Spiritual Perception
December 1, 2013

C. R. Oliver

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December 1, 2013

Spiritual Perception


Having the same mind, having brought every thought to the obedience of Christ, having eyes opened to see in the Spirit, having learned not to lean on one's own understanding changes one's spiritual perception. To those who share these qualities, there is a deepening of insight, a change in values, a re-arrangement of priorities and a refreshed look at reality. Cultural constructs often look contrived when seen through "opened" eyes. Religious order and format may join a myriad of other conformities viewed as being arranged (in order to follow a pathway away from God and towards man's manipulative control).

Those of us who have been affected by the changes wrought from glory to glory, simply "see through" vast landscapes of subterfuge. We are aware of spiritual alliances and contracts among nations, religious entities and individuals which are both holy and unholy. We "know in the Spirit" what the world cannot fathom or discern. Our discernment causes our reactions to be different throughout a whole plethora of occasions. Viewing the same events as others, our "take" is often markedly in contrast to public opinion. Our value set is different. Our life goals are different. Our hearing and seeing is different. We have matured enough to recognize our spiritual perception can be honed and improved throughout a saint's life. (SP is not static.* Seeing, as God sees, revels in a world made clear and paths made sure.)

          *(From this point forward SP will be substituted for Spiritual Perception.)

SP is a gift from God. It simply cannot be obtained through any other source. It cannot be an extension of experienced based learning. For example: The children of Israel went through continuous episodes of fantastic wonders, yet had no spiritual perception by which to view these acts. Similarly, while the church cries out for signs and wonders, the heavens deplore the lack of SP in its midst. The following three passages, spoken by God through Moses, are "eye opening."
Deuteronomy 29:2ff
2 Now Moses called all Israel and said to them:"You have seen all that the LORD did before your eyes in the land of Egypt, to Pharaoh and to all his servants and to all his land - 3 the great trials which your eyes have seen, the signs, and those great wonders. 4 Yet the LORD has not given you a heart to perceive and eyes to see and ears to hear, to this very day. 5 And I have led you forty years in the wilderness.
Notice: SP is a gift given only by God. Seeking to remedy the lack of SP in this people required some commitment on their part. It required a covenant.
12 that you may enter into covenant with the LORD your God, and into His oath, which the LORD your God makes with you today, 13 that He may establish you today as a people for Himself, and that He may be God to you, just as He has spoken to you, and just as He has sworn to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
A better covenant between God and man exists today through Jesus Christ. We affirm it in each Lord's Supper. However, some fail to recognize there is no source of revelation or SP apart from one's bond with Him.
29 "The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.
Before going further, it is necessary to look into the New Testament Greek word for "perceive."
NT:1492 Perceive
eido (i'-do); a primary verb; used only in certain past tenses, the others being borrowed from the equivalent NT:3700 and NT:3708; properly, to see (literally or figuratively); by implication (in the perf. only) to know:

KJV - be aware, behold, can (+not tell), consider, (have) know (-ledge), look (on), perceive, see, be sure, tell, understand. Compare NT:3700.

optanomai (op-tan'-om-ahee); a (middle voice) prolonged form of the primary (middle voice) optomai (op'-tom-ahee); which is used for it in certain tenses; and both as alternate of NT:3708; to gaze (i.e. with wide-open eyes, as at something remarkable; and thus differing from NT:991, which denotes simply voluntary observation; and from NT:1492, which expresses merely mechanical, passive or casual vision; while NT:2300, and still more emphatically its intensive NT:2334, signifies an earnest but more continued inspection; and NT:4648 a watching from a distance):
KJV - appear, look, see.
When Solomon wrote in Proverbs of the necessity to have SP in order to receive from the Lord, the majority of the prophets' oracles heralded the lack of it. Solomon went so far as to say we must not associate with those who lack SP.
Proverbs 14:7-8
Go from the presence of a foolish man,
When you do not perceive in him the lips of knowledge.
8 The wisdom of the prudent is to understand his way,
But the folly of fools is deceit.
Sadly, our congregations are subjected to diatribe from those who lack SP and have no evidence of the Spirit of Discernment. Pews are filled with those who blindly follow and are encouraged to continue in their spiritual blindness. Hear the prophet Isaiah speak to the people of God in Isaiah 6 (and know that for the next 52 weeks you will probably not hear this passage used for a sermonic text).
Isaiah 6:8-10
Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying:
'Whom shall I send,
And who will go for Us?'
Then I said, 'Here am I! Send me.'
9 And He said, 'Go, and tell this people:
"Keep on hearing, but do not understand;
Keep on seeing, but do not perceive
10 "Make the heart of this people dull,
And their ears heavy,
And shut their eyes;
Lest they see with their eyes,
And hear with their ears,
And understand with their heart."
As Jesus ministered and taught, He quoted the Isaiah 6 passage as being the condition of the religious leadership and their followers in His day. Sadly, this is again the condition of the church and the vast majority of Christian enterprises. Lacking SP, they pursue wondrous works and increased exposure to accumulated knowledge (bible schools, seminars and conferences) while never seeing as God sees.
Matthew 13:13ff
13 Therefore I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. 14 And in them the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled ...
In Acts, Paul used the Isaiah 6 passage to convict Jewish dissenters by saying the Heathen (Gentiles) displayed SP while they did not.
Acts 28:28
28 "Therefore let it be known to you that the salvation of God has been sent to the Gentiles, and they will hear it!" 29 And when he had said these words, the Jews departed and had a great dispute among themselves
SP the product of the gift of discernment:

Eight ninths (8/9ths) is not the formula used by the Spirit in giving of gifts. I am convinced that those claiming to have received these gifts, while displaying no evidence of Spiritual Discernment, perpetuate error! The most needed attribute in the modern Christian is SP and it comes only through the gift of discernment.

Jesus blessed His Disciples because of their "opened eyes." (Elisha's servant never was the same after his experience of receiving SP [2Kings 6] and neither were the followers of Jesus during His earthly ministry.)
Matthew 13:16-17
16 But blessed are your eyes for they see, and your ears for they hear; 17 for assuredly, I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it
Many times in the gospels, a similar passage to the one below revealed the SP of Jesus. His SP was not that of God-man but of a God sent man. What He possessed, we must and can possess.
(Matthew 18:1-5; Mark 9:33-37)
Then a dispute arose among them as to which of them would be greatest. 47 And Jesus, perceiving the thought of their heart, took a little child and set him by Him, 48 and said to them, "Whoever receives this little child in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me receives Him who sent Me. For he who is least among you all will be great."
Spiritual Perception also reveals the hearts of others and is not the art of counseling, teaching or doctrinal interpretation. Seeing motive, character and biographic events about ourselves and others is not a display of soothsaying.
Mark 2:6-12
6 And some of the scribes were sitting there and reasoning in their hearts, 7 "Why does this Man speak blasphemies like this? Who can forgive sins but God alone?"
8 But immediately, when Jesus perceived in His spirit that they reasoned thus within themselves, He said to them, "Why do you reason about these things in your hearts? 9 Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, 'Your sins are forgiven you,' or to say, 'Arise, take up your bed and walk'?
Spiritual Perception allows the believer to understand circumstances in difficult surroundings. Surface judgments are put aside, in order to reveal that which is hidden from the natural eye. Those with SP are not caught "off guard" by world events. (Saints know what is going on! News media could learn something from the saints.)
John 6:15
Therefore when Jesus perceived that they were about to come and take Him by force to make Him king, He departed again to the mountain by Himself alone.
SP played a large part in the early life of Jesus as well as throughout His ministry.

(Joseph and Mary, his early childhood care givers, were warned to flee to Egypt when He was a baby. Their spiritual acumen was not from natural instincts, but by the Angel of the Lord. Spiritual Perception determines what is from the Lord and what is not. Course of action is often changed by a "word from the Lord." This attribute will be needed more and more as the dark covers the earth.)

David understood the foundation of SP was to have close adherence to the Word of God and intimate association with the Father. The following passage was not an ego trip.
Psalms 119:99ff
99 I have more insight than all my teachers,
for I meditate on your statutes.
100 I have more understanding than the elders,
for I obey your precepts
Is it any wonder David's son penned in Proverbs a formula leading to one's possession of SP?
Proverbs 2:2ff
2 turning your ear to wisdom
and applying your heart to understanding,
3 and if you call out for insight
and cry aloud for understanding
4 and if you look for it as for silver
and search for it as for hidden treasure,
5 then you will understand the fear of the LORD
and find the knowledge of God.
6 For the LORD gives wisdom,
and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.
7 He holds victory in store for the upright,
he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless,
8 for he guards the course of the just
and protects the way of his faithful ones.

9 Then you will understand what is right and just.
The cry of the church should be - "Forgive our blindness and cover us with Your mercy, help us to "see" and to "hear."

Daniel possessed SP and the world knew it. The king declared it and those around him knew his renown for it. Oh! That national leadership would acknowledge it ... O' that church leadership possessed it in abundance--then malfunctioning government and sloppy religion would cease and a new day would be birthed.
Daniel 5:11
There is a man in your kingdom who has the spirit of the holy gods in him. In the time of your father he was found to have insight and intelligence and wisdom like that of the gods.
Paul possessed a Daniel like SP, and he declared his desire that all his hearers and followers would open their hearts to such spiritual discernment.
Ephesians 3:2-6
2 Surely you have heard about the administration of God's grace that was given to me for you, 3 that is, the mystery made known to me by revelation, as I have already written briefly. 4 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to men in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God's holy apostles and prophets. 6 This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.
His desire for the body of Christ to grow in SP was expressed throughout all his epistles. On this issue, he was similar to John in his writings. (If one would search the word "know" throughout the writings of John, one would be overwhelmed by his desire that "we would know.") Alas, the church does not "know" what these early saints knew. Having been spooned a soft mix of showmanship and watered down doctrine, the congregants exit with a sugar high, but no sustaining spiritual protein. No pastor, evangelist or speaker should address the congregation of the Lord without visibly being filled with the Spirit and displaying SP.

Paul's epistle to the Philippians stands solidly in contrast to what is encouraged among today's weak sheep (Sheeples).
Philippians 1:9-11
9 And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ--to the glory and praise of God.
In speaking to young Timothy, Paul wrote:
2 Timothy 2:7
Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this.
John's Revelation is filled with spiritual insight. Jesus' insight into the seven churches went beyond the surface of their being to the depth of their issues. My God knows this is what must take place today if the pulpits of the world are to be credible. SP must be unleashed if the church is to know its true condition.

Many times in John's writings, he invoked SP. As an example, consider the following passage.
Revelation 13:18
18 This calls for wisdom. If anyone has insight, let him calculate the number of the beast, for it is man's number. His number is 666.
(Next month's Newsletter will continue this study and include "insight" and "know" as synonyms.)

Remember also the rebuke made by Jesus to those practicing religion during His earth days.
Luke 12:56
Hypocrites! You can discern the face of the sky and of the earth, but how is it you do not discern this time?
Conclusion:           In SP, there is the sense of knowing, foreseeing, prophetic understanding, envisioning and consciousness of things unseen. The words "awareness" and "knowing" are implied in it. Possessing SP enables one to apprehend the intangible, the invisible, the undetected, and the unnoticed. Being able to see into the realms of the mysterious, yet not being mystical, is part of their personae.

SP does not come from the pursuit of education, but is imparted by the Spirit. One need notice only the appraisal of the Sanhedrin concerning the apostles in Acts, as they called them "unlearned," while marveling at their words.

Being apprenticed to the Spirit increases these qualities, hones one's own spirit and gives light concerning those with whom one comes in contact. Paul was bathed in the Spirit, and his writings are filled with spiritual perception. Most of the New Testament was written by him, yet he called himself "the least."

SP helps us know "who we are" in the currents of history and "where we stand" facing the issues of the day. SP is not an ingredient to be added into a worldly mix, but is part and parcel of a holy one's spiritual being. It is inseparable from a person once enjoined. It flavors every decision and is a part of every equation. Its resources are a constant factor in every venue.

SP haunts the auditory; it is phantom to one's vision. It makes the people of God the peculiar ones He calls forth. God speaks through SP and offers His help by it. Glory to God for it, nothing is like it.

(Because of the season of the year, allow me to say that Anna and Simeon exemplified it!)

Until Next month,

Dr. Cosby R. Oliver, PhD.


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In Spanish:

Called to be Saints El Secreto de Salomon Los Hijos Sadoc

In German:

Die Sohn Zadoks

Last modified: 02/07/2019