Depending on the Spirit in Ministry
Luke 4:17–19 gives us a condensed description of the Father’s business. It’s an example we must follow as we live in the flow of the Holy Spirit and allow Him to work, not just in us, but through us as well.
Luke writes, “And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written:
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”
The Father’s business can be summarized in these seven points:
1. The Spirit of the Lord is upon me.
2. Preach the gospel to the poor.
3. Heal the brokenhearted.
4. Proclaim liberty to the captives.
5. Give recovery of sight to the blind.
6. Set at liberty the oppressed.
7. Proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.
These seven points give us a roadmap to understanding the Father’s business. These are seven things we MUST be about. We need to understand them and do them—we don’t want to be only “hearers” and not “doers” of the Word (James 1:22). We want to be equipped to be passionate servants of Christ and doers of His Word.
It is our responsibility as believers to be equipped and GO.
To be equipped and follow His roadmap we need to understand that everything Jesus did He did as a man filled with the Spirit of God. He didn’t go about the Father’s business as God, with different resources available to Him than we have, which is a major misconception among many Christians. Philippians 2:7 says that when Jesus came to earth, He “made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.” Jesus emptied Himself and lived on earth as a man of the Spirit.
Read Luke 3:21–23. Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit, and then He ministered. Do you think you can do the Father’s business without the Father’s power in the Holy Spirit? If you try to do your Father’s business without it, frustration and burnout will come. What will frustration and burnout cause?
We need to remember that we cannot burn out the eternal Spirit of God. We must trust God and be radically dependent on Him if we are going to be about His business.
Jesus wants to fill us with the power of the Spirit of the living God so we can follow His example and be about the Father’s business. If, however, there is no desire or intent for “to”—to minister, to be a witness, to preach the gospel, to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, to give recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty the oppressed, to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord—we can’t expect to receive any power to “do.” How can we get ourselves into a “to” mindset? Can we humble ourselves and ask God to enable us to “do”?
God responds to a heart that’s willing, hungry, and humble. What is one step we can take today to become more willing, more humble, and more hungry for God?