The ﬁrst part of Romans 8:26 tells us more about the Holy Spirit and about good, positive control in our lives: “Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our inﬁrmities [weaknesses].”The Holy Spirit “helps” us. He will not do the job for us, neither will He expend all the effort needed to accomplish the task at hand. He will help us to fulﬁll the plan and purpose of God on the earth. A minister friend of mine once put it this way: “The Holy Spirit will help you do a job, just as I would help you move a chair. You pick up one side of the chair, and I lift the other. That is how the Holy Spirit helps the believer.”
Roberts Liardon shows us that positive control will never pressure, condemn, or smother. It will love and provide the encouragement needed to live life to the fullest for God. Positive control serves as a safety valve, a “check and balance,” for your daily walk. Positive control exercised through a person helps and guides, but this kind of control does not do so for self gain. Positive control gives an individual the freedom, within the boundaries of the Word of God, to be himself and to express his own individual personality and creativity.
Roberts Liardon tells us that it is imperative that we understand one important principle: God has always appointed leaders, and spiritual leaders must exercise legitimate, godly authority. Let’s begin our study of this vital principle in Ephesians 4:11–14. I like the way The Ampliﬁed Bible translates this passage:
And His gifts were [varied; He Himself appointed and gave men to us] some to be apostles (special messengers), some prophets (inspired preachers and expounders), some evangelists (preachers of the Gospel, traveling missionaries), some pastors (shepherds of His ﬂock) and teachers. His intention was the perfecting and the full equipping of the saints (His consecrated people), [that they should do] the work of ministering toward building up Christ’s body (the church), [that it might develop] until we all attain oneness in the faith and in the comprehension of the [full and accurate] knowledge of the Son of God, that [we might arrive] at really mature manhood (the completeness of personality which is nothing less than the standard height of Christ’s own perfection), the measure of the stature of the fullness of the Christ and the completeness found in Him. So then, we may no longer be children, tossed [like ships] to and fro between chance gusts of teaching and wavering with every changing wind of doctrine, [the prey of] the cunning and cleverness of unscrupulous men, [gamblers engaged] in every shifting form of trickery in inventing errors to mislead. (emphasis added)
Notice that it was the intention of the Lord to give certain leadership gifts to men and women to help the body of Christ come into maturity and to know Him in an intimate way. These leadership gifts are often referred to as the ﬁvefold ministry.