We are continuing our study of the Holy Spirit and the benefits we have because He is in us and the benefits we have when we are baptized into Him.
Much of the discussion of the Holy Spirit stems from the New Testament particularly Romans 12 and 1 Corinthians 12 and 14. This is because Paul in these three chapters lists some of the different gifts of the Holy Spirit. However, we will be focusing on the lists in these three chapters and pointing out a few of them for the next few blogs, but this one will begin in the Old Testament looking at what the Holy Spirit was doing through the Old Testament.
Before looking at the different benefits that we find in the Old Testament we need to do a little word study of Ruwach.
This is the word that is translated into Spirit of God. It is also the word used for wind, breath, mind, blasts, courage.
Throughout the Old Testament Ruwach is used with the understanding of a powerful invisible force. It is the life energy that is in and through all things. It gives a person the ability to run, act, fight, and it is the movement and power in nature. This word related to God gives the understanding that God is that power that we can’t see.
The first time Ruwach is used is in Genesis 1:2
Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God (Ruwach) was hovering over the waters.
The Holy Spirit was present and an active part of the creation, because when there was nothing the Spirit of God was hovering, or brooding over the surface. Then God said…
“Let there be light,” and there was light.
The Holy Spirit was active in the creation of all things. The life energy that is in and through all things is Ruwach. As we look further the Holy Spirit isn’t simply a force, but He is God and He has a mind.
Close your eyes…take a deep breath…a long deep breath and hold it in and slowly count to 3…then slowly breath out.
The breath, the feeling of life, the energy in your mind; that is Ruwach and the Holy Spirit is there to be the full Spiritual life energy you need for everyday. This is not simply for leaders, but it is powerful for all believers. Now let us look at two people from the Old Testament who experienced the powerful benefits of the Holy Spirit resting on them. These two men show a few of the different benefits of the Holy Spirit, but they are not well known.
9 But when the people of Israel cried out to the Lord, the Lord raised up a deliverer for the people of Israel, who saved them, Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother. 10 The Spirit of the Lord (Ruwach) was upon him, and he judged Israel. He went out to war, and the Lord gave Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand. And his hand prevailed over Cushan-rishathaim. 11 So the land had rest forty years. Then Othniel the son of Kenaz died.
Othniel is known for being the first judge of Israel. Throughout the book of Judges there is a powerful working of the Holy Spirit on men (and Debrah) to lead the people of Israel. At the time before Othniel became the judge; the people of Israel cried out to God to save them.
There is a cry in our land for someone to deliver us!
The problem is many are turning to the wrong thing. If we truly want deliverance we must cry out to the Lord and through the power of the Holy Spirit “Upon” people we will be saved!
The benefits of the Holy Spirit we see here in the life of Othniel are leadership and serving. The scripture says The Spirit of the Lord was upon him. When he was following the leading of the Lord he was baptized into the Holy Spirit with power to lead the people through war and serve the people faithfully for forty years as the judge.
The Holy Spirit was working through this man to save the people. God will work through you to lead His people and the nation who is far away into deliverance and freedom.
The wonderful thing is now the Holy Spirit has been poured out of all of us not just a chosen few in the Old Testament. But the benefits of leading and serving walk hand in hand through the power of the Holy Spirit who is the life energy you need to lead and serve at the same time.
The next person is found in Exodus.
Then the Lord said to Moses, 2 “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, 3 and I have filled him with the Spirit of God (Ruwach), with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— 4 to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, 5 to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts.
Bezalel is not a prophet, a king, or a judge (like Othniel) he is a craftsman.
At times, it is easy to ignore or avoid desiring the benefits or gifts of the Holy Spirit either out of fear or a misunderstanding of who they are for. Bezalel was not a leader in the Israelities community. He was a man who was willing to give his work to the Lord.
What is it you do?
23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
When you allow the Holy Spirit to give you the ability and skills you need He will create opportunities to show God’s greatness through your work!
Remember the Holy Spirit was an active and important part of creation! Through this process the Holy Spirit was able to use Bezalel to create beautiful things for the Tabernacle. When you are baptized into the Holy Spirit; He will gift you with special abilities to work to create a more beautiful world!
When he was filled with the Holy Spirit he also experienced the benefits or gifts of wisdom, knowledge, and understanding. If you are a follower of Jesus Christ you have all the wisdom, knowledge and understanding through the Holy Spirit inside of you. However, if you do not accept His full baptism into Him you will not be able to unlock your true potential for Him.
Before being filled with the Spirit of God Bezalel was probably a good craftsman. But once he accepted to fullness of God’s love, grace and power he was able to create the ark of the covenant and other wonderful things to show off God’s glory; through leadership, service, understanding, knowledge, wisdom, and creativity.
For the next few weeks, we will look at more of the benefits of the Holy Spirit baptism from Romans 12 and 1 Corinthians 12.
Remember that no gift is better than another. Othniel was not better than Bezalel for Paul wrote.
1 Now about the gifts of the Spirit, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed…7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good…
But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
1 Corinthians 12:1, 7,24b-27
Each member and each gift is important and if we trust that the Holy Spirit is the one who is working through us we will be mighty and effective; whether we are like Othniel leading and serving or like Bezalel working with wisdom and understanding.