And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12  He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.
1 John 5,11-12

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The tragedy of the church where Jesus isn´t the Lord….

Společenství pro Ježíše

The duplicate of a part of Vojtěch Kodet’s lecture called „Who isn´t thirsty, let him not come“ that´s been heard at this year´s Catholic Charismatic Conference ( 2008) in Brno The tragedy of the church where Jesus isn´t the Lord….
You see, it´s very difficult when you´ve never before experienced Jesus.And I think, in this respect God´s heart is very sore when he looks at us, our congregation, our church.There´re for example people who´ve been trying to go to church since their childhood, receive the Holy Communion, go to confession, trying to observe the Ten Commandments, read Scriptures, pray but they´ve never experienced joy of God. As if their heart never met Jesus´s heart. And it stands to reason that the Holy Spirit´s flowing through Jesus´s heart or they couldn´t experience what´s written in the Bible, especially in the New Testament.The Holy Spirit gives life and joy and freedom.He prays within us, calls Abba, Father.That´s exactly what we all want….And someone´s never experienced it.He doesn´t even know what he should ask for, because when you never got a taste, so you don´t know what you should ask for.And this is one of the biggest problems of every majority church, of course not excepting ours.Our Christians are said to have come across the formal faith, loads of Christian truths, habits, some of them are less Christian ( sometimes the Christian customs are even mixed up with the pagan ones ), different practice, habits, commandements, to cut a long story short, they encountered Christianity without Spirit.And Christianity without Spirit doesn´t exist in essence, it´s a nonsense!!!. The trouble is that we´ve been trying to do it for 2000 years. And we´re quite good at it.The point is that it´s not Christianity any longer without Spirit.Since wherever the Lord´s Spirit is, only there is present Jesus.Wherever the Lord´s Spirit is present, the God´s work is carried out there.There´re people who really confess Christ and they live according to the principles of the Gospel from the God´s power.Unfortunately, we´ve got the experience, although you may have experienced some personal awakening several times , how the things are with you, your congregation or with your parish when the Spirit sneaks away.Suddenly there´s a sadness, sometimes a kind of the religious seriousness ( words to the effect „Fun ends here, the religion begins“ ), forms start to proliferate, instructions, rituals, prohibitions and orders and phrases begin to increase, we need to have instructions for everything, but the letter kills and Spirit gives life.
Derek Prince´s warned us ( the Christians ) and all the churches without exception about the pitfall of legalism – the Christianity without the Spirit – in one of his books. And he characterized single signs of this legalism that endangers our congregations.We can find it out according to these sympthoms: theology takes precedence over the God´s revelation, intelectual education is placed over building a personal character, all the social psychological sciences and disciplines are put above the spiritual discernment, various projects, for example,.pastoral ones are put over leading of the God´s Spirit, the eloquence of the God´s servants are placed above the God´s power, logical thinking over walking in the faith, commandments over the love.This is a tragedy.I wouldn´t like to live in such a church.I wouldn´t like to rub shoulders with anyone in such a congregation.Since this is the congregation of the dead, a congregation that stinks, which is being decomposed, which keeps going only by embalming.
But I want to be where the life´s welling up.At the 4.assembly of the ecumenical council of the churches in Swedish Uppsala metropolitan of Laodice in Syria in those days ( and the Orthodox patriarcha of Antiochia Ignacios the subsequent years ) hit the nail on the head.The God is distant without Spirit, Christ remains in the past, the Gospel remains a dead letter ( something that we´re studying, analysing, dissecting till we find the dead God ), the church remains only an institution, ( and you know some of the atheists don´t like it at all when they first come across the church, it looks like an institution.That´s wrong ).The authority becomes a willing instrument of holding the people in its power, missions are going to be a mere propaganda, liturgy becomes a commemoration ritus and only enslaving morals will remain of the Christianity. If this is the case, then you shouldn´t be surprised that young people aren´t interested in the Christian faith.This can´t be true.Since Jesus didn´t think it this way! He wished Holy Spirit to come down over and over again.Remember Jesus´s desire when he´s shouting:“I’ve come to throw fire on earth and how much I want it to flare up!“He referred to the Holy Spirit.As he knew only Holy Spirit, his love and power can return a person the dignity that was lost by sinning.He knew only Holy Spirit can bring a person back in the intimate relationship with God that he´s just lost.He knew that only He can teach us to follow the God´s paths.We´re too much blinded, confused and remote to God to do it on our own.That´s why he craved a lot so that the Holy Spirit could come and be poured down on all of us.He himself had the Holy Spirit.He didn´t do anything without Him.He himself was also baptised in the human body by the Holy Spirit.The Spirit sent him out into the desert and led him when his was tempted by devil.Then Jesus was lead out of the desert and was given the words of the announcement of the gospel….

Let´s remember the Nazareth´s synagogue where Jesus read the passage from Isaiah, the 61.chapter.He says:“Today this scripture´s fulfilled in your hearing: The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he´s annointed me to preach good news to the poor.He´s sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners…... everything that Jesus´s done, was in the Spirit´s power, he´s had Holy Spirit but he didn´t want his disciples to become some altar boys, he didn´t want them to look only how to go about it and try to imitate it. He wanted to give them the essence, that´s the Holy Spirit and this is the only way how to live our Christianity well and properly.We can never separate Jesus´s teaching from his Spirit who gives life.

Jesus´s disciple isn´t the one who´s studied something.Unfortunately, there´s sometimes more theology than practice in our seminaries as well.Our civilisation tends to lay too much stress on the education.It´s not that the education would be bad but the education without experience?! And it´s even more crucial as far as the Christianity is concerned.The experience is fundamental there.Jesus´s disciple is someone who´s experienced the change of the Spirit, the change of his heart. Remember what the prophet Ezechial says in the 36.chapter where he foretells God´ll give us a new heart and a new Spirit.What does it mean?I´ll take hearts of stone away from your body and I´ll give you hearts of flesh..

He´ll take away from us everything that made our heart grow hard.And he´ll give us the share in his heart.His heart full of love, kindness, humbleness and blandness.And he´ll take the human spirit away and he´ll give us his spirit.And he calls: „Come to me!“As wecan´t receive the Holy Spirit by doing magic.The Holy Spirit isn´t an energy that I´m gonna draw somewhere by myself.I must come to the Christ.
The most important moment of my life is when I´ve laid my head on the Jesus´s heart.

In other words, the moment when I chose Jesus for my Lord, Saviour and my friend. When I accepted the invitation to become Jesus´s friend.

And I entered into the intimate relationship with him.This is changing the life.There´s Holy Spirit bubbling over there.And there comes a kind of sparkle of understanding between me and him.


                                                       Ludvík Šojdr transcribed from the sound recording


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