“The Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.”
John 14:17 NKJV
The second Christian leadership principle I want to discuss is that the Holy Spirit is an agent of “recognition.” This is very important because without an initial awareness of a thing there can be no deeper understanding of it. Since God’s essence is spirit (John 4:24), we must develop a familiarity with spiritual things to have any interaction or experience with Him.
How interesting is it that in the Person of the Holy Spirit the highest link has been made as our personal “connector” with God?
Jesus explained to his disciples that they were separate from the everyday unspiritual populace because the Holy Spirit was dwelling “with” them. By virtue of their relationship with Jesus, they were also in a position of nearness to God’s Spirit. He was the One who had originally stirred their hearts when the Lord called them to follow Him. After they responded, He was the One that kept prompting them to continue listening to Jesus’ directions and pursuing His directives.
Apart from the Spirit, our hearts grow dull to the reality of spiritual things, blinded to their source, or the origin from which they spring. How many Christians today know the Bible but do not recognize the Holy Spirit when He begins to stir their hearts or their churches? You can see how critical He is to the everyday life of the believer…how much more to those who find themselves living in the last of the last days?
Until Jesus came the Holy Spirit was “with” those who followed God, but His death ushered in a new closeness. This is what Jesus meant when He said, “and will be in you.” God’s Spirit literally took up residence within those He “came upon” on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-4)!
A new day required a new way. Jesus paid a price worthy not only of the removal of our sins but also of the improvement of our relationship with God. As a result we now see and know the Spirit from a different vantage point. Before Jesus’ death and resurrection men knew God from the perspective of a leading influence, now they may see Him through His own eye, peering from the windows of their own inner man!
Because of this distinction we are equipped to see things as they really are, from God’s absolute vantage point. The Spirit of Truth leads us into a personal recognition of spirit and truth…an advancement that will make all the difference in the end.