Paul declared a mystery in the first chapter of Colossians. He said, “the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints…which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.” So all the while throughout the whole of our history, and woven into each and every story in the Old Testament, there was a mystery.
God’s plan all along was, and is, to put his Spirit in each and every one of his believers. We saw it with Moses when God took of the Spirit that was on Moses and gave it to each of the seventy elders. In fact Joshua became upset at the time because two of them didn’t go to the Tent and they still were prophesying. He said, “Moses, my lord, restrain them.” But Moses said to him, “Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all the Lord’s people were prophets, that the Lord would put His Spirit upon them!”
The story of Elijah and Elisha found in 2 Kings 2 tells of another instance where God took of the Spirit that was on Elijah and put it on Elisha. Elisha followed Elijah and never would let him out of his sight. Finally Elijah said, “Ask what I shall do for you before I am taken from you.” And Elisha said, “Please, let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.” Without going into all the details let me just say that’s exactly what happened. God took Elijah and when he did Elisha received from him a double portion of the Spirit. The sons of the prophets testified, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.”
These are only two Old Testament examples of how I believe God has always intended his people to be. He has always wanted us to have his Spirit but apparently not all of us have. We read of several instances when the Spirit came upon people in the Old Testament but the good news is after Jesus came and went through death, burial, resurrection and ascension the Spirit now resides within the believer.
Jesus himself promised us in John 14 he would send another like him. He said, “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” He then went on to say, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word; and my father will love him, and we will come to him and make our abode with him.” Did you catch that? Jesus is promising us that he, the comforter(Spirit) and the Father will live in us. Later in the 17th chapter of John we read where Jesus prays to the Father and asks “that they may all be one; even as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that you sent me.”
I think this is exactly what Paul picked up on when he said he was disclosing a mystery. Paul had been given revelation from God that Christ’s prayer was being answered because the Spirit of God had begun taking up residence within believers. In fact Paul’s whole ministry had turned out to be telling non-Jews that they too could be filled with God’s Spirit. That may not sound like that big of a deal to us now but then it was quite a radical concept.
Let me wrap this up by saying that I believe God’s intention all along was to put his Spirit in us so we would be an expression of him to the watching world. I thank God that he never has changed his mind about this wonderful plan. Join me in declaring this same mystery to all that will listen. “Christ in you the hope of glory!”
Written by Louie