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Building a Spiritual Profile

The sons of Sceva could not drive out the demons, instead the demons drove them out. What! These people were doing supernatural stuff, but they had no spiritual authority. Their spiritual profile was thus non-existing.  What is your Spiritual Profile?

STUDY: Acts 19:11-20

When one study this chapter from beginning to the end, you will find certain conditions for the church to have a real impact on a region. 

  • Right Foundations – Acts 19:1-5 Baptised in water, as believers. Baptised with the Holy Spirit with the evidence of the ability to speak in tongues and prophecy. 
  • Studying the word from 10:00 – 15:00 (5 hours per day) for two years, saturating the whole region. Acts 19:9-10
  • Removed themselves from those who hold on to religion and traditions – Acts 19:8
  • “Miracles Glorify Christ” interweaved with everyday life! – Unusual miracles? Why? Two Greek words gives us the answer.
    – Soudarion – Handkerchief used for whipping of sweat
    – Simikinthion – A narrow apron or linen covering worn by workmen and servants
  • DUALISM and separation between work and ministry removed.
  • The Gospel was preached with demonstration of power, and might manifestations, creating an expectation, that even the outsiders tried to copy the methods.
  • The power of Magic, idolatry and false religion was broken, people burn their magic books, no longer buy shrines bringing a whole industry to a halt.
  • So the word of the Lord grew mightily and prevailed Acts 19:20 (Acts 6:7; 12:24; 13:49.)

The sorcery in the region cannot be overcome unless it is overcome within the hearts of God’s people. 

This story is an indictment against those who worship religion, playing church.

You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God. Mat 22:29

  1. verbs for “know” used here by the evil spirit (i.e., the demon). He said, Jesus I know (ginōsko, “to know by interaction and experience”), and he added, Paul I know about (epistamai, “to know about, to understand”). But the demon did not know Sceva’s sons. We are suppose to have authority over demons Luk 10:19. The kingdom power within is manifested when demons flee. Mat 12:28 God expect us to confront and overcome the evil one. 1 John 2:13 Like Jesus we have to say; “away with you, it is written”
  2. You do not build a spiritual profile, it cannot be build, it is established for you by obedience. 
  3. Social media is a false profile, you cannot fake a spiritual profile. You can feel the presence of the Lord, around someone who have been with God, and who has an active prayer life.
  4. Social media can be setup quickly, a spiritual profile takes time. Social media is about image, self, ego-centred your spiritual profile is built through humility and obedience, taking up your cross moments of self-denial
  5. A reputation. Ecclesiastes 7:1 A good name is better than precious ointment. Proverbs 3:4 Earn a reputation for living well in God’s eyes and the eyes of the people.  Cornelius goods works reached heaven Acts 10
  6. Social media seeks an audience, likes, followers… one seeking to build a spiritual standing, lives for the audience of one! God! How can you believe, who receive honor from one another, and do not seek the honor that comes from the only God. John 5:44
  7. Mat 7:21-23 I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’  Luke 6:46 But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say? These people were doing supernatural stuff, yet God does not know them. Lawnessness: 458. ἀνομία anomía; gen. anomías, from ánomos (G0459), lawless. Lawlessness. In most cases in the NT it means not the absence of the Law, but the violation of Law, (thus meaning, you know the law, yet choose to transgress it).  
  8. In 1 John 3:4, we have a statement which relates hamartía (G0266), the general word for sin, and anomía. A literal translation of this verse is: “Whosoever commits the sin [on a continual basis] also commits [continuously] lawlessness [anomían], and the sin is the lawlessness” (a.t.). Sin (hamartía) is missing the mark ordained by God and not by us. God has placed in our hearts an innate knowledge of what is good and evil. There may not be any specific law which we violate when we sin, but that does not make sin any less sinful.
  9. By implication, anomía is sin, iniquity, unrighteousness that continue in secret make the church powerless.  Like the pharisees, and religious people,  “Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness” Matt. 23:28; Rom. 4:7; (by implication our sinful deeds, where we miss the mark, knowing the mark, And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. Mat 14:12)
  10. For if we sin wilfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, Heb 10:26-39 Just: right, just. Righteous, just. Used in the neut. tó díkaion, that which is right, conformable to right, pertaining to right, that which is just. This is expected by the one who sets the rules and regulations whereby man must live, whether that be society or God. Therefore, it means that which is expected as duty and which is claimed as a right because of one’s conformity to the rules of God or society. Conscientious, blameless, even-handed, honest, fair-minded, authentic, meticulous, punctual, honourable “The just shall live by faith” Hab 2:4; Rom 1:17; Gal 3:11;

Grace is not a license to sin, but the power and divine ability not to sin.

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7 Ways to Stay Spiritually Fit

1. Feed your spirit through the Word, prayer and meditation. 

It is written, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that goeth forth through the mouth of God.” The word referred to here is ῥῆμα rhḗma; the voice of someone speaking. This implies God’s audible voice. “He caused you to suffer, and caused you to hunger, and then gave you the manna to eat—something which ye had not known before, nor did your ancestors. He wanted you to realize that one lives not only on bread, but of every word the Lord says.” (Deut 8:3).

When we read the Bible, we do it prayerfully, set to hear His voice. Meditation is precisely the contemplation of God’s Word, so that the passage He has enlightened in your heart by His Spirit can gain our understanding of what we need to do, to apply in practice.

  • These audible statements from God’s Word anchor us, and make us steady in times of evil and crisis.
  • These words speak to our spirits, and help gain insight.
  • These words from God touch the roadmap of our faith journey with the Lord.

The more time you make with the word, read it, memorize, pray, preach and live the more Word fit one becomes. You hear His voice more and more clearly, because you have a faith-word vocabulary. 

2. Activate your Faith.

“What does it help, my brothers, if someone claims to believe, but his actions don’t confirm it?” Faith is an action, a verb, it is obedience. It is the doting and act of the Word, which makes us mentally fit. Faith fit!

Serving Jesus is impossible for the flesh, it costs faith to forgive, serve, the person who doesn’t deserve love, gives you last money, prays for the sick, leads someone to the Lord. The more you start applying the word in faith, the fitter you get. You build as too true faith muscles, and a capacity of faith when, for example, you physically praise the Lord in difficult circumstances.

You can immediately count out someone who spends a lot of time in the gym on their physical fit appearance — the great of their muscles. So you can immediately measure believers by the greatness of their acts of faith. 

3. Practice your spiritual gifts:

The Father has made provision for us by the Holy Spirit to live supernaturally like Jesus: The 9 fruits of the spirit (Galatians 4:20-21) and 9 gifts of the Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:4-11) are God’s supernatural validation to live Godly fruitfully.

These are supernatural gifts to demonstrate God’s love in the world. These gifts make our ministry directed, focusing on giving. When we can do something meaningful to someone, it makes us feel good, and we feel inspired. a valuable spiritual exercise in times of need and loss.

When you have physically nothing to give to someone, but you can, by a prophecy, enlighten someone’s mind and give new hope, you feel rich. We are rich in Christ in that He has given us access to His kingdom. a spiritual inheritance of divine gifts and abilities. (Eph 1:3; 2 Peter 1:3-4) 

4. Rest. 

Jesus made time to lay down and sleep even in the midst of a day-trip. (Mark 4:35-41) Studies have found that sleep is non-negotiable when it comes to concentration and imagination abilities, and emotional stability. A concert violinist sleeps up to nine hours to be totally mentally rested, to give them best.

In a study group, a difficult code-word discovery exercise was given to two groups. One group slept sufficiently and rested, the other stayed awake. The group that rested resolved the problem twice as fast than the other group.

Sleeping well presupposes soul rest. You don’t fall asleep if you’re upset, or worried about a certain crisis. “Be careful of nothing, but let everything through prayer and cries with thanksgiving become familiar with God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 4:6-7).

This is an essentially important daily exercise that faith people must master. We must teach each how to reveal your needs to the Lord in prayer, through petition, and then thanksgiving, and then in His presence, receive the gift of soul rest. Our entire spiritual battle in this life is from the position of rest. We’re fighting harder, resting harder! This resting position is our position of authority and authority to silence the storm like Jesus. 

5. Interact with the fellowship of believers. 

Social discourse is indispensable, and core to our spiritual existence. The talk together, witness, share, and stories tell us build up in our faith. Dr Henry Cloud tells of his brother-in-law completing his NAVY SEALS training when, on the last day of “Hell’s Week”, he was physically no longer able to complete the killing swimming effort. His friend saw him struggling, and began to cheer him on from the side. Suddenly almost supernaturally he gained strength to finish. Spending time, eating and socialising with the right people sets up your mind. It is especially in these “togetherness” times where we practice our spiritual gifts to build, sooth, encourage, and encourage one another. Some people still struggle to pray,  speak on tongues and prophesy in the company of others.  “How then does the matter stand? When you come together, then each of you has a psalm or a teaching or a language or a revelation or a layout — let everything be founded.” (1 Cor 14:26)

So to get mentally fit is not only chit-chat, it is to go over to deeper conversations and spiritual ministry. It is to lay hands on one another and pray for one another so we for our spiritual strengthening and fitness.

6. Open yourself up to mentoring. 

We all need feedback from a specialist, to help us grow and develop in a certain area. As with athletes who want to perform better, we each need a spiritual mentor and coach.

In our heart, every person thinks he or she is doing right. That’s when our life stands under the light and standard of Christ Jesus, we realize our sin and miserable self-justification. Spiritual Fathers want to see their children grow up in adulthood in Christ Jesus’ life, thought, habits and values (Galatians 4:19; Col 1:28-29). This means there is a specific encouragement, correction, admonition, rebuke and chastening that is part of the mentoring process (Hebrews 12:5-11). People who do not receive spiritual direct coaching aimed at Christ’s example tend to misrepresent Jesus. 

7. Think right. 

Much of our spirituality is locked up in our thinking. How we think, the specific way and process of thinking determines our life. Spiritual people have their minds formed by the Word. They think Word, and according to the directives and wisdoms of the Word. Consider the wisdoms of the preacher and proverbs.

“For they that are carnal devise fleshly things, but they that are spiritual, spiritual things. For what the flesh devises is death, but what the Spirit devises is life and peace; because what the flesh devises is enmity against God; for it does not submit to the law of God, for neither can it. And they that are in flesh cannot please God; however, ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if even the Spirit of God which abides in you.” (Romans 8:5-11).

Thinking follows beliefs, or worldviews that ultimately form an ideology. It’s not so much about what you think here, but how you think. Do you think linearly or systemically? Do you think from God’s perspective or that of a person like Peter? (Mat 16:23). Do you think to re-utilize one aspect or  entirely pluralistically?

Spiritual men have the words of Christ (2 Cor 2:16).  “The wind blows where he wants, and you hear his sound, but you don’t know where he’s coming and where he’s going. So is everyone born of the Spirit.” (John 3:8). Spiritual people are therefore unpredictable, fresh and new, but defining a certain directionthe throne room of the Lord.

Examples of negative thinking are practical:

  • do you always think the worst of someone?
  • Are you like Thomas always disbelieving because you want to see first?
  • Are you derogatory on yourself?
  • Constantly measure yourself by others?
  • Do you do self-examination all the time?
  • Do you always seek the error with someone else first?
  • Are you full of excuses?
  • Do you feel entitled to something you haven’t worked for?

These thoughts are all examples of thinking that haven’t caught mental fitness yet. How long does it take you to move from a ‘default’ old way of thinking, to think right again? This process needs to take place faster, for the person who is spiritual fit.

In times like these, it is important that we get spiritually fit, with great value to our overall immune system health. Spiritual-well being is beneficial to all the other aspects of our being (social, emotional, mental, physical, vocational, mental) anchoring and correcting your humanity, emotions, desires and habits.

Spiritually mature and healthy people:

  • Deal with stress, and crises better.
  • They can handle change better.
  • They are not so much attuned to the daily news events and circumstances.
  • They are usually more helpful and seek practical solutions.
  • They are people-oriented to recognize people’s need more quickly, and to actively help.
  • They’re more grateful people.
  • They are more peaceful and happy people!