RE Verse reading–Acts 6:1-15, 7:1-60 (day one) “You stiff-necked people! . . .You are just like your ancestors: You always resist the Holy Spirit” (7:51) It was a terrible moment. A moment of truth. Stephen was preaching his synagogue sermon (the one for which he was killed). He had traced Jewish history from Old Testament to present moment with this conclusion–the Jewish nation (as a whole) had always resisted the Holy Spirt, and with devastating results. The word is antipipto. It literally means “to fall against, to oppose even if the opposition means falling yourself” Similar to what the Lord says to Paul in Acts 26:14. “Why do you kick against the goads?” Why do you continue to fight, even when it becomes clear that your resistance is hurting you? Good question. Sad question. Why do people continue to resist God, even when it means destruction? What is it about a full surrender to God that raises such irrational, stubborn resistance in our sinful hearts?
0 thoughts on “Always resisting the Holy Spirit”
(Although I get that this is a rhetorical question) I think the answer depends on who one is talking about. If it is “the world” it is just because they are spiritually dead and are unable to accept/understand the things of the Spirit…. “But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised” (1 Cor 2:14). We all have a testimony of what a life lived like this looks(looked) like. The spirit of the world/the spirit of deception and sin is all these can possibly know. They are in desperate need of a Savior…. not condemnation/criticism from us.
Christians, however, I am convinced often act this way because they have not been trained/equipped. Just like Apollos of whom it was said, “He was a learned man, with a thorough knowledge of the Scriptures. He had been instructed in the way of the Lord, and he spoke with great fervor and taught about Jesus accurately, though he knew only the baptism of John. He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately.” What did they tell him?…. how I wish I knew!
Paul prayed for Wisdom and Revelation in the knowledge of God for the Ephesian church so apparently there is more to know. Part of this is that we not only need to turn from our sins but we also need to learn to receive…. by Faith…. from God… how to walk with Him and let His Spirit put/help us put to death our flesh.
I have heard several Pastors recently give a new definition of Faith…not sure why we need a new one when the Bible clearly gives us one (Heb 11)…. their definitions seemed to me to be more of Trust than of Faith. They are interrelated and close conceptually but they are not the same practically. This is way beyond the scope of my point, except to say that lack of understanding of God in general leads to many things, including a lack of understanding that He really does want to Bless us by turning us from our sins…..the other option is destruction/death. We often choose this because we lack understanding and are deceived.