Grieving the Holy Spirit (Spurgeon)

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        I was reading through Spurgeon notes and sermons on Grieving the Holy Spirit and thought I’d post some of his thoughts and teaching on this.  I think you’ll enjoy this and find it quite thought-provoking. ( click here for more on “Grieve not the Holy Spirit” Eph 4:30)

(notes/ phrases taken from Charles Spurgeon 1859 sermon no. 278)

       And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Ephesians 4:30

       Notice the bible does not say “Don’t make him angry” but instead it reads “Grieve Him not”.  Some people are barely moved when someone is angry with them, but who cannot be somehow moved when we know we have caused someone grief? For grief is a sweet combination of anger and of love. Love sweetens the anger. Perhaps you wouldn’t care much if you made someone angry without cause, but to grieve that person and without intention, would cause you distress of heart and you would not rest until this grief had subsided, until you had made some explanation or apology or had done your best to take away the grief. When we see anger in another, we at once begin to feel hostility. Anger begets anger, but grief begets pity and pity is next to love and we are to love those we have caused to grieve.  Grieve not the Holy Spirit; do not cause Him to mourn.

The Love of the Holy Spirit for you

     Oh, how He loves you! It is difficult to put into words, except to look at actions. Look back on your life from childhood and see how the Holy Spirit searched you out in love to stir up your conscience and correct us on account of our youthful sins. How often has the Spirit of the Lord gone after us. How often have I remembered his guiding?  He has whispered in our ears “ My son, give me your heart, go to thy chamber, shut they door , confess thy sins, and seek a Savior’s love and blood” –and how often or not have we listened and obeyed? How often have we put those words aside? But blessed be his dear name, that He has never let us go! Though our steps were leading us straight to the fires of hell, he sought after us to pluck us from the fire. He wrestled with us and would not let us destroy our souls. Oh, how many times have we ill-treated Him? Wasn’t it the Holy Spirit who guided you to Jesus? Who opened your blind eyes and your deaf ears to hear of a pardoning love? Who opened your clasped hands to receive the Savior’s grace? Though we are all still learning, He is our blessed instructor and continues to lead us into many truths. The Spirit comes down to dwell with us stubborn, unruly wild colts to teach us the mystery of the kingdom and make known to us the wonder’s of a Savior’s love. He has helped you in all your labors; He has comforted you in all your distress. He has filled you hearts with peace and Joy in believing. How many times would your heart be broken if He had not bound it up? He bound up your wounds. He teaches, preaches, commands with authority, how many of us are willing to do this- to bear with unbelievers, with sinners, and to search out the troubles souls helping them find compassion? How wonderful is the Holy Spirit, who would stoop down from heaven to become a comforter to us. 

            We, ourselves, groan within our spirit which the spirit hears and it reaches the heights of heaven to the ears of Christ. He is full of tender compassion, he helps us in our infirmities. He gives us strength, and we cannot say it is on our own accomplishment. He has so sweetly enabled us, and how often have we forgotten to thank Him, must we not admire His love? Must it not be a fearful sin indeed to grieve the Holy Spirit by whom we are sealed? The Holy Spirit dwells in the heart of all God’s redeemed and blood-washed people. Oh, my friends, when I think how often you and I have let the devil in, I wonder the Spirit has not withdrawn from us. He preserves the saints what a wonderful miracle.  It is a wonder that the Holy Spirit is there at all, but he must be daily grieved with all the evil guests, false traitors, that try to enter the heart of man. We often talk about the love of Jesus, but when do you talk about the love of the Holy Spirit? Now we are not here exalting one person of the trinity above another, but I do feel this: that we should love Jesus with all our hearts, and let us love the Holy Spirit too. Do not forget Christ’s cross, let us not forget the Spirit’s operations.

The Holy Spirit Has Sealed You

           The Spirit himself is said to be our seal and our pledge of inheritance. He confirms we are truly the children of God, we are born of God. No faith is true if it is not sealed with the Holy Spirit. The Lord has anointed us and has sealed us and has put the Spirit in our heart. Unsealed faith is like a poison, but sealed faith is true faith.  The Holy Spirit seals us with preservation until Christ comes to fully redeem us.

 Grieving the Spirit

  How can I grieve the Holy Spirit? You may grieve Him with impure thoughts. He cannot bear sin and it grieves Him if your heart is lifted up to anything other than Him. We also grieve Him if we indulge in outward acts of sin. For he cannot dwell in our hearts if we continue to carry on that way. Is you prayer closet cob-webbed? Have you neglected Him? Is your bible collecting dust on the shelf in the back room? Do you not seek to do any good in this world? Do you only live for yourself? As the scripture says “ They have forsaken me, they have left the fountain of waters, they have hewn unto themselves broken cisterns” I can see the Spirit grieving when you sit down to read a novel and there sits your bible unread. Don’t you know how precious this book Is? You have no time for prayer, but the Spirit sees you very active about worldly things, and you have many hours to spare for relaxation and amusement. He is grieved when He sees you love worldly things better than you love Him.

      Take care that He does not go away from you, for it will be a pitiful thing for you if He leaves you to yourself. He is grieved with your unbelief, doubt and worry. (Read Hebrews 11) Do you doubt His trustworthiness? His Power? Let us make a confession, that we have grieved the Holy Spirit. What happens to us when we grieve the Holy Spirit? He is grieved again and again and again, and still bears with us. But finally, when His grief become excessive, He will say “ I will stop my operations here, I will leave” What a miserable state we will be left in if this happens. His instructions we will hear no more, we open the word- but no longer understand. We go to our notes, but they make no sense. Where has our comfort gone? Where has our joy gone? Now there is darkness and no presence of spiritual power. Once we could do all things, but now we can do nothing.. The Lord will withdrawal himself at that time, no longer will light shine, joy will not be found, spiritual power and comfort –all gone. Oh, how thankful I am to the Holy Spirit for the abundance of grace and gifts He fills us with.

  Now consider this: Some may not agree, however, some of the present day churches have grieved the Holy Spirit. For the Spirit deals with the churches just as it does with individuals. Consider this- how many lost are the churches bringing in? Is the pool of baptism unstirred? This is sad, but the churches seem to like it that way. For the Spirit of God is grieved there in our churches and He is gone. He is still present here with us. He has not left us, even though we are unworthy. Oh, how I want to see the Holy Spirit poured out on the churches!!

        Now, go home to your houses and humble yourselves before God and cry aloud that he will visit His church and open the windows of heaven to pour out His grace- that nations would be born in a day, and sinners saved by the thousands- oh, that revival would come. The Spirit of God never leaves His people finally, He leaves them for chastisement, but not for damnation. Sometimes He leaves that they may get good knowing their own weakness, but will not leave them finally to perish. Are you in a state of backsliding or coldness?

      Listen to me and may the Lord bless these words: Brother, do not stay any longer in this condition and in the absence of the Holy Spirit. Use every means so that the Spirit may come back to you. Search out the sin that has grieved the Spirit, give it up, slay that sin, repent with tears and sighs, continue in prayer, and never rest until the Holy Ghost comes back to you. Pray “Return, return, O Holy Spirit return, and dwell in my soul” Yield to Him, resist Him not, and grieve Him not.
              Repent and be converted every one of you, that your sins may be blotted out when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the lord and remember these words:

He that believeth in the Lord Jesus and is baptized, shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned” May the Lord grant that we many not grieve the Holy Spirit. Amen

Pray Psalms 51:
Have Mercy on me, O God
because of your unfailing love.
Because of your great compassion
blot out the stain of my sins.
Wash me clean from my guilt
purify me from my sin.
For I recognized my rebellion,
it haunts me day and night.
Against you and you alone, have I sinned,
I have done what is evil in your sight
You will be proved right in what you say,
any your judgement against me is just.
For I was born a sinner
yes, from the moment my mother conceived me
But you desire honesty from the womb
teaching me wisdom even there
Purify me from my sins and I will be clean
wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.

Oh, give me back my joy again, a
you have broken me
now let me rejoice
Don’t keep looking at my sins
remove the stain of my guilt
Create in me a new heart, O God
Renew a right spirit within me
Do not banish me from your presence
and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me.

Restore me to the joy of your salvation
and make me willing to obey you
Thank I will teach your ways to rebels
and they will return to you
Unseal my lips, O Lord that my mouth may praise you
The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit
you will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God

And Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God. Ephesians 4:30

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What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 1 Cor 6:19

And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Eph 4:30

           If you had asked me what this meant a few years ago, I’d probably have some quick answer like- “don’t sin and therefore grieve the Spirit”. Honestly, I didn’t really understand it and the words sounded so old-fashioned to me, but when the Lord spoke this into my heart –“You have grieved the Holy Spirit”-  it crushed me and I  finally understood.

Let me explain:
                I decided, as the years have gone by, not to watch rated R movies (and I think I need to begin backing out of some PG13 ones also) I have been really convicted and as much as I really want to laugh with a good movie, I just say no.  This decision leaves me with little left to watch except for Veggie Tales and SpongeBob, if I’m lucky. Anywhoooo….. my husband really wanted me to watch  a certain movie with him.  I read the review- knew it wasn’t for me, but made a wonderful excuse for myself; “I’ll just watch it until the bad part, and then I’ll leave”.   So I’m watching this movie and the bad part comes along- it was so shocking and repulsive, I won’t let myself remember it again. However, there I sat and watched it , the same way I do with road kill- I don’t know why. I was disgusted. I got up from the couch and walked around the house to distract my mind from what I just saw.  I thought I was good.
            Later that evening, I found my way to my hidden prayer place in the house. I began to pray- but something wasn’t right. I prayed, but I felt like the Lord wasn’t there.  Lord, I prayed, where are you? I feel like you aren’t here. I feel like you aren’t listening to me. I feel alone and my prayers are going nowhere. Lord! Lord! I cried out, I knew something wasn’t right. As I wondered in silence a clear voice spoke into my heart: “You have grieved the Holy Spirit”  What! I, thought…. “but Lord, I didn’t want to, Lord, I didn’t mean to” and I heard “but you knew” and I argued back again, and I heard “but you knew” I was silenced. I felt horrible. I don’t think words can explain how I felt. Not only for doing something wrong, but that I had hurt His feelings and caused Him sorrow. The words cut right through me, and I knew I was wrong.
              I felt like I had hurt my best friend’s feelings. Here was someone who loved me, cared for me, puts up with my defects, watches over me, teaches me, had never done any wrong to me – and I had hurt His feelings. My spirit was crushed, what an awful feeling to grieve the Holy Spirit who lives inside me. He doesn’t tell us, “don’t get the Holy Spirit mad”, but not to cause Him grief and sadness with the way we live our life.

IT FELT LIKE I HAD HURT MY BEST FRIEND’S FEELINGS

 30 And do not bring sorrow to God’s Holy Spirit by the way you live. Remember, he has identified you as his own, guaranteeing that you will be saved on the day of redemption.

    Think and Meditate on Gen 6: 4-6:  The Lord observed the extent of human wickedness on the earth, and he saw that everything they thought or imagined was consistently and totally evil. So the Lord was sorry he had ever made them and put them on the earth. It broke his heart.( KJV:And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart)

 

  Ephesians 4 teaches us to live a life pleasing unto the Lord: 

  1. Live a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God
  2. Always be humble and gentle
  3. Be patient with each other, allowing for each other’s faults because of your love
  4. Make every effort to keep yourself united in Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.
  5. Be wise, and don’t be tossed around with every new teaching
  6. Do not be influenced by lies people use to trick you into false doctrine
  7. Speak the truth in love
  8. Grow in every way to more and more like Christ
  9. Don’t close your minds and harden your hearts against the Lord
  10. Do not live for lustful pleasure and stay away from anything impure
  11. Throw off your former way of life which is corrupted by lust and deception
  12. LET THE SPIRIT RENEW YOUR THOUGHTS AND ATTITUDES’
  13. Put on your new nature, created to be like God- truly righteous and holy
  14. Stop telling lies
  15. Don’t sin by letting anger control you
  16. Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry- for anger gives a foothold to the devil
  17. If you are a thief, quit stealing and use your hands for good hard work and give generously to others in need
  18. Do not use foul or abusive language.
  19. Let everything you say be good and helpful
  20. Let your words be encouraging to all who hear them
  21. Do not bring sorrow to God’s Holy Spirit by the way you live
  22. Get rid of all bitterness
  23. Get rid of all rage
  24. Get rid of all anger
  25. Get rid of all harsh words
  26. Get rid of all slander and gossip
  27. Get rid of all evil behavior
  28. Be Kind to one another
  29. Be tender-hearted, gentle and merciful to others as the Lord is with you
  30. Forgive one another just as God through Christ has forgiven you

     God has called us to live holy lives, not impure lives.  Therefore, anyone who refuses to live by these rules is not disobeying human teaching but is rejecting God, who gives his Holy Spirit to you. 1 Thes 4:7-8

I’ll add a few more: 

  1. Don’t use God’s name in vain
  2. Don’t watch movies that you know are wrong
  3. Don’t listen to music that is not good for you listen to
  4. Make time for the Lord today, He wants to spend time with you
  5. Don’t ignore Him when He tugs on your heart to pray
  6. Listen for His warnings and obey
  7. Follow Him

  The Holy spirit is closer than a friend, He is our Comforter and our Helper 

And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. Ez 36:27

He is our Comforter, He is with us forever
 If
ye love me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you. John 14:16-18

 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 1 co 6:19

   He teaches me and guides me into all truth

  When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own but will tell you what he has heard. He will tell you about the future. 14 He will bring me glory by telling you whatever he receives from me. 15 All that belongs to the Father is mine; this is why I said, ‘The Spirit tell you whatever will he receives from me.’ John 16:12-15

    Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.  But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned 1 Cor 2 : 12-14 

For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.  But you have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you, so you don’t need anyone to teach you what is true. For the Spirit teaches you everything you need to know, and what he teaches is true—it is not a lie. So just as he has taught you, remain in fellowship with Christ. 1 John 2:27, Luke 12:12 

So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus. Acts 13:4

Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. Acts 20:28 

 He helps us pray

For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.     
         
And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.  But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost, Jude 1:20, Romans 8:5, 26-27

The Holy Spirit Keeps us Protected, and Sealed until the day of  Redemption;  Grieve not the Holy Spirit, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption
     Looking at the leaves in my backyard, I noticed a waxy cover or seal over each of them. Though the rains and storms come, the leaves are unaffected. That is what the Holy Spirit it like for us, He is our protector in storms. Though the trials of life may hit hard, He is always there to help us, comfort us and get us back on our feet. He is there when we are tempted, helping us find our way back. He has sealed us and marked us because we belong to our Heavenly Father.

 Luke 11:13 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.  For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call.  REPENT, BE BAPTISED AND ASK HIM ASK HIM

FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT

Think about:  Am  I listening to the Holy Spirit? Am I obeying? Are the gifts of the Holy Spirit evident in my life?

But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and selfcontrol. There is no law against these things! Gal 5 :22   Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there.  Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives.  Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.

SPIRITUAL GIFTS:

There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all. There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord. God works in different ways, but it is the same God who does the work in all of us.   A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other.  To one person the Spirit gives the ability to give wise advice; to another the same Spirit gives a message of special knowledge. The same Spirit gives great faith to another, and to someone else the one Spirit gives the gift of healing He gives one person the power to perform miracles, and another the ability to prophesy. He gives someone else the ability to discern whether a message is from the Spirit of God or from another spirit. Still another person is given the ability to speak in unknown languages, while another is given the ability to interpret what is being said.  It is the one and only Spirit who distributes all these gifts. He alone decides which gift each person should have.

And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret?But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way

Let love be your highest goal!
But you should also desire the special abilities the Spirit gives—especially the ability to prophesy.  For if you have the ability to speak in tongues,] you will be talking only to God, since people won’t be able to understand you. You will be speaking by the power of the Spirit,] but it will all be mysterious. But one who prophesies strengthens others, encourages them, and comforts them. A person who speaks in tongues is strengthened personally, but one who speaks a word of prophecy strengthens the entire church.I wish you could all speak in tongues, but even more I wish you could all prophesy. For prophecy is greater than speaking in tongues, unless someone interprets what you are saying so that the whole church will be strengthened.1 Cor 14 

 

Today remember:  grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Amen.