Test The Spirits

April 13, 2014
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Listen while you read: "Ride On Ride On In Majesty"1 (Lyrics)

As I was reading a relatively familiar passage in Matthew, an occasional occurrence happened to me that always amazes me: some of the words seemed to jump right off the page and instantly grab my attention.

Matthew 21:1b-2 – Jesus stopped and beckoned to two of the disciples. "Go to the village over there. There you'll find a donkey tied to a post and a foal beside it. Untie them and bring them to Me." (The Voice)

Perhaps Jesus might have thought the disciples could have some questions in their minds, because He went on to say, "If anyone tries to stop you, then tell him, 'The Master needs these,' and he will send the donkey and foal immediately." (Matthew 21:3 The Voice)

Without a word, the disciples went and followed His instructions. Their absolute trust in Him and their unquestioning obedience resulted in a parade of singing and praise to honour Jesus. The crowd sang and shouted as Jesus quietly rode along on the donkey. "Hosanna, praises to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Eternal One! Hosanna in the highest!" Then the blind and the lame came to the temple, and Jesus healed them. Rings of children circled round and sang, "Hosanna to the Son of David." (Matthew 21:9b,14-15a The Voice)

What if the two disciples had flatly refused to boldly take the donkey and colt, thinking that they might be accused of stealing? Perhaps none of what followed would have come to pass: Jesus would not have been praised by the crowds, nor would the blind and lame have been healed.

The two disciples instantly obeyed Jesus because they knew Him and trusted Him. However, when we sense in our spirits that the Lord is telling us to trust Him and do whatever He says to us, we should immediately test the spirit to be sure it is of God. Satan is a great impersonator.

1 John 4:1a – Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God. (NIV)

How can we be sure it is God's will for us? I know of two ways to test the spirits. If the thought persists, and we feel peace about obeying it, then we can believe it is from God. Then it is our choice whether to obey or to disobey.

Prayer: Father, help us to trust You so completely, that when we believe that Your Holy Spirit is directing us to a specific task, we will first test the spirit to be sure it is from You. Once assured by Your peace, help us to obey immediately, like the two disciples. Then we can go ahead and just do it, even if, on occasion, we have to do it afraid. Amen.

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About the author:

Sharon Y. Greer <sygreer11@gmail.com>
Sandycove Acres, Innisfil, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for the encouraging thoughts Sharon.


    Sharon – Thanks for the great study in obeying the Lord.
    Testing the spirits, is so important; a very good reminder.
    God bless.


    Hello Sharon,
    Our pastor preached on Matthew 21 this morning.
    You just added another dimension to the thougths that were shared this morning.
    God bless you and continue to make you a blessing through contributing to the presbyterian devotionals.
    If Jesus had not ridden into Jerusalem on a donkey, then the crowds would not have praised him by laying their coats on the road and waving palm branches and proclaiming and shouting, Hosanna, etc.
    You will never know how what you have written impacts others for Jesus Kingdom.


    Amen to your prayer. I thoroughly enjoyed your devotional this morning. It was also a confirmation for me that what I said and did was God ordained. Thank you.

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