and that they have all they need at that time to be able to live godly and holy lives.  1 Corinthians 12:13 says, "For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.” Some churches believe that the baptism of the Spirit is an experience different than initial salvation. They see it as a second experience that gives a person much greater spiritual power and boldness, and the ability to live a more victorious Christian life. We can conclude that when a person is baptized in the Holy Spirit he has power bestowed upon him.  This power is for the purpose of the preaching of the gospel (Acts 4:31), living a purer life, and having a deeper devotion to God.  Some groups teach that the baptism is accompanied by such signs as speaking in tongues (Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongue, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.).
                The Bible does not actually use the term "baptism of the Spirit" very often. John the Baptist predicted that Jesus would come and baptize with the Spirit and with fire (Matthew 3:11; Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16; John 1:33). In Acts 1:5, Jesus recalled John's words, and told His followers that they would be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from then. While these passages make it clear that the believers in Acts 2 experienced a baptism of the Spirit, we do not find a clear explanation of what that baptism means. The clearest explanation of the baptism appears in I Corinthians 12:13. Paul is dealing with a situation where the Corinthian church was splitting into factions over the issue of spiritual gifts. Overemphasis on certain spectacular gifts had led to the attitude that some people had the most desirable gifts, while others were deficient. In response, Paul exclaims, "We're all one! Don't divide up into cliques!" And to prove his point, he explains, "For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit" (I Corinthians 12:13).
                We must have a renewal of our heart where we give up all unrighteous things of our past (Ezekiel 18:21-2, Romans 6:11-14, Hebrews 10:22-29). Ezekiel 18:21-24 says that if a wicked man turns from all his sinful ways he will surely be saved but if a righteous man commits sin he will die.

“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to
put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires,
to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to
put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”

-Ephesians 4:22-24

“Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked? declares the
Sovereign Lord, Rather am I not pleased when they turn from their ways and live?”

-Ezekiel 18:23

“Wash  your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”

-James 4:8

                   If we turn back to God and give ourselves to His will and become His workers we will be blessed greatly and He will protect us. In this next verse He is talking about Israel but it can still be applied to our own lives, just like every other verse in the Scripture.

"...if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and
pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will 
hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land."

-2 Chronicles 7:14



  1. This is a beautiful message, and beautiful artwork to support your message. I too believe that you should incorporate your belief into your every day life and act accordingly. It's not enough to talk the talk, you must walk the walk!

  2. Amen! And thank you for the kind words!