Summary: One of the most needed messages in America Today.
“What ‘Spirit’ Do I Have”
* What do you think of when you hear the word, “Pharisee?” Do you think Religious leaders? Or maybe Killers of Jesus? Do you think of their reputation for being judgmental, arrogant, or a people of Law & Rules? Several years ago, I heard Jack Taylor say, “Anyone exposed to any form of religion in USA for more than 6 months has been ministered to in Spirit of Pharisaims.”
* Back in the 50’s, a nationally known Christian leader received a “vision”, a “dream”, a “word”, from God and talked about many things which we have seen come to pass. This leader went on to say that as bad as we need revival in the USA there are 5 great opponents which have to be overcome. These are;
* The Spirit of Jezebel- This is seen in “taking control.” She took control in an ungodly way. We see that spirit taking over in the church today. Truth is, God is in control & He takes high offense to our overstepping our position as His creation.
* Spirit of Absalom- This is a spirit of sedition, rebellion, and even disloyalty. A true Holy Ghost, Heaven Sent revival will reveal just how rebellious we have become.
* Spirit of Witchcraft – Today, we see more than ever, the Eastern Religions, the New Age, Cults, Satanism and much more finding an open mind in America. Make no mistake; Satanism is on the rise in our area.
* Spirit of Pseudo-Counseling- First, counseling in and of itself is not bad. The problem comes in the counselors we choose. The modern day secular mode of counseling finds itself borrowing from scriptural terms to brace the person up instead of dealing with the issues at the cross.
* Spirit of Pharisee – I heard Jack Taylor say this; “It was birthed in the Garden of Eden and is filled with deadly hostility. It killed Able, Crucified Jesus, Stoned Stephen, & tried to do away with Paul, whose target is still the Christ life. It hates the grace of God & love legalism. It is through these traditions while receiving the praise of men that the pharisaical spirit seeks to manipulate and control the lives of people to their “own” benefit. When they tried to judge Jesus according to their own traditions, He challenged the legalism they held so dear. It loves the darkness and refused to come to the light. It militates against worship & a relationship to God. It love praise of men and is more concerned about position than honor, influence than power, insists on ruling people with their rules & traditions. It is not impressed with the humble way Jesus came healing the sick & feeding the multitudes. It is content to receive glory for itself.
* It masquerades as super spiritual and cannot stand to be corrected. It despises authority and cannot flow in unity with God’s anointed leadership. It exalts its own opinion, becomes bitter, critical, censorious of others.
* A Pharisee lives on a island unto himself and literally exalts himself above the Spirit of God. His intent is to kill the Christ life in each of us.
* We owe Pharisees much. They initially implemented a system to protect scriptures. However, in implementing their system based on the scriptures, they raised their interpretation above the truth, the heart, & spirit of word.
* The Pharisaical Spirit esteems the written word above the living word. So intent were they to abide by the letter of the written scriptures that when the living word, Jesus Christ, came by, they missed Him, refused Him, & rejected Him. That was the tragedy. And that tragedy is being repeated today.”
* The very reason which I have detoured from our study of Romans for a week or two is that our nation is in desperate need of a Spiritual Awakening. For years, we have had meetings which we called “Revivals” and in fact, we are planning a “Community Revival” in February. That’s good and that’s okay. However, personally I don’t really need one more meeting. Yet the truth is, “We are in need of a ‘heaven-sent’, ‘spirit-lead’, ‘Holy Ghost’, ‘life-changing’, ‘priority-arranging’ Revival!” However, revival will not come until the Spirit of the Pharisees is extricated from the life of His children. If we cannot recognize the spirit of the Pharisee, then we have no hope in dealing with it.
* This morning we have read from John 9 and as you have heard this story let’s consider the contrast between the Spirit of Jesus and the Pharisees.
I. THE SPIRIT OF JESUS- I will suggest 3 characteristics of our Lord.
a. He is Concerned about People- If we back up to verse 1, Jesus saw the needy man. It seems that everywhere Jesus went he saw needs & never let anything or anyone get in the way of Him touching people. By the way, He is not only concerned with convinced people.