Now his older son was in the field, and as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. And he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. And he said to him, Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fattened calf, because he has received him back safe and sound. But he was angry and refused to go in. His father came out and entreated him, but he answered his father, Look, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your command, yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your property with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him! And he said to him, Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours.' Luke 15:25-31
The reason why we can become so ineffective is because we so easily deviate from the unity of the Spirit with fellow believers in our local church. We make unyielded rights in our lives.
Indignation - But he was angry. Anger is a clear indication of an offended spirit. Anger is what gets us into trouble, and pride is what keeps us there. There are two spiritual repercussions of anger. When you come into someones presence you carry with you an aura, an atmosphere, and whatever is reigning in your life (Such as unbelief, fear, etc...) the stench of it permeates your atmosphere and others sense there is something wrong with your life. But, if you are walking in the spirit and the person you are with is too, you have a closeness. Likewise, if you are not walking in the Spirit and you come into someones presence who is walking in the Spirit, you will probably feel uncomfortable and convicted. Friends, we carry within ourselves an atmosphere. Anger, fear, unbelief, etc... destroy the atmosphere of God and when you attempt to minister you are dong it in your own strength.Sometimes we misrepresent God when under pressure. To my family it is not what I preach to them so much as what I am in reality. The letter of the law kills but the Spirit brings life. It is important that we walk in accordance to what we believe and preach (1 Samuel 3:19). In reality my family is not becoming what I preach to them but what I am in reality.
Isolation - Refused to go in. The self-life will always striking back to get revenge by isolating or separating you from the one who offended you. Much of the righteous indignation that we see today is nothing more than just a deceitful form of the flesh which is anger. Notwithstanding, there is a difference between righteous indignation and being just plain angry. If you have righteous indignation you will always seek for an occasion to put the offense right. On the other hand, if you are angry and you have isolated yourself from others and have no desire to make things right, you need to repent.Our attempt to get revenge is often to isolate ourselves from a church, from our in-laws, from someone within the church. When we go to church there are certain persons who have offended us with their atmospheres, and we hope we dont have to encounter them in a handshake, a conversation, or even be in their presence at all. If I - the hand - separate myself from another part of the body the arm I am not only cutting myself off from the body of Christ, but I am also separating myself from the head, which is Christ (1 John 1:3). We open ourselves up to tremendous deception when we isolate or alienate ourselves from any part of the body of Christ. When we deal with our offended spirit, repent, and walk in the Holy Spirit we become very teachable. When we do not listen to others were not only offended but we cant receive what God intended for us to receive through them.
Idolatry - I never disobeyed your command. When we say, I cant believe they did that to me after what I have done for them we need to understand that what we did was certainly not done for the glory of Christ but for the glory of our own self which is idolatry.Vance Havner said: Gods provision for swelled out I is the cross, for the cross my friend, is nothing more than a crossed out I. Magnifying our past works in order to justify our present condition which is idolatry.
Irrationality - Yet you never gave me a young goat. The older son was so oppressed and offended he couldnt remember what his father had given to his brother, which was a calf. He became confused and couldnt think straight. Another counselor said: I am convinced that 80% of all mental and physiological problems are spiritually related. There are 3 means for which God has ordained for healing: prayer, calling for the elders of the church, and confession.
Independance - I might celebrate with my friends. The older son never acknowledge his brother as my brother; he separated himself from his brother. He didnt want to admit he was his brother. Rather than acknowledging this as a test of God for the cross of Christ in his life, he was ready to vindicate himself. He should have allowed God to teach him through it.
Incrimination - This son of yours came, who has devoured your property with prostitutes. We have a tendency to magnify others weaknesses, question their motives and pass false accusations upon them because they have done something to deeply wound our spirit. The characteristic of love believes all things. Rather than to question another persons motives, if we have truly been filled with the Holy Spirit, we will not magnify their weaknesses, we will not exploit their faults or question their motives; instead we will believe the best for them. If you cant look squarely into another persons eyes, you probably have an offended spirit.
Indifference - We, like the brother of the prodigal son, when we are offended forget our identity. What we need is the same reminder the father gave the prodigals brother.
His Position Son. Paul saw himself from Gods perspective as the least of the apostle, chief of sinners, and moreover saw himself in the beauty of Jesus. We too are complete in him Colossians 2:10; We are his workmanship Ephesians 2:10; We have been made the righteousness of God 2 Corinthians 5:21; We are saints Colossians 1:2. You are either a saint or an aint, not because you are obedient and striving to live for Him, but because God has declared it. God has made Christ our righteousness, or wisdom, our sanctification.
His Presence: You are always with me. Someone has said, Lifes greatest tragedy is to lose the presence of God and not even know it. Genesis 28:16 Surely the Lord is in this place
and knew it not. Too often we are insensitive to the presence and Spirit of God in our church that we do not recognize that the Lord is there, doing a work, wanting to work. We are often occupied with thoughts of an offended spirit.
His Possessions All that is mine is yours. The greatest things we have that are obtained in our relationship with Christ are some of the simplest things. Its easy to forget what God has done for you and what He is going to do for you because He loves you. We have an eternity with Him.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon