The words of the Bible are truth. But the natural mind can’t accept them without the mighty working of the Holy Spirit, who brings revelation and guides us into all truth. Staying in the word is so important, but remaining in the Word—capital W—is even more critical because all wisdom and understanding, and the empowerment to obey what we read, come from Him. Reading the Bible under the Spirit’s guidance is life altering. By His power alone are we transformed by the renewing of our minds.
As we read, we must submit to His leading, not leaning on our own understanding and powers of reasoning, but asking Him for His wisdom and revelation. Let us not make an idol of our logic and rational mind when we know that our natural mind can’t understand the things of the Spirit, “because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14). Remember the Jews who wanted to take Jesus and make Him earthly king by force? They were guided by their natural minds even though they had the Scriptures.
Remember the parable of the sower, which shows instances in which the word of God—that all-encompassing seed with powerful truth potential—could be rendered ineffective. There’s no question that God’s word “is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12). But what of the soil?
The soil represents our individual hearts. Consider the Israelites in Moses’s day, of whom Paul says, “But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Corinthians 3:14-17).
We can have God’s word, trust in our own powers of reasoning, and still not “get it,” unless we invite the Holy Spirit—whose thoughts are higher than our thoughts—into our Bible reading with an attitude of teachable humility. I like the Passion Translation’s rendering of this last verse: “Now, the “Lord” I’m referring to is the Holy Spirit, and WHEREVER HE IS LORD, there is freedom.”
God can be near us without us sensing His presence and walking into His freedom. Some remain in bondage beneath that veil because they haven’t made Him Lord in their hearts and minds. Be assured, this is something we can only do fully with His help. There is no condemnation for the children of God, but He wants to take us higher, deeper. Because of the enemy’s deception, some of us are still living beneath that blinding veil—at least in part.
Are you ready for freedom? For more of God’s truth and power in your life? Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you into all truth in every moment. When we know the truth, it sets us free from all manner of bondage which is not of the Lord but of the enemy. Submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee. The Passion Translation for verse 16 says this: “But the moment one turns to the Lord with an open heart, the veil is lifted and they see.” This could be our moment for greater spiritual vision and freedom. Are you ready? Jesus said, “Come. Follow me.”
Romans 12:2, be transformed
John 16:13, Spirit of truth
Proverbs 3:5-6, trust
Isaiah 55:8-9, His thoughts are higher
Ephesians 1:17, Spirit of wisdom
1 Corinthians 2:14, natural mind
John 6:15, king by force
Matthew 13, parable of the sower
Hebrews 4:12, word is living and active
2 Corinthians 3:14-17, veil vs freedom
2 Corinthians 10:5, take thoughts captive
Romans 8:1, no condemnation
James 4:7, submit to God
Matthew 4:19, “Follow Me”