The Mingled Spirit
The first talk is on the mingled spirit. What is the mingled spirit, and what role does it play in our lives? Why is the mingled spirit so significant?
Watch the video to find out more.
Starting from this morning I’d like give a short talk on the topics from the Training in the Homes, the materials for the new believers, but each time we will cover half of a lesson. This is mainly not for the new believers but for us. These topics are very familiar to us, but because they are familiar, we may become numb to them. So let us really pay attention.
First of all, in these lessons, the first lesson is on the mingled spirit. I would like to start the matter of the mingled spirit with John 4:24. We are all familiar with this verse. We all know John chapter 4 as a chapter about the Samaritan woman. The Lord Jesus went out of His way to meet this woman. The Lord told this woman that if she would drink of the water from this well, she would thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water the Lord will give them shall by no means thirst forever. So this is the background of this verse. And the woman changed the subject to worship. She said, “Our father worshipped in the mountain, yet You said in Jerusalem is the place where man must worship. This is our natural concept coming in. Our natural concept is that our God is something material, so we worship Him int he mountain, or we go to Jerusalem, a place. Many of us have an oriental background where we worship ancestry or idols in a material or outward way. Many of the people who see an idol, whether St. Peter or a picture of Jesus or anything outward, then they say this is how I can worship God. This is the natural concept.
But the Lord Jesus told the woman in verse 24, God is Spirit. What does it mean to say that God is SPirit? It’s just like me saying that this table is wood. It’s not that He is the Spirit, the living Person, but that the nature of God is Spirit. So that if God is Spirit, then we must worship Him in spirit. We cannot touch God or feel God in the material way. It’s a common concept that Christian have. For example, if we say that the Lord is with us all the time. How is the Lord with us. I’ve seen pictures of a saying Christians love to say, that on the sand there are 2 sets of footprints to a point where there is one set of footprints. So the 2 sets of footprints is us walking with the Lord. Then they say, Ok, Lord when I need You the most, when I was facing a very big trial, and You disappeared. You’re not walking with me. There’s only one set of footprints. I’m all alone. Then the Lord this Christian, “foolish child, I have picked you up in My bosom and walked with you.” So many Christians took this word and say, “Wow, Praise the Lord. The Lord is carrying me through all my problems.” This is our concept. But here, the Lord told us that God is Spirit. God is not outwardly with us. When He says He is with us, He does not mean that He is with us outwardly. He is with us in Spirit because He is Spirit.
Spirit is something that in the spiritual realm we do not know. Do you know why people, especially Chinese people, like to worship idols. Because idols are outward. We usually use these historical heroes and make them idols. If man could make people idols then man really is God. So our Chinese belief is wrong. But Western believe they need to also worship outward idols. That’s why in the Catholic church there are so many idols. St. Peter, St. Steven, etc. are idols. They have pictures. One time I was in Manila, they had a Jesus but a black Jesus. His toe was gone so they had to make a new Jesus, a new idol, for people to touch and contact. This is our concept. But here, the real concept we should have in our mind is that God is Spirit. God is Spirit. If God is Spirit, then He is not visible, but mysterious. That’s why He is mysterious. Christ is the mystery of God and He is the one who manifests God. God does not need to remain hidden but He can be expressed. So Colossians 1:15 says Christ is the image of the invisible God. If we contact the Lord, the Lord is the image. If you saw the Lord 2000 years ago on the earth, whatever He did, whatever He said, was God expressed. He was the image of God. However, praise the Lord, through death and resurrection He became the life-giving Spirit. He is the Spirit again! So how can we contact the Lord. Do not contact the Lord in the concept of outward contact. “Lord Jesus, I want to touch You. I need you to walk with me.” No, the Lord does not walk with us in an outward way; He is walking with us in our spirit. Then it says, “Those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and truthfulness.” The matter here is related to worship. The revelation of God as Spirit is not for us to feel comfortable or feel nice. It is for us to worship God. It is for God’s satisfaction and for Him to feel nice.
So, here, what are the real worshippers? The real worshippers are those who worship God in spirit. So the first point in this lesson is that God created the heavens and the earth and then the spirit of man within Him. This is Zechariah 12:1. there it says that God has created the heavens and the earth. Everyone would agree that God created these, even from the signs such as the big bang. But without the revelation of the Word, the Bible, that God created the spirit of man. It is not just that God created heaven and earth. The real thing is that we need realize that God created the spirit of man. In revelation, God has revealed to us in His word that the heaven is for the earth, and the earth is for man, and the important part of man is his spirit. So we can worship God in spirit and in truthfulness. In Genesis 2:7 it shows us how God created man. We know that God created man in His image and in His likeness. In Genesis 2, it says that the Lord used the dust of the ground and formed man in His likeness. However, it says that God breathed into his nostrils the breath of life. God breathed Himself into man, and that breath came inside that clay man and became his spirit. So the spirit of man is God’s breath.
In other words, our spirit is the same material that God is. That’s why in our spirit we can fellowship with God, flow with God, and touch God, because in our spirit, it is the breath of God, something from God Himself coming out of God that came into us. This is how He created the spirit of man. Then the spirit of man came into the body and now we have the living soul according to 1 Corinthians 15:45, that the first man, Adam, became a living soul, and the last Adam became a life-giving Spirit. So in our natural man we have a soul. We live in the physical world but we contact it in the realm of our soul. We like to talk to people and exchange ideas. God has given us the ability to speak and pass on languages. Languages were initially spoken, then later on they invented letters and language became written. Through the written language, the thoughts, whatever people are thinking and what they understand, they wrote it down and passed it down to us. So we have Plato’s and Aristotle’s writings and different philosophies; that’s because man has a soul.
So we also realize it tells us that God has created us in three parts, the spirit, soul and body. I believe we all know 1 Thessalonians 5:23, “may our spirit and soul and body be preserved complete.” So the Lord has created us in these three parts, and God’s salvation is to preserve all three parts complete. However, most people, both unsaved and even saved, neglect the matter of their spirit and take care of their soul. They take care of their bodies because it contacts the material world. We look at the material world and think, “Ha, I have all that.” But no, we don’t live in the material world, but live in the psychological world more. We care for people’s thinking. People can speak a word to us and we get irritated. People can touch us in an inward way. Whatever they touch is really our soul. Why are you so angry a lot of times at your wife, children, even at your dog? Because you are a soul. You do not want to live in your spirit. But the Lord has become a life-giving Spirit.
So what happened to us when we believed? When we believed, the Lord Spirit came into our spirit. He is the life-giving Spirit, so when He came into our spirit, he gave life to our spirit. We got regenerated. And so in John 3:6 He says, “He that is born of flesh is flesh; he that is born of the Spirit is spirit.” So we are born of the Spirit and we are the spirit. We are not just body and soul but we are spirit. In God’s eyes, the spirit is the most important part of my being, because God the Spirit is mingled with my spirit. 1 Corinthians 6:17 says, “He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit.” We are all very familiar with that verse, but how did we join to the Lord? We joined to the Lord by believing into Him. Our believing is not our physical joining to Him, but joining in spirit. So we must learn to use our spirit and exercise our spirit. That is why in 2 Timothy 1:6 and 7 says, “The Lord has not given us a spirit of cowardice, but of power and love and sobermindedness.” Then it says that we need to fan into flame the gift of God. So we need to fan it into flame, to exercise it, to walk in it. But our problem is that we are so used to living in our soul. That’s why to live in our spirit, to walk in our spirit, to walk according to our spirit, is an exercise. Do you know what an exercise is? That means you normally don’t do it. When you go to a gym or fitness center, you exercise. Why do you have to go to exercise? Because you normally don’t do that. You don’t flex or use your muscles. Why do you have to go to school or to the library? You exercise your mind. You normally don’t use your mind that much. You normally don’t think too much. But there are people who have thought these things and wrote them down. And so you learn mathematics, arithmetic, and other things from different people, because that’s an exercise. That is why you go to school. But spiritually speaking we Christians must learn to exercise our spirit. The problem with us is that we don’t exercise our spirit normally, so in the church life neither do we exercise our spirit. We would exercise our mind, read the ministry materials and say, “Praise the Lord, I got it. God’s economy is this and that.” No, you didn’t touch your spirit, so you didn’t get anything. This is our problem. So we must exercise our spirit. So 1 Timothy 4 says bodily exercise profits a little, but exercise unto godliness is profitable for all. What is an exercise of godliness? It is to exercise our spirit. Paul of course does not ask us to exercise our mind anymore because it is already exercised. He does not ask us to exercise our body because it profits a little. But the main profit is from exercising our spirit. So we love music and we sing hymns. Sometimes we sing hymns because it is beautiful music. Let’s not really exercise our soul. In these days the co-workers have asked you to join to pray for 30 days, 15 minutes a day, and we give you some topics to pray for. But my concern is that that in the beginning we give you some topics and you can pray according to the topics. But after the thirty days, will you still pray, and what will you pray? We have to learn to exercise our spirit. We have to learn that the Lord is in our spirit. He will lead us in our spirit in our prayer. But right now, I hope that, even if you join in the thirty days, you have a topic to pray for, you pray according to that topic, but at the same time you learn to exercise your spirit, touch the Lord in your spirit, and let your spirit lead you to pray. There are other things also to pray for.
I will finish here. I’d like to give you a conclusion. In John 3:6, it says we were born again by the Spirit. In John 4 it says we must worship God in our spirit. Romans 8:14 says that we are led by the Spirit and that the Spirit is leading us, verse 16 says that we witness with the Spirit that we are sons of God. So we must learn to live in our spirit. We are born in Spirit, we must worship God in spirit, we must be led by the Spirit, and we witness in the spirit.
I hope this would be a help to us all. We learn to exercise our spirit. God is Spirit! Amen.
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