A Bible study on Perplexity
Today we are going to discuss perplexity in the natural flesh human soul, and in the Holy Spirit filled human soul, and the differences in what or who they are perplexed about. I noticed years ago how God transformed my perplexity. Today I do not think many “Christians” realize how their perplexity changes, or if they do, they may not have received the full understanding as to why it has changed.
Others may not be changing their perplexity, confusion, or troubled mind because they are not allowing Him to transform it, their ears are blocked by their own evil desires, they are being blocked from the prince of this dark world, or they are ignorant because they are being taught wrong.
Perplex - to cause to be puzzled or bewildered over what is not understood or certain; confused mentally
Example: Their strange response perplexed me.
God’s word uses the word troubled in some translations in the place of perplexed. Confusion can cause a person’s mind to be troubled, and a confused mind can cause someone to go in a wrong direction.
A natural flesh occupied human soul is perplexed about many things, and for many reasons. In fact, a natural human being stays in a perplexed, or confused state of mind. A natural human being or soul changes the reasons why they are perplexed day to day due to their relationships or their circumstances. They are never content. They stay in a perplexed state of mind about God, and themselves. This is one of the weapons Satan uses to keep a child of God away from what our Father is giving them, and it also is a state of mind Satan uses to keep anyone from hearing God’s truth.
Satan loves to create perplexity to the point a person is destroyed from hearing the truth about our Father and His Son Jesus Christ, and the grace, and power He gives them. A natural human soul is perplexed about why they exist, their purpose, where to go, and what to do. They have no answers.
They rely solely on themselves, and find they truly never have that completeness they are searching for. Their minds continually fall short, and they search continually as to why their minds are in total confusion. They have no true judgement or discernment about themselves or others. They have doubt, fear, and have an anxious state of mind from one day to the next. They deceive themselves and are easily deceived.
1 Corinthians 2:14 The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment. For who has known the mind of the Lord that he many instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.
The Holy Spirit that comes into a human soul through Jesus Christ and the Cross searches all things, even the deep things of God within that soul. For who among the natural human soul knows the thoughts of another human soul except the man’s spirit within that soul? In the same way, no one knows the thoughts of God’s soul except the Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit filled human soul has not received the spirit of the world, they are different, they have received the Spirit who is from God, so they can understand clearly what God has freely given them.
1 Corinthians 2:10 The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him? In the same way, no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us.
The only way a natural human being can recover from perplexity or their perplexity is coming from the right place is to surrender their mind to Jesus Christ as their Lord. Many people say they surrender all to God, but truly this is evident in ourselves and in others when our mind is not being transformed into His mind.
Today many “Christians” have the same mindset as someone in the world, they do not think differently than someone else who lives in the world, and they remain in confusion. Jesus said, in this world we will have trouble, perplexity, and heart break, but the response a Christian has is much different than the response a natural man has when they face trouble. God’s Holy Spirit is the One truth of God, and the mind of God given to us so we may know Him and His power and He may know us and how much we need Him.
Today we are going to discuss some reasons, a true child of God, a Holy Spirit filled person is perplexed, and a natural human being, unbeliever, pagan, or Gentile person is perplexed. Our Father will reveal to us the difference, and help us to realize who we are, and who we are not. If we recognize the difference He has given us within ourselves as a true child of God, rejoice in Him, praise Him for revealing His truth in us; we have been given the mind of Christ! If you recognize He has not manifested this difference in you, then repent, ask Him to give you His reasons your mind is being confused, perplexed, or troubled so He can give you rest in Him. We will start with Daniel.
Daniel 4:19 ( Daniel Interprets the Dream) Then Daniel (also called Belteshazzar) was greatly perplexed for a time, and his thoughts terrified him. So the king said, “Belteshazzar, do not let the dream or its meaning alarm you.” Belteshazzar answered, “My lord, if only the dream applied to your enemies and its meaning to your adversaries!
The KJV uses the word troubled instead of perplexed. Daniel was alarmed, perplexed, and confused because the dream was not about the king’s enemies, or adversaries, but the king himself. King Nebuchadnezzar had become to know that Daniel had the Spirit of the Holy God in him, and the kind knew that was the only reason Daniel could interpret his dreams. King Nebuchadnezzar had already seen the miracle of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego when he had this dream, and even praised God for saving them from the fire. Even though Daniel was troubled, alarmed, or perplexed, he did not fall into despair, but fearlessly told the king what God had given him about the king’s dream.
This reveals to us when a righteous man, one of God’s chosen, a Holy Spirit filled person gets a troubled or perplexed mind due to what is being revealed through Gods Spirit about another person, and they fearlessly speak what God reveals regardless of the outcome. Daniel offered his advice to the king because he had more fear of not pleasing God then he had of not pleasing the king. Many false prophets had a fear of kings more than God, and told kings only what they wanted to hear, and not the truth. Although Daniel respected the king, God was greater in Daniels life, greater then king, and greater to Daniel than any other relationship or circumstance.
Even though Daniel was perplexed and troubled he did not fall into fear or despair, he spoke the words God gave him to speak, because He wanted to please God, for God’s sake, and Daniel cared about the king’s relationship with God more than his own relationship with the king. Daniel's interest in others had become God’s interest in others only because Daniel surrendered all of Himself to God, so God revealed many works in Daniel and through Daniel. Through Christ and the Cross, we receive His Holy Spirit, and our mind, soul, body, spirit and heart transform the same way. Our interest in others become God’s interest in others, and our soul, body and spirit prove His transformation, and redeeming work for all to benefit from. The King was not willing to take hold of God’s instructions through Daniel, and he suffered for it.
Daniel 4:27 Therefore, O king, be pleased to accept my advice: Renounce your sins by doing what is right, and your wickedness by being kind to the oppressed. It may be that then your prosperity will continue.
The king kept his prideful ways, boasting about himself, taking credit for building up His kingdom, and gave no credit to God. He suffered seven years he did not need to suffer, but he was humbled by God through them, repented, and regained his kingdom better than it was before. Daniel did God’s will, no matter how alarmed, perplexed, or troubled he was about the dream. He warned the King regardless of the king’s response, because Daniel lived and belonged to God.
Luke 9:7 Now Herod the tetrarch heard about all that was going on. And he was perplexed because some were saying that John had been raised from the dead,
Herod was a tetrarch, a governor or a ruler of one of the four divisions of Rome when Christ walked the earth. Herod was perplexed about what was going on because some people were saying John the Baptist was raised from the dead, and others claimed prophets had come back to life because the disciples of Jesus was sent to village to village, preaching the gospel and healing people everywhere!
Herod killed John the Baptist by having him beheaded so he was confused or perplexed about all that was going on. Herod wanted to know who was performing all these miracles, and he tried to see him. We know Herod’s perplexity lead him in the wrong direction, because he lived through his natural mind, and by his own power. It grew into despair and later it caused him to make a wrong decision. Therefore, it is very important for us to look where our confusion comes from, and for what reason.
Acts 2:12- 13 Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?” Some, however, made fun of them and said, “They have had too much to drink.”
This occurred when the Jews came from all over the region to meet on the day of Pentecost, and the Holy Spirit came upon them. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from Heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest one each one of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.
A crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard them speaking in his own language.
Peter addressed the crowd and told them what it meant, “In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughter will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Even on my servants, both men and women I will pour out my Spirit in those days and they will prophesy.
When a child of God receives the Holy Spirit, they will be amazed, perplexed, and confused at first because their mind is transforming, their emotions are changing, they are being healed in unexplained ways, their denying themselves, their carrying a Cross that is given by His power and grace, and their growing in Him. They will dream dreams, see visions, and they will prophesy. These people that have chosen the way of Christ, God's way, through His Spirit filled life will not remain timid, or prideful in their own works, but speak, and walk in His truth boldly with His love and authority guarding their hearts, and without resentment, malice or harsh judgment toward anyone else that do not believe as they do.
They are given gifts they could have never imagined from God to prove they are His Spirit filled children, so others will be drawn to Him, not to them for their own purposes. They love God with all their heart, with all their soul, with all their strength, and with all their mind because He has given all they have in all ways it can be given. Through His love, a child of God that is living to please Him, will love others for His purpose, not their own. They are bearing fruit for Him because they belong to Him, and they do not belong to themselves or others any longer. They live for God and Him alone.
A true child of God becomes a part of another world, another Kingdom that is led by the Heavenly Father, and His Son, and that person is not a part of this one any longer. If this transformation does not give you some perplexity then God has not taken hold of you. All His children will have some perplexity at first because a new person has taken up residence within them, and He wants to change them into His Holy Image, and this type of confusion can be overwhelming at times, but at the same time He gives you a peace that goes beyond your understanding.
Paul writes to the children of God in Corinth to explain what happens to each of us that have fully given themselves to Christ, not to some, but to all of us who are living in and through Him fully as being His treasures, in His jars of clay.
2 Corinthians 4:8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life may be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us but life is at work in you.
If you call yourself a Christian and these experiences are not manifesting within yourself through His power that is within you then you are not being molded by His hands, as you are being his clay, and Him being your Potter. If He is your Potter and you are His clay these experiences will be happening to you. This is not a sad, miserable, victimized, sorrowful, guilt ridden life, but the only abundant life worth living, and He will mold you, shape you, and He will be exalted through it.
God writes through Paul to the believers in Corinth as he writes to His children today, we are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed. Perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. Paul does not say some believers, a few believers, many believers, He says “We” are, meaning all who are in Christ are, and it is to show that this all-surpassing power is from God, and not from us!
Hard pressed on every side, but not crushed. A natural human being will always be crushed by his or her circumstances, or his or her relationships. No natural human being has the power to overcome their circumstances or their relationships, all natural human souls will be crushed by them sooner or later. God reveals this to us and through us in the beginning of our relationship with Him through His Spirit of truth, we are no longer crushed by them, but molded and shaped by His power through them for His sake. We become stronger through our circumstances by His power and grace. We are not changed through our circumstances or experiences, we are changed by Him through them.
A natural soul can change and learn through their circumstances, and through their own relationships, all people can learn, and change without God, but He will not the glory, there will be none of His fruit bearing, and no fruit from His Spirit will be manifesting in them.
A Holy Spirit filled person learns from God, and through others that God is in. This means anyone at any accountable age can learn from Him through their circumstances and relationships, and not be crushed by them, but transformed by Him through them. They will transform from within, through them, because HE changes them.
Perplexed, but not in despair.A natural person will be perplexed about many things. There perplexity, as I have already written, will always be in despair, and end without completeness. Their mind is not being transformed by Him, not because He does not want to transform them, but they are not willing.
Those who remember, like Paul, what it was like to live through the natural spirit of man, know the difference, and I remember how confused, and perplexed I was about myself, God, and all my relationships, and circumstances before I knew my Lord and Savior. I learned from my experiences, and relationships, just like every natural human being can, but no change within me ever took place, nor was I being transformed to His likeness. I was not perplexed about what perplexed Him because He was not in me. I did not have a relationship with Him as my true Lord and Savior, so His relationship was not lived out. Only my heart, mind, body and spirit was living in me, and what I willed. I only saw and heard others in the world.
A Holy Spirit filled person will be perplexed about others, but the will have no despair, and it will not end in despair. They have His hope, faith and love to guide their minds. They are never perplexed about what their Heavenly Father is doing in and through them, about their own relationship with God because they are full of His Spirit, and He is teaching them all things. For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open. Therefore, consider carefully how you listen. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he thinks he has will be taken from him. (Luke 8:17)
A child of God will be perplexed about other lost souls, about other believers that say they have faith in Christ but their mouths, and hearts reveal something different. A Spirit filled person will be perplexed about people who are willing to be deceived after they have been told the truth, and they will be perplexed about people who distort God’s truth, but a Holy Spirit filled person will not be in despair even though they are perplexed.
I wonder if there were any Holy Spirit filled souls that were perplexed about me before I knew Him? They never told me they were, but then again, I never claimed I knew Him or was walking through His Spirit. I never spoke His words because He was not in me giving me the understanding of them to speak. His words were not dwelling in me to use as He determined.
His love, peace and grace will guide His Holy Spirit filled child to pray for the lost, faithless, the ones that are being deceived, and the ones that are persecuting them. All these a Holy Spirit filled person will be perplexed about, but not in despair. He will give them what they need in word and deed when He gives them an opportunity to speak or to comfort those the Holy Spirit filled Christian is perplexed about.
Like Daniel, Jesus, Paul and all the first disciples, no matter how troubled or perplexed a Spirit filled child of God is about another soul, a child of God speaks and walks through His Spirit of truth regardless of the circumstances or the relationship he puts before them.The Holy Spirit filled child of God lives in God, for God, and through God for all people. They are perplexed, but not in despair.
Persecuted but not abandoned. A Spirit filled child of God will always be persecuted, but it may be in different measures. Today many Christians are being heavily persecuted, beaten, and put to death. Through my research, Christians are estimating 90,000 thousand Christians are killed a year, and 215 million experience persecution in countries across the globe according to the world watch list given by Open Doors USA a Christian Today publication. This number has to do with many wars, and not just from Muslims. Go to OpenDoorUSA.org/WWL to get more information about severe persecution from 50 countries.
There are all kinds of levels of persecution that can cause perplexity. It can come from a family member not wanting to be around a Spirit filled child of God, and a friend not wanting to be around them. It can come from co-workers at a job or anywhere they walk, and speak through His presence. It can also come from another group of believers, and church community that do not want to live by His truth that His Word proclaims.
A Holy Spirit filled person can recognize if His peace is not being received instantly from someone else, because He reveals it to them because they are focused on Him, and not the other person. As He sent His disciples out into the world He sends us out, and as He was sent they and us are sent doing our Father’s will, and some will not receive His peace.
Many Christians today say they do not look at other people and their walk, but if you are focused on Him, He will reveal how you speak and walk, and through you He will reveal how others speak and how they walk for all to benefit from. If you are focused on people you will not see correctly, you will either see all the good, or all the bad, but never clearly that reveals His truth for all to befit from.
Only through Him can anyone see clearly has He wants them to see, and He will reveal what He wants every child of His to see, they do not know until He reveals it, but if you are fully His to work in and through you will see as He sees. His truth, or a lie, the darkness, or His light, this world, or His Kingdom, all will be revealed, and who is up for such a task?
When a child of God speaks His truth plainly through His Spirit of authority and grace it can be rejected by another person only because they are not willing to live by His truth, and that person can look at a child of God as an enemy. It does not matter how kind, and merciful the child of God is, not because of who they are, but because of who He is. The persecutor is rejecting His truth not the persons truth. It is not a matter of getting their own way, but His way, through His Words, not their own. Regardless if they listen, or reject His truth, a child of God continues to follow His Spirit.
Today His truth is being accepted as relative, and comparative depending on the person. Today many Christians believe God gives people different truths depending on how each person perceives it, and the time they receive it. This means each person can have their own truth. This is not true, a false teaching that has spread among many believers. Each person that has received Christ are taught by the same mind, and the same Spirit. This is where their unity comes from.
Above all you must understand God’s word was not made for private interpretation. It is given by One Spirit for all to receive the same understanding from, through His Wisdom, and if at any time the mature in Christ do disagree, wait patiently through His Spirit; He will always reveal His truth. He has proven this truth so many times in my own life.
2 Peter 1:20 Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
Philippians 2:14 I press toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. All of us who are mature (spiritually) should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. Only let us live up to what we have already attained.
Persecution can come from people in another country, across the table, or down the street, but our Lord will never abandon a true child of God, and He will always give them what they need through it all! His children are always blessed by Him through their persecution. God speaks through Paul’s letters to Timothy and tells him if a person is not being persecuted then they are not in Christ.
The world today can be among His body of believers, just like it was among the early church, false prophets, and false witnesses, and people who distort the word of God, can all be among His body of believers. Jesus said, "Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them." God speaks this through Our Lord by Johns recorded account.
It is not because of who a true child of God is as an individual is why they get persecuted, but because of who He is, and if you belong to Him as His child, you will be obedient to Him, and you will be persecuted by others.
John 15:18 “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you don’t belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. This is why the world hates you. Remember the words I spoke to you. ‘No servant is greater than his master, if they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. They will treat you this way because of my name, for they don’t know the One who sent me.
2 Timothy 3:12 In fact everyone who wants to live a Godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil men and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.
Struck down, but not destroyed.If you are a Holy Spirit filled child of God you will be struck down. This word struck down, means put in a lower place, to humiliate, ridicule, or mock. Many people will try to humiliate a true child of God in many ways due to who He is in them; His righteousness, and His wisdom that is His truth; they did it to Him first, and if He is in you it will be done to you. Through Him a child of God will have most of the answers because He gives them all the answers. People who do not have all the answers will hate the ones that do because they are prideful.
If you are living a true Spirit filled Holy life people will try to humiliate you, they will ridicule you, and try to make themselves seam higher than you are because they are prideful in who they have created themselves to be.
A child of God is confident in Christ and what He gives them, not in themselves, they know all they have is due to what He gives. A prideful person may use many things to try to humiliate a child of God.
People that persecute a child of God can use their age to try to humiliate a child of God, they may use their own works to try and humiliate a child of God, their education, gender, and accomplishments to try to make a child of God seam smaller than they are, not because of who they are, but because of who He is.
That is why Jesus tells the crowd, those who think they are first will be last, and those who know they are last will be first. This means the prideful will fall, and the humble He will exalt. Because the humble person knows all they have been given has come from Him, not from themselves and their power.
A Spirit filled child of God will not let perception destroy their spirit or sou, they will always remain true to who He is in them, they will remain standing in His presence, will not be shaken, they will not stoop to the false prophet’s level, submit to them, they will stay true to His word, His ways through His teachings. A true child of God will not humiliate anyone, they will never ridicule anyone or mock anyone. They will tell His truth boldly, with His given authority, remain in His love, and let the circumstances fall where they may.
They will never be destroyed, nor will they desire to destroy anyone, only sin and evil, but at the same time they will not compromise His truth. It is up to the person that is persecuting them if they want to continue being deceived, or be reborn fully living in and through Him. Those who are fully in Christ will continue to pray for those who are persecuting them. They are lifted up to the Father, and put into His hands. Our prayers will be His rain drops falling on their heads, and His truth will set them free from their sins.
Matthew 5:43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He caused his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.
This does not mean we love sin, and we accept our sins, or anyone’s sin. This also does not mean we must live with those who persecute us, or be equally yoked with our persecutors. This means we love our enemy’s through prayer, and we still will bless them through God’s Holy word of truth when He gives us an opportunity to speak to them for their benefit and ours. Many today are ignoring their sin, and loving without His truth, and that benefits no one.
Galatians 4:20 how I wish I could be with you now and change my tone, because I am perplexed about you!
God writes, just as He speaks through Paul to the church in Galatians as He speaks to us today. God is showing His concern through Paul for the Galatians as He does through us for others. Formerly, they did not know God, they were slaves to those who by nature are not gods, just like we are all before we know God through Christ. He tells them now since they know God or rather are known by God- how is it that they are turning back to those weak and miserable principles? This is what Paul is perplexed about, and if Christ is in us we too will be perplexed about someone turning away from God after they have been told the truth, and received the message with joy.
God ask them through Paul's letter, as He ask us and through us today as well, “Do you wish to be enslaved by them all over again? He tells them they are observing special days, months, seasons and years! They used to be in Christ when Paul visited them before, now some of them were turning back to false principles, away from their faith in Christ giving them all they need, and they began disliking Paul for telling them the truth. They began treating him as an enemy! Truly they were treating Christ as a enemy, and Paul was perplexed about them and their response.
He became perplexed, and his tone was not pleasant, but he wished he could come to them and his tone be changed. Paul’s greatest desire was for Christ to be formed in others has He was formed in Paul. That is God's will for all of us to be in Christ fully sanctified. Paul pleaded for the Galatians to be like Him in Christ for he became like them to show the work of Christ, and how he transformed him.
This type of perplexity comes from a heart that is totally devoted to God wholeheartedly, and wants others to love God has they do, and they become perplexed when someone goes backwards instead of moving forwards in faith in Christ giving them all they need daily to love and walk through His Given Spirit. We are free in Christ from the in traditions that enslave us, observing certain days, months, seasons and years, and Paul wanted them to experience the true freedom Christ could only give them each day for one another through His life giving Spirit.
Have we let Christianity become enslaved by observing certain days, months, seasons and years all over again just like the organized religion of the Jews that put a heavy yoke upon the people? God was not able to work in and through the natural man as He desired. He knew this in the beginning, and planned Jesus has their Savior before the creation of the world. They were promised a New promise in Christ that gives them a New heart, from His Spirit that transforms them.
I am perplexed about this myself just as Paul was. Has His church today gone backwards instead of forwards in faith in Him giving us all we need each day? Have we gone back to observing special days, months, seasons, and years above His daily presence living in and through us?
Through all this perplexity my hope is in Christ that we all realize where our perplexity comes from, and where it is taking us. If He is transforming it, or has transformed it without despair, but with His grace, and peace. We all will be perplexed at different times, and for different reasons, and the reason why will reveal who we are. If we test ourselves and find that we are perplexed for His reason and purpose, praise God! We know it does not not end in despair, but His peace, hope and His amazing grace is transforming us through His life given Spirit.
If you find yourself perplexed by your own desires, and it is ending in despair, repent now, this hour and this day! Ask your Heavenly Father to forgive you for letting your confusion, or troubled mind take you away from His purpose in your life. Ask Him to help you be perplexed about what perplexes Him, and He will give you His peace and hope.
May all of us learn to be perplexed about what He is perplexed about.