The Active Life of the Spirit-filled Believer
Ministration and operation of the gifts
Published in Latter Rain Evangel p. 19-24 February 1923
Published in Pentecostal Evangel p. 2-3 August 17, 1940
Published in Revival News* in two parts/editions n.d.
* Ed: The Revival News was the magazine of the Full Gospel churches in UK commenced under the leadership of Fred Squires. It ran from 1935-1947.
These are the last days; the days of the falling away. These are days when Satan is having a great deal of power. But we must keep in mind that Satan has no power only as he is allowed.
It is a great thing to know that God is loosing you from the world, loosing you from a thousand things. You must seek to have the mind of God on all things. If you don’t, you will stop His working. I had to learn that as I was on the water en route to Australia. We stopped at a place called Aden, where they were selling all kinds of ware. Among other things were some beautiful rugs and ostrich feathers in great quantities. There was a gentleman in “first class” who wanted feathers. He bought one lot and the next lot put up was too big; he did not want so many. He said to me, “Will you join me?” I knew I did not want feathers for I had no room or use for them and wouldn’t know what to do with them if I got them. However, he pleaded with me to join him. I perceived it was the Spirit as clearly as anything and I said, “Yes, I will.” So the feathers were knocked down for fifteen dollars. Then I found the man had no money on him. He had plenty in his cabin. I perceived it was the Spirit again, so it fell to my lot to pay for the feathers. He said to me, “I will get the money and give it to one of the stewards.” I replied: “No, that is not business. I am known all over the ship. You seek me out.”
The man came and brought the money. I said, “God wants me to talk to you. Now sit down.” So he sat down and in ten minutes’ time the whole of his life was unhinged, unraveled, broken up, so broken that like a big baby he wept and cried for salvation. It was “feathers” that did it. But you know we shall never know the mind of God till we learn to know the voice of God. The striking thing about Moses is that it took him forty years to learn human wisdom, forty years to know his helplessness, and forty years to live in the power of God. One hundred and twenty years it took to teach that man, and sometimes it seems to me it will take many years to bring us just where we can tell the voice of God, the leadings of God, and all His will concerning us.
I see that all revelation, all illumination, everything that God had in Christ was to be brought forth into perfect light that we might be able to live the same, produce the same, and be in every activity sons of God with power. It must be so. We must not limit the Holy One. And we must clearly see that God brought us forth to make us supernatural, that we might be changed all the time on the line of the supernatural, that we may every day live so in the Spirit, that all of the revelations of God are just like a canvas thrown before our eyes, on which we see clearly step by step all the divine will of God.
Any assembly that puts its hand upon the working of the Spirit will surely dry up. The assembly must be as free in the Spirit as possible, and you must allow a certain amount of extravagance when people are getting through to God. Unless we are very wise, we can easily interfere and quench the power of God which is upon us. It is an evident fact that one man in a meeting, filled with unbelief, can make a place for the devil to have a seat. And it is very true, that if we are not careful we may quench the Spirit of some person who is innocent but incapable of helping himself. “We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak.” (Romans 15:1). If you want an assembly full of life you must have one in which the Spirit of God is manifested. And in order to keep at the boiling pitch of that blessed incarnation of the Spirit, you must be as simple as babies; you must be as harmless as doves and as wise as serpents (Matthew 10:16).
I always ask God for a leading of grace. It takes grace to be in a meeting because it is so easy if you are not careful, to get on the natural side. The man who is a preacher, if he has lost the unction, will be well repaid if he will repent and get right with God and get the unction back. It never pays us to be less than always spiritual, and we must have a divine language and the language must be of God. Beloved, if you come into real perfect line with the grace of God, one thing will certainly take place in your life. You will change from that old position of the world’s line where you were judging everybody, and where you were not trusting anyone, and come into a place where you will have a heart that will believe all things; a heart that under no circumstances reviles again when you are reviled.
I know many of you think many times before you speak once. Here is a great word: “For your obedience is come abroad unto all men. I am glad therefore on your behalf: but yet I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil” (Romans 16:19). Innocent. No inward corruption or defilement, that is full of distrusts, but just a holy, divine likeness of Jesus that dares believe that God Almighty will surely watch over all. Hallelujah! “There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways” (Psalm 91:10,11). The child of God who is rocked in the bosom of the Father has the sweetest touch of heaven, and the honey of the Word is always in it.
If the saints only knew how precious they are in the sight of God they would scarcely be able to sleep for thinking of His watchful, loving care. Oh, He is a precious Jesus! He is a lovely Savior! He is divine in all His attitude toward us, and makes our hearts to burn. There is nothing like it. “Oh,” they said on the road to Emmaus, “did not our heart burn within us, as He walked with us and talked with us?” (Luke 24:32). Oh beloved, it must be so today.
Always keep in your mind the fact that the Holy Ghost must bring manifestation. We must understand that the Holy Ghost is breath, the Holy Ghost is Person, and it is the most marvelous thing to me to know that this Holy Ghost power can be in every part of your body. You can feel it from the crown of your head to the soles of your feet. Oh, it is lovely to be burning all over with the Holy Ghost! And when that takes place there is nothing but the operation of the tongue that must give forth the glory and the praise.
You must be in the place of magnifying the Lord. The Holy Ghost is the great Magnifier of Jesus, the great Illuminator of Jesus. And so after the Holy Ghost comes in, it is impossible to keep your tongue still. Why, you would burst if you didn’t give Him utterance. Talk about a dumb baptized soul? Such a person is not to be found in the Scriptures. You will find that when you speak unto God in the new tongue He gives you, you enter into a close communion with Him hitherto never experienced. Talk about preaching! I would like to know how it will be possible for all the people filled with the Holy Ghost to stop preaching. Even the sons and daughters must prophesy. After the Holy Ghost comes in, a man is in a new order in God. And you will find it so real that you will want to sing, talk, laugh, and shout. We are in a strange place when the Holy Ghost comes in.
If the incoming of the Spirit is lovely, what must be the onflow? The incoming is only to be an onflow. I am very interested in scenery. When I was in Switzerland I wouldn’t be satisfied till I went to the top of the mountain, though I like the valleys also. On the summit of the mountain the sun beats on the snow and sends the water trickling down the mountains right through to the meadows. Go there and see if you can stop it. Just so in the spiritual. God begins with the divine flow of His eternal power which is the Holy Ghost, and you cannot stop it.
We must always clearly see that the baptism with the Spirit must make us ministering spirits.
Peter and John had been baptized only a short time. Did they know what they had? No, I defy you to know what you have. No one knows what he has in the baptism with the Holy Ghost. You have no conception of it. You cannot measure it by an human standards. It is greater than any man has any idea of, and consequently those two disciples had no idea what they had. For the first time after they were baptized in the Holy Ghost they came down to the Gate Beautiful. There they saw the man sitting who for forty years had been lame. What was the first thing after they saw him? Ministration. What was the second? Operation. What was the third? Manifestation, of course. It could not be otherwise. You will always find that this order in the Scripture will be carried out in everybody.
I clearly see that we ought to have spiritual giants in the earth, mighty in apprehension, amazing in activity, always having a wonderful report because of their activity in faith. I find instead that there are many people who perhaps have better discernment than you, better knowledge of the Word than you, but they have failed to put it into practice, so these gifts lie dormant. I am here to help you to begin on the sea of life with mighty acts in the power of God through the gifts of the Spirit. You will find that this which I am speaking on is out of knowledge derived from a wonderful experience in many lands. The man who is filled with the Holy Ghost is always acting. You read the first verse of the Acts of the Apostles, “Jesus began both to do and teach.” He began to do first, and so must we.
Beloved, we must see that the baptism with the Holy Ghost is an activity with an outward manifestation. When I was in Norway, God was mightily moving there, though I had to talk by interpretation. However, God always worked in a wonderful way. One day we met a man who stopped the three men I was with, one being the interpreter. I was walking on, but I saw he was in a dilemma, so I turned back and said to the interpreter, “What is the trouble?” “This man,” he said, “is so full of neuralgia that he is almost blind and he is in a terrible state.” As soon as ever they finished the conversation I said to the spirit that was afflicting him, “Come out of him in the name of Jesus.” And the man said, “It is all gone! It is all gone! I am free.” Ah, brothers, we have no conception of what God has for us!
I will tell you what happened in Sydney, Australia. A man with a stick passed a friend and me. He had to get down and then twist over, and the tortures on his face made a deep impression on my soul. I asked myself, “Is it right to pass this man?” So I said to my friend, “There is a man in awful distress, and I cannot go further. I must speak to him.” I went over to this man and said to him, “You seem to be in great trouble.” “Yes,” he said, “I am no good and never will be.” I said, “You see that hotel. Be in front of that door in five minutes and I will pray for you, and you shall be as straight as any man in this place.” This is on the line of activity in the faith of Jesus. I came back after paying a bill, and he was there. I will never forget him wondering if he was going to be trapped, or what was up that a man should stop him in the street and tell him he should be made straight. I had said it, so it must be. If you say anything you must stand with God to make it so. Never say anything for bravado, without you have the right to say it. Always be sure of your ground, and that you are honouring God. If there is anything about it to make you anything, it will bring you sorrow. Your whole ministry will have to be on the line of grace and blessing. We helped him up the two steps, passed him through to the elevator, and took him upstairs. It seemed difficult to get him from the elevator to my bedroom, as though Satan was making the last stroke for his life, but we got him there. Then in five minutes’ time this man walked out of that bedroom as straight as any man in this place. He walked perfectly and declared he hadn’t a pain in his body.
Oh, brother, it is ministration, it is operation, it is manifestation! Those are three of the leading principles of the baptism with the Holy Ghost. And we must see to it that God is producing these three through us.
The Bible is the Word of God, it has the truths and whatever people may say of them they stand stationary, unmovable. Not one jot or tittle shall fail of all His good promises. His word will come forth. In heaven it is settled, on earth it must be made manifest that He is the God of everlasting power.
God wants manifestation and He wants His glory to be seen. He wants us all to be filled with that line of thought that He can look upon us and delight in us subduing the world unto Him. And so you are going to miss a great deal if you don’t begin to act. But once you begin to act in the order of God, you will find that God establishes your faith and from that day starts you on the line of the promises. When will you begin?
WHAT IF WE BELIEVED?
In a place in England I was dealing on the lines of faith and what would take place if we believed God. Many things happened. But when I got away it appeared one man who worked in the colliery had heard me. He was in trouble with a stiff knee. He said to his wife, “I cannot help but think every day that that message of Wigglesworth’s was to stir us to do something. I cannot get away from it. All the men in the pit know how I walk with a stiff knee, and you know how you have wrapped it around with yards of flannel. Well, I am going to act. You have to be the congregation.” He got his wife in front of him. “I am going to act and do just as Wigglesworth did.” He got hold of his leg unmercifully, saying, “Come out, you devils, come out! In the name of Jesus. Now, Jesus, help me. Come out, you devils, come out.” Then he said, “Wife they are gone! Wife, they are gone. This is too good. I am going to act now.” So he went to his place of worship and all the collier boys were there. It was a prayer meeting. As he told them this story these men became delighted. They said, “Jack, come over here and help me.” And Jack went. As soon a he was through in one home he was invited to another, loosing these people of the pains they had gotten in the colliery.
Ah, brothers and sisters, we have no idea what God has for us if we will only begin! But oh, the grace we need! We may make a mishap. If you do it outside of Him, if you do it for yourself, and if you want to be some one, it will be a failure. We shall only be able to do well as we do it in the name of Jesus. Oh, the love that God’s Son can put into us if we are only humble enough, weak enough, and helpless enough to know that except He does it, it will not be done! “What things soever ye desire when ye pray, believe that ye receive and ye shall have them.”
Live in the Spirit, walk in the Spirit, walk in communion with the Spirit, talk with God. All leadings of the divine order are for you. I pray that if there are any who have turned to their own way and have made God second, they will come to repentance on all lines. Separate yourself from every earthly touch, and touch ideas. And God will bring you to an end of yourself. Begin with God this moment.