How can a minister of Jesus be filled with His Holy Spirit and also be overcome by evil spirits? Is this even possible? Isn’t it written that those with the Spirit of God never sin, because the seed of God is in them and they cannot sin?
I want to write about this because I said that I would, but I don’t think I have a very good understanding. Just my own experiences and thoughts. It seems that ministers should not be very sinful. Yet, I know that we learn in different ways and I know that we cannot pin down the purposes of God.
I have learned that scripture is useful in growing our understanding of the Lord, Jesus; however, the written word of God should not be used in such a legalistic and calloused sense as to keep us from the Living Word of God who is Jesus Christ.
Though He changes not, because He is God, He is a person. He was a man of mercy and He is a God of mercy. He is also wise in ways that go beyond our reasoning, and one thing we know is that the purpose of the creation by our Creator is to raise many sons.
Although the hearts of man are fashioned alike, we are distinct individuals also, so the Lord will do what He must do for each person so that we are properly formed for His purposes as sons and servants of His Kingdom. Because of His great and personalized care with each person, we cannot use the scriptures so woodenly regarding the judgment and mercy of God towards us who love Him.
Peter gives great examples of this. Jesus said that those who deny Him will be denied by Him to the Father. Peter denied Him three times, and Jesus forgave Him.
So, yes. The scriptures say that those who have the Spirit of God do not sin, but there is always going to be mercy and there is always going to be purposes the Lord is fulfilling that we do not readily see.
I cannot speak too much regarding other ministries, but I can write about myself. I knew that my first website, kinglingtruth.com, was a learning process. I felt as though this was more for myself as something that would sharpen my understanding and ability to communicate the things of God more effectively.
There is some good content. There are ideas that I should get back to that I have at times let slip. There are also mistakes. There are errors in understanding. As I have mentioned previously, there were times when I was not of the right spirit.
What does this mean? The Spirit of God will have certain effects that bring good and true things. His Spirit brings life-giving things. His Spirit also destroys, but in a constructive manner that is not man-pleasing, proud, arrogant, or rude. His Spirit is not impatient or fearful. His Spirit is not self-serving or self-preserving. His Spirit does not lie, create confusion, or minister questions that take our focus off of Him. His Spirit does not lead to disputing among believers, accusations, and slander. His Spirit does not bring us under bondage of law or legalistic faith. His Spirit considers the fullness of every situation, and with wisdom instructs each person personally.
Though at times I was in the right spirit, many times I was following something else. I was following myself or I was overly reliant on the people I looked up to. There were times when I doubted what the Lord was showing me because I relied too much on others, and when they would make jabs directed at me, I shriveled up and berated myself, not realizing that I was grieving the Spirit in the process.
There were times when I was overcome with fear. There were times when I was impatient and angry. There were times when I was self-serving. There were times when I judged the brethren too harshly. All of the things that the Spirit of God is not were in me—and how could that be? His Spirit was there also, but I did begin to doubt it. I wondered if I had deluded myself or maybe His Spirit left because I was too grievous to Him.
So, I quit the ministry. Things did not go well after that, so I came back. Yet, I did not feel like it was good enough to just go back to kindlingtruth. I had to start afresh, sort out the good from the bad, and do better. Or, at least attempt to. I will never claim perfection in life or in ministry. I know there are going to be weak spots. There might be times when I am still of the wrong spirit.
In any case, I don’t think any Christian instantly knows how to walk after the Sprit of God from the get-go. We have to learn how to, and Jesus will do the work in us necessary so that we can. It is also true that none but Jesus have the fullness of the Spirt of God. We can always seek more. The day we stop looking for Him is a sad day.
Even so, I do believe that as many as walk after the Spirit of God are the sons of God. We do not want to walk after the spirts of devils, but we might at times. We need mercy. We need guidance. We are all lost little sheep looking to our great Shepherd.
I will forever be skeptical of any minister who claims to be without sin, or at least without the capacity for sin. Maybe we get to a point in which we do not sin, but we are still not perfect. We have work to do. We have sufferings to endure. We have more of the Spirit to obtain. We have the resurrection or transfiguration to experience, and we are all at one time changed into the likeness of our Lord. How wonderful!
I don’t think anyone will attain perfection before the other. We are all raised at once at the coming of our Lord, Jesus. We are all on this journey together, so I am also highly skeptical of ministers who lord themselves over people. We should lead as we are given the ability, but often we are walking along side one another. Not in front or behind.
I do know that if the grace of God abounds towards us who have the Holy Spirit, we will be convicted of our sin. We will repent. We will overcome over time. So, in that way, those who are born of the Spirit of God cannot sin. I can sin. I would that I could not. I get overcome by things that are not of the Spirit of God, but I do recognize this more readily than I did before.
He can do this for us, and the more we seek Him and put Him first—which is a desire He graciously gives—the more we will grow in all things of His Life-giving Spirit. And in turn, we can be better servants of our brethren and of Him.