I’ve known people who wanted to learn to play an instrument. So they purchased the instrument, took the lessons, bought the music, and did everything just as they were supposed to do. They learned how to technically play the instrument, but they never learned the joy of making music. That requires more than correct technique.
In Exodus chapter 40, you find all the elements and parts of the tabernacle gathered and ready for assembly. Then you find Moses putting the tabernacle together, exactly as God had instructed. He put all the right pieces in all the right places. But it was still just an assemblage of part. It was colorful, but lifeless.
It wasn’t until the Spirit of God descended and filled the tabernacle that it became something more than a lifeless assemblage of parts. It was the presence of God’s Spirit that turned a lifeless tent into a powerful place of His presence.
This principle holds true today. Just as on the day of Pentecost, when cautious disciples were transformed into courageous dynamos, only the presence of the Holy Spirit will turn our correct theology into courageous biology. Only the power of God will turn our orderly approaches to religion into extraordinary appeals from God.
We mean well. We try to get things right. We try to do what we’re suppose to; in the way we’re suppose to. And that’s all important, but we must remember that we’re just an empty tent apart from the in-dwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. (Eph. 2:22) All of our efforts lack life and impact apart from the power and presence of the Holy Spirit. (John 15:5)
So let us live by the Spirit (Gal. 5:16), and God will fill the space in our lives with His presence and power.
Bret Legg is the Teaching and Counseling Pastor at Warren Baptist Church in Augusta, GA.