Training for Reigning - 26 - Led by the Spirit

LED BY THE SPIRIT
IF WE LIVE IN the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. (Galatians 5: 25). Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. (vs. 16). For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are (manifestly) the sons of God. (Romans 8: 14). Be filled with the Spirit. (Eph. 5: 18). Filled with all the fulness of God. (Ephesians 3: 19).
Ever wonder how you might know the constant leading of the Spirit, or longed for the blessing of His fulness? Have you ever tried and tried to "empty yourself" of everything, so that He might take full possession of you, only to end the experiment with a dismal sense of defeat?
Many Christians have had experiences of this sort and have given up their quest convinced that such a blessing was far beyond their reach. But when we remember that the "fulness of the Spirit" is meant to be the normal, habitual experience of every believer, it becomes apparent that there must be some misunderstanding somewhere. Let us review the basic teachings relating to this subject given us by the Holy Spirit Himself.
You will recall that in the early days of the church the disciples were led in thought, word and deed by the Spirit by means of recollections of our Lord’s teachings (John 14: 26), principles gleaned from the Old Testament, direct revelation and, at times, by indirect or "providential" occurrences. When we read of such manifestations of the Comforter’s presence and power in the Acts it is imperative that we remember that apart from such direction they had no means of knowing what the Lord would have them do in the new Dispensation of Grace. But all is changed now; for since the Holy Spirit led men to write the New Testament Scriptures we have been provided with a written record of the leadings of the Spirit.
This is a most important truth to realize, since it is at this very point so many of us miss the way.
In demonstration of the fact that for us the leadings of the Spirit are found in His written Word consider, for example, His exhortation in Eph. 4:20-32. When we read ". . . that ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man . . . and that ye put on the new man . . . "we are being led by the Spirit to "put off" and to "putd on." These words (with all other of His exhortations in the Scriptures) give us His definite leading. They are "the mind of the Spirit": He is seeking by them to lead us; and it is our duty and privilege to follow His leading. And in the measure that we are obedient to such leadings, we are "led of the Spirit," and are "walking in the Spirit."
In so writing we are not unmindful of the truth that the Spirit of God is sovereign and may use any means whatsoever may please Him. Nevertheless, many who sing ardently, "Where He leads me I will follow," think only of a possible leading to go some place, and in their search for extra-scriptural leadings they seem to overlook the great and vastly important field of everyday living in the Spirit, walking in the Spirit, made possible by seeking to follow His leadings as He has recorded them in the Word. (Galatians 5:24-25).
One such passage (cutting squarely across the writer’s own path) is that of Galatians 5: 22-23 where we learn the character of the Fruit of the Spirit:
"Love, Joy, Peace,
Longsuffering, Gentleness, Goodness,
Faith, Meekness, Self-control."
These nine graces the Paraclete seeks to produce in our lives as His fruit. Yet, at the same time, they provide us with a standard, a rule of life, by which we can judge the character of our lives. Let us make no mistake in the matter: it is along these lines that the Spirit seeks to lead the Christian. Why not memorize them, so that we may be helped to keep them ever before us? Oh how different our lives will be when we shall have learned (when it becomes the habit of our lives) to "walk according to this rule"!
Gal. 5: 16 tells us the direct result of seeking to walk in the Spirit, that is, according to His leadings as they are found in His Word: victory over indwelling sin.
In principle it is something like a man who walks through a town at night. If he will be content to walk along the brightly lighted Main Street he will be in no danger of stumbling in the darkness of the back alleys (John 8: 12).
Moreover, to the extent that we follow His leadings in the Scriptures, walking in the Spirit, we make it possible for Him to give us deeper experiences of His ministry. Not only will we reflect the nine graces of His fruit, "walking worthy of our Lord unto all pleasing," but we shall enjoy the birthright of every child of God, the Fulness of the Spirit. (See Acts 6: 5; 7: 55; 11: 24). In these passages the "fulness" mentioned appears to have been a habitual condition, the result of allowing the Holy Spirit (through obedience to His Word) to take possession of His temple.
To this end may "the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit" (the participation in what is derived from the Holy Spirit: Vine) be with us all. "Amen." (2 Corinthians 13: 14).