Andrew Murray on ‘Knowing the Spirit’ #2.4
In chapter eight of The Indwelling Spirit, Andrew Murray begins by bemoaning the fact that our knowledge of what God has prepared for us is often too weak. That is why we need to pray the same prayer as the one St. Paul prayed in Ephesians 1:17-19:
I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in His holy people, and His incomparable great power for us who believe.
But first, we need to know the Teacher through whom all knowledge comes.
Discerning the Spirit’s voice
We can only know that it is the Spirit leading us if we have grown to know Him.
- The first step is to acknowledge His divine commission and presence.
- The second is to accept Jesus’ word when He says: ‘You know Him for He dwells with you and will be in you’ (John 14:17)
Murray urges everyone who desires to know the Spirit as a friend and teacher to study the Word with regards to what it says regarding the Spirit.
If you are in earnest to know the Spirit, search the Word. . . . If you are a child of God, you have the Spirit, even though you may not know how He manifests Himself in you.
Murray goes on to say that we should ask the Father to illuminate the Word to us through the Spirit, and we shall find His promise fulfilled. We should, however, keep in mind that Scripture speaks of His work as demanding the surrender of our lives:
But if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live. For those who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God (Romans 8:13b-14).
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore, honour God with your bodies (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).
Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit (Galatians 5:25).
Cultivate the spiritual disciplines
Murray now urges us to cultivate the spiritual disciplines that will lead us to getting to know the Spirit and His work in our lives. He mentions here the ones that revolutionized his own spiritual walk.
- Cultivate the habit of bowing in silence before God.
- Wait on the Spirit in holy dependence.
- Enter the temple of your heart to see whether all is surrendered to Him.
- Ask and expect the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
- Don’t rely on your feelings.
- As you continue to have regular fellowship with God, you will feel, see, and taste as well.
- Converse with God as you would a person.
Blessed Father, You who in the name of Christ has sent us your Holy Spirit, graciously hear my prayer and grant that I may know Him by His indwelling presence.
May His witness to Jesus be divinely clear, and may His leading and sanctifying be in such power that the consciousness of Him may be as sure as my natural life.