Creflo Dollar - The Spirit of Grace - Part 8
Philippians 2 and 12: "Wherefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling". Now, that sounds like, "Well, see, Brother Dollar, right there, he said we're supposed to work it out". And then you start singing the song, "Work it out". No, no, no, you have to keep reading. "Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to," what? "And to do of his"... All right, now look at this in the Amplified. Philippians 2:13 in the Amplified says: "[Not in your own strength,]" look at there, "for it is God Who is all the while effectually at work in you [energizing and creating in you the power and desire]". Look at what the Holy Spirit's doing. "[Creating in you the power and the desire.]" He's creating the desire.
You see, obviously, you didn't have the desire but he's creating a desire for you to live right. Maybe you didn't have the desire before but he's working in you, energizing you, and giving you the desire, a new "want to," amen, "both to will and to work for His good pleasure and satisfaction and delight". Now look at the New Living Translation. So the Holy Spirit's the one that's creating desire. The Holy Spirit knows how to create desire. Say out loud, "The Holy Spirit knows how to create desires". Now look at this: "For God is working in you," doing what? "Giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him". You've always wanted to please him, you just didn't know how and, to be honest, you didn't have the desire or the will to do it. And that's where the Holy Spirit comes in there. He says, "I will create the desire". You know what he's saying? "I'm gonna give you a 'want to,' I'm gonna replace your old 'want to' with my 'want to,' and then you're gonna want to".
See, right now, you might not want to stop having sex with everybody except your spouse. I'm just saying, I'm just saying. Ain't nobody got to leave. We still friends. And that's the issue. It's like, but I don't want to stop smoking this weed. I don't want to stop cussing. And the Holy Spirit says, "I know, that's why I was sent. And if you just believe and just stick with me, I'm gonna give you the desire". Y'all got to hear me. "I'm gonna give you the 'want to' that you don't want to right now. And, oh, if we can just work together, you're gonna wake up one day and you're gonna have a new 'want to.' And what you used to want, you ain't gonna want it no more. And you will look at that want but you'll say, 'She cute, but she's not cute enough for my salvation.' 'Cause you got a new 'want to.'" You got a new "want to," are you listening to what I'm saying? And what we've been trying to do is we've been trying to manufacture a new "want to" out of our own efforts, out of our own performance, out of our own discipline, and the Holy Spirit says, "I don't need you and your self-help books. If self-help could have got the job done, then I would have stayed where I was".
Ha, ha, ha, ha. Hey, he says, "But I've been sent to be your helper". "Well, you know, Brother Dollar, like the Bible says, 'God helps those who helps themselves.'" The Bible don't say that; Benjamin Franklin said that. See, we're so open for all the wrong narratives. And we just let folks just say anything and if it ends up on TV or on a paper or a magazine, you think it was real, you think it's true. I got folks still thinking stuff about me that's true. I ain't got time to be defending myself. The Lord's my defense, I ain't got time to be doing that. You just heard somebody create a narrative and then all your life you just believed it, that's your fault. You ought not to believe everything you hear. Ain't got time to be going around, every time I see somebody, "Hey, how you doin'? Now, I don't know what you heard about me, but"... I ain't got time to be doin' that. He will work in you. He is working in you right now.
If you don't quit, you get a chance to see the masterpiece that the Holy Spirit has created, and you will wake up one day, the habit that you used to have gone, and you can't figure out why you don't want it no more. And it was a secret, you did it in the booth in the back in the corner in the dark, didn't nobody know about it. You didn't think nobody know about it. In these days of cell phones, somebody will see you. But if you'll let the Holy Spirit do his work, he'll change your "want to". You didn't use to want to pray and now you can't wait to pray. You didn't use to want to come to church and now you can't miss a service. You didn't use to want to, watch this, tithe. You remember how you used to be. "Tithe? I ain't tithing crook. And his last name were Dollar? And tithe? Ah, man, y'all can't see that"?
Somebody need to change your "want to". But you know what happens when you push the Holy Spirit out of your life? When you push him out of your life, you've now tried to govern your life and you are not very successful in changing your "want to". You kind of stick with the same old stuff you've been wanting to do. And you find yourself in the center of the circle and self-centeredness produces self-righteousness and all of that leads to bitterness which will now open the door for any type of perversion in your life because God never intended for you to operate and live a life of self-righteousness and self-centeredness, amen? Now, let me keep going just for a moment. I didn't plan on doing this, this morning, but we there so let's do it. Let's look at Psalms 37 and 4. Psalms 37 and 4. It's important that you know only thing he's asking you to do is to believe him, and he'll do the work. We just can't believe that by resting in what he said that something can be done. That by the grace of God, God can give you something you didn't deserve or didn't even work for.
Taffi a few weeks ago taught about the God of the surprise. And I wanna prophesy to you that you're about to encounter the God of the surprise. Some of y'all need a surprise, but a good one. You understand what I'm saying? And the God of the surprise is on the move, praise the Lord, if you don't give up, cave in, and quit. All right, Psalms 37:4, you're familiar with this Scripture. Let's read it out loud: "Delight thyselves in the Lord: and he'll," what? "Delight yourself". Become pliable. It literally means to come to know and to come to receive him. Now what happens when I come to know and receive him? This is so good here, the desire of our hearts are going to be shaped and created according with our delight in him. And so, in other words, he says, as you expose yourself to him, he's gonna create a desire and a will in your heart to be like what you've been exposed to. And in other words, ladies and gentlemen, the Word is gonna shape your desires. The Holy Spirit's gonna shape your desires.
You remember John 15 and 7, he says: "If you abide in me and my Word abide in you, you'll ask what you will, and it'll be given to you"? Well, what's happening here? Basically, what he's saying: "If you let the Word abide in you and you abide in my Word, you're going to ask what you will". Well, what is the will gonna be? It's gonna be what you've been abiding in. In other words, the Holy Spirit's gonna shape your desire to line up with his will. And you're gonna start wanting what he wants. When he says, "Delight yourself in the Lord and I'll give you the desire of your heart," he doesn't mean, "I'm gonna give you your Christmas list". What he means, and we use it like that so wrong. "Delight yourself in the Lord, he'll give you that car if you delight yourself in him," and you're like, "Well, how do you delight"? And then you wake up the next morning smiling, what you doin'? "I'm delighting myself in the Lord". "Why"? "So I can get that car".
That's not what he's talking about. He's talking about if you'll come to know him and spend time with him, then he'll shape your desire. How can he shape your desire? 'Cause you're spending time with the very image you're getting ready to be shaped in. That word you've been abiding in, and has been abiding in you, it's shaping your desire. The exposure to God's Word that you get when you come to church, it's shaping your desire. The time that you spend studying God's Word, meditating in his Word, listening to the Word, praying the Word, it's shaping your desire. You're not gonna just wanna desire just anything, some selfish thing. You're gonna desire what you've been spending time with. Boy, that is true in the natural, isn't it? That is true in the natural too. That is absolutely true in the natural. You spend time around a bunch of junk in the natural, it'll create a desire, won't it? You spend time in God's Word and you spend time with God, he will shape your desire.
See, your desire didn't just pop up. What you desire to do, whether good or bad, came from somewhere, it was shaped in you. "Well, I just desire to have sex all the time". Well, we know what you're doing all the time. You have to expose yourself to a thing in order for it to shape your "want to". "Well, I just want to," ain't no such thing as "I just want to". Your "want to" is subjected to what has shaped you to want to. Does everybody understand what I'm saying here? He will shape your desire. Now, here's what I wanna say to you before I move on. God is shaping your desire. He's giving you the will to do. And so you wonder, "How am I gonna change bad behavior"? He's changing it. He's changing it. It's not a waste of time to come to church. That's why we come to church. We don't come to church so we can deserve a reward. "What you doin' this morning"? "I'm going to church. Lord knows I need it. Maybe the Lord will make something happen for me. Maybe I'll win the Lotto if I just go to church every day this month," that's not what this for. This is about shaping your desire and giving you the will to do in line with God's Word, that's what it's for.
"Well, I would come to church but we can't dance and shout". You can dance and shout once I finish. But you need to sit down and get fed. You need to chill on the emotionalism just for a minute and you need to learn something because the devil's beating your brains out and you have no idea that it's him and you don't know what to do to stop it and then when you get by yourself in the booth in the back in the corner of the dark, when you don't think nobody watching you, then the desire of that has been unaffected and unimpacted by God's Word begins to come up and then it brings about the guilt and the condemnation and the shame which blocks God's love and what he wants to do in your life, amen.
Somebody like, "Sure is. Is that what that is? Is that why I felt like that this morning"? It can all change if you will acknowledge and trust in the presence of the Holy Spirit in your everyday life. You expect to be with the Holy Spirit every day. You wake up and say, "Good morning, Holy Spirit". You talk to him throughout the day, "What we gonna do, Holy Spirit"? You go in a meeting and say, "Holy Spirit, give me wisdom. I think I understand it, but if something pop up in this meetin', I'm trusting that you'll help me to do what I need to do. Holy Spirit, give me the grace to be able to do this, this interview I'm getting ready to do, Lord. I thank you that I got the job, but I need you. And Lord, if you don't want me to have the job, hey, just close that thing up so I won't walk out talkin' about, 'Lord, where were you?' No, I walk out, say, 'He got a better one for me. He didn't wanna have me there.'"
You just gotta trust in the Holy Spirit, that he's walking with you, talking with you, he's guiding you, hallelujah. But we don't spend no time talking to him. You go in your closet sometime, "Holy Spirit, what you want me to wear today"? "Ah, now that's just too deep". No, it's not. He's a living, real reality in my life. Help me, Holy Spirit. Show me what to do, Holy Spirit. The Lord been helping me and my dress because I'm trying to figure out how this generation do stuff. And some of it I like, and some of it I gotta get used to, like them tight straight-leg jeans. I don't know how they wanna wear something that don't cover you all up in the back. But I'm just asking the Holy Spirit, "Help me. Help me so that another generation can receive what I say". "Well, I just think you ought to put your suit and tie on".
Well, ain't nobody ask you what you... see, I wanna be relevant until I'm 120. So if changing the way you dress can help in that, I'm willing to do it because I'm hungry for souls. And if you're not building image but building the church, then you don't care what nobody say because you're concerned about building people and not building your own image. Amen. So I don't know, I might start preaching in shorts and flip-flops if that do... I have to get my feet fixed but, you know, grease them dogs up before you walk out, you understand? Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha. It's good to be free. It's good to be free. You got to quit being in bondage to people and allow the Holy Spirit to deliver you into the call and the mission that he's called you to do. Everybody can't be a rap singer. Hey, man. Everybody can't take... why do what you can do when you can do what you're anointed to do? There's an anointing on everybody in here to do a job, a special anointing that can't nobody do it like you do it with the anointing that God gave you. Before you were born, he selected an anointing and put it on you, and you don't even know about it yet, but that's why he gave you the Holy Ghost, it's to help you discover you.
All right, now let me go on. I think I'm ready to say this. Yeah, I said that. You notice I've been preaching the same thing for the last two months, why? I'm just trying to figure out a better way to say it each time I say it until you can get it, amen? Now, I wanna show you something here. Go with me to a couple of Scriptures here, 1 Corinthians chapter 2, verse 9 and 10, Galatians chapter 1, and then Matthew 16. And that's what we're gonna do today. 1 Corinthians 2, I'm gonna give you this 'cause I'm gonna put this down in a minute. 1 Corinthians 2:9-10, I wanna look at that in King James and the Amplified; Galatians 1:11-12, and then Matthew 16, the King James. All right, now watch this carefully. Now here's what I gotta say, this is what I've been working on the last two weeks, here's what I gotta say. The main purpose of the Holy Spirit is to reveal knowledge to you. His main job is to show you something.
Now, verse 9: "But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, ear has not heard, neither have it entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath," past tense, "prepared for them that love him". How many of you love God? Well, he said he's prepared some things for you that your eye hadn't seen. He says he's prepared some things for you that your ear hadn't heard. He said he's prepared some things for you that your heart hadn't even received. But now look at the next verse: "But God hath revealed them unto us," how? congregation: "By the Spirit". "For the Spirit searches all things, yea, the deep things of God". So if the Spirit searches the deep things of God, he knows what God has already done for you and now is prepared to reveal it to you. Every one of us have a purpose. Every one of us has a mission. Every one of us has an anointing, but the Holy Spirit says, "I'm gonna reveal some things to you that have been hidden for you, not from you," oh my goodness.
All right, now, go to Galatians 1, Galatians 1:11-12. Now, for example, look at what he did with the apostle Paul, Galatians 1. The gospel of grace that Paul preached, he said, "But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man". He said, "I didn't get this by man". Verse 12: "For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it by man, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ". Here is Paul walking around trying to be the best Pharisee that he can be, and then on the road to Damascus, the Holy Spirit reveals his mission, his assignment, his purpose, his anointing. I believe, ladies and gentlemen, that we're gonna have to have revelation in these last days, and the Holy Spirit has been sent to give us revelation. It wasn't like Paul was an expert in hearing from God. On the road to Damascus, Jesus revealed it to him. And I believe that some of you are gonna have a Damascus experience where the Holy Spirit's gonna reveal some things to you.
Now, this is a, in Matthew chapter 16:13, I've been trying to get here for the last month. We here. I said, we're here. All right, I remember teaching this years ago and didn't understand like what I understand right now today. "When Jesus came into the coast of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am"? Do you ever ask yourself the question, "What's the difference between the Son of God and the Son of man"? Jesus was the Son of God. Then when he got a body, he became the Son of man. It's the body that took him from being the Son of God to the Son of man. He has a physical body.
Now, watch this. And here's how they answer: "And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; some, Jeremiah, you know, or one of the prophets". Verse 15: "He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am"? So they're around Jesus and they have no revelation of who he was. They just thought he was a good prophet. Watch this, "Simon Peter answered and said unto him, Thou art," watch this, "the Christ, the Son of the living God". Now, Christ is not Jesus's last name. Somebody say, "Anybody know Jesus's last name"? "I dunno, Jesus Christ or Christ"? No, Christ is not Jesus's last name. Christ is translated, "the Anointed One". So it says: "Who do you say that I am? He said, You are the Anointed One, the Son of the living God".