Inspiration & Expiration
When people refer to being inspired, it is often how they describe a feeling that motivates them to action. A word, poem, picture or nature are thought of as being inspirational. They cause us to be creative and give us big ideas. People often see inspirational people and think, "If they can do it, so can I"! People who inspire others don't often seek to be inspirational, they just are!
The Word of God tells us that it (the Bible) was inspired by the Holy Spirit. (2 Timothy 3:16). Men were impressed by God Himself to pen the Holy scriptures that we call the Bible today. It is God-breathed, or inspired. Well, while meditating on this, the Lord showed me the difference between inspiration and expiration. To inspire means to breath IN while to expire means to breath OUT. There is a regular, passive exchange happening in our bodies at all times. We don't think about breathing, we just do! It happens as a part of the respiratory cycle.
Every time we expire, we are closer to death. When we inspire, we are revived and are closer to life. In the christian life, while in these mortal bodies, we are always in this in-between state.
Paul says it like this:
Phillipians 1:21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
22 But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not.
23 For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better:
24 Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.
Jesus Himself became death for us. He took the death punishment for our sins so that we may be made alive again. The Holy Spirit is our life, the God who dwells within us, to continually inspire us to live holy lives. What comes out is what went in!
When we receive Christ's gift of salvation into our lives by faith we die to our fleshly nature. We expire to sin and old habits and become inspired by the Holy Spirit who dwells within the believer. We are saved by grace through faith in order to be a living testimony for others to see so that they too may become inspired to follow Jesus Christ.
Let me explain.
The Bible is divided into an Old Testament and a New Testament. The word testament itself refers to a "last will and testament" of someone who is expired, or deceased. It does not go into effect until the death of the Testator (the one who enforces it).
Hebrews 9:13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:
14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
15 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.
16 For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.
17 For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth.
So, our testimonies of how the Lord inspires us to live holy is not in effect until we have died to the flesh nature and have been inspired by the Holy Spirit Himself! We are living testimonies! To speak from a dead position is to have a testimony, to speak from a living position is prophecy (ok, too deep...let's back up). When we speak, we are letting out what was put in which is the Holy Spirit. God has spoken through his people and He continues to do so (Matthew10:20). We are channels for the Spirit of God. Now don't get all spooky on me. We are used of God. His people are not mediums, but are completely sold out to the One mediator between God and men, the man Jesus Christ! (I Timothy 2:5)
When you share your testimony with others, you are being a witness of God's resurrection power! When you disciple others, you show them how to breath and live in the Spirit. Our lives are an open book. (2 Corinthians 3:1-3) You see, this environment is not conductive to spiritual beings, namely, those of us who have been born again. We do not live in a Godly atmosphere. That is why the christian life is a struggle. The Holy Spirit is a "down payment of our inheritance" as children of God.
Ephesians 1:11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:
12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
We have inherited just the first part of the Will of God people. That is why these old bodies have to go! To die is GAIN - eternal life in new bodies. No more cycles of inspiration and expiration will be needed in that heavenly paradise.
While we are here on this earth, in these bodies, we need to learn to breathe in the Holy Spirit of God day by day, hour by hour, moment by moment. It is the only way to survive. Our purpose is to accomplish the mission for which we were sent - winning souls, making disciples of Jesus Christ and establishing the Kingdom of our Great God one breath at a time. Have you been inspired yet? I'd love to hear about it!