• Pastor John Rhodes

Spirituality for Today

Updated: Apr 11, 2020

I introduce a new series for the next quarter, July-September 2019, entitled 'Spirituality for Today'. To be ‘spiritual’ is to be aware and concerned about things of a spiritual nature. These are things that cannot be seen, handled and touched as in the physical realm, but they are very real.

1. To be spiritual means to be aware of a spiritual dimension to life.

People are generally aware of a spiritual dimension, even if they don’t belong to a particular religion or religious organisation. Most have had some form of spiritual experience or realisation. Despite this, the relentless message of Western philosophy and education is that only the physical is real. The message doesn’t agree with our experience. The lack of attention to spirituality in our public sphere is at best a misguided attempt to please everyone, at first competing denominations, and now religions in a multi-ethnic society.

Losing spirituality, however, is far from being progressive. It leads to a loss of meaning in life and a feeling-oriented, lost compass morality. An obsession with the physical leads to what is called, in old fashioned religion, ‘idolatry’. In Australia, we need to become more aware of the spiritual dimension to our lives and pay closer attention to the teaching of religion.

2. The Christian understanding of spirituality is deep and meaningful.

The contribution of Christianity to our understanding of the spiritual dimension is rich and wholesome. Christianity brings pardon for human wrong doing through the Cross of Jesus, and peace with the felt presence of God’s Spirit. It gives insight into what is going on in the struggles and temptations of life. In Christian teaching there are spirits – the human spirit, angels, and God. Jesus said, “God is spirit and those who worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.” There are also evil spirits (fallen angels) and the Devil or Satan, believed to be a fallen archangel. Pentecostal Christian teaching provides power to overcome.

3. God can be experienced through the Holy Spirit.

The Gospel message is to receive Jesus and then be filled with the Spirit of God. This provides spiritual power for life, as the prophet says, ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty’ (Zec. 4:6b). I was baptised with the Holy Spirit when I was a teenager and it has profoundly affected my life for good – in my prayer life, in spiritual gifts, in relationships, and in ministering to others.

I invite you, in this series, to appreciate more the spiritual dimension to your daily life in the power of the Holy Spirit. Spirituality is for today!

John Rhodes

Pastor, Hope Sydney

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