1 Corinthians 12:2
You know that you were Gentiles, carried away to these dumb idols, even as you were led.
I. WHO DO NOT SPEAK BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD, AND HAVE NOT HIS INFLUENCES. "They that call Jesus accursed" (Leviticus 27:21, 28).
1. The test put on Christians by their persecutors was, that they should revile and blaspheme Christ. Pliny, writing to Trajan, says, "When they" (the Christians) "could be induced to call on the gods... and, moreover, to revile Christ, to none of which things it is said that those who are in reality Christians can be compelled, I thought they ought to be released." And the Jews not only uttered blasphemies against Christ themselves, but extorted them, if possible, from those they apprehended to be His disciples (Acts 26:11). The apostle, therefore, here signifies that those who reviled Christ had not the Spirit. This is applicable to those who in any way detract from the glory of Christ, or that do not acknowledge Him to be Lord.
2. It includes —
(1) All that blaspheme Him, or account Him, an impostor; as all infidels, heathens, Jews, Mohammedans, and whoever does not acknowledge Jesus to be the Messiah (John 8:24; 1 John 4:3).
(2) All that reject Him (Acts 4:11).
(a) As a Teacher, not receiving the whole of His doctrine as infallibly true.
(b) As a Mediator, not making His atonement or intercession the ground of their justification (Romans 9:31; Romans 10:3).
(c) As a Saviour from sin and its consequences.
(d) As a King, by disobeying His laws. For, as the chief end for which the Holy Spirit is given to us is to glorify Christ, if we neglect, or be indifferent about, Him, it is certain we are not inspired by that Spirit.
II. WHO HAVE THE HOLY SPIRIT? All that "say that Jesus is the Lord."
1. What is implied in saying this? To say so is —
(1) To believe and confess that, although He was despised and persecuted, yet He was the Lord Christ promised to the patriarchs, foretold by the prophets (Malachi 3:1; Psalm 110:1; 1 John 4:2; Matthew 16:16); anointed and qualified to be our Teacher, our Redeemer (Isaiah 59:20, 21; Hebrews 2:14), our Saviour, our Owner, our King (Philippians 2:11), our Lord and Master (Romans 14:7-9), our Judge (Romans 14:9-12).
(2) To believe and confess Him to be the Son of God, in a sense that no other being is His Son (1 John 4:15; Matthew 16:16; Hebrews 1:3, etc.); therefore, to be the "heir" and "lord of all" — to be "Immanuel, God with us" (Romans 9:5). It is impossible He should sustain His offices, or be our Lord, if He be not God.
2. The importance of it.
(1) It is the end of His life, death, and resurrection, that He should be acknowledged such (Philippians 2:6-11).
(2) It is necessary to our salvation, and certainly connected with it (Romans 10:8-10; 1 John 4:13-15).
(3) It tends to the glory of God, and the salvation of others.
3. It can only be said "by the Holy Ghost." It must be said —
(1) In the mind believingly and sincerely; therefore, it must proceed from knowledge which we cannot have but by the Spirit (Matthew 11:27; 1 Corinthians 2:10, 12; John 16:13-15; Ephesians 1:17; 2 Corinthians 4:6).
(2) In the heart, affectionately (Romans 10:10; and 1 Corinthians 16:22; 1 Peter 2:7, 8); but this love we cannot have but by the Spirit (Romans 5:5).
(3) With lips, openly, whatever it may cost (Romans 10:9; 2 Timothy 2:8-14; Matthew 10:25, 28, 32, 33-39), which we cannot do of ourselves, or without faith and a new birth (1 John 5:4, 5), and, therefore, without the Spirit.
(4) By the life, consistently.
Parallel VersesKJV: Ye know that ye were Gentiles, carried away unto these dumb idols, even as ye were led.