|1 Corinthians 2:14 |
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14 But the natural man cannot receive the things of the Spirit of God5 for they are foolishness to him; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. [The typical sect-attending Christian has no concept of sin, limiting it to murder, theft, rape; he is unaware that intolerable sin includes: sexual immorality (including adultery and fornication), impurity, lust, idolatry (including covetousness), sorcery, hatred, arguments, jealousy, anger, ambition, divisiveness, factions, envy, drunkenness, revelry (partying), and the like; also evil thoughts, murders, thefts, wickedness, deceit, lack of restraint, blasphemy, pride, and foolishness.]
5 A natural man cannot believe or understand the mysteries of God. It is impossible for a natural man to become a spiritual man by reading, Bible study, seminary training, Bible college, praying for understanding, or listening to other natural men talk; such only increases his fleshly knowledge, which must die to be replaced by wisdom from above. A natural man is only changed into a spiritual man by the teachings and changing grace of the Spirit of God, through revelation and power. Of course God only reveals the mysteries to spiritual men. But also, God reveals unrighteousness to the spiritual man. The natural man cannot accept the things of God and cannot see the depth of unrighteousness. This is a basic function of the Holy Spirit — to convince the world of sin [unrighteousness]. The typical sect-attending Christian has no concept of sin, limiting sin to murder, theft, rape; he is unaware that intolerable sin includes: adultery, pre-marital sex, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of rage, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, partying — immorality, impurity, greed — evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. From the Word of the Lord within: "Every thought of man is at best a vain hiss." All other understandings from God, have to be shown to a man by God, before a man can see sin and unrighteousness. What is to be known of God, is revealed by God within a man's heart; (mark!), not from reading a book; not from listening to a preacher speaking without words supplied by the Holy Spirit, as he speaks. The natural man must be taught by revelation in that man's heart in the power of the Holy Spirit; words must be heard, and/or visions must be seen, with clear understanding received in a man's heart.
From Isaac Penington's writing titled, SOME PRINCIPLES GUIDING OUT OF THE APOSTASY,TO THE CHRISTIAN SPIRIT AND LIFE AGAIN.
The knowledge of Christ is not literal, traditional, or fleshly, nor can it be received by the natural understanding; but it is spiritual, and the understanding must be given by God which receives it. "He has given us an understanding, that we may know him who is true." 1 John 5:20. A man may read scriptures, hear sermons, etc., and thereby gather a knowledge into the old understanding: but neither this understanding into which the knowledge is gathered, nor the knowledge itself that is gathered, are spiritual, but fleshly, and so cannot save. He who comes once to receive an understanding from Christ, and to have the knowledge of Christ poured forth from Christ into his heart, knows the difference between that and the understanding into which he gathers things. The knowledge of Christ after the letter, (and a faith in him answerable to such knowledge), will not save; but a man must know him in that Spirit, life, and power in which he lived, if he is firmly established in hope to be saved by him, (2 Cor 5:16-17).
All things are delivered to me by my Father; and no man knows the Son but the Father, neither does any man know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal him. Mat 11:27. The Father and the Son are only known through revelation, by the son revealing him; for the Son and the Father are one. Because what may be known of God is revealed in them; for God has shown it to them, Rom 1:19; not reading about God, not hearing someone talk about God, for God and Christ are known by only revelation in your heart, where you hear him and see him teach you about sin, righteousness, and himself.
Jesus said, "Come to me... learn from me," Mat 11:28-29. Jesus said, "come to me many times." You must go to Him by sitting quietly and listening for Him to speak to you. You do not learn from the Spirit by reading scripture, going to "church," going to prayer meetings, prayer circles, discussions with other fleshly "Christians," listening to sermons spoken by unperfected preachers, singing hymns, etc.
From the Word of the Lord within: