Come to Understanding

They also that erred in spirit shall come to understanding,

and they that murmured shall learn doctrine. ó Isaiah 29:24

So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense,

and caused them to understand the reading. ó Nehemiah 8:8

November 1, 2009

Volume 8 Number 21

Being Past Feeling

The Spirit clearly says that in the latter times some believers will depart from the faith:

1 Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; -1 Timothy 4

By listening to "seducing spirits" and "doctrines of devils," they will be deceived away from the faith that they once had. Compounding their problem, their conscience will be "seared with a hot iron:"

2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; -1 Timothy 4

It is our conscience that makes us feel guilty for the mistakes that we make. For example, the accusers of the woman taken in adultery were about to stone her to death in front of Yahshua (Jesus), until they were convicted by their own conscience. Consequently, they changed their minds and left, without stoning the woman:

9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the oldest, even to the last: and Yahshua was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. -John 8

Paul wrote a letter to the congregation (church) of believers in Corinth, along with "all the saints" of Achaia:

1 Paul, an apostle of Yahshua the Messiah by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, to the congregation of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints which are in all Achaia: -2 Corinthians 1

One of the effects of his letter to these believing Christians was to convict their conscience to the point that they became sorry for what they had been doing. It was that sorrow that led them to repentance:

9 Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that you sorrowed to repentance: for you were made sorry after a godly manner, that you might receive damage by us in nothing. -2 Corinthians 7

Paul rejoiced over them, because their godly sorrow, resulting from the conviction of their conscience, led them to saving repentance:

10 For godly sorrow works repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world works death. -2 Corinthians 7

Even though these Corinthian believers were sinning, they still had a conscience that had not yet been "seared with a hot iron." Therefore, they could be convicted by the Holy Spirit to the point of godly sorrow, which led them to repentance unto salvation.

The Holy Spirit, also called the Holy Ghost, the Comforter, and the Spirit of the Messiah (Christ), is the One that convicts (reproves) us of our sins. Yahshua explains:

7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.

8 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: -John 16

The Holy Spirit was active in David, convicting his conscience for his sins. That conviction brought David to the depth of godly sorrow that was needed to bring him to repentance unto salvation:

9 Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.

10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.

11 Cast me not away from your presence; and take not your holy spirit from me.

12 Restore unto me the joy of your salvation; and uphold me with your free spirit.

13 Then will I teach transgressors your ways; and sinners shall be converted unto you. -Psalms 51

Davidís repentance did not originate in his mouth, or even in his mind. It came from his "broken and contrite (crushed) heart." David came before God in a condition of absolute humility, with his own spirit in a state of brokenness, allowing the Holy Spirit to work upon his heart:

17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. -Psalms 51

Davidís example of sorrowful repentance reveals what it means to "believe in your heart" to be saved:

9 That if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Yahshua, and shall believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved. -Romans 10

It is easy to say, "I believe, therefore I am saved." However, James reminds us that the devils (demons) also believe in God. They even tremble in fear of Him:

19 You believe that there is one God; you do well: the devils also believe, and tremble. -James 2

However, even though these devils believe and tremble, they are not saved. The Holy Spirit does not dwell in them to convict them to godly sorrow unto humble repentance.

Righteousness does not come from what we say with our mouths. It is accomplished through the work that the Holy Spirit does in our hearts, which is then confessed with our mouths unto salvation:

10 For with the heart man believes unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. -Romans 10

However, Yahweh says that when His people turn completely away from Him, His spirit will not always strive with them:

2 That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.

3 And Yahweh said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be a hundred and twenty years. -Genesis 6

He says that when the righteous turn away from their righteousness, they shall die. However, when the wicked repent of their wickedness, they shall be saved:

26 When a righteous man turns away from his righteousness, and commits iniquity, and dies in them; for his iniquity that he has done shall he die.

27 Again, when the wicked man turns away from his wickedness that he has committed, and does that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. -Ezekiel 18

As long as the Spirit of God strives upon our conscience, we will feel sorrowful conviction for our sins. Unless our conscience is seared, we can find no rest until we humble ourselves in repentance and accept the forgiveness that God offers to us.

While Yahweh, through His Holy Spirit, is working upon our hearts, He is still near to us. That is when we must seek Him and return to Him through repentance:

6 Seek you Yahweh while he may be found, call you upon him while he is near:

7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto Yahweh, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. -Isaiah 55

However, once our hearts become hardened in unbelief, we become like other unbelievers, whose understanding is darkened as they become "past feeling" the conviction of the Holy Spirit:

18 Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:

19 Who being past feeling have given themselves over to lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. -Ephesians 4

As we reject the work of the Holy Ghost, we become hard-hearted, searing our conscience from the conviction that leads us to true repentance and forgiveness:

10 And whoever shall speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but to him that blasphemes against the Holy Ghost it shall not be forgiven. -Luke 12

As long as we continue to fight against the work of the Holy Ghost within our hearts, we remain fallen away from God and cannot expect to be renewed through repentance:

4 For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,

5 And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,

6 If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame. -Hebrews 6

If we willfully continue in our sin, under the condition of a seared conscience, we are "past feeling" the godly sorrow in our hearts required for repentance. We are thereby rejecting the only sacrifice, the shed blood of Yahshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ), that can cleanse us from our sins:

26 For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remains no more sacrifice for sins, -Hebrews 10

His sacrifice is the only one that can pay for our sins. Therefore, there is no other way to salvation except believing upon His name in humble repentance under the conviction of the Holy Ghost:

12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. -Acts 4

Since God loves us, He rebukes us, chastens us, and knocks upon the door of our hearts to bring us to repentance!

19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.

20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hears my voice, and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. -Revelation 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

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