Your inner man

by Chuck Doughty

A few years back I went down to Bluefield state College and there debated Dr. Gerald Olmstead from Harvard University.  He covered Theistic Evolution and I covered creation.  He is an Anthropologist. I asked him, “Are you an anthropologist of the inner man or are you an anthropologist of the outer man?” He laughed and said, “We don’t go too deep in this stuff.” It is amazing, it is a wonder the feminists don’t change the world anthropology to man and woman-ology, because it means “man-study” and they haven’t attacked that yet. We have to change everything, it seems, to suit the fancies of the latest trends and philosophies and sociology.  I was going to talk about the Holy Spirit and the inner man, but I didn’t want to offend the feminists, al­though it is a very unnecessary uncalled-for issue, be­cause we know that when God speaks of man, we know He is speaking both of man and woman. It is very defi­nite. Anthropology is a study of man and woman, but they only cover the outer man. I am going to talk about the inner person. When I am talking today I am going to talk about the outer person- as if it were the floor here. Then the soul of man – as if it were the stage here. Then the in­ner man we are going to put up here is where the commun­ion table is, where it is visible.

 

Christians die because they neglect the inner man. There is no doubt about it, the death of a Christian comes through strangulation of the inner man. We will die very slowly if we neglect the inner man and stress only the outer man. If there is no harmony between the outer and inner man we will die. We will be out of the church inside of six months, maybe a year. We don’t die quickly, we just starve and strangle to death by focusing only on the outer man, at the expense and peril of the inner man.

 

I want you to stand and read John 7 with me and focus upon what Jesus said in John 7:36. What did he mean when He said you will seek me and will not find me and where I am you cannot come?

 

“Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out saying, If any man is thirsty let him come to me and drink.”

 

(That was probably the loudest verse that Jesus ever uttered.) He who believes in me, as the Scripture says, from his inner most being shall flow rivers of living water.  But this He spoke of the Spirit whom those who believed in Him were to receive, for the Spirit has not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

And now, God, bless this wonderful congregation as they have hungry hearts and listening ears, may we heed, dear God, the Word.  In Christ I pray, Amen.

 

 

I am going to talk about this inner most man. Jesus said, most of us don’t live in the inner most man, we live on the perimeters and the outer. The purpose of my series on the Holy Spirit is to try to re-direct and re-focus our attention that we are living within. We are dying with­out, we are living within. If we feed the dying cause we will surely die. If we feed the living ‘cause we will surely live. That is what Jesus said. I am speaking to your spirit. The devil has been playing games with your spirit far too long, you need to listen and let the Holy Spirit deal with your spirit and quit allowing Satan to invade.

You are a person, you are not just a physical entity; you are a person, a soul. You are also a spiritual entity. You have a spirit and that spirit is the most important part of all of your lives. We can fool friends and we can fool family and society, and we can even fool the law, but you can’t fool your spirit. You can­not fool your spirit. Jesus said – the inner most man.

The inner person. The New American Standard says and the King James says it is in your belly. Out of your belly. Liter­ally He did say out of your belly. Speaking of the vistory, the conglomerate of nerves that we call the solar plexus is way down deep. The center of the nerves you might say, the very center of life and being.

 

After September 11th there is so much hatred in the world. Unreasonable hatred and we need to give love and open up and let this love flow from the inner most self, so that we can show the world that there is a group of people who have the love of God in them. I remember reading about a missionary to Korea. His name is Dr. Yon Com Shea, I think I got that right. His son’s name is Kook. I thought that was funny. Kook Ja Shea. They are a father son missionary team. They have been there for a long time, they have a university and they have done a great work. He was talking to a young lady who was preg­nant out of marriage. She wanted to abort her baby and he said to her, after they talked for many times. She was obstinate she was going to abort her baby and he said, “Well if the baby was born, what name would you give him?”

The question made her think for a little while, she thought about the baby, and said I think I will give him birth, before I give him a name. Because she realized when this baby was going to have a name, she thought that it was more than just an embryological group of cells, it was indeed a person. The spirit of God convicted her, and she gave birth to the baby. You know the spirit of God is the most important part of you and that is the part that God deals with.

 

In II Timothy 1:7 it says:

 

“God has not given us the spirit of fear,

but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”

 

A very san e person is a spirit- led person. The spirit of your mind, your heart, your emotions, your will. Where you live in the very depths, the innermost being, Jesus says.

In I John 4:13,

 

“Hearby know we that we dwell in Him and He

 is in us because He has given us His Spirit.

 

  So the Holy Spirit is within us in that inner man. His abode in the inner uppermost. True anthropology is what I am teaching today, I am not talking about the surface and the evolution of homo sapiens as they say in the university and man is an anatomy, a physical entity. I am talking about the true Anthropos, the man who lives inside of man. In Ephesians 3:16 it talks about that. He said that He would grant you something, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might in the spirit of the inner man. The mind of the inner man the spirit of the inner man. It is also called dwelling in your heart. The most important part of you is the spirit in the heart. The inner person and it talks about that in John 14. How He abides there. He said I will come and abide with you. In Romans 8:6 – to be carnal minded is death but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is against God. It is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can it be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God but you are not in the flesh, you are in the spirit. You are not living out here in the perimeters. You are living in the spirit, in your heart. Then in covenant when God gave you the Holy Spirit, John 14:17 – he said,

 

He is the spirit of truth whom the world

Can not receive because it sees Him not.”

 

And so when the judges and the people in the world look for truth, whether it is in the courtroom or classroom they can’t see the Holy Spirit, therefore they concoct what they consider to be the truth in their own minds. They are not governed by the Spirit of truth. That is why they hand down some of these ridiculous things that they call laws. They are not governed by the Holy Spirit. But when you have the Holy Spirit, you know Him, you know God and He dwells with you and then of course after Pentecost He is in you. You see in covenant this is what God promised you. He can’t break His word. You have the Holy Spirit. In Ephesians 2:22, what happens when the Holy Spirit comes into you, you become a habitation. You become an abiding place for the Holy Spirit. The devil wants to get into a warm body. The spirits of evil want to occupy a warm body. So does the Holy Spirit want to live in the body?

Ephesians 2:22

 

“In whom you were also built together·

 For a habitation of God through the spirit. ”

 

That is one thing we all have in common in this church. We are all a habitation for one spirit. We are many people with various personalities and there are no two souls alike. We are all different, but we all have the same spirit. That is what makes us one. There is no unity in the flesh. There is no unity in the soul. But there is unity when we all become a habitation of God in spirit. The greatest hindrance to the Lord’s work is when we don’t walk in the spirit of God. The greatest hindrance to all of our projects in life is when we don’t walk in the Spirit of God. Every generated man has the Holy Spirit living in his spirit, not in his body, not in his soul but in his spirit. That is where you are re-generated at. If you live out of that regenerated spirit, you are going to live. If you don’t you are going to die. That is why you are not happy, you are dying. It is not happy to be a dying person. It is happy to be a living person. There is no reason why you should be dying a slow death when you have the Holy Spirit. You see the person is who you are. But the Spirit is like an underground spring. That is bubbling forth, Jesus said, and making your soul the kind of person He wants you to be. You see if you live after the outer spirit then all you want to do is impress people with who you are. You are very sensitive, and you become very defensive. You can’t really enjoy life because your outer spirit is in competition with other people’s outer lives. But when you are living in the inner spirit, you just relax, you are at ease with Zion. There is comfort and joy in the inner spirit.

 

When Jesus said in John 12:25

 

“He that hates his life shall gain it

and he who loves his life shall lose it. ”

 

The word life there is soul. The soul is the person that lives in your body. The spirit is the spring that gives life to your soul. If you have a soulish personality, then you hate it. You are going to gain it. But if you love your personality, you are going to lose it. If you hold on to your personality you are going to lose it.

 

If you neglect your spirit, you are going to lose your soul. It is not a question of who you are, it is a question of what the Holy Spirit wants you to be, you must hate your soul, you must hate your personality, in order for the Holy Spirit to live. There can be no resurrection without death. There can be no heaven without the death of the cross. Some people want to separate the cross from the glorified Jesus.

 

You cannot do that. How can you have a resurrection without a death? How can you live unless you deny yourself and die? You must give up who you are to become what the Spirit wants you to be. If you hate yourself, you will gain yourself. You will like yourself. Most people put on a front, like as if they really like their selves. I’ve never met a person in the world who’s not walking in the spirit who enjoys who they are. I have never met one yet. You really get down into the confines of their heart, they are not happy. So why do you neglect the living you and feed the dying you? Sometimes we preachers can be in earnest. Outwardly we sweat, and we act like we are concerned, but is our inward man in earnest? Can we visit the cross and talk about Jesus and death and heaven and then go out to lunch and jest and carry on like a bunch of clowns? Can we teach a serious message from the Word of God and then go out in the hallway and jest around and carry on like a bunch of Comanche Indians? I am not saying that it is a sin to be happy, but our happiness must not be independent of the seriousness of God. Is the Holy Spirit in what we are doing? Or are we just foolish in our religion? Am I laboring in the inner man? Or am I just preaching? Do I prepare my mind in prayer for everything I do? We go visiting people and everybody says,

 

“Oh, isn’t he a wonderful man, he came

To see me when I was sick.”

 

He didn’t come to see you when you were sick. Christ did. For me to live is Christ, and we have some wonderful men and women in this church. You say well I am here because of that wonderful man and woman. The only thing wonderful about that man and woman is that they pointed you to Christ and you are here because of Christ. If we are walking in the flesh we can give the impression of the outer man and it all fleshy religion. But if the inner man is truly emphasized in this church then all you will see is Christ. The Holy spirit in your conscience.

I want to talk: about your conscience for a few minutes, the sense of being a free moral agent. The word conscience comes from the Greek word that means co-­perception. It means that you have a perception that is not only outward, but it is inward. There is something in you. That conscience means that you have a knowledge of what good and bad is. Adam and Eve were born with a good conscience. They were not aware of evil. But you were born into a world that knows both good and evil conscience. The conscience is neutral, it has to receive information, except for morality. The conscience will never understand doctrine. If you are just led of your con­science you will never understand faith, repentance, and baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Your conscience will never teach you that. The Holy Spirit must teach you those things. Your conscience, the day you are born, ac­cording to the book of Romans 2:15, it says that their con­science excuses or accuses them. That means that the day you are born, you were born with a built-in understanding and knowledge to know that it is not right to commit adul­tery. It is not right to steal. It is not right to murder. A baby has it built into him the day he is born. It says here that that conscience, even if no one ever told him the law of God it was written in his conscience. The day he is born God put it in him. You can go to places in the world, the bushmen down in Australia, you can go to the Hot-in-­tot in Africa or somewhere where people have never heard the word of God, but their conscience knows if you commit adultery it is bad. If you murder a fellowman- it is bad. Their conscience tells them that if you lie – it is not good. It is built-in. Now doctrine is not built in, but moral­ity is built in. That is why I don’t judge you in morality. I am not going to immorality, I am going to judge you only in doctrine. When Jesus said judge not that you be not judged, get your own act cleaned up first before you start talking about other people that is talking about morality. Conscience is a general thing, everybody knows good and bad, I don’t even have to tell you what is good and bad. You know it already. It is there, God built it into you. You don’t know church doctrine, but you know what is right and wrong. So, the conscience in John 8:9, when they tried to stone a woman to death because she was caught in the act of adultery, it said that when they heard what Jesus said “those, who are without sin, cast the first stone.” They were convicted of their own con­science. Jesus knew that had a conscience and he was working with that when he preached … The conscience. Now the naked conscience is dangerous. What your con­science will do is give you a soul life. It will never give you an inner life. You can be a refined person and think I’m pretty good and our mom and dad taught you traditions of what is good and bad and you say well, as long as I don’t beat my wife, and as long as I pay my taxes and stop when the light is red, and go when it is green, and you know, most of us have a pretty good opinion of ourselves, where soulish people it is called a natural man.

 

The inner man is a supernatural man. That is the spirit of God, it is supernatural. Living a soulish life just don’t hack it with God. It is not enough. In 1st Corinthians 8:7, some of the people in the church had a weak conscience. Paul said we know there is only one God. There is only one Savior. But he said howbeit there is not in everyman that knowledge. Some people in the church were offering things to the idols and going to the idol markets and buying meat that was cheap, that was offered to their gods. They said I can get a good buy by going down here to a pagan altar sacrifice and what meat if left over, I will buy cheaper than you can buy meat from the farmer. For some of with conscience of the idle unto this hour eat it as a thing offered unto an idle and their con­science being weak is defiled. It other words they don’t have a conscience about what they are doing.

 

In Titus 1: 15 on the other hand you have people who have a pure conscience. Someone like my wife, noth­ing is evil to my wife, nothing. Evil can parade itself be­fore her and she couldn’t understand it. You could tell a dirty joke around her and she wouldn’t understand it. Be­cause unto the pure all things are pure. You have people who have filthy minds, their minds are always evil. I have had friends like that. Every suggestion is interrupted in an evil way. You have heard people at work that way. It says that their conscience is defiled. Their mind and con­science is defiled. They have a defiled conscience. So what I am talking about is that through heredity and envi­ronment that which is born of the flesh, is flesh. That which is born of the will of man, that is the soul. Mom and Dad taught me how to live. But that which is born or the Spirit is of God. Now you are spiritually discerned. Your life is not governed by soulish principles of natural men and what you read in the newspaper, and learn from your educators. Your life is not governed by the flesh. The Holy Spirit. You discern everything spiritually. No one needs to teach you because you everything you need here in the spirit of God, that come from the Word of God. If you know the teachings of the Apostle Paul in the New Testament and your spirit is educated by the teachings of the Holy Spirit you don’t need soulish princi­ples and you don’t need worldly things. Some of your friends, your relatives, even your own wife, your husband, your grandparents, they all have principles that they think you should be governed by. The Bible says don’t let them judge you. No man can judge you, because you are gov­erned by the principles of the Holy Spirit, spiritually dis­cerned. You are living in the inner man. How can somebody in the outer man judge you? How can they possibly host upon you their opinions when you are governed by the opinions of the Word of God? Tell me how. How could you ever retreat and descend to such a low estate as to be governed by principles that you read about where your mom and dad taught you when you received the principles of the Holy Spirit? Tell me how. Now there is a class here. We see it everywhere between Christian values and the worlds values. Joseph Fletcher said we are going to have a new morality. Then he comes along and says there is no truth, there is no conviction. The Supreme Court based their sodomite decision on the fact that the American people are now ready for this. The American people are already to accept this, so we are going to have to give them what they want. No one asked me what I be­lieved about it, that’s for sure. Did anyone ask you what you believed about it? Who are these American people who are now governed by a love of Sodomy. I don’t understand, but you see the Supreme Court have no Holy Spirit to govern their principles. All they can do is estimate         the consensus of the people. What do the people want? That is what we are going to give them. God does­n’t give you what you want, God gives you what you need. You have a pure conscience when you are baptized. You have a safe conscience when you are baptized.

 

I Peter 3:21, The like figure where unto baptism does also now save us. Not the putting off the filth of the flesh but the answer of a good conscience toward God by the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Now if you are bap­tized you have a good conscience. You say, well some­times my conscience accuses me. Okay, look at I John 3:20. You say well sometimes I don’t feel too good about myself. Read I John 3:20. You are baptized and now you are in covenant with God. You are keeping the covenant with God, you haven’t quit. You keep that covenant with God you are going to walk in the Spirit eventually. Covenant keepers will become spiritual people. If our heart condemns us God is greater than our heart and knows all things. My heart condemns me. Chuck Doughty you are wrong, you have done wrong. My conscience condemns me, but God is greater than the heart, because God made a covenant with me. I can’t be perfect, but I can keep the covenant. I can’t be sinless, but I can keep the covenant. Here are Christians who have been Christians for years, their heart still condemns them. They don’t feel right about themselves, but I’m keeping the covenant. Now, if I am keeping that covenant what does God see when my heart condemns me. But you see, when I take the Lord’s Supper what does God see? What does He see? The blood, right? The blood of forgiveness, now what is greater? The blood of forgiveness or my accusing heart? Amen. So God is greater, isn’t He! The covenant is greater than my conscience, greater than my condemnation. There are two groups of people. Some are condemned, some are not. But you are in covenant, it makes no difference whether you are con­demned or not. The covenant is still keeping you, because God is greater. I feel good sometimes. Sometimes I say man I’m really walking in the Spirit. Other times I feel like a dog, I feel like a heel. It is not how I feel, it’s how great my God is and how great the covenant He made with me and I’m not going to break that covenant, and I know He won’t, because He is greater. Brothers and sis­ters, you see we have a good conscience, a naked con­science. Paul says that my conscience is of the Holy Spirit, your naked conscience without the Holy spirit will lead you astray every time. You say, well I feel good, yeah, well I go down here and I’m a stranger in town and I say, how do you get to Roanoke? They say get on 81, it’s about 250 miles. So I get on 81, I drive, man I feel good, I am enjoying the scenery, I’m at ease, get me a lit­tle cup of coffee and drinking and driving. I’m drinking and I’m driving (coffee, that is). Before long I say to Dottie, ”What did that sign say?” She says, “Welcome to Pennsylvania”. What happened? I had a good conscience, didn’t I? But I’m going the wrong way. A lot of people are going to wake up one of these days and it’s going to say, “Welcome to hell”, because they were led of their conscience. They weren’t led of the Holy Spirit, they weren’t led of the scripture, they weren’t led of the truth. They thought they were right. Have you ever talked to people who thought they were right and yet you knew they were wrong, because their conscience was not edu­cated in the Spirit of God, it was educated in the soul.

 

Somebody said America is dying because of lack of vitamin A and B. They have calcium deficiency and they have potassium deficiency. They say that Americans are eating more than they have ever eaten in their life and they are obese, they are unhealthy, and they have heart trouble, and the reason is they are eating salt, sugar and grease. That’s all they eat. Salt, sugar and grease. I’ll tell you the greatest deficiency is not just the lack of good food, it’s the lack of moral conviction.

 

In the playwright “Winter Comes”, A. S. Hutchin­son writes concerning the hero of that plot, “I guess the reason I am a failure I have never had the capacity for deep convictions in life.” The reason you are a failure is you never have a capacity for convictions, you just let the devil walk you, you are never right, you never walk in the spirit of the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Psychiatrists say that a conviction is a strong belief, a cause to which one can commit his or her life as a mainspring or a well to develop your personality. Well, psychologists don’t know that the conviction of the spirit is what develops the soul. And what develops the soul will influence the body.

 

There must be a mainstream in order for there to be conviction. And that mainstream must be the Spirit of God in the inner man. General Omar Bradley during the cold war said that communism has raised up the most dedicated, convicted men in the history of the world, and yet those convictions have not lasted. Communism is a dead ideol­ogy except for North Korea and China and even there it is dying. So what kind of conviction was it? The only con­viction that will last is the Holy Spirit. Romanism has no Holy Spirit in it. It has to depend upon alliances with na­tions to survive. It takes political clout to survive. Islam has no Holy Spirit. They have to depend upon fanaticism and the sword. The only convictions that will abide that are true are Holy Spirit convictions and I tell you there are still a group of people in the world today as convicted of the Holy Spirit as they were on the day of Pentecost.

 

WHAT IS CONVICTION?

 

Conviction, and what is conviction? There are two kinds of conviction in the Hebrew. One means to chasten, to argue, to chastise, to make a defense and to reason with people. To convict them. Then there is a bad word for conviction. It is to corrupt or to chide people. To be scornful. In the Greek language they have two words for conviction as well. One is a good word and one is a bad word. One means to find fault, to compute. It means to admonish to provide evidence and proof. To convince people of the truth. Then there is a bad word. It comes from two words. “Ax upon,” it means to hack people with an ax to get them to be convicted. It means to try to charge them or to for­bid them. In John 16:7 Jesus said, “Nevertheless I tell you the truth, it is expedient for you that I go away. For if I go away the comforter will not come unto you, but if I depart I will send him to you and when he comes he will convict the world of sin.” What word do you think that is? Convict the world of sin. You think it means to ax people or do you think it means to provide evidence? You are right. God never brought an ax saying you are going to be convicted or I will smash you to pieces. When Christ died, he said, “I love you,” and the Holy Spirit said, “Brother and sister, you are going to hell, brother and sister you are lost.” Brother and sister, there is something wrong with you, your flesh and your ideology, you are not living right, you may think you are, but you have no thought of God and that Holy Spirit working through the word of God will convict the world of sin, of righteousness and of judg­ment. Now when you are convicted of sin by the Holy Spirit, it will either make you mad or it will break you. We need to be broken, God wants to break us. He wants to break the shell of that outer man. “You stiff necked and uncircumcised in heart,” Stephen said in Acts 51, “you re­sist the Holy Spirit. As your fathers did so do you.” You’re resisting, you’re mad because you’re not accepting the Holy Spirit. It is not the preacher, it is the Spirit. You say “well, I was convicted without the preacher, I was con­victed without the Word of God, I was in a hotel room and I fell on my knees and realized I was a sinner.” But brothers and sisters, you heard the Word of God earlier. The conviction may have come later, but it was still based on what you heard. You can’t be convicted unless you hear. Say you want to buy a car and you go look at five cars and you don’t know which one to choose. You go on vacation, you go to a hotel room and you are sitting there and suddenly you say, “I am going to buy that fifth car.” You call the salesman and say I want to put a deposit, hold that car. Were you convicted of the need of that car in the hotel room? No, you had already visited, you had already heard, you had already been programmed. The whole world is programmed. The cross, Christ, the blood. It’s the blood, the heaven, the hell. Everybody is con­victed. They just haven’t been converted yet. So the Holy Spirit will make you mad when He convicts you or in Acts 2:36, now listen, sixteen times, I haven’t time to read them all, but in Acts 2:36, Let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made that Jesus whom you cruci­fied both Lord and Christ and when they heard this, the Acts 2: 14, Peter stood up with the eleven, he lifted up his voice. Acts 2:22: “You men of Israel hear these words, hear,” he said. Acts 2:29, “Men and brethren let me freely speak to you.” Acts 2:37, “When they heard this they were pricked in their hearts,”- the inner man was devastated. That Word went right through the shell of the flesh, went right through the soul personality and hit the target dead center, right down deep in the inner man. They were convicted, and they cried out, men and brethren what are we going to do? It is not the preacher it is the Spirit of God. In Acts 2:38, Peter said to them, repent and be baptized. He said to them repent and be baptized. In Acts 2:40 and with many other words, he exhorted them. Words, speaking, hearing, listening. Then they were convicted of their sin. That sin is a transgression of the law. That sin is unrighte­ousness and that whatever is not of faith is sin. Babies couldn’t be saved. Babies couldn’t be baptized. Babies were not candidates, because they couldn’t know what was right or wrong. But their conscience and their inner man and the greatest sin they committed was they didn’t believe in Jesus. They were convicted of sin and of right­eousness. Listen to me brothers and sisters, please listen. I used to wonder why when Jesus was immersed in Mat­thew 3:15. He said, “Suffer it to be so for thus it becomes us to fulfill all righteousness.” Why did he say his baptism was a matter of fulfilling righteousness? The reason is that he was the only one who was righteousness. He was the only one who was perfectly righteous. He didn’t have to be baptized, so rather than having baptism for the for­giveness of sin, it was simply an accomplishment of a righteous thing to do and to fulfill it. What he was saying is I am going to be baptized to fulfill righteousness and then all who follow me are going to be baptized because they are not righteous. They can’t fulfill righteousness. They need to have my righteousness. That is what he is saying. And He was setting an example here of being wa­ter immersed, but not an example of baptism we don’t follow His example of baptism. Our baptism for forgive­ness of sins, His was for righteousness. Are you with me? He the righteous one is going to give righteousness and when you are baptized you are washed.

 

In 2 Corinthians 5:21 He has made Him to be sin for us who knew no sin that we might be made the righteousness of God and Him. The righteousness of God and Him, again, again and again it talks about the righteousness of God in Jesus. Now I have been talking about the Holy Spirit at work. All of you and I are busy about many matters. We have a lot of things we have to do a lot of things we have to say and visit, but you don’t have matters, you have Christ. We must not fragmentize our religion and say it’s a “doxon,” it’s reconciliation, it’s justification, it’s redemption, it’s salvation. It’s Christ. Oh yes, I love to study justification, reconciliation, propitiation. I love to study adoption. They are all wonderful teachings, but don’t get hung up on the academic fragmentation of it. It’s Christ, Christ is your salvation. Christ is your redemption, Christ is your justifi­cation, Christ is your reconciliation, Christ is your adop­tion, Christ is your propitiation, it is God in Christ, it is not a doctrine. It’s a person. He said I am the way. We are not teaching you a way, we are teaching you Christ. I’m the resurrection, the woman said oh we know, we know that the resurrection is a wonderful doctrine. We heard

about it from our prophets and our fathers. Jesus said I am the resurrection, you are looking at the resurrection. I am a person, I am not a doctrine. It’s not an academic intelli­gence that the Holy Spirit is trying to teach you. The Holy Spirit is trying to form Jesus Christ in you and when you have Christ, you have reconciliation. When you have Christ, you have justification. When you have Christ, you are adopted into God’s family. When you have Christ, you are propitiated. When you have Christ, you are now renewed. You are a friend of God. With God it is Christ, it is everything. God’s Christ is everything. The Holy Spirit’s Christ is everything. You see the Holy Spirit has done His job. It’s not a denomination, it is not Calvinism, it’s not some book, it’s not just Christianity, it’s Christ. You see Christ does not give you something, He gives you himself. Not fragmentary things. Churches are hung up on different doctrines, but we know when I am finished with the Holy Spirit teaching I am going to tear you down and build you up until God tears you down and builds you up, and then one day you can say, Christ is everything. For me to live and to work and to talk to pray and to teach, you see I’m not loving, Christ is. I’m not giving, Christ is. I’m not disciplining, Christ is. I try to teach the co-workers in this church, you’re not out visiting the sick and shut-in, people aren’t going to brag about how good you are. It’s Christ. There are times I haven’t gone to visit people because I wasn’t in the right frame of mind. I was going for the wrong reason, I had to get into prayer because when I visited people, then they wouldn’t see Chuck Doughty, they would see Christ. God’s Christ, Gods means, God’s method. God made Him the head of all things, He is all in all. In God’s eyes, in the Holy Spirit’s eyes it’s not many things. It’s not spiritual gifts, it’s not talents and who you are. It is only Christ. There is no matter with God, no energy, no time, no force, no space, it’s Christ and that is all that matters with God. It’s crucible that we understand these Holy Spirit teachings that God’s Christ is all that God matters. God does not have material matters. He only has Christ. He has not given us light, He has given us Christ. He’s not given us food, He is giving us Christ. He is not giv­ing us a way, He’s giving us Christ. God’s Christ is all things. Apart from Christ, God does not have anything. Brothers and sisters, the person of Christ, not an intellectual way. An intellectual way, an intellectual truth, not just a collection of writings, but God’s Christ is in your life, your resurrection, not just some strict teaching from a denominational discipline, not just fragmentary doctrines. The whole exercise in academics is nothing. All that matters is that He is the resurrection, He is the way. He is the truth, He is the light, and it all comes from death. The only way you are going to see these things is that you must die. One cross, one death, one ride, one glorious shining of the light and when that light shines on you, it kills you. When Paul saw the light, he fell down like a dead man. Your outward shell dies. Your soul dies and then there comes the life within you, a quickening of the spirit that you never realized was possible.

 

And this, my brothers and sisters, leads to the next part of my sermon next week. The control of the Spirit. In your lives. Are you looking for­ward to hearing it? I hope you are.

 

“Father in heaven, we have said enough, it’s time for the Spirit now to be subject to the prophet, theres nothing more at this time to say on the subject. I pray that is there is one who is convicted of their need to be born again of the water and Spirit, like those on the day of Pentecost having heard, they will say there is more to this American tie. There is more to this than just these red pews and carpets, there is more to this than just an adorable group of people. There is more to this than just someone telling me what to do. There is more to this than just simply a church, but it is the Church of Christ and he is as alive today as when He came forth from the grave 2000 years ago and I will fol­low Him to the best of my conscience and my convictions. I will follow Him until I die, and nothing is left but Him, the resur­rection and the life. Lord if there is one here today who wants that kind of life I pray they will come now in JesusName, I pray Amen. ”

(Steno graphically recorded from the pulpit of The Church of Christ at Mountain View.)