THE MYSTERIES OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
"Likewise the Holy Spirit also helps our infirmities:
For we know not what we should pray for as we ought:
But the Holy Spirit Himself makes intercession for us
with groanings which cannot be uttered. And God that
searches the hearts knows what is the mind of the
Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit makes intercession
for the saints according to the will of God. And we
know that all things work together for good to them
that love God, to them who are the called according to
His purpose. For whom He did foreknow, He also did
predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son,
that He might be the firstborn among many brethren."
Seated at my desk in 1979, I began to consider the direction
of the Lord in my ministry as a traveling Baptist evangelist. I
noticed that many evangelists were beginning to focus on
particular themes in their week long revivals. The home,
personal finances, soul winning, and prophecy were prominent
topics of interest as pastors requested special emphasis in such
areas of local church ministry. Evangelists focusing on such
topics were generally invited more often to guest speak than
those simply traveling and preaching on the standard doctrines.
I considered what I might do along these lines and rationalized
that, since the Holy Spirit was really the one who stirred people
to revival, perhaps it would be wise for us to study His nature
Pulling my notebook from the shelf, I began to write down
everything I knew about the Holy Spirit. Pastors were requesting
Sunday-through-Wednesday meetings rather than full weeks, so five
messages on the Holy Spirit was my goal. After reviewing
everything I had jotted down concerning my knowledge on the
nature and personality of the Holy Spirit, I abandoned my
attempt. I did not even have enough written to support a single
message with substance. I realized He was a mystery, and before
I could teach, I would have to know him better. I shelved my
notebook and left the room; rarely considering the Holy Spirit
until three years later.
After being filled with the Holy Spirit in mid 1982, I went
to my book shelf and extracted my notebook. Turning to the notes
I had written some three years earlier, I sat down and began to
construct outlines for sermons. Soon four messages emerged on
His nature and personality and later a manuscript. What made the
difference? Knowing Him!
Shortly after being filled with the Spirit and preparing the
four messages, I sent out information to seventy-five pastor
friends. I knew other Baptist brethren wanted the power of the
Holy Spirit as much as I; thus I would be swamped with requests
to come and share my message. I receive not a single request.
Not one! Why? The Holy Spirit was a mystery. Perhaps it would
be better for Him to remain so?
As I began to walk in the Spirit following the baptism, I
discovered His ministry was one largely of intercessory prayer.
He is likewise the administrator of His own manifestation, often
incorrectly referred to by Charismatics as "the gifts" of the
Spirit. Finally, however, in 1983, I began to pray and study
God's Word on the subject of prayer to discover exactly how the
Holy Spirit worked in this area. It was not until mid 1985,
however, after receiving my prayer language - the gift of tongues
- that I began to learn from the teaching of the Holy Spirit on
how to pray. As I prepared this manuscript, I realized that
Romans 8:26-27 could not stand alone. Verse (28) and (29) had to
be included if the other were to be interpreted properly. To
unveil the "mysteries" of the Holy Spirit in prayer, we must
begin by looking at how "all things work together for good" and
how this promise intersects with conforming to the image of
Perhaps the most misused text in all of Scripture is Romans
"And we know that all things work together for good to
them that love God, to them who are the called
according to His purpose."
This verse is generally applied when one is void of any
satisfactory explanation of difficult circumstances, traumatic
failure, unpaid bills, broken marriages, or even the loss of a
loved one; not to mention broken hearts and unanswered prayers.
Both the failure of proper interpretation and correct Biblical
application of this verse has probably brought more spiritual
frustration to the Christian life than any other. Such doctrinal
error always results in increased doubt in God's ability to
provide for His own and intensifies disbelief in God's Holy Word.
A correct interpretation, on the other hand, and wise application
has life changing potential.
As a child growing up in Sunday school, we often sang the
song: "Every promise in the book is mine, every chapter, every
verse, every line." Although the song contains basic truth, it
is certainly not wise to claim every promise in God's Word as
personally applicable. The Bible is filled with promises of
eternal judgment, condemnation, destruction of nations that
forget God, and rebuke for those unwilling to submit to the will
and ways of God the Father. There is no doubt, however, that
Romans 8:28 is a promise. It is, however, only germane to those
who are in prayerful fellowship with God through the ministry of
the Holy Spirit. To apply the promise in any other way, would
not only violate proper Biblical interpretation, but likewise
would nullify it's effectiveness and power.
Covenants, pledges, vows, agreements - spoken or written - and
even marriages are all secured by promises. A promise gives
cause for hope, expectation, or assurance. Legally, a promise is
a binding agreement. Spiritually, it has eternal value worth,
and finality. Relationships established by promise, likewise
afford security. Without promises, we would be forced to live by
luck and chance.
Romans 8:28 is a conditional promise. "And we know..."
This is not a promise to all Christians who simply need a
convenient verse to jam all unanswerable situations into
indiscriminately. The promise is personal and exclusive. The
promise found in this verse is only applicable to those who
conform to the description found contextually.
Romans 8:1 immediately identifies those to whom Romans 8:28
is written: "There is therefore now no condemnation to them who
are in Christ Jesus..." This is where most cease quoting the
passage. It is not written to the general populous of
Christendom nor can it be properly applied to all Christians.
Romans 8:1 concludes by saying: "...who walk not after the flesh
but after the Spirit" - Holy Spirit. This is the theme [focus]
of the entire chapter. Paul contrasts the carnal Christian with
the spiritual and clearly demonstrates the two types of
Christians: the one who follows the dictates of the flesh and
the other who walks in agreement with the Holy Spirit.
Romans 8:28 is furthermore conditional, and exclusive,
because verse (26) and (27) inform us that the way "we know all
things work together" is only through prayer and the will of God
the Father. Thus, Romans 8:28 is not a verse for situational
relief but rather a comfort to those engaged in doing the will of
God through prayer and the ministry of the Holy Spirit. The "we"
in Romans 8:28 is not those seeking relief but those seeking the
perfect will of God by assistance of the Holy Ghost.
Romans 8:28 states a spiritual law: "And we know that all
things work together for good..." As should be seen, this
promise is limited in scope. It is only applicable to those
walking in the Holy Spirit through prayer. The promise, or
effectiveness of the spiritual law, is only made available by
conviction. Such is a strong belief or a code by which one
lives. In short, Romans 8:28 is a standard by which one lives
through God's governmental rule. It is not an over coat which we
shrug on when it looks cold nor can it be quickly swallowed as a
pill to kill the pain of circumstances. Simply put, this promise
must become a way of life.
After being caught up to the third Heaven, Paul states in
his letter to the Corinthians that he besought God three times to
release him from a messenger of Satan that was sent to buffet
him. The Heavenly Father responded by saying, "My grace is
sufficient for you: for my strength is made perfect in
weakness."1 Paul's confession immediately follows: "Most
gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities that the
power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in
infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in
distresses for Christ sake: for when I am weak then am I
strong."2 This was Paul's statement of conviction - by which he
lived. Most of us, however, change our convictions whenever the
circumstances dictate, thus, releasing us, we hope, from any
Scriptural responsibility. In such cases of change, Romans 8:28
is not applicable. The promise is a spiritual law of performance
and can only be experienced when lived by as a conviction. If
lived by, Romans 8:28 performs spiritually which in turn releases
authoritative power to the Believer. Paul parenthetically
states, "we," know all things work together. The Greek Word for
"know" means to (see). This is a spiritual vision, or awareness,
available only to those submitted to the will of God as they walk
in the Spirit. Such spiritual vision can only be accomplished by
conviction through faith. The difference between a moral
practice and a Biblical conviction is eternal fruit. How is such
spiritual vision manifested? Only through one's life. If we
live by Scriptural law, all things can and do work together for
our good. Such conviction means we remain squarely centered on
the authority of God's Word even when it looks as though prayers
are not being answered. God has promised, to those who will live
accordingly, to cause all things to work together for their good.
The promise of Romans 8:28 is also one used for spiritual
conditioning. "Conditioning" can be defined as: (The achievement
of a desired goal by the placement of limitations, including the
exclusion of distractions).
There ar at least two types of conditioning which are
radially identifiable: indirect and direct. The direct form of
conditioning takes on the shape of discipline and practice to
achieve the goal. Ridged physical training is an example of
such. Habits, trends, and fads on the other hand, usually are
made reality through indirect conditioning. The continual
advertizing of a particular product until the hearer finally
makes a purchase is a simple example of indirect conditioning.
One of my secret dreams has been to swim the English
channel. It would be fatal to attempt such a goal without direct
conditioning. Such conditioning would encompass everything to do
with such a goal. I would need to read and research everything
available on the aspects of the channel itself. It would equally
be wise to obtain information directly from those who have
accomplished the swim already. The physical training would be,
of course, an absolute necessity. In another words, it would
take practice and discipline to achieve my goal and the
employment of everything necessary to achieve such a goal.
This is the meaning of Romans 8:28. God uses "all things"
to condition for His perfect will. This is not to say God uses
sickness and disease, tragedy and loss, poverty and destruction
to form His will in His own. God is not the author of such. He
will, on the other hand, use what the Devil meant for evil and
cause it to bring forth that which is good for our benefit if we
look to Him as we walk in His Holy Spirit. Furthermore, if we
are found unwilling to submit to such conditioning, the promise -
spiritual law - of Romans 8:28 "all things work together for our
good" will not, indeed cannot, apply.
God's promise is to incorporate "all things" - good and bad,
strong and weak, success and failure, right and wrong - "together
for good to them that love God." Through the promise of Romans
8:28, we can "know" or be spiritually aware of God's personal
management and concern of our affairs through prayer. It is that
which is "known" or "understood" supernaturally through the
intercessory ministry of the Holy Spirit in prayer for us. The
problem is, however, we generally seek to "know" through the
justification of circumstances. We, instead of living by the
promise of Romans 8:28, attempt to justify the workings of God by
rationalization. We suggest that the wheelchair has been given
that we might become a better Christian. We consider the death
of a loved one to be the hand of God; thus to be better equipped
to help others. Cancer, when spiritualized, is that which God
has blessed us with to bring us to a closer walk with Him. No
one truly believes these twisted distortions of spiritual truth
but somehow it seems to ease our emotional pain and suffering,
thus, enabling us, we think, to live with such suffering more
successfully. If such rationalization and spiritualizing were
indeed true, then we should all be praying for God to give more
of these infirmities to us that we might become better witnesses
for Him. Yet John the Apostle wrote, "Beloved, I wish above all
things that you may prosper and be in health."3 Most of us as
Christians are guilty of considering the circumstances as good or
bad. We conclude, that the more "good" things we can experience,
the more in tune we must be with God's perfect will.
To live a life as Paul described - "My strength is made
perfect in weakness"4 - and - "I have learned that in whatsoever
state I am, therewith to be content"5 - would take wisdom beyond
human reason and understanding. This is the essence of Romans
8:28. If we are to "know" that all things work together for our
good, we must do so with supernatural vision. Such spiritual
vision takes faith. As we pray in the Spirit, we become
spiritually aware, through the intercessions of the Holy Spirit,
that "all things" indeed do work together for our good. This
creates faith, or the supernatural ability to know - see beyond
circumstances - to the finished work - the will of God. If such
conviction is not maintained, we become spiritually myopic and
unable to discern the will of God in difficult, and especially in
impossible, circumstances. Such circumstances then become a
controlling factor and we easily loose sight of God's greater
picture for our lives. Through the employment of "all things,"
we practice being the children of God and thus we are conditioned
to become more like His Son through every situation good or bad.
This also implies what often is considered to be failure. You
may have tried and failed, again and again; not simply in the
Christian life but in business, marriage, child rearing,
employment, pastoring, friendships, self control. Such failure
for the Christian, living by the promise of Romans 8:28, in no
way implies one has failed. Circumstances certainly fail, people
assuredly, but for the Christian walking in the Spirit; there is
no failure. Why? Because we "know" that all things work
together for our good. Learn to pray in the Spirit and you will
be able to spiritually see - know - beyond circumstances God's
will for your life.
Although I am going to address the subject of how God uses
all things together for our good in the next chapter, I do not
want to leave this area without giving several Scriptures which I
think will assist us in comprehending the true meaning of "all
Verily I say unto you, if you have faith, and doubt
not, you shall not only do this which is done to the
fig tree, but also if you shall say unto this mountain,
Be removed, and be cast into the sea; it shall be done.
22 And all things, whatsoever you shall ask in prayer,
believing, you shall receive.
Jesus said, With God all things are possible.
Jesus said, All things are possible to him who
He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up
for us all, how shall God not with Christ freely give
us all things.
II Peter 1:3-4
According as His divine power has given unto us all
things that pertain unto life and Godliness, through
the knowledge of Him that has called us to glory and
virtue: 4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and
precious promisee; that by these you may be partakers
of the divine nature.
I John 5:14-15
And this is the confidence that we have in Him, that,
if we ask any thing according to His will, He hears us.
15 And if we know that He hear us, whatsoever we ask,
we know that we have the petitions that we desired of
Jesus said, If you shall ask any thing in my name, I
will do it.
We often make the mistake of claiming these verses to help
free ourselves of a jam by which we are being squeezed and When
they do not perform as anticipated, we jump to Romans 8:28 to try
and justify the reason for God's failure to perform His promises.
Do not make that mistake. Begin with Romans 8:28 and then live
by these other promises.
What if one has put their whole body, soul, and spirit into
their efforts of prayer and still nothing happens? If we are
truly walking in the Spirit according to Romans 8, and if the
Holy Spirit is our intercessor who always agrees with the will of
God for our lives, then we will see - "know" - that God is going
to use "all things" to work together for our good. If you do not
see it - "know" it - then you are not walking, praying, in the
Spirit, and your faith is not in evidence. "The just shall live
by faith." If the prayer or petition is yet unanswered, continue
to walk by faith in the Spirit; making use of His intercessory
partnership as you pray in the Spirit. The Holy Spirit will
quicken faith to your soul, by means of your regenerated born
again spirit, as you walk in the promises of God's Holy Word. In
this way, all things can then be worked together by God into your
life to bring about God's perfect will.
Footnotes For Chapter 5
1 II Cor. 12:9
2 II Cor. 12:9-10
3 III John 1:2
4 II Cor. 12:9-10
5 Phil. 4:11
End Of Chapter 5
PRAYING IN THE SPIRIT
By Phil Scovell
All Rights Reserved
Reproduction of the book entitled "Liquid Purple" is granted by
the copyright holder, Phil Scovell, if such reproduction is done
in the spirit in which it was given. It may not be reproduced
and sold for financial gain without written permission of the
copyright holder: Phil Scovell. Electronic formats may be
distributed freely but this copyright notice must remain with
each copy and the text cannot be altered in any way. For
convenience, this copyright notification may be placed at the end
of the document if reproduced electronically. If chapters and
sections of the book entitled "Liquid Purple" is separated in
file form for convenience of electronic reproduction and
distribution, this copyright notice must appear somewhere within
each individual file.
840 South Sheridan Boulevard
Denver, Colorado 80226-8017
End Of document
Go To HOME: The Zeneith Tube Website: RedWhiteAndBlue.org