The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me… – Isa. 61:1a KJV
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The prophet Isaiah was God’s voice to Judah who prophesied during the reign of five kings (Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah and Manasseh) but was martyred during the reign of Manasseh, the son of Hezekiah. Although he severally warned the Israelites of both kingdoms about the unhappiness of the Almighty God with their conduct, calling for a change of attitude in the early chapters of his book in order to avoid impending effects of the anger of the Lord, he spent the latter chapters revealing the plan of God to forgive and return them from exile. Probably in response to questioning of his status as God’s voice or just a way of letting his listeners know who he was spiritually, he launched out in the first verse of the 61st Chapter of his book with the scripture for today.
In that scripture, he asserts clearly that the spirit of the Lord God is upon him. Seemingly like one who is trying to clarify his spiritual status, he uses two similar words in a manner that strengthens one another. In a society that has a lot of idolatry and different spiritual powers in operation, all seemingly achieving the same spiritual feats like that of one with the Spirit of the Sovereign God, it can sometimes be necessary to clarify ones personality to people. No season can be better for this scripture than the one we are in all over the world today. A season where many questionable miracles are rampant but are still been wisely doubted, either in terms of their authenticity or the power behind them.
The Prophet Isaiah clarifies in the scripture today, the spirit that is in operation in his life, which he describes as the “Spirit of the Lord God”. He needed to use those two words together to let people know which god is in reference. He was referring to the god that is the Lord of the Universe. The New International Version of the Bible used the two words “sovereign Lord” which means the one whose lordship is supreme, just as some early versions and manuscripts use the word “Jehovah God” which more clearly identifies the god in reference. Most people will want to make similar claim like Isaiah that the spirit that is operating in them is that of the “Lord God”, but they will need to convince, not merely by verbal assertion, but by equally showing performances in the areas listed by Prophet Isaiah. He had considered the outpouring of the Spirit of the Lord God on him as some form of anointing which implies spiritual empowerment – Isaiah 61:1-3. With such empowerment therefore, he reveals the essence of such commissioning which are:
1. To preach good tidings unto the meek.
2. To bind up the brokenhearted.
3. To proclaim liberty to the captives.
4. To open the prison for those that are bound.
5. To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord , and the day of vengeance of our God.
6. To comfort all that mourn giving them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.
All these is so that the people of God can be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord and that he might be thereby glorified. The ultimate objective of this Spirit is therefore to have God glorified in the lives of His people.
If it is the same Spirit of the Lord God that the Christian today possesses, then that will be confirmed not just by verbal assertion but by the number of souls whose life glorifies the Almighty God due to the actions carried out, under the influence of the spirit, in the life of people who have been so influenced, just as in the case of the Prophet Isaiah. Inability to reference people who have been so affected by such spiritual empowerment obtained through that Spirit may indicate a waste of resources invested in such a person with its attendant repercussion (Matt. 25:14-30) or a confirmation that the spirit in such a person is not what they think it is or present it to be.
If you belong to the latter group, there may be the need to be honest with yourself and start pleading with the Almighty God to replace the Spirit in you with a right Spirit just as David did – Ps. 51:10. That is the only way that your life can begin to influence people around you positively and in the direction listed by the Prophet Isaiah such that those spiritual fruits associated with those who have the Spirit of the Lord God will begin to manifest. May that be your portion in Jesus name. Amen.