Witness And Leading Of The Spirit
Walter Beuttler

Tonight, we're going to go particularly to the activities of the Spirit. I had said to you that the Spirit of God is a real person. I've mentioned that it has nothing to do with what is called in theology "corporeality," that is, possession of a material body. You and I are spirit beings and principally spirit personalities. The bodies we have are simply our house, which some day we'll lay aside. Laid aside, we'll be clothed with a new house, a resurrected body not subject to the laws of decay.

Now the Spirit of God does not have a body. The Father does not have a body. I do not say they do not have a form, but their form is essence. The essence is spirit. Now there is one difference. From all eternity, Jesus Christ, also what we call the 2nd person of the Trinity, did not have a body, but today He has one, a glorified body.

When Jesus came to be born of a woman and took on a human body, a change took place in the Trinity. The change was that Jesus, the 2nd member of the Trinity, who up to this time did not have a body, now has a body, just as we are going to have some day after the resurrection. But the Spirit has no body.

I want to tell you something here, not by way of doctrine or proof, but by way of interest, and at the same time shedding some light on the subject. I went to Bible school in 1927. We had a teacher; in fact, he was the best-liked teacher, who came down with a serious illness. He was taken to the hospital. He never returned. The principal of the school was with him when he died.

He said to him, "Brother Evans, please tell the students that the Holy Ghost is a real person. I see the Father, and the Son and the Holy Ghost as three persons on the throne. Please tell the students the Holy Spirit is a real person." With those words, he passed away.

Now we do not offer that as proof, because things like that cannot be offered as proof, but they do add a certain element of truth and light on a subject otherwise freely proven from the Word of God. As a person, the Holy Ghost not only knows as a person, He is omniscient. In fact, he knows more than a person does.

We had a girl in our school who was in very, very serious trouble - very serious. I do not want to mention what the problem was. Few people knew it. In fact, Wife, myself and another party were the only ones that knew. That girl was in despair. In doctrine class, she sat there with her head down. She was in the depths of despondency. And she had reason to be despondent. You would agree if you knew what was wrong.

I knew she didn't listen, and I didn't blame her. In her condition, I wouldn't be interested in doctrine either. Yet, as I was teaching, all of a sudden there came an utterance in tongues and interpretation. Now I knew what was wrong with the girl, and the interpretation was so clearly directed to that girl without disclosing who was involved, because you could only know if you knew.

The girl's face changed. She looked up and listened for the rest of the class. After the class, she was among the last to leave the room and I sided up to her. As we walked up the hill, I sort of caught up with her and said, "Say, did the Lord ever help you."

She said, "Oh Brother Beuttler, you will never know what that utterance meant to me." The Spirit of God knew that this poor thing was sitting there in despair, and He sent a special word to her to lift up the head of her countenance, and she smiled again.

The boy who interpreted the utterance said, "Brother Beuttler, it sounded like this was for somebody specific in class. Do you know anything?"

I said, "I do, but that's all I can tell you. Surely that was for someone in the class."

And that girl perked up. The Spirit came and under girded her so she could carry on and go through in spite of the very serious problem that she had on her hands. The Spirit of God knows. Do you see what I mean? He is a person. Now we talked about that some.

Now I'd like to mention, at least as far as our time would seem to allow, three activities concerning the Spirit. I may be able to finish only two, but then tomorrow night is another night. The Spirit of God is a person. Now I'll take here the Gospel of John 16:13 for a basis.

"Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself (that is to say, on his own authority, on his own initiative); but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak; and he will shew you things to come." John 16:13

Notice the activity of the Spirit. He will "guide;" He shall "hear;" He shall "speak;" He will "show" you. We have the personal activity of the Spirit of God doing the will of the Father in the hearts and lives of His people.

You know, when I was a student in Bible school, I took to liking a girl, and she took to liking me. So a friendship developed, only a friendship though, still it kind of got stronger and stronger. And the Lord dealt with me. He negated it. No, He didn't want that, but I wanted it. I was all-alone and was glad to have somebody to chum with a little bit. Yet the Lord kept dealing with me not to continue this friendship. Well, I wouldn't listen.

So one day, she and I went to an evangelistic campaign. Smith Wigglesworth from England was the evangelist. Do some of you remember him? No? Well he was quite a character. If you came to him and complained about a stomach pain, he'd take his fist and hit you in the stomach. That was one way to get rid of one pain, but you got another one. But he got results.

He was speaking. The church had long pews that had room for at least a dozen people, I would say. She and I were sitting on one side in a corner of the bench. That man stopped in the middle of his preaching and gave a message in tongues. When he gave that message in tongues, I knew instinctively (I just knew), the Spirit of God had something to say to me. I just knew. I also knew it had to do with her. You see, the Spirit knew.

I was so scared that I slipped down the bench to the other side, and let the poor thing sit in the corner by herself. I was so scared at what was coming. He finished the utterance in tongues, then he interpreted it. That man told exactly what was going on in my heart. You'd think he could look in and read every thought. He came out with it. And then he just let me know where I was. In the utterance, the Spirit of God called on me, not by name but I knew it was me, to discontinue this relationship and follow the Lord with a single heart.

He got finished. Then he said, "This message is for a young man in this audience tonight whom God has called." When I heard that, that did it. That finished the whole thing. The Spirit of God is a person, and He knows who is in the audience, so you better look out. (Laughter)

I have seen people jump up right from their seats and run out when the Spirit of God does that. I saw a man jump up and make a confession for having stolen the church's missionary money. He was a deacon. He came up and repented and asked the whole church to forgive him for his thievery. The man just got touched of God through the Word and gave himself up. The Spirit of God knows. Being a person there are times when the Spirit of God witnesses. Here I'll use Romans 8:16.

"The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." Romans 8:16

Now here is something that is difficult to explain. It is a case of "better felt than telt." You kind of have to know some of these things before you can understand them. So you know that you are saved. I know that I am saved. Well, how do I know that I am saved? How do you know that you are saved? Well you say, "I believe in Jesus Christ, therefore I know I'm saved." But how do you know it works?

In the final analysis, I think you would say, "I don't know how I know, I just know I know." Well, that assurance is the witness of the Spirit.

The Lord had called me to the ministry, and the day came when I applied for credentials with the US Assemblies of God. They had a board of ministers on the credentials committee. There was one fellow on it that was real rough. He liked to rough up the candidates, and every candidate was afraid of him with his questions and his seeming cynicism. He was all right, but he had a rough way.

I said, "Lord, when I get in there, don't let him ask me any questions." Would you believe it, he was the first man who asked me the first question.

He said, "I see here on your application that you claim to be called of God. How do you know?" Why, that was enough to scare the daylights out of a young fellow.

I didn't know what to answer so I said, " Brother, I don't know how I know. All I know is that I know." Well I thought with that I'll never get my papers.

But one of the other men spoke up and said, "Brother Beuttler, that's what we like to hear." He continued to say, "We get fellows in here who come with ambitions. 'I'll tell you brethren, behold I saw a sign in the sky. There were two letters that said GP, and that means, Go Preach.'"

One brother said, " How do you know it doesn't mean, Go Plow?"

Well, I got my papers with no problem whatsoever. "All I know is that I know." That's the witness of the Spirit. The Lord has called me to go into all the world to teach. You know I've been doing that. That's what brings me to New Zealand.

Even though the Lord spoke right in here (pointing to stomach area), I know apart from that. I could never doubt it. A thousand people could say, " We don't believe you, Beuttler."

I'd say, "Well ladies and gentlemen, that doesn't make any difference. I still know." That's the Spirit. He gives us the assurance of our personal relationship to God as children. We'll move on now to Hebrews:

"God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will." Hebrews 2:4

Here we have the witness of the Spirit by means of what we call the gifts of the Spirit. That would take in tongues, interpretations, prophecy, some of the other gifts of the Spirit of God. God, by means of the gifts of the Spirit, bears witness to His Word, to the truth. The kind of witness differs with the kind of ministry. You take an evangelist who ministers, let's say in the Spirit. God bears witness to his ministry with healings, with miracles, with the casting out of spirits with great results.

Now I'm a teacher. Miracles, healings, baptisms and salvation are not the integral part of my ministry. In my case, the Spirit often bears witness by means of tongues, interpretation or prophecy to the truth spoken. The Spirit of God witnesses.

He also witnesses on the inside where God's people spontaneously know this is the truth, this is from God, I heard from God. All over the world, on occasions people have said, "Brother Beuttler, God spoke to my heart this day." I don't know what He said, but He bore witness to their hearts what was said there was the word of the Lord to their hearts. That can be embarrassing to me.

I was in France, for the first time in this particular church, and I spoke what the Lord laid on my heart. After the meeting the pastor said, "Brother Beuttler, I don't know what to do. I'm going to have a problem."

I said, " Well what does that have to do with me?"

He said, "You brought it about. You caused it."

I said, "How did that happen?"

He said, "You spoke tonight as though you had been in our business meeting last meeting. We've got trouble in this church, and you spent all evening speaking on that condition. My problem is: How will I ever convince my people that nobody has told you anything about our church problem?" Well that's the Spirit. The Spirit of God knows. There are times when He comes along with tongues, interpretation or prophecy to verify the word because there are some in any congregation who will not believe.

I was in a meeting and a lady stood up in front of me. I had just related a marvelous experience in relation to the presence of God, and she stood up and said out loud so everybody heard it, "That's a lot of bologna."

That night I said, " Sister, did you come for more bologna?"

She said, "Yep." She was an old, old lady. I think in her 80's. She thought it was all bologna.

Well, the Spirit of God comes along and bears witness to the truth - He witnesses. Before I get finished this week, I just might perchance tell you some unusual things. I have them. Some of you may have difficulty believing it even though it is true, where the Spirit of God bears witness to your heart that this is indeed the word of the Lord.

I was in Bible school teaching. You know that. Well I was a lay teacher. I think it was my first or second year, and I was teaching what is known in theology as the kenosis - That is to say the ministry of Jesus, His miraculous ministry, the work He did, the people He healed, the word He spoke: the secret for all that did not lie in His deity. In fact, His deity had nothing to do with it. He didn't raise the dead because He was the Son of God. He didn't heal the sick because He was the Son of God. Paul healed them, and he wasn't the Son of God. Elijah raised the dead and wasn't the Son of God.

Anyhow, that is the doctrine, and I was teaching it. I knew there was a fellow there who was going to make trouble. I was the Dean of Men. I had to keep those fellows in line, and that's a job for anybody. This fellow just did not like Beuttler. He was a rascal, and it was my job to unrascal him. To unrascal a rascal is quite a rascal job.

I knew he would make trouble. He loved to put me on the spot in class. He'd put his hand up to raise an argument, and if I didn't recognize it, he'd keep it up. Do you think he'd put it down? Oh no! My hand's up. A teacher isn't obligated to recognize every hand. The Lord didn't, but I usually did. This time I was afraid. He had studied to be a lawyer, and he was good with his tongue. That fellow could prove me wrong even though I was right. He was so cleaver. I was afraid of him.

So before I went to class, I stuck my head in the corner of my office in the school. I had my books under my arm. I said, " Father, you know how this boy loves me. (He knew what I meant.) Now Father, you also know that this kenosis is correct doctrine, but I know, and You know, he's very likely to make trouble for me with it, put up his hand and start an argument. Father, You know that it is the truth. Will you please defend me when I go to class."

And so I went to class. I went along with my lesson. I just came toward the end of the kenosis. I expected his hand to go up at any moment. That was the signal that I was in trouble. But before he got a chance to put up his hand, the Spirit put up His hand, so to speak. One of the girls gave a beautiful utterance in tongues, and one of the fellows interpreted. I still remember the interpretation. I was so grateful, and it was short enough.

"Behold the words which thou hast heard are true, and I the Lord, bear witness to the truth." With those words, the Spirit of God fell on the class. Hands went up praising the Lord. After a little while, the bell rang meaning the end of the class. When I heard the bell ring, I knew I was safe. (Laughter) The Spirit of God bore witness to the truth. I think He must have cut the boy off before he got his hands up. "Behold the words which thou hast heard are true, and I the Lord, bear witness to the truth." That came by means of tongues and interpretation.

That's what you have here, God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will. I love the Spirit, don't you? I owe the Spirit of God so much. You'll find that out before we get done. I would like to point out to you that the Spirit also witnesses to us by giving us a deep assurance. What we have in Acts is this:

"And after he had seen the vision, immediately we endeavored to go into Macedonia, assuredly gathering that the Lord had called us for to preach the gospel unto them." Acts 16:10

Now if you have experiences in the way of the Spirit, and many of you doubtless do, you will have found there are times when He gives us a real assurance concerning a matter, an assurance in the heart that we know.

One year I was getting an air ticket in Rome to go to Tunisia. I remember leaning over the desk watching the man write out the ticket, and inside of my spirit...Here is where our spirit is (pointing to stomach), that is where the Spirit lives. The Spirit lives in our spirit in this region (stomach). That's where you get your gifts from, your messages in tongues, what have you. That's where the Spirit speaks, usually, not always. And there was such a presence, such an assurance that I said to myself, "One thing I know, I'm in the will of God going to Tunisia." Very slowly, it subsided, but I knew that I was to go. That's a wonderful thing to know, especially if you get into difficulties. And I got into them.

I was walking along a boulevard in the city of Tunis with my interpreter. I had a nice little presence in here (stomach area). Do you know what I mean--the glow of His presence, that Praise the Lord, the conscience awareness of His presence? It wasn't strong, but noticeable. We were walking along when all of a sudden, this presence in here turned to a very strong alarm. That's the only way I can put it. It changed to such an inner alarm that it frightened me. Without knowing why, I jumped to my right. I took a big leap. I didn't know why. The presence made me jump, and as I jumped, a young Arab brushed my left shoulder with his right shoulder with an open knife in his hand. From all appearance, he sneaked up behind and was going to use his knife on me for what purpose, I do not know, but the Spirit of God saw him. My companion observed him, gave me a warning, and I jumped away from the knife.

Those were the days when the Algiers, the Arabs cut the throats of the Westerners, Frenchmen in particular, by the hundreds. That's true. You weren't safe anywhere, and I had a few narrow escapes. And there the Spirit of God changed this inner presence into this warning, but in Rome, I had the witness, the assurance that I was in the will of God. So no matter what would have happened, I could have said, and believe would have said, "I still was in the will of God." I'll tell you folkses; I don't know what I would do without the witness of the Spirit of God and His assurance.

One year I was going to Buenos Aires. I was just going to go on an Argentine Airlines flight. I went to the airport in New York. I had two suitcases in my hand, a cabin bag over my shoulder, and walked into the International Departure Hall. As I walked in, I got an increasing consciousness of the presence of the Spirit-in here (pointing to stomach). It became so strong that I put my cases down and my bag, and stood there.

I said, " Father, what is this?" That presence got stronger. I think it's the strongest I've ever had. It got so strong. Oh! Such a strong assurance, that I stood there midst hundreds of people milling about. I stood there. I remember saying in my heart, "One thing I know, I'm in the center of the will of God going to Argentina." I cannot describe it to you, as it's better felt than telt. Such a witness, an assurance in here (stomach)! In fact I said, " If I ever traveled in the will of God, this is it." I knew it, and I stood there awhile. I didn't know what else to do. Very gradually it subsided, so I picked up my bags, checked in and went on my way. It took quite awhile before that presence was gone. Even again I said, "One thing I know, I'm in the center of the will of God, come what may."

We got down to Havana. I'd never been there before. It was a refueling stop. The passengers got off and I thought, "I'll walk out of the building and look around a bit." So I browsed around and came back to the airport. There was a big commotion and I couldn't get through. I recognized a passenger and said, "Say sir, you're on the Argentine flight?"

He said, "Yes."

I said, "What's going on here?"

He said, "Don't you know?"

I said, "No, what's up?"

"The Cubans, Castro is taking our plane from us." Those were the days when Americans were stopped and slapped into jail for no reason whatsoever, except hostility toward everything American. "Castro is taking our plane from us."

I said, "Well, what are we going to do? "

"Nobody knows," he answered.

Whew! So I was there awhile, and here was Castro's soldiers: dirty, bearded, sloppy. In those days, beards weren't the fashion. They were sloppy with submachine guns slung under their arms. Some had rifles. Some kind of an officer gave an order, and I was told what it means was that all the passengers from this plane were to line up single file. That didn't sound good.

We had to line up, one behind the other. Castro's soldiers stood on this side, all with their submachine guns or a rifle, mostly sub machine guns and automatic rifles, and the line of them here facing each other. We were told one by one to walk down between these lines of soldiers. At the end there was an officer examining each person. It didn't look good. When my turn came, I was scared. My turn came and I walked down. These fellows looked me over and I came to this officer. He put up his hand to stop, and I stopped there. He had a submachine gun under his arm. I noticed his finger was on the trigger and when he pointed it, I could look right down that little black hole. Then I remembered the airport in New York where I said, "If ever I traveled in the will of God, this is the time."

So I said to myself, "Beuttler, come what may, you'll still be in the will of God. If he slaps you into jail, you're still in the will of God. One thing I know, I'm in the will of God." My, what a help that was! That was the purpose of that strong presence. It was so exceedingly strong because the Lord foresaw that a critical situation would arise and He wanted me to remember in Havana that I had a presence in New York and was in the center of the will of God. And I'll tell you, that helped greatly.

I'm not saying I wasn't scared anymore because I was, but I was confident that come what may, I was in the will of God. Well, he (the officer) waved me on. We got on our plane. After awhile, they gave us the plane back. There was quite a commotion over it.

I sat by the window over the wing. While the plane was being loaded, these Cuban soldiers came climbing up on the wing, all over the plane. You know, you're not supposed to be up there. They had their rifles with them. One came right by the window next to me and looked in. I didn't know whether I should smile. I was afraid to smile for fear he would think I was laughing at him and he would shoot. They could have done it. They were a bunch of hoodlums.

I was afraid to look scared for fear that would get him going, so I decided to give an intermediate expression, whatever that is. He looked at me, and I tried to look sort of nonchalant, but I wasn't. This is what he did. (Demonstrated. It seemed to be a cut across the throat.) I got the signal. I didn't like this last too much. I didn't want to smile, I didn't want to look scared. I hardly knew how to look for fear he'd carry it out.

Well, we finally got off, but believe you me, did I appreciate that presence of the Lord. (Demonstrated the signal again-laughter from audience.) Nobody could have stopped the fellow from doing anything he wanted to. But the Spirit of God gives assurance. I'll never forget that. There have been other occasions. Do you know what I've noticed? Very often when there is a strong presence, there is a reason for it that still lies ahead. The Lord works this in so many different ways.

I was teaching in a camp meeting in the States, and was eating breakfast in a place, and the Lord, the Spirit, checked me. I was not to eat breakfast. In fact, I had some nice pancakes ordered. I haven't seen them here yet. I love them. The waitress had fixed them for me just the way I wanted, extra butter, extra syrup, you know, what have you. Just as I was ready to start, the Spirit gave me a check. I knew what it meant. No.

I said, "Lord, you're too late. The pancakes are already here. What will the waitress think if I don't eat them?" And I looked at them, and this Wife of mine over there is no fool. She's a smart girl.

She said to me, "Say, you're not supposed to eat this morning."

I said, "No, I'm not."

She said, "Then why do you look at these pancakes like that?"

"Because I'd like to eat them." She encouraged me that I better go home and pray, and I spent time waiting on the Lord.

In the meeting, there came a crisis while I was speaking, and I had to have an extra anointing from the Spirit to handle the crisis without ruining the meeting in the process. I have noticed that often the strength of His presence, for which we cannot account, has some relationship to things yet to come. I wouldn't want to say that it's always so, but it is so many times. The Spirit of God gives us, when necessary, a deep assurance.

You know, I came home from overseas one year, and a lady said to me, "Brother Beuttler, where were you on a certain day?" Well, I didn't know, so I talked with Wife, and we then remembered that was the time I was very sick overseas. I did not expect to see daybreak alive. Now I'm not saying I was that bad, but I felt that bad.

So I said to this lady, "Why?"

She said, "Brother Beuttler, at that time, the Lord awakened me by night and said to me, 'Pray for Brother Beuttler.' She answered, 'O, he isn't in need of prayer, he's in the Bible school somewhere.'" She didn't know I was overseas. So she said, "I went back to sleep."

Then the Lord awakened me a second time and said, "Pray for Brother Beuttler." So something must have been wrong and she got up and prayed, and the Lord gave her very heavy intercession for me. And then the intercession changed into a deep assurance that God had answered prayer and all was well. So she went back to sleep.

That night overseas, I fell asleep so sick, but when I woke up in the morning, I was fine as fine could be. The Spirit gave to that lady the assurance that now all is well. You can multiply or apply this in a multitude of ways how the Spirit of God gives you that assurance.

Now we better go into the area of His leading. I'm finished, I think, with the second one. The third one then is speaking, how He speaks. That we'll probably leave for tomorrow night. I'm not finished yet though.

As I speak to you in this manner, I believe that many of you have had experiences, and you can say in your heart, "Ah, that's what it was. Now I understand." That has happened oodles of times. Folk have had experiences and didn't know what to make of it. Along comes some teaching, " Ah, now I understand. Now I know what it was."

A lady said to me, "Brother Beuttler, now I know."

I said, "Sister, what do you know?"

She said, "Now I know."

I said, "Well, tell me what you know ."

"Oh, you talked about the Lord waking us up. Time and again, someone called me by my name, Mary, in the middle of the night. I felt like I ought to pray, but I figured that's my imagination, so I went back to bed. Now I know that was the Lord."

I said, "It sure sounds like it." That's how we get help. We get to understand some of the experiences we've had and could not understand or know what to do with them. Now we're turning for an example to Acts.

"Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia." Acts 16:6

Now there was, of course, a great need in Asia. Incidentally, the need is not the call. They figured, well there are so many people that need the gospel, why not go and preach the gospel, but the Spirit said, "Nope." He forbade them to preach the gospel there. Now you might wonder why. I do not know, but I think I can give a possible reason. I think that one reason was that the people in Asia at that time were not yet ready for the gospel, though they were ready some years later. You remember they had strong churches there. I don't think the people were ready for the gospel, and the apostles' ministry probably would have had very little results.

Secondly there was a ripe field in Macedonia, grain so to speak, that needed to be reaped. The Lord had another type, another place of work for them at that time. But what we're interested in now is the forbidding. I do not know how the Spirit did forbid them. I mean what I don't know, I can't tell you. And I'm not going to tell you I know, when I don't know. There's no point.

We can conjecture. It could be that one of the group gave an utterance in the Spirit such as a prophetic utterance. That would be possible. The Spirit could also have spoken to them in a voice. I've had that. But the principle we're interested in is some way the Spirit of God negated their intended course of action. There are times when the Spirit of God stops us from doing a certain thing.

Some years ago, I had scheduled a trip to the Far East that was taking me through the Middle East. Now for many years, I had wanted to stop in the city of Baghdad. I've never been there. I wanted to stop in the city of Baghdad to take a train down to Ur, the city of Abraham. Now the city is in ruins, but the ruins are still there. There is a train junction near the city of Ur where travelers can get off the train and take a side trip to visit the city of Ur from which Abraham came.

I also wanted to see the Tower of Babel and the ruins of Babylon. I was so anxious to see those places. Now I had my chance. I was going right in that direction and thought, " Well, here is a good opportunity to stop in Baghdad and visit Babylon, the Tower of Babel, (It's just a mound now, but even so), and the ruins of the city of Ur." I had everything planned.

Early one morning the Lord awakened me by His presence. But in that presence (How shall I put this?): In that presence there seemed to be a great disturbance. There seemed to be something wrong. I was frightened by it. Oh a frightening presence. I knew it was the Lord's presence, but there was an element in it that alarmed me. I sat bolt upright in bed and said, "Father, is anything wrong?"

In letters this high, in front of me stood the word, Baghdad. Oh, so that's what's wrong? So, I eliminated Baghdad from my itinerary. I never got there. I cannot tell you why the Lord forbade me to stop in Baghdad because I don't know. It could very easily be that He knew that I would suffer harm; I could be hurt; I could be killed. There are various reasons why harm could come. Whatever His reason, He forbade me to go to Baghdad. I didn't ask Him why. God is under no obligation to give an explanation for His actions, and we better learn that.

(Ironically) "Lord, why not?" Well, that's an insult. I ask no questions. I kind of squirmed a bit because I didn't like to, but I eliminated Baghdad. I could say, "And the Lord forbade me to go to Baghdad ." It's surprising how the Spirit works these things. I'll give you another example.

One year I was in the process of making up an itinerary. I was sure in my heart of my general route as far as Singapore: New York, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Hong Kong, over to Manila, down to Singapore. I had a map of the world before me, and I knew in my heart, everything is all right until Singapore. In Singapore, I didn't know where to go next. I knew I could cut down to Perth. Australia's always open. All I need to do is tell them I'm coming and that's it. It's an open invitation all the time.

I could go to Perth, Melbourne, Sydney and work up maybe through New Zealand, South Pacific. I could do that perhaps. Brisbane is always open, Brother Short is in Tauranga and what have you. I could also go straight ahead through Europe on the way home.

I was sitting there with this map in the presence of the Lord. I said, "Father, I just don't know which way to go after Singapore? Should I go south to Perth, work my way back through the South Pacific or go on?" There was no answer. So I just sat there. Do you know what it is to sit in His presence and wait? It's one of the great secrets. I'd love to speak to you on that sometime. I sat there.

Finally I said again, " Father, I just don't know which way to go." Suddenly the Spirit of God spoke in here (stomach), right in here. There were words in here, not a thought, but words, not a witness, but words. The words were, " I will meet you at the Pyramids." I knew what He meant.

Why would He say, "I will meet you at the Pyramids?" Well, for this reason. Before we had this disturbance in the Middle East, it was reasonably safe to go there. When I went on my way through, I like to stop in Cairo for a rest stop. You know, in this type of work, you need rest too. You need to be away from people. People will kill you if you let them. Really, people will kill you, and I can't afford it. (Laughter) That's right. I'll only die once. The Bible says, "It is appointed unto man once to die." When you die once, you've had it, and I'd like to do a little bit more work.

So I like to get off there. There's a hotel there by the Pyramids, Oh, five minutes walk or so to the Meina House, nothing fancy, not luxurious, but satisfactory, $2-3 a night, air-conditioned. You don't get that anywhere, at least at that time. So my habit was to make a stop there, get some rest, walk out in the desert, and be all alone. Nobody coming after you with, "Brother, I have a problem." There nobody comes to the hotel wanting a conference. Well, you can't afford these things. I can't. There you were safe. Nobody asks, "Where did Cain get his wife?" or "Who is the antichrist?" or what have you.

So I knew what the Lord meant, "You go westward, I'll meet you at the Pyramids." How would you like the Lord to say to you sometime, "I'll meet you at the Pyramids?"

So I arranged my itinerary to take me westward. Just to tell you what happened. I took an Air India flight from Singapore to Cairo, and we were coming over letting down over the desert. The airport's out in the desert, you know. Early in the morning, around 3:30, I saw the lights of Cairo come up in the distance. I could sense the plane was slowly letting down for the landing. I thought, "I wonder where He's going to meet me?"

Opposite the Sphinx, there is a rest house, just about within a stone's throw. You get coffee; you get the omnipresent Coke Cola. I think Coke Cola may be more omnipresent than the gospel. You find Coke Cola anywhere. A thousand miles up the Amazon, you get Coke Cola. In the remotest desert oasis, you get Coke Cola. My, that's a company! I wish the gospel would spread like that. So you get that at the rest house.

I figured, "Well, I'll be checking in. By 5:00 I'll be in the hotel, take a stroll out and go down to the rest house for a cup of coffee or something, and while I sit there looking over the Sphinx and the Pyramids, the Lord's going to draw near." But that wasn't the way it worked. We were still letting down over the desert, when all of a sudden, there was a strong presence. He had come out to meet me. He couldn't wait until we landed. He had to come up in the air and meet me there. Shall I put it this way, "He and I rode in together." What a lovely present for the Spirit had said, "I will meet you at the Pyramids." Folkses, that is so deliciousmous. How the Spirit of God works and leads in our lives.

I'll give you an example of one more method. I went to France one year, and always I had said, "Lord, don't let me go unless you go with me." And the Lord spoke by His Spirit right in here (stomach area). I guess by now you wonder what's in there! Well, the same person that's in here is in you, the Spirit of God. You're baptized in the Spirit, aren't you? Well, He's in there too.

You may say, "Well, I never knew that. He never talks to me." Well you just take time with Him, obey and the like, and you'd be surprised what there is for us that we have never received.

Well, this is what He said, "When you arrive, I will be waiting for you." That was deliciousmous.

We got there the next morning and it rained, as we say in the States, cats and dogs. I would add sauerkraut, lima beans and succotash. Everything came down from the sky. It just poured down. I got off the plane, stepped on the concrete (now it looked like a lake full of water), and the presence was there, a strong enveloping presence of the Spirit. " When you arrive, I will be waiting for you."

Folkses, this life in the Spirit is the life. And God has for us a huge area here that many of us, I would assume, have never even touched.

I've gone an hour now; I'll take about ten more minutes. Do you think that will be all right? Can you take about ten more minutes? I'm wearing out, tiring rapidly, but I'll add a little bit. In Acts 16:7:

"After they were come to Mysia, they assayed to go into Bithynia; but the Spirit suffered them not." Acts 16:7

What we have here, I would judge, is in some way a restraint by the Spirit of God. Explained simply that the Spirit permitted them not. I know there is such a thing as a restraint by the Spirit of God, an inner restraint where you intend to do something, or go somewhere, and you say, "I just feel within me I ought not to go." It's a restraint, a lack of freedom, a holding back.

I've had that many times in ministry over the years. Many, many times I would minister, let's say in our school, and all of a sudden, I'd get a restraint in my spirit, a holding back, for me not to go on speaking. When I discover it, I stop. Many a time I've said, "Students, someone here has an utterance from the Spirit." And here it came. But first there was that restraint, that inner holding back.

This brother here knows what it is. I've observed that. He knows when to hold back because the Spirit of God is working in somebody with an utterance. Now sometimes, one misses it, but there is this restraint, this holding back of the Spirit of God.

I had a round-the-world itinerary laid out one year and included was Rangoon, Burma and Singapore. Next came Manila, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Los Angeles, and New York. I had the whole thing laid out. Then I spread my map of the world before the Lord. I said, "Father, to the best of my knowledge, this is where I am to go. If anything is wrong, now is the time for You to let me know because after I'm going to finalize things."

So I sat before the Lord with my map and let my eyes wonder from New York to someplace in Europe (I forgot where), and right over to Beirut, Calcutta, Rangoon, and Burma. When I came to Rangoon, I felt a something in my spirit, a restraint, a something that, oh, this is so hard to explain. I just recognized here is something wrong, not a lack of freedom, a restraint from a freedom that gave me the assurance.

I noticed it so I said, " Father, is anything wrong with Rangoon?" And I got some kind of a witness that Rangoon is out. I didn't know why. I said, "Lord, I'll take it out."

So I came down to Singapore on the map. As I did, I had the same thing, a restraint in my spirit, a holding back, a hanging back, a pulling back like. I said, "Father, anything wrong with Singapore?" The same thing happened.

I said, "All right, I'll take Singapore out ." I couldn't understand what was wrong, but that's God's business.

So I said, "Father, now I have two weeks that I have to rearrange the itinerary. Where am I to go in place of Rangoon and Singapore?" The Lord bore me witness that I should go to Australia to Perth, to Melbourne, Sydney and up to Manila. Now that was a huge detour and it was expensive, but then, that's His business. So I did that.

I wrote and got some letters back, " Very sorry you're not coming. We're very disappointed."

Finally I got a letter from Burma, "Dear Brother Beuttler, It is a very good thing that you canceled out Rangoon because the government has made a law that no foreigner is allowed to come into Burma, except for a period of 24 hours, and that all foreigners resident in Burma must leave the country. So we would have had to cancel the meetings with you anyhow ." The Spirit of God foresaw that.

I got a letter from Singapore, "Brother Beuttler, it's a good thing we didn't plan the seminar for Singapore. The US Assemblies of God had scheduled a conference in Manila for missionaries of the Pacific Area. They changed the conference to Singapore and put the conference into the very week in which we had you scheduled. We would have had to cancel you out if you hadn't done it on your own."

The Spirit of God knows. The Spirit of God restrains. The Spirit of God witnesses. The Spirit of God is a real person, and being a real person, He acts like a real person in many ways and tomorrow night, we're going to consider some more of these ways including the leading of the Spirit of God and the voice of the Spirit.