To be Born of the Spirit
“I have baptized you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” Mark 1:8
I believed to hear the Voice of God telling me that this sister would be the woman of my life; but as soon as the sign that the voice had given me came true, the attraction and feelings I had for her vanished immediately. I realized then that it was not the Voice of God that I had previously heard and that I was going astray. So, I asked the Holy Spirit to explain to me what had deceived me. He replied, “your soul!” The voice of my soul had prevented me from grasping the real Will of God!
Annoyed by the rebellion during the crisis in Ivory Coast, I thought I heard the Voice of God announcing a certain outcome to the crisis; the opposite happened. Seeking to understand once again, the Spirit spoke to me again about my soul: anger had prevented me from hearing the Voice of the Spirit.
After several experiences like this, I realized how susceptible the soul was to lead astray. Your soul is surely your greatest source of blindness to the Voice of God. Your emotions such as sadness, anxiety, anger, and fear can prevent you from seeing the kindness that God sends you. Your fiery, introverted, angry, or melancholic temperament can corrupt your vision and thus your benevolence.
Your habits and culture can also be an obstacle. Pharaoh’s daughter would not have seen Moses as a prince if she had judged him based on his origins and social status.
Jesus said to Peter, “Flesh and blood did not reveal this to you…“
Let’s talk about the revelations that blood can give. As you know, the soul is in the blood (Leviticus 17:11). The revelations of the soul are those that led me astray several times and can therefore corrupt your ability to recognize the kindness that God sends. The soul is different from the spirit, but it influences the disposition of the latter. Hebrews 4:12 also says that the soul and the spirit must be separated by the sword of the Word.
To be able to see the things of the Kingdom, you must begin by being born of Water and Spirit. The Birth of Water is what allows you to dominate the voice of the flesh, while the Birth of the Spirit allows you to subject the voice of the soul.
What does it mean to be born of the Spirit?
Just as the Baptism of Water is the image of purifying the impurities of your flesh with water, the Baptism of the Spirit comes to purify you from the cares of the soul called the Self or the old man. But for that:
- Your Baptism of Water to be effective, you must repent
- Your Baptism in the Spirit to be effective, you must renounce your Self
It is said that the disciples were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues (Acts 2:4; 4:31). Unlike the Baptism of Water, which is an immersion, the Baptism of the Holy Spirit is a fullness following a filling.
We all know that to fill a container, it must first be empty. “Denying oneself” is emptying one’s inner being and taking up one’s cross. If the Baptism of Water is done only once, the fullness of the Spirit (called Baptism the first time) is continual; it will manifest every time you empty your soul to be filled with the Spirit.
The one who is born of the Spirit is the one who regularly knows how to make room within, renouncing their “Self” to be filled with more of the Spirit.
For example, when praying to receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, you will hear the voice of your intellect (soul) saying, “How is it possible to speak another language without learning it?” At that moment, renounce your logic (your soul) and believe like a child in the promise, setting aside the logic that the world has learned, expecting to be filled. It is not about setting aside your ability to think but the intelligence of the Spirit, which is different from the earthly one. Earthly intellect can prevent you from grasping divine intellect.
To be born of the Spirit is to renounce oneself by taking up one’s cross to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Whoever receives Baptism and prayer in tongues without renouncing themselves will not see the Kingdom of God and will not be able to develop Kindness.
I’m reading my Bible in 1 year: Isaiah 57; Deuteronomy 31
This text is an excerpt from the book “Benignity – Foundation of God’s Faith – In His Image To Dominate, Devo 6 – September 2023” written by Mohammed SANOGO.