Supply – It’s one of my favourite words in the Bible. Probably not what you’d expect because after all there are so many great words in the Scriptures. So many words that have great meaning and depth. Agape – God’s sacrificial love for humanity. Hesed – Covenant commitment, lovingkindness. What about grace – Where would we be without God’s grace? I completely agree, these are all great words, and if we removed any from God’s vocabulary the Gospel message would not be complete. But, if I may, I would like to make a case for the humble word supply. Because, if you will allow it, this simple word could transform your entire life. Let’s take a look at Galatians 3:
Does he who supplies the Holy Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith. (Galatians 3:5 ESV)
There it is, that little word that packs such a powerful punch – supply. Does he who supplies the Holy Spirit to us…? Let’s zoom in. What does it mean for God to supply the Spirit to us? Well in the original Greek the word means to supply, provide or lavish. HELPS Word-Studies translates it as this: to properly, or lavishly supply, as it is suitable (apt) to outfit all that is needed to accomplish a grand objective.
Pause for a moment. Re-read that.
God supplies us with His Holy Spirit to see the grand objective accomplished. Woah! That sounds epic. But why? I mean, what even is the grand objective that we need such a lavish supply of the Holy Spirit anyway? Well, the answer lies in the letter to the Ephesians.
God has now revealed to us his mysterious will regarding Christ—which is to fulfill his own good plan. And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. (Ephesians 1:9-10 NLT)
The plan, that has been in effect since man sinned and has now been made known to us, is that God is uniting all things in heaven and on earth under Christ Jesus, starting at the cross and continuing until His return. Everything that was disconnected from the life of God through the fall will be reconnected to Him through Christ – His death and resurrection was enough to win the decisive victory of sin and death, and now everything affected by sin is being subjected to life. This is His grand objective, restoration.
So, if restoration is the objective, what role does the Spirit play, and how do we access His lavish supply? Well, the simple answer is that the Spirit is of utmost importance in seeing creation restored. It is only by the Holy Spirit that we can continue the mission of Jesus (See Matthew 28:18-20, John 20:21 & 2 Corinthians 5:18-20) on this earth. So much so that in Acts 1 Jesus told the disciples to wait in Jerusalem until they received the baptism and anointing of the Spirit. Why? Because the Holy Spirit was going to empower them to do all that was necessary for the Kingdom of God to be established on earth, and all things to be reconciled to God. But I digress, we’re here to talk about the word supply! (If you want a more in-depth look at who the Holy Spirit is Roger Aubrey has written a fantastic three-part series that you can find here.)
So, this incredible person, the Holy Spirit, has come to empower us for the Grand Objective – the restoration of all things. And God, being who He is, has lavished the Holy Spirit upon us in a means suitable for fulfilling such a great mission. Put plainly, you and I have EVERYTHING we need to do ALL God has given us to do. I’ll say that again, you have all you need. But the question remains, how do we experience that awesome truth? The answer is found back in Galatians 3 – faith.
Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith. (Galatians 3:5 ESV)
If you want to experience the supply of the Spirit, it is not by our own effort or ability, it’s by trusting that the one who has promised to empower us is faithful and will do what He has promised. It means that when faced with an opportunity to do things God’s way or another way we opt for God’s way. It means when we read a command from God in the Bible, we do it, regardless of what we perceive the consequences might be. It means that the truth of God becomes our defining principles in our lives.
I’ll leave you with this: The Bible says that faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. Just as Galatians 3 tells us that we must hear with faith, I want to encourage you; Listen to Jesus, seek His voice, seek His commands and instructions, and then choose to live by them. That is faith and that is how we will experience the lavish supply of the Holy Spirit. See, I told, supply – it’s a great word!