“…AND THERE was an Ethiopian, a eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure. He had come to Jerusalem to worship and was returning, seated in his chariot, and he was reading the prophet Isaiah…So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, ‘Do you understand what you are reading?’ And he said, ‘How can I, unless someone guides me?” (Acts 8: 27- 31a).
In the last few weeks, we have been discussing the need for Christians to spend adequate time to read their Bible, and hear it being taught. However, the problem many people face is the same problem the Ethiopian eunuch faced. He was reading God’s Word alright, but he lacked the grace to understand it. Oftentimes when believers are asked if they understand the biblical passages they read or hear, they join the eunuch, saying, “How can we understand it?”
You see, when it comes to understanding God’s Word as we read and hear it, we may be assisted by learned people filled with the Spirit of God. We may also be assisted by the Spirit of God, a great Teacher who lives in our hearts to understand what we read or hear. The Holy Spirit is a Teacher who gives illumination to the Word.
One truth Christians must know is that, “God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4: 24, KJV). This means every act of our worship like teaching, singing, dancing and giving to God must be done by the leading, inspiration or guidance of the Holy Spirit.
True apostles, prophets, pastors, evangelists and teachers of Christ are commissioned to explain the various mysteries of God to His children. They are to impart wisdom. They are not called, appointed and sent out to communicate the wisdom of the world.
They are not assigned by the Lord to engage in party political discourses. No, not at all! Faithful men of God know that they are sent out to utter the deep things of God. They are to “impart secret and hidden wisdom of God”.
Interestingly, however, the secret and hidden wisdom of God cannot be understood by carnal minds or un-regenerated minds. An un-regenerated mind is the one which has not been spiritually reborn or converted. Such a mind can be referred to as a carnal or natural mind. It cannot fathom the wisdom of God. It takes only the Spirit of God to understand the things of God.
“For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God.
“The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2: 11, 14).
Indeed, most things about Christianity are spiritual. It takes the Spirit of God to fully understand the things of God. It takes the Holy Spirit dwelling in a believer’s heart to understand scriptures, the gospel of Christ, the ways of God, and the mysteries of God. A person without the Spirit of God dwelling in his heart cannot understand the things of God.
The problem in many churches today is that a lot of Christians have not really been born again or been baptized in the Holy Spirit. This is the reason why many people cannot accept, obey and practise the commandments of Christ. We cannot love, forgive, humble ourselves and give to the poor as commanded by our Great Creator.
We should understand that Christianity is a spiritual kingdom headed by an unparalleled, huge and massive Spiritual Being who is the Lord of hosts, King of kings, Lord of lords – the Lord Jesus Christ.
For a person to understand the things concerning the kingdom of God, he must receive the gift of the Holy Spirit to dwell in his heart. Without this, he cannot comprehend the Word of God. To comprehend is to understand something that is complex or difficult. The word of God cannot easily be understood by someone who does not have the Holy Spirit in his heart.
I believe that the Word of God was not designed for the carnal mind but for the spiritual mind. This is why for a sinner to hear the Word of truth, the gospel of salvation, and believe in the name of Jesus Christ to be made a child of God, he must be drawn by the Holy Spirit and the preacher also carried along by Him. Without the presence of the Spirit of God, a sinner cannot genuinely be converted.
FROM James Quansah, Kumasi