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Puffed-Up Soul

Narrow is the path that leads to life… (Matthew 7:14)  

The word “life” is from the Greek word zoe, which means not only “an active and vigorous life in God” here on Earth but also the promise of “everlasting life.” Many Christians focus on the fact that they have accepted Jesus as Lord, and in doing so they receive Heaven as their final destination. Meanwhile, they are not experiencing the abundance of God’s presence that brings both healing and provision in this life.  


I have encountered many good-hearted Christians who firmly believe they are on this narrow path, yet they haven’t found healing or financial blessing for themselves. Their families are torn apart and their children or their health and finances are under assault. This is a good indication that some of these well-meaning brothers and sisters have fallen prey to one of the biggest dangers of the narrow path: a puffed-up soul.  

Woe (judgment is coming) to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever and shrewd in their own sight! (Isaiah 5:21 AMP)
 …Yet [mere] knowledge causes people to be puffed-up (to bear themselves loftily and be proud) ... (1 Corinthians 8:1 AMPC)

The word “knowledge” is derived from the Greek word gnosis, meaning knowledge in the ways of God. This verse speaks about being puffed-up in what we know about God. This leads to pride which occurs in the soul. When we feed on knowledge and our strength is in the knowledge we have acquired, then it may cause our soul to be “puffed-up” so that it dominates our body and our spirit. It isn’t that we should not seek knowledge about God. The Bible tells us to do this: 

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge… (Hosea 4:6 KJV)

We should seek knowledge of God and His ways, but placing our trust in this knowledge instead of God puts us in danger. Let’s not forget what Paul teaches us:

And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. (1 Corinthians 13:2 ESV)

God is Love. Knowledge does us no good without God being dominant in our lives. We must always remember that He should be leading us, instead of exclusively following the knowledge we have gained.

There is no [human] wisdom or understanding Or counsel [that can prevail] against the Lord. (Proverbs 21:30 AMPC)
Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not to your own understanding. (Proverbs 3:5 AKJV)
For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. (Romans 8:14 AKJV)

Gaining knowledge in God’s ways should be pursued. When we accept Jesus as our Lord, we become a part of the Kingdom of Heaven. We need to learn about that kingdom to receive the full benefits of that new citizenship. However, as children of God, we must be led by the Holy Spirit. When gaining knowledge is our primary goal and we rely on knowledge rather than seeking God, then we may become “puffed-up” in the understanding that we have. This will feed our soul until we are being led by our own voice, which may be mistaken for the Holy Spirit but is actually our own soul.


God is a three-part entity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We are made in God’s image as tri-part beings: spirit, soul, and body:

And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Thessalonians 5:23 AKJV)

This is the proper order: our spirit should dominate our soul; our soul will then keep our body in line with our spirit, which is joined with the Holy Spirit. When we feed our soul with knowledge and become proud of the knowledge we have gained, it will cause our soul to dominate us instead of our spirit. 


Many people who have this condition may not even realize it. The Word of God is sharper than any sword and can often reveal what lies beneath. We will use the Word to show symptoms of a soul dominating a person.  


Signs of a Puffed-up Soul

When we are sick, the symptoms that our bodies exhibit often reveal what disease is afflicting us. There are several key behaviors our soul leads us to do that are sure indications that we are “puffed-up” and being dominated by our soul rather than our spirit which should be led by the Holy Spirit:


  • We are unteachable

  • We are self-promoting

  • We use formula prayers

  • We have beliefs unsupported by Scripture

  • We are charging for that which belongs to or comes from God


Each of these actions is prevalent in the Christian culture of today. Each behavior puffs up the soul and can lead a good-hearted Christian into the trap of pride.


Unteachable

But if anyone teaches otherwise and does not assent to the sound and wholesome messages of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) and the teaching, which agrees with godliness (piety toward God), he is puffed-up with pride and stupefied with conceit, [although he is] woefully ignorant…. (1 Timothy 6:3-4 AMPC)

Every Christian I have ever encountered, who is not asleep and wandering away from God, claims to be “teachable.” They want to know the ways of God. However, often it is only the revelations that correspond to what they already believe they will receive. If a teaching conflicts with their tradition or with their desires, they want nothing to do with that teaching.

…He has a morbid fondness for controversy and disputes and strife about words, which result in (produce) envy and jealousy, quarrels and dissension, abuse and insults and slander, and base suspicions, and protracted wrangling and wearing discussion and perpetual friction among men who are corrupted in mind and bereft of the truth… (1 Timothy 6:4-5 AMPC)

You know that your soul is puffed-up when you take offense at a teaching that brings correction to your life, your traditions, or to what you believe. When Jesus came, He said to the Pharisees, “Your traditions have made the Word of God of no effect” (Mark 7:13). If you are prone to insulting and slandering those who don’t agree with you, perhaps even rejoicing in the friction that arguing creates, you may have a puffed-up soul. When you hear a new teaching that contradicts what you have been brought up to believe, you should look to the Scriptures to see if your beliefs are correct.


  • Are you merely depending on what has been handed down for generations?

  • Do you believe that what a pastor or prophet has been teaching you is more important than what the Bible actually says?


I am shocked at the number of Christians who can no longer discuss their differences and assert their faith in the Scripture they believe in without being offended by opposing viewpoints. In 1 Corinthians 13, the Apostle Paul describes how love behaves and how we are supposed to love one another:

[Love] Does not behave itself unseemly, seeks not her own, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil… (1 Corinthians 13:5 AKJV)

It says in Colossians 3:13 that we should be “bearing with one another if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.” One fruit of the Spirit is “patience” and is derived from the Greek word makrothumia, which means long-suffering. When combined with the other fruit, kindness and gentleness, it creates a perfect example of how we should interact with Christians who do not see things the way we do. These are the fruit of the Spirit that should be present as we walk through each day, especially as we discuss the Word of God.


If no one can agree on a topic, then both parties should agree to set it aside and let God be the Judge. It is only pride that causes us to be offended by a teaching that is different from ours or when what God gives us is not accepted by others. It is not our job to correct and teach one another: the Lord sent the Holy Spirit, who is our Teacher and Guide (John 14:26). Taking offense is the most crippling trap for the growth and development of the body of Christ. 


Even mature leaders in the body of Christ can fall into this pit. You know your soul is puffed-up if a thought like this ever enters your mind: “Who is this person to say this to me? To think they can teach me something or correct me? I have been in the ministry since before they were born!”


Self-Promotion

When we promote ourselves, we are taking charge of our destiny instead of trusting God to get us there. This is actually a form of boasting: we want people to know how qualified we are.

Thus says the Lord: Let not the wise and skillful person glory and boast in his wisdom and skill… (Jeremiah 9:23 AMPC)
I said to the arrogant and boastful, Deal not arrogantly [do not boast]; and to the wicked, Lift not up the horn [of personal aggrandizement]...” (Psalms 75:4 AMPC)

These are just a couple of the many verses that warn against boasting. Paul warns us about teachers who boast as well:

These people are [habitual] murmurers, griping and complaining, following after their own desires [controlled by passion]; they speak arrogantly, [pretending admiration and] flattering people to gain an advantage. (Jude 1:16 AMPC)

There are two very simple ways that good people can slip into self-promotion that puffs up the soul:


Titles

It seems so innocent. In many cases, it seems a necessity. However, we must carefully discern when a title is necessary and when it is giving in to pride. Let’s look at this in the context of the natural world:


Jeff is the Chief Executive Officer of a company where the abbreviation CEO often accompanies his name. In reference to the business, it is necessary for John to have CEO next to his name as he is the person in charge. However, if John put CEO next to his name at every luncheon, convention, hotel visit, and even on his Facebook page, it would be clear that John has an issue of pride in connection with that title. He would be using it as a way to gain influence.


It is no different with the ways of God. Titles should be used in the proper context. If you are at a church meeting, it is appropriate to be called Pastor, if you are the shepherd of the sheep. If you insist on putting Pastor, Prophet, Apostle, or Evangelist next to your name outside of where it is necessary, it is a form of boasting.


Look to the Bible as your example. Did any of the prophets even announce themselves as a prophet? We never see Prophet Isaiah or Prophet Ezekiel mentioned. Paul only referred to himself as Apostle Paul when addressing churches he had established. Jesus fulfilled all the roles listed, yet He never called Himself by any of those titles. It was up to those who encountered Him to decide what to call Him by the impact of His word and actions and by revelation from the Holy Spirit. 


When others see God working through you, the Holy Spirit will tell them what your job is. This is the way the Bible shows it to be. Anything other than this is man trying to influence others or to put forth his own importance instead of trusting God to anoint his words and move those to whom we are speaking. Consider repenting and removing any title from your name, and let God promote you instead of promoting yourself. God will tell other people who He has called and anointed.


Declaring Qualifications

Many of the disciples of Jesus were unlearned fishermen. They were simple, even sinful people before they followed the Lord. Neither were they schooled in the things of God like the scribes or Pharisees were. Yet, many of our leaders today feel the need to boast about their qualifications.


  • If they speak or preach, they will be prideful and make sure their name and all their titles/credentials are on display. If they are not on the screen in front of you, they will ask to be introduced with them. If you don’t call them by their title, they will remind you to call them Dr., Pastor, or Prophet so and so.


There is a popular teacher from whom I have learned much. However, he is frequently heard saying how he has “studied prophecy for 80,000 hours...” He claims this because he has been in ministry for thirty years and says he studies the prophecies in the Bible for eight hours a day, but there is just something not right about his repeated claims.


How many pastors have “Dr.” or “Reverend Dr.” next to their name because they have a Doctorate in Theology? Some have gone so far as to purchase the title. This is walking the path toward becoming a Pharisee or Sadducee. We are stating the qualifications of man we have obtained through study, just as the Pharisees and Sadducees did. Using a title wherever we go is another way we fail to trust and rely on God and the Holy Spirit because we use the title to convince people that we are someone to whom they should listen.


Formula Prayers

Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differs nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all; But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father. (Galatians 4:1 AKJV)
And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba... (Galatians 4:6 KJV)

In order to walk in the full authority that our Lord has given us, we must be full-grown sons and daughters of God. It is listening to the Spirit that will bring us to maturity. Remember:

For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. (Romans 8:14 ESV)

As we learn God’s ways, it is tempting to lean on the understanding we have gained instead of leaning on God. This happens with secular knowledge as well: if we know that it takes weeks to heal a broken bone, we can lean on that “fact,” or we can lean on the fact that God is able to heal it instantly. In spiritual matters, we lean on our own understanding by creating prayers based on a revelation from God, then repeating those same prayers even when the Holy Spirit is no longer guiding us to use them.


A math formula is 1 + 1 = 2. We know that if we add these numbers we can expect a certain answer. When we lean upon reciting certain words and prayers to receive results, then we are guilty of formula prayers.

And when you pray, do not heap up phrases (multiply words, repeating the same ones over and over) as the Gentiles do, for they think they will be heard for their much speaking. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him. (Matthew 6:7-8 AMPC)

We should not believe that simply saying words over and over will yield good results. This is placing your faith in your own words and the Holy Spirit. The following can also be unintentionally ill-used by believing that we will receive by pronouncing words:


  • Demands

  • Decrees

  • Affirmation

  • Attacking the enemy


We can and should read the Word of God and thank Him for all He does: He is our Provider, our Healer, and so much more. However, if we think that we can read passages of scripture or make daily decrees and receive what we want, this is stepping into pride. If we do this without the direction of the Holy Spirit, then we are attempting to order Him around! We have forgotten that God is in charge, and we should be led by Him and not be doing the leading. This is occurring in many areas of the Church, but we will focus on two:


  1. Deliverance

  2. Spiritual Warfare


Like most revelations from God, they start as wisdom brought from the Holy Spirit. At the core, there is truth in each one: most often, it is the principles with which they began. Then man gets a hold of it and tries to use it without the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Each revelation can be used to bring victory for the Kingdom of God and freedom for God’s people if we learn to lean not unto what we know. Instead, we need to learn to wait on the Holy Spirit’s leading.


There is no “magic” formula or set of words that will solve our problems. Anyone who says, “Just say this prayer, and the enemy will be removed from your life,” has a puffed-up soul because he is leaning on what he has learned instead of listening to the Holy Spirit to see what needs to be done.


Deliverance 

A formula was created in the deliverance movement of the ’70s and ’80s. We learned that the name of the Lord and the blood of Jesus could be used to set us free from attacks of the enemy. This was a tremendous revelation from the Holy Spirit and a much-needed weapon. Unfortunately, man took this tool into his own power, and soon these words were bandied about for everything without any urging from the Holy Spirit.


Most “deliverance” ministries still operate in this way. Books are read to learn the right things to say. The symptoms of demonic interference are diagnosed and the name and the blood are used in an attempt to bring healing or financial breakthrough. When this is done without the guidance of the Holy Spirit, it is usually unsuccessful because the enemy may have some rights given to him by God (see Courts of Heaven course). This is why deliverance doesn’t work every time by the same method. The Holy Spirit is in Heaven, and He will let us know what needs to be done.


If deliverance is successful, often it is only temporary because the sins behind the affliction are not revealed. If we remove the enemy through the name and the blood of Jesus then do not seek to learn God’s ways so we can remove the sin from our life which gave the enemy access, the demons and the issues they cause often return. 

When the unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it roams through waterless places in search [of a place] of rest (release, refreshment, ease); and finding none it says, I will go back to my house from which I came. And when it arrives, it finds [the place] swept and put in order and furnished and decorated. And it goes and brings other spirits, seven [of them], more evil than itself, and they enter in, settle down, and dwell there; and the last state of that person is worse than the first. (Luke 11:24-26 AMPC)

Our Lord was clear, we must fill the place the demon had or we will not stay free for long. Unfortunately, the words of Jesus are never uttered by those doing the deliverance, “Go and sin no more” (John 8:11, John 5:14). If a demon is removed, you need to begin learning God's ways and apply them to your life to remain free.


Spiritual Warfare

Spiritual warfare is coming against any spirit that attacks a person or geographical area. When it comes to warring over a geographical area, spirits are known as “principalities, powers, and wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12). The claim has been continuously made that we have ALL authority through Jesus, even over the things in the Heavens. The simple truth is this:


  • Is anyone walking in ALL AUTHORITY?

  • Is there a Christian who has been able to cast out EVERY demon, heal ALL who are sick, or STOP ALL violence by taking down ALL principalities?


The disciples learned at Jesus’ feet. The Holy Spirit flowed through them with greater measure than has been seen in this age, yet Christians were still being fed to lions and hung on a cross. If they could have taken down the evil principalities with a prayer, don’t you think we would have heard about it? Instead, when Paul speaks about principalities, powers, and spiritual wickedness in high places, he says:

Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. (Ephesians 6:13 AKJV)

Then after he describes the spiritual armor, he tells them what to do about these powers:

… praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— (Ephesians 6:18 AKJV)

We are to pray in the Spirit, which is our Heavenly language. When we do this, it is God speaking, not us. To be strengthened, we can also pray for the saints, meaning the people devoted to God’s Word. When the majority of people’s hearts in a certain area are turned toward God, then He will appoint a new principality in that area.


Prayer marches are another way we attack a principality. They are based on the Bible story of Jericho, where God’s people were told to march around the city. In one of the first novels written about angelic encounters the author talks with an angel about the battle of Jericho; this particular angel was actually there.


He said that God had sent His angels to stand on the enormous walls of the city. They waited for the sound of the shofar and when it sounded, they plunged their swords into the wall, taking it down. The key to having victory was that the people of Israel had heard from God; they were TOLD SPECIFICALLY what to do. Angels were waiting for that signal from them, and then there were miraculous results. 


We have turned the marching of the Israelites into a formula, conducting prayer marches around cities to pull down principalities and such. There are no massive walls falling from prayer marches because this is an act of the flesh, prompted by the soul and not by God. Anytime we think we have to go somewhere to pray to be more effective, we are leaning on the flesh unless we have heard very strongly from God.


When the soldier came to Jesus and asked Him to pray for his servant to be healed, the soldier said it wasn’t necessary for Jesus to come. If He would just speak the word, the soldier knew it would be done. Jesus declared that this was the highest level of faith in Israel. He also speaks of how we should pray in other verses:

Also when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by people. Truly I tell you, they have their reward in full already. (Matthew 6:5 AKJV)

We should know that we can pray in our home, and God will hear from Heaven, and it shall be done. Of course, no one will know that we did anything if we do it this way. Our flesh does not like this. It wants attention and credit for what has been done. Our soul wants us to be present and get noticed for our efforts. If we keep reading, we find our Lord’s instructions confirm this:

But when you pray, go into your [most] private room, and closing the door, pray to your Father, Who is in secret; and your Father, Who sees in secret, will reward you in the open. (Matthew 6:6 AMPC)

UNLESS we HEAR direct instructions that line up with the Word, it isn’t God; it is our soul speaking to us. If we do not see miraculous results, it was probably our soul. Sometimes God will ask us to step out in an action as a statement of faith. However, when it is something that will bring positive attention to us, we need to ask, “Is this the Holy Spirit or my soul speaking to me?”


David was the most successful of all God's warriors. He was referred to as "a man after God's own heart." When you read the account of his life in the Old Testament, you will see that before he charged out into battle, he would say, "Lord, what way shall I go this time?" If we want to be successful in battling the enemy, we need to be like David and depend on God, not what has happened before!


Beliefs Unsupported by Scripture

One of the biggest dangers of having a puffed-up soul is that we may depend on what this minister or our favorite prophet said. It doesn’t matter what kinds of visions or miracles are associated with a ministry or a man or woman of God; you must always be willing to search out what they are saying: does it line up with the Bible? We can develop beliefs in doctrine and procedures that are not supported by the Word of God. This will feed our soul instead of feeding our spirit.


I am not immune to this. I have been challenged by others about certain beliefs. My response is always the same:


  • I look for what I believe in the Scripture. Sometimes I go to the people I heard it from and see what Scripture they give to support their actions.

  • If I cannot find Scripture to support what I believe, I throw that belief out.

  • If there is conflicting information, I carefully research the context of both Scriptures. Always let the Bible be your guide.


There are several new “revelations” that are drawing Christians by the thousands. Below are some examples the Holy Spirit has brought to my attention:


Ascension Groups

The new wave in the Church is ascension groups who pray and “enter Heaven” any time they choose. Let’s look at what the Bible says about visiting Heaven:

...anyone who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber... (John 10:1 AKJV)

This shows that there is more than one way to enter Heaven: A right way and a wrong way. If you have studied the spiritual realm known as Heaven, you know that it is actually “Heavens,” plural. There is more than one place your spirit can travel to or connect with. One of those places is the Second Heaven, where Satan rules. I have actually been there. Here is how it happened:


There are often long gaps between the times the Lord takes me to the Secret Place. In one such gap, I determinedly sought Him. Focusing on the Lord I pressed in, determined to spend time in the Secret Place. I listened to my favorite worship music: true praises to the Lord. Then I turned off the music and focused on how much I loved and adored Him.


I pictured Him the way I saw Him last time and sought to be in Heaven with Him. I found myself in the garden I remembered. The Lord was there, as was the figure of Abba. However, the interaction with them seemed a little off. There was no feeling of love and comfort, no peace. When their actions became a little harsh, I knew this wasn’t my loving Father. I forced my eyes open.


Satan loves to mimic God. He can appear as a powerful angel of light or as an immense being of power. However, he cannot imitate the love God has for us. If you are joining with others who claim to be able to enter Heaven as they will, please consider that unless our loving Lord is there, it may not be a true picture of where God resides. It may be an imitation created to distract you from the ways of God and a close, intimate relationship with Him.

But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. The watchman opens the door for this man, and the sheep listen to his voice and heed it; and he calls his own sheep by name and brings (leads) them out. (John 10:2-3 AMPC)

This describes the true way to enter Heaven. There is only one way to enter Heaven: Jesus. He is the Door. Only one is able to open the door that leads to Heaven where God resides for man: God. He is the Gatekeeper. We cannot open the gate to Heaven whenever we choose. That is up to our Lord. There is no example in the Bible of someone leading a group of people to visit Heaven. It is a puffed-up soul when we think of ourselves more highly than we are by saying we can lead a group into Heaven on a sightseeing tour whenever we choose.


Charging for Things of God

Our Lord showed us how we are to handle the gifts, anointing, and wisdom that He gives us:

And as you go, preach, saying, The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand! Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, drive out demons. Freely (without pay) you have received, freely (without charge) give. (Matthew 10:7-8 AMPC)

When we preach or teach about God, when we use the gifts of the Spirit and pray for people, we are to do this for free. When we charge for prayer, we are saying that there is something special about us that will get “special” results, so we should be paid in advance. This is putting emphasis on the wrong party: our prayers will achieve nothing without God. He is the important part. Without Him, we are nothing!


Jesus came triumphantly into Jerusalem on a donkey, taking His rightful place as the King of Israel, even though the spiritual leaders of the time didn't acknowledge Him. The next thing we see in scripture is Jesus cleaning house:

There He found in the temple [enclosure] those who were selling oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers sitting there [also at their stands]. And having made a lash (a whip) of cords, He drove them all out of the temple [enclosure]—both the sheep and the oxen—spilling and scattering the brokers’ money and upsetting and tossing around their trays (their stands).
Then to those who sold the doves He said, Take these things away (out of here)! Make not My Father’s house a house of merchandise (a marketplace, a sales shop)! (John 2:14-16 AMPC)

The temple was where they taught about God and worshiped Him; the church of God at that time. This was one of the few times Jesus was provoked to anger, making His view on selling things in a church perfectly clear. The doves were used in burnt offerings and sin offerings: an important part of coming before God. Even though these were a necessary part of worshiping God, Jesus would not allow anything to be sold in the House of God.

But if anyone teaches otherwise and does not assent to the sound and wholesome messages of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) and the teaching which is in agreement with godliness (piety toward God), He is puffed up with pride and stupefied with conceit, [although he is] woefully ignorant. He has a morbid fondness for controversy and disputes and strife about words, which result in (produce) envy and jealousy, quarrels and dissension, abuse and insults and slander, and base suspicions, and protracted wrangling and wearing discussion and perpetual friction among men who are corrupted in mind and bereft of the truth, who imagine that godliness or righteousness is a source of profit [a moneymaking business, a means of livelihood]. From such withdraw. (1 Timothy 6:3-5 AKJV)

We should not turn our righteous walk into a business. We should withdraw from those who do. Look at the ministry website where you are learning about God. Does it look like a marketplace?


  • Are teachings being sold in book form?

  • Are seats in a conference being charged for?

  • Is a "donation" required to join a group or receive a teaching about God?

  • Is there a charge for prayer even if it is an “ascension” group?

We have indeed turned God’s house into a marketplace once more. Charging for anything connected to His church is not okay with our Lord. Consider doing what the Bible tells us to do: withdraw.


If we stop here, with this portion of God’s Word, it would be out of context. It is only half of what Jesus was saying. Yes, we should give away what God gives us for free. Then Jesus went on to give further instructions:

Take no gold nor silver nor [even] copper money in your purses (belts); And do not take a provision bag or a wallet for a collection bag for your journey, nor two undergarments, nor sandals, nor a staff; for the workman deserves his support (his living, his food). (Matthew 10:9-10 AMPC)

Those who worked solely for the Lord were not to take anything with them: money, food, or even extra shoes, which they needed to get to the next village. When we receive a message from God, we should step out in faith to give that message how and where God tells us to, just like the disciples did. It was well known among the Jewish culture that if you received something of spiritual value you should give and acknowledge God with a physical contribution. The Apostle Paul was teaching newly converted Gentiles about this:

Let him that is taught in the word communicate to him that teaches in all good things. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap. For he that sows to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that sows to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. (Galatians 6:6-8 AKJV)
If we have sown to you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things? (1 Corinthians 9:11 AKJV)

If you receive something of spiritual value, you should sow back in return. This provides for those who brought the message so they could continue the work of God and acknowledge that you have heard from God through them. This is the right context for and one of the ways God teaches about "reaping what you have sown." This principle about acknowledging God is so very important for His people to know. The Bible shows us why:

In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. (Proverbs 3:6 AKJV)

When we acknowledge God, it opens up the way for Him to lead us! If we give first before we see if there is wisdom from God, we miss out on this blessing! What our leaders are doing is putting a kink in God’s system; it stops the flow. This is why charging for things is not God’s way. To find out more, there is a detailed account of how this revelation came about in the free book, “Why Doesn’t God Speak to Me?


Avoid the Puffed-up Soul

These are a few of the things God has pointed out that help to “Puff-up” our soul. Now that you know the trap, it is easy to avoid.


  • Simply confess that you now see it according to God’s Word

  • Repent: turn from it

  • Ask for the blood of Jesus to blot this out


This is the first part. The easy part. Now you must follow through. Listen to the Holy Spirit. Listen and do what He says, and only what He says.

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