God also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
– Second Corinthians 3:6
The living word strengthens our inner man whereas the letter of the word kills (2 Cor. 3:6). A preacher may share a similar message numerous times. If we are not open to a fresh speaking from the Spirit, we may react, saying, “I have heard this before.” This shows we are not open to the living word. Without the Spirit, we don’t have the reality but only knowledge, which makes us arrogant (1 Cor. 8:1) and causes us to live in the flesh and speak foolishly. The more we have the living word, the more we live in God’s favor and “put no confidence in the flesh” (Phil. 3:3).
Adapted from A Sketch of Genesis, pages 70-71.