CULTIVATING THE CULTURE OF THE WORD AND SPIRIT
Text: 1Pet.1:23; 1Tim 3:15.
Objective: To enlighten and entrench the new birth (word & Spirit birth) lifestyle to become a culture among all members of the church.
When we get born again, we are birthed into a spiritual world. We draw our essence from that consciousness. This new birth has its own lifestyle. The values of this terrestrial world are different and many times opposite to the spiritual world; which is our new heritage particularly in Christ. In the natural, we feed our body to grow with natural food, but in the spirit we feed our spirit with Spiritual food (i.e the Word of God). The life in the spirit is made up of its own values and culture.
This culture must be taught and understood and encouraged at all times for the beauty of our heavenly heritage to be experienced. For example, if a Christian betrays his heavenly culture of the Word and the Spirit and goes around talking lack and penury and sickness, he though being of a superior heritage will suffer much hardship simply because he does not have a culture of speaking faith filled words in His daily lifestyle.
However, in 1 Tim.4:13-16, some of the cultural values expected from us as believers are listed. It particularly affirms that if we take these things (i.e these culture and other recommendations made) seriously, we will make significant progress that cannot be ignored but rather envied.
So today in this particular study, we seek to appreciate the value of the new life we have received in Christ Jesus and to cultivate the culture of the Word and the Spirit so that we will truly experience the fullness of the quality of life we have received in Christ Jesus. Be blessed as we study along. Amen!
Questions for discussion
1) What does the word culture mean?
2) Can we identify various natural and spiritual culture(s)?
3) What do you understand by culture of the Word?
4) What do you understand by the culture of the Spirit?
5) Is there any real benefit to cultivating or developing and practicing these spiritual culture? Please name them!
6) Is there any consequence whatsoever for not embracing the culture of the Word and Spirit?
7) How do I cultivate and practice these culture? Also when and where may practice my culture and my convictions?
1) Culture means the behaviors and beliefs characteristic of a particular social, ethnic, or age group: the youth culture; the drug culture; the Christian culture. It also may be described in Anthropology as the sum total of ways of living built up by a group of human beings and transmitted from one generation to another. In other words lifestyle peculiar to a people.
2) Natural will include, greeting, eating, giving out in marriage and other peculiar beliefs that may affect how it is done. Spiritual culture includes praying, fasting, reading, meditating, coming to church, faith, worship, speaking the truth, preaching the gospel, among a few.
3) Culture of the Word and the Spirit refers to the peculiar lifestyle that a Christian should undertake in line with his new nature. It is when He does this that his profiting will appear to all men. Examples of the culture of the Word is to read, study, meditate, preach and do. Because we are born of the Word we must be sustained by the Word. A person who will practice the Word as a lifestyle or culture must work with the back ground mentality that the Word of God is sovereign and supreme. John1:1; Ps.119:89; ps.138:2.
4) For the culture of the spirit, the believer is expected to be conscious of the fact that God is Spirit and if you must worship Him or please Him, this is not possible in the flesh. You must embrace and walk with God in the spirit. Rom.8:8; John 4:24. Examples of the culture of the spirit to cultivate is Prayer, fasting, giving, forgiveness, honesty, faithfulness, fellowship, lifting up of hands…!
5) There are very exciting benefits for cultivating these culture(s). Heb.11:6 says …God is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. In Ps.1:1-2. We see the reward for doing things right and steering off mockers, ungodly and sinners. The Word of God says there that such a person will prosper in ALL that He does. Josh.1:8, Rev.1:3 and 1Tim.4:13,15 &16 tells us that the person who reads and preaches these things is blessed. In more specific sense, the believer who is given to study and to practice the scripture will be unshaken in the day of evil. The believer who truly believes will be saved. One who prays will have a strong and competent spirit man just to name a few. Please add to the list.
6) Yes, there are some clearly stated consequences for disregarding ones spiritual culture. Such a person may never receive anything from God. James.1:5-8. It also means all the blessings involved in the above scriptures will be a consequence from not committing to practicing them.
7) We practice and cultivate our culture with a conscious effort to respond more to the things of the Spirit. Each time we do this, the culture gets re- strengthened. Every successful action reinforces itself. By so doing it becomes a seated lifestyle. Obedience is what it means to believe God. We must obey God – NOW (IMMEDIATELY) and EVERYWHERE!!! Heb.3:7-8.
Everything that goes into a life of pleasing God has been miraculously given to us by getting to know, our Master and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen! 2 Peter 1:3. We of necessity have to get deliberate at keeping up with our new found life. The culture of the Word and The Spirit is such that is pleasing to God. One would have approval of God and even men when we keep these values dear to our hearts. Take a decision today, now and here that you will cultivate the nature and lifestyle of God which is in you.
You are blessed by God, don’t live less. Till we meet again next week, please remain God’s pride!