The commandment against murder is a basis of common law in every civilized society, but the spirit of murder is out of control. It operates in business, on the freeway and even in the church to destroy lives and divide. A purpose of the Holy Spirit’s operation in the church it to lead us into all truth and that truth is the opposite of the spirit of murder. It is the spirit of love.
Let’s understand how allowing the Holy Spirit to lead us into the greatest truths of all would fix our country and our own lives.
We will look at the opposite of murder, the spirit of love, creating unity and how we can experience Pentecost every day.
The Opposite of Murder
More Christians have been murdered for their faith in the past century than in all previous centuries combined. Why is it that those who murder Christians (John 15:26-16:15) think that they are doing God service? Even Christians have been guilty of murdering other Christians. As a Catholic priest once said, the church is sometimes the Whore of Babylon and sometimes the Bride of Christ. The cause of anyone engaging in such evils is that they have not known God. If they had, they would have known that the Christian way is the opposite extreme of murder. At opposite ends of human experience are hatred and murder on one end and love and unity at the other. One of the functions of the Holy Spirit is to guide us into unifying, loving truth and making it known to us.
The Spirit of Love
A spirit of murder encompasses more than just the act of killing itself (John 15:26-16:15). It has nothing to do with the Spirit of God. The spirit of murder expresses itself in hatred and division between Christians. The Holy Spirit guides us in the opposite direction, love and unity. The truth that the Holy Spirit leads us is into is not some picky doctrinal twig, but deeper love for God and neighbor. He testifies about Jesus, because while many teach us to hate Christians who believe different from us, it is Jesus who taught us to love. When many create division within the Christian church over non-essentials, it is Jesus who taught us to strive for unity. The remarkable unity among Christians over the essentials of our faith is a testimony to the Holy Spirit’s work among us.
How can we Christians be unified? We can keep unity by following God’s example expounded in John 15:26-16:15. Here we see the way Father, Son and Holy Spirit act in perfect unity. The Holy Spirit guides us into all truth. He is not a rebel, who speaks words that divide, but speaks only what he hears. From whom does he hear those words? It is from Jesus Christ that the Holy Spirit receives the words that he makes known to us. As we look down through Christian history, perhaps we can see that division comes from politics, lust for power and words of mere human beings. However, there is something that unifies us all, the words of Jesus. When we emphasis the truths that Jesus taught, we become more unified. The Trinity teaches us how perfect unity behaves.
Acts 2 was not a usual Pentecost. John 15:26-16:15 describes a Pentecost which occurs every day. The Advocate comes alongside to plead our case as the Accuser gossips about our sins. The Holy Spirit also helps us testify to Jesus in the face of opposition. He puts the world to shame regarding sin, justice and judgment. The opposite of sin is not impossibly perfect law-keeping, but faith. The remedy for sin is faith. The Holy Spirit convicts us that the world’s idea of justice is unjust and causes oppression, inequality and poverty. The Holy Spirit in us judges the world. The Holy Spirit guides us into the truth which is in Christ and nowhere else. Eastern Orthodox Christians call this theosis, growing into union with God. In the west we call it spiritual formation and it is a mystical experience.
The spirit of murder is out of control in the world. It operates in business, on the freeway and even in the church to destroy lives and divide. Let us allow the Holy Spirit to lead us into all truth and the most truths of all, love and unity. As we follow the Holy Spirit’s lead we experience Pentecost every day.