February 9

“But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge…the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie-just as it has taught you, abide in him.” (1 John 2:20, 27)

If you have traveled outside your home country, you’ve experienced being in a completely different culture, with distinctive music, language, customs, patterns of traffic, and dress. You can feel it right away; there is a particular impression about the airport or train station, the people, and markets. This is a small and inadequate analogy for the difference between human wisdom and wisdom that which comes from Christ. Some children belong to Jesus from a young age and are used to the ways of the Spirit, who indwells them. It is as if they moved around the world in a military family and felt at home almost everywhere. Others, who have never traveled only know the customs of their home until they have been converted by grace in Christ. We are used to the human wisdom of the world and have learned to think like the world. But when Christ captures our hearts, the Holy Spirit comes to live in us and gives us an entirely different experience.

The apostle John writes that believers have been anointed by Jesus Christ, who is the Holy One (Mark 1:24; John 6:69; Acts 3:14). We who were dead in sin and darkness have been born again into eternal life, by the work of the Holy Spirit-who also teaches us all things of Christ. There is no higher wisdom than that of God, given to us through the gospel and the work of the Holy Spirit in us, who sanctifies us, bringing us to increasing knowledge of biblical certainty. We no longer need or want any truth that does not conform to the gospel; we are confident of its veracity and dispute anything that does not submit to it. The Old Testament prophet Jeremiah spoke of this when he wrote, “And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more'” (Jeremiah 31:34).

One of our most significant challenges is to learn to apply gospel wisdom to our lives. Relationships are both the most troublesome and the most pleasurable aspects of this world. We say we want higher wisdom from God but won’t commit to learning how to use it in one of the most critical facets of this life. But those with the Spirit have redemptive wisdom for more loving relationships.

How will you engage with the Holy Spirit to apply his wisdom more effectively to your relationships? “No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us, and his love is perfected in us. By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit.” (1 John 4:12-13)

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