Pressing Forward in Him
Pastor Ian draws from the teaching and example of AB Simpson to remind us that we need both the leadership of the Holy Spirit and the authority of God's word to inform and strengthen our faith. Let us join him in praying that our hearts will be led by the Spirit and shaped by His word, and let us consider both as being of equal importance in our Christian journey.
Born in 1843 and raised in a strict Puritan tradition, AB Simpson nevertheless felt a deep sense of brokenness for the lost and aggressively sought to organise churches in a passionate pursuit of God’s mission in His world. He eventually became the founder of the Christian and Missionary Alliance denomination: a global family of churches that supports more than 2,000 missionaries in over 70 nations.
While seeking strength for this missionary passion, Simpson saw no binary choice between the authority of God’s word and the leadership of His Spirit. He once wrote,
“The blessed Holy Spirit is our Guide, our Leader and our Resting-place. There are times when He presses us forward into prayer, into service, into suffering, into new experiences, new duties, new claims of faith and hope and love. Then there are times when He arrests us in our activity and rests us in the secret place of the Most High. He teaches us some new lessons, breathing into us some deeper strength or fullness and then leading us on again, at His bidding alone.
The Holy Spirit is the true Guide of every saint [believer], and the true Leader of the Church. He is our wonderful Counselor, our unerring Friend. He who would deny the personal guidance of the Holy Spirit in order that he might honor the Word of God as our only guide must dishonor that other word of promise, that His sheep shall know His voice, and that His listening and obedient children shall hear a voice behind them saying, this is the way, walk ye in it (Isaiah 30:20).”
This Sunday, Pastor Eugene will bring us to Galatians 5:16-24 to remind us that the Spirit of Christ comes to guide and shape us into His image. I pray that each of us would come—this, our last Sunday at CHS (!!!)—with hearts fully ready to be led by His Spirit and shaped by His Word. May we joyfully anticipate His leadership, presence and power as we soon celebrate the great things He has done, and is doing at 17 Mattar Road!