- Text: I Corinthians 2:6-16, NKJV
- Series: The Holy Spirit (2021), Pt. 3
- Date: Sunday, August 15, 2021 — AM
- Venue: Central Baptist Church — Lawton, Oklahoma
- Speaker: Jared Byrns
- Download Audio: mp3
The following rough transcript has not been edited, proofread, or corrected. It is a draft transcript and is not certified to be true and correct. It has been produced by AI and may contain inaccuracies. It is presented here primarily to enable users to search the audio by keywords.
I walked in my house just recently and said, Alright, and somebody asked me, did you hear what Charlie did? Which is not all that unusual and occurrence. So now I haven’t heard I guess what Charlie did this time, apparently. Well, some of you know, he’s gotten obsessed with numbers. He’s four. And he’s gotten obsessed with numbers. My mother in law had asked him, How much is three times nine. And he said, 27. He watches the show where he’s memorized all these. I don’t get it. But he’s memorized all these numbers and all these facts, and he said it’s 27. And my mother just to mess with him said, Are you sure it’s not 26? And he said, No Nana, to 13th or 26. Guys, I don’t I know it comes from the show, but I don’t know where he gets that from. Because I always struggled with math really until I became an adult. There, there were a lot of class I did pretty well in school, there were there were a lot of classes where I was at or near the top of my class, especially when it came to history, or government or France or stuff like that. But math I always struggled with and I just barely passed algebra two by the skin of my teeth. By the grace of God, I don’t know how I made it through that class. When I went to Oh, you, I found the one philosophy class that counted as a math credit toward my degree because I was not, I was not on board with taking math. Somehow though. He knows all this, all this math. And it reminds me how we can be. We can be smart or wise or knowledgeable, however you want to describe it in some areas, but not in every area. I’m sure you have areas just like that where you are knowledgeable. But you have other areas where maybe you don’t have a clue. I’ve always I’ve always been that way I could tell you some stories about how I was made fun of and in. Well, that’s always fun. I was made fun of in junior high. Because I knew all all this stuff. But the kids were talking about this musician called m&m and I thought they were talking about the candy. And somebody said, No, it’s a rapper. I said, No, they come in a little bag, not a rapper, you know, so and I got made fun of for stuff like that all the time. We all have areas where we’re knowledgeable in areas where we’re gonna say dumb if I’m talking about myself this way. And we all know the difference between different kinds of knowledge. For example, book learning and common sense. This really came to a head a few years ago when I went for my, my graduation. For my masters. I went down a week early for graduation workshops, and all that. And I’m around all these people that are graduating with their master’s degrees and their PhDs and their PhDs and all this stuff. And they gave us cards with numbers on them so we could line up in order for the graduation ceremony. And watching all these people with their doctorates struggled to line up in numerical order was hysterical. Charla asked me at the end of that she said, Well, would you learn this week, I said, means having an advanced degree doesn’t necessarily mean you’re smart, nor different kinds of knowledge, I guess. There are different kinds of knowledge. And just because we’re knowledgeable, just because we’re wise in one area, doesn’t mean we are knowledgeable, or wise in all areas. That’s certainly true. When it comes to spiritual things. As Paul talks about in First Corinthians, there’s a lot of wisdom in the world. There are a lot of wise people who aren’t necessarily wise when it comes to spiritual matters. That’s what he talks about in First Corinthians. That’s where we’re going to be this morning. First Corinthians chapter two, as we continue our series about the Holy Spirit, and looking through the month of August at some of the ways that the Holy Spirit and ministers to us some of the ways that he’s present and active in our lives today, we’re going to look at the concept of, of guidance from the Holy Spirit, who gives us wisdom that we don’t otherwise possess something that doesn’t come naturally to us. So if you if you have your Bibles and concern there with me, we’re going to be in First Corinthians chapter two this morning. If you have your phone and you’re using that there’s a link to that passage in our bulletin. It’s also on the screen for you right here. And if you would, you all already know where we’re going. You’re standing up already, if you can, without too much difficulty if you’d stand with me as we read from God’s word together. We’re going to start in verse six, and go through verse 16. Paul writes, however, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. But we speak the wisdom of God and a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, which none of the rulers of this age knew for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of Glory. But as it is written, I has not seen nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him. But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit, for the spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God, for what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him, even so no one knows the things of God accept the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak not in words which man’s wisdom teaches, but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual, but the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned that he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one, for who has known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him. But we have the mind of Christ, and you may be seated. So Paul was writing to a church here at Corinth, that was in a culture filled with wise people. That’s sort of one of the stereotypes of ancient Greek culture is that they were just they were nuts about philosophy. They, they liked to learn things. As a matter of fact, Paul went to preach one day on Mars Hill, and it says, people just were there because they wanted to hear some new ideas. They were constantly wanting to have their, their brains tickled with with these new ideas. their culture was filled with wise people, they were the ones who invented philosophy. As a matter of fact, at least from a human standpoint, they emphasized wisdom, they wanted to know things, yet they had very little wisdom or knowledge or understanding when it came to God’s truth. And so he wrote to the church that is in this culture that has come from this culture. And he explains to them how to find true spiritual wisdom, because it’s not something we just sort of fall into by accident. And he points out the first thing we need to understand we’re not necessarily taking all these verses in order. But the first thing we need to understand that he deals with here is the fact that the wisdom of the world and the wisdom of God are not the same thing. I’ve already hit on that a little bit. We know there are different kinds of wisdom, we know we can be wise in one area, and not necessarily wise. In other areas. There is such a thing as natural wisdom, that allows us to understand some of the world we observe around us, there are a lot of people that that are smart about the world that we can see. There are a lot of scientists who spent a lot of time studying and trying to make sense of the observations that they make. And they have some, a lot of them have a lot of wisdom in those areas. Even outside the sciences, this this is how we learn we observe things, even as little children we observe, oh, the stove is hot. I don’t want to do that again. You know, there’s there’s natural wisdom that we all possess a degree of. But the Holy Spirit has total understanding of things that can’t be observed. So you look with me at verse 13. He’s describing the Spirit. And he says these things we also speak he’s talking about his his teachings, not in words, which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches comparing spiritual things with spiritual, he’s talked about the ability to observe the natural world. But he says there are spiritual things that only the Holy Spirit understands that only the Holy Spirit can teach us. Because it’s the job of the Holy Spirit to be able to take this spiritual observation, this spiritual observation, this spiritual truth, and compare them all together and draw the connection so that we can learn and understand the Holy Spirit is the one responsible for this. So I want to be very clear up front when I say that the world outside does not understand the things of God is is unwise when it comes to the things of God. I’m not saying that everybody who doesn’t believe in God is stupid. There are a lot of people who are not Christians who are smarter than I’ll ever think about being that when it comes to spiritual matters, spiritual wisdom and natural wisdom are not the same thing. There are things that cannot be observed that are taught by the Holy Spirit. And no matter how wise a man may be, without the Holy Spirit, God’s truth just sounds like gibberish to him. If you look at verse 14, it says the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for their foolishness to him, nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. I made a statement last week about people not ever having seen a Bible in their natural habitat in its natural habitat. You know, some of these so called Bible experts. If you ever watch a documentary on the History Channel about the Bible, and maybe don’t do that. But they’ll have them on every year around Christmas every year around Easter and the so called Bible spurts I listened to them and think that’s not right. That’s not what that says. That’s not what that is not what that teaches. And because it’s the History Channel, you get to the point where, you know, they’re talking about Moses coming down from Mount Sinai glowing, and the guy says, must be aliens, right? These people portray themselves as Bible experts. And I think how do they get it so wrong, is because they don’t have the Holy Spirit. Now, I’m not I’m not saying everybody that disagrees with me on anything doesn’t have the Holy Spirit. I’m saying these people miss out on the spiritual aspects, because they’re looking at it as literature. They’re looking at it as mythology. They’re looking at it at all, as all these things. They’re not looking at it through the lens of the Holy Spirit. And so of course, it sounds foolish. And the Bible says to, to those who don’t believe the message of the cross is foolishness. The whole thing makes no sense, unless the Holy Spirit opens our eyes to it. And so to help us understand that this natural wisdom and the spiritual wisdom are not the same thing, he tells us that the world outside, don’t, don’t be amazed when when they don’t understand, don’t be amazed when somebody looks at you, like you’ve got lobsters coming out of your ears, that’s natural, because we would be the same way without the Holy Spirit. God’s truth doesn’t make sense, without the Spirit of God. They’re making it make sense to us. But then the world wants to judge God’s truth and stand in judgment over God’s truth. And that doesn’t work either. You look at verses 15 and 16. Again, he talks about that which is spiritual, the one who’s spiritual being, being able to judge all things but rightly being judged by No One, as we’re led by the Spirit of God, and we’re, we’re walking in his truth that is not subject to the opinions of those who are walking without God’s truth. The world doesn’t get to pass judgment on God and what he says it’ll try. Verse 16, says, who has known the mind of the Lord that He may instruct him? This reminds me of the end of the book of Joe, we’re gonna we’re Joe has asked God, some somewhat accusatory questions and God’s response to gel basically, as several chapters of Who do you think you are? That’s what we get here. That as the world wants to stand in judgment over God in His truth, who has known the Lord in the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him, who’s going to stand there and tell God, what is right and what is wrong. God’s truth is not subject to man’s opinion and is not subject to man’s philosophies. By the way, this is where a lot of churches are going wrong with things today, churches have bought into human philosophies, that they are now letting sit in judgment over God’s word. And you can call it whatever you want, you can call it wokeness, you can call it critical theory. You can call it critical race theory, you can call it intersectionality. You can call it liberation theology. But when you take a human philosophy, and say, This is the lens that we’re going to look at God’s word through and try to understand God’s word and try to hold God’s word accountable to this, you’ve got a problem. And by the way, this is why our convention of churches was dead wrong. Two years ago, in passing a resolution saying that critical race theory and intersectionality were an analytical tool. To help us understand scripture, we should look at scripture, we should look at everything else through the lens of Scripture, look at all other philosophies through the lens of God’s truth, not evaluate God’s truth, according to our human philosophies. I don’t know where we got the idea that none of us could understand scripture until Marx came along, Karl Marx, that people have understood scripture just fine. Now a lot of people have misapplied and misused scripture that God’s truth has been there all along without these human philosophies. And just so it doesn’t sound like I’m picking on other people, I have to be careful not to do this too. Because we all have political views. We all have cultural values, we all have opinions, we all have things that are just convenient, that we have to be careful not to bring and enforce them into scripture. Just a couple of weeks ago, in a conversation, I made a statement, and a friend pointed out, you know, that’s that’s your politics, bleeding into your theology, not the other way around. And he was right, I was wrong. See, I have my views. And I have to make sure, for example, that I evaluate Madison and Jefferson in light of Scripture, not scripture in light of Madison and Jefferson. It’s all about who has the authority, and it’s God and His truth. And so he warns them to be careful not to allow human wisdom to stand in judgment of God’s wisdom. This is why the convention was wrong. This is why Desmond Tutu the the Anglican Bishop from South Africa was wrong when he said that he would not worship a God who didn’t share his views on a particular subject. That’s why public figures are wrong when they say they wouldn’t worship a God who doesn’t do X, Y, or Z or who does do X, Y, or Z. They wouldn’t worship a God like that. That’s why the comedian Stephen Fry was wrong years ago when he was asked what he would say to God about evil happening in the world. And he said he would say to God, how dare you, we don’t get to dictate to God what is right and what’s wrong. His truth is up here and everything else is To be evaluated through that, who has known the mind of God that He may instruct him. But he says what the Holy Spirit in verse 16, we have the mind of Christ. Now, we need to be careful about this too, because we can very easily turn this into an us versus them thing, that we’ve got all this wisdom, and everybody outside here doesn’t we’re just smarter than they are. Listen, none of us. None of us, including those of us in this room have any spiritual wisdom apart from the Holy Spirit. Any knowledge we have of God’s truth is there because of the Holy Spirit, same as anybody walking around outside. So it’s not us versus them, it’s us versus the ruler of this world. For them, just want to be clear on that. He says, we have the mind of Christ. That means with the Holy Spirit, we are able to look at things through Jesus’s perspective. That’s incredible. Did you realize that you are able to view things with the same perspective that Jesus has, you’re able to not to understand God’s truth, you’re able to see people as God sees them, able to love them as God loves them able to do all these things the way Jesus would, because we have the mind of Christ through the Holy Spirit. But without the Holy Spirit. Humans are not as wise as we think we are. Right? We like to think we’ve got it all figured out. I like to think I’ve got it all figured out. And we look at people around us, and we think they’ve got it all together. There’s something called the halo effect. Where because somebody is good at one thing, we assume they’re good at everything. We know they’re smart at something so they must be smart at everything. This is why this is why people are always asking celebrities, their opinions about serious issues. And every week I see it I open I open websites with with the news, whether it’s a newspaper or a TV station, what what have you. And there’s some article there that somebody famous had an opinion. Listen, years ago, I enjoyed the show friends, but I’m not going to go to one of the stars of the show friends for their analysis on the COVID situation. Why was that news? It’s news because of the halo effect. Because we figure somebody’s successful over here, we just assume there. Now we all know that’s not true. But there’s this aura of success around them. There’s this halo, but just because the leading minds of our age, are wise in some areas, doesn’t mean they’re experts in God’s truth. This is where he starts in verse six, think of some of the experts that we look to on things like COVID policy, think of some of the experts that we look to on on foreign policy, think of some of the experts that we look to when it comes to our own health, our own finances, just because they are smart in those areas does not mean does not mean that they are experts on God’s truth. Again, there are different kinds of knowledge. I know how to grow monster zucchini, but you do not want me doing your open heart surgery. Right? Okay, just making sure you’re awake and clear on this. I may be successful in some areas. That doesn’t mean I’m an expert in all of these. And just because, and this is important for us to understand, too, because everybody has opinions about theology. They were asking a reporter weeks ago was asking Anthony Fauci his opinions on on the church and not not about whether we ought to be open or not, but his his opinions on theology and and the nature of the church. And I thought, Why, what does that have to do with anything? He’s the head of the National Institutes of Health, what are some subset of it, I don’t remember his exact title. Just because somebody is an expert in one area doesn’t mean they have any expertise in God’s truth. Verse six says, We speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. There were a lot of wise people in the days of the church at Corinth, there were a lot of great philosophers. There were great political leaders there. It didn’t mean that they were experts in God’s truth. As a matter of fact, when it came to God’s truth, he said it was their wisdom was coming to nothing. Their wisdom was a dead end, dead end road, it was leading them nowhere, you see that the truth of God predates all of our cultural wise men. God’s truth was there before they ever existed. God’s truth was God’s truth, regardless of what they were ever going to think about it. And God’s truth contains wisdom that they could never even dream of. It was true of Corinth. That’s true of us today, because Paul talks about speaking the wisdom of God and a mystery, hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the ages for our glory. Long before any of us were ever here before the ages. He says, God’s truth was there and it was ordained. And he says, none of the rulers of this age knew they didn’t know what God was doing. For all their wisdom for all their expertise. They had no idea what was going on in the mind of God. had they known they wouldn’t have crucified Jesus. He says, there’s proof right there, because many of the wisest people of their age, many even of the religious experts thought that they were doing God’s Will by putting a blasphemer to death when they executed Jesus. Now they fulfilled the will of God but not in the way they thought. Because God’s Will was not that a blasphemer be executed God’s will, was that the perfect spotless lamb be sacrificed for the sins of mankind. And that’s what they did. But notice this, they did it in complete ignorance. They thought they had God’s will figure it out. And they were clueless, the Messiah came and they killed him. And they are a perfect illustration, these religious leaders in Jesus’s day, they’re a perfect illustration of what happens without the Holy Spirit’s guidance. They were convinced that they were fulfilling God’s will. They were convinced that they were doing the right thing. They were convinced they were on God’s side, they were convinced they were right. They were right. They were right. But they had not a clue. And I do the same thing. And you do the same thing. We do the same thing. When we’re not listening to the Holy Spirit, it’s very easy to convince ourselves that we are right, that we know just the thing to do that we’re smart that we’ve got this all figured out that when we do things without the Holy Spirit’s guidance, we can feel we’re right and yet be miles and miles outside of the will of God. And we know it’s true, don’t we? Have you ever been? I will say I have. Have you ever been convinced that you were absolutely right, only to take a particular course or make a particular choice. And realize later on when the Holy Spirit pointed it out to you know, you had it wrong, I’m guilty. That’s why Proverbs says Not once. But twice. There’s a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death. Apart from the Holy Spirit, we can do what seems right to us. And it leads nowhere we want to go leads us away from God’s will. So to understand God’s will and God’s ways we have to rely on the Holy Spirit, our natural wisdom. Again, some of you are smarter about things than I will ever be, or could ever dream about me. But our natural wisdom is not enough to make us right with God. It is not enough for us to figure out on our own what God wants from us. That’s why he’s given us the Holy Spirit. When God gives spiritual wisdom to man, he gives it through His Holy Spirit. Verse 10, tells us as he’s talking about the things of God, back to verse nine, the things that God has prepared for those who love Him. Verse 10, says that God has revealed them these things to us through His Holy Spirit, when he revealed his word when he revealed his word, so that we would know everything that we needed to know for salvation, and for a life that that pleases God. When he did that he inspired it through His Holy Spirit. Peter wrote that no prophecy of Scripture came from the from the prophets, private interpretation, but holy men of God wrote as they were moved by the Holy Spirit, when God wanted us to know how to be right with Him, when God wanted us to know how to please him after we were made right with Him, He revealed his word through His Holy Spirit. And when he illuminates the truth of this word for us, when you and I sit there, and and we study it, and we wrestle with the text, and we’re trying to figure out what was God saying to them? What What is God using that to say to me, how does this apply to my life today? How do I take that truth that he revealed to them, and apply that timeless truth to my situation today, as we are wrestling with those things, it is the Holy Spirit that makes it click, have you ever been in a situation where you’ve read the same passage that you’ve read for years, and years and years, and suddenly you understand it in a fresh way? I’m not saying you’ve discovered new truth that nobody else has that danger down that road, if we start discovering new things that nobody’s ever seen. But I mean, you start making connections that you’ve never made before. You start understanding things that you’ve never understood before you start seeing in a new way, how this timeless truth applies to your, to your life to your situation. That’s the Holy Spirit teaching you. Jesus told his disciples that when he sent the spirit of truth, he would guide us into all truth. And he said, he would call to mind the things that Jesus had said, that’s how he does it. The Scripture teaches us in accordance with what God’s Word has said. So when God illuminates his words, so that we can understand it, and so that we can apply it he does it through His Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the best teacher we could ever have. Because the Holy Spirit understands even the deep things of God. It says in verse 10, if you look at verse 11, and what he says here, it can be a little confusing the way it’s worded. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him, even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. He’s saying, who really knows what’s going on inside of the person, except the spirit of that person. Only you know what’s going on in your own mind and in your own heart, other than God, but from a human earthly standpoint, only you know what’s truly going on in your mind and in your heart. And then in comparison to that, he says, No one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit knows the mind of God, the Holy Spirit who has been left here to teach us and to lead us and to guide us that holy spirit that you have living within you at your disposal 24 hours a day to guide you into God’s truth. That Holy Spirit understands the mind of God better than you understand your own mind. Folks, we are not getting God’s truth. Second hand, we are getting it from the best possible teacher, the one who understands all of God’s truth. And in Christ, we are not just stuck with human wisdom, verse 12, tells us that the Spirit has been given to us so that we can receive truth, freely, we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been given that have been freely given us by God. God wants us to know his truth. Now, does that mean on day one of your Christian walk the day you trust Christ as your Savior, you’re suddenly going to know all of God’s truth? No, by the way, it doesn’t mean either that on the last day of your earthly walk, you’re going to know all of God’s truth either. But it means we suddenly have access this bolt door has has swung open, and God is going to begin lavishing His truth on us so that we can understand it as we need it. And so that we can apply it as we need it. And you’re going to go on and the Holy Spirit’s going to continue to teach you and he’s going to continue to guide you, as you listen. And as you apply it, he’s going to continue to reveal and illuminate this truth so that you can understand and you’re going to grow deeper, and you’re going to grow deeper. And you’re going to have a closer walk with him as a result. Because He gives His truth freely. God gives His truth to us freely, because he wants us to know it. Through the spirit, we have the mind of Christ, which as I said earlier, allows us to think the way he thinks to understand His truth. And to become more like Him, it doesn’t mean we become gods, that means we’re able to see things from his perspective, we’re not stuck thinking the way we naturally would, which leads us away from the will of God. You know, there is that way that seems right. And sometimes that will come out in the flesh, we want to respond to things in a certain way, in the flesh, we want to respond to things in a way that Jesus would not respond to them. And we have to fight that we have to fight that natural impulse as Christians. And there have been times not that long ago, that something has happened. And I’ve said, I think this is how we need to handle it. And my wife has said, Why do you have to be so nice all the time, you’re gonna let them get by with this. I said, You know me well enough by now to know it. I’m not that nice. Blame it on the Holy Spirit seriously, because I want to do this and say this. But it’s the Holy Spirit over here with that whole mind of Christ thing. Not that I do it perfectly every time. But he’s over here telling me now this is the way you’re supposed to do this. And that’s the way we do it. Hopefully, that’s what I’m talking about. Doesn’t mean that we become Jesus in some mystical way, just means that he’s there teaching us how to become more like Jesus, I’ve still got a long way to go. And I’m thankful that he’s there guiding and teaching. But if you take nothing else from this morning, and from this passage that we’ve looked at, I want you to understand that the Holy Spirit is the only source for true spiritual wisdom for all true spiritual wisdom. We don’t have to go to human philosophies, we don’t have to go to mystical practices, we don’t have to base it on our feelings. And I submit to you, we shouldn’t base it on any of those things. As we study God’s word, we can ask God’s Holy Spirit to help us see the truth that’s there and He’ll do it. But we cannot discern God’s Will while ignoring his spirit. This is why where we’ve got to be so careful. He’s given the Holy Spirit to guide us. And many times we try to short short circuit the process and ignore the Holy Spirit and then wonder why it’s so hard to figure out what God’s will is. we as believers cannot go it alone and trying to determine God’s will, or trying to discern what God wants for us we study and rightly apply God’s word while looking to the spirit for guidance and trusting that he’ll give it to us at the right time. But only then only through the ministry of the Holy Spirit, can we truly know what God wants? And the very first guidance The Holy Spirit will give us as he’s teaching us truth is to point us to the fact that we need Jesus Christ for salvation. The very first foundational spiritual truth we all need to understand is that we are separated from God because we’ve sinned because we’ve disobeyed God. I like the definition the kids brought back from cross timbers Christie helped me out what was it? Same as anything we think, say, do or don’t do that displeases God, I get that. I think there are emotions that go with it, but I’m not going to try that this morning. Anything we say think do or don’t do that displeases God, we’ve all done that. And because God is holy, that sin separates us from God, the world likes to think if I just try harder and do better, I can get right with God. That’s natural wisdom. But spiritual wisdom says, We can never do enough good to make ourselves right with God. And because of that Jesus Christ came and lived a perfect sinless life. And he was nailed to the cross where He shed His blood and he died to pay for our sins in full not just pay for part of them so we could work the rest off, but he paid for our sins in full so that our slate could be wiped clean, and then he proved it by rising again. From the dead Three days later, and because he did all of that to earn our salvation, God offers salvation. He offers forgiveness, eternal life in a relationship with him as a free gift that we could never earn or deserve. That’s the very first thing the Holy Spirit will teach you on this journey.