When we speak of a slumbering spirit, we may think of one who does not know or study the word of God. However, what most don't know is that this is an intent from God. First we need to understand the function of our own human spirit. lets see what the spirit is and it's function. We can break down the human makeup into three parts; the body, the soul, and the spirit. The "body" is your physical being. The "soul" is your self, as an individual, your unique personality if you will. The "spirit" is the intellect of the soul. i.e. your brain. The spirit makes up the "thought process" of how we are going to believe, discern, conceive, and live our lives. With that being said, lets see what God was talking about with the "spirit of slumber." We will begin our study in the book of Romans.
According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear; unto this day. (Romans 11:8).Here it is, the spirit of slumber written here, and in the old testament. (Isaiah 29:10). "To this day God has shut their eyes so they do not see, and closed their ears so they do not hear." Put a "stupor" on them if you will. "A deep sleep or state of spiritual coma." Why did God do this? Lets go back to the old testament and see what we will find.
Back in Deuteronomy, Moses called to Israel and tells them that they have seen all the things the Lord did before their eyes, and the temptations they had seen, along with all the great miracles performed by the Lord for them. This is what he tells them after he led them for forty years in the wilderness: Yet the LORD hath not given you an heart to perceive, and eyes to see, and ears to hear, unto this day. (Deuteronomy 29:4). No eyes to see, or ears to hear, and minds that do not understand. He has given them the spirit of slumber, "They just didn't get it."
We see it in the book of Isaiah during Isaiah's vision of the Lord sitting upon the throne. And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed. (Isaiah 6:9-10). Tell the people to listen carefully, but do not understand. Watch closely, but learn nothing. Harden the hearts of the people and plug their ears and shut their eyes. Give them the spirit of slumber. Why? Then they might turn to God and be healed. Sometimes God will keep things from you, so that you need to turn to Him for help. Especially when He deals with foolish and rebellious people. (Jeremiah 5:21, Ezekiel 12:2). Lets go to the new testament in the book of Matthew.
Jesus was explaining that the kingdom of heaven would be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps to meet the bridegroom. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. (Matthew 25:5). They slept and got a little sidetracked from what was going on. Just like can happen to us with false teaching and traditions of men. Don't let the "spirit of slumber" hit you by not knowing what is going on in Gods Word. Remember that Christ is the bridegroom and he is looking for spiritual virgins at His return. Those who know the truth and have not been deceived by Satan!
In the book of Mark when Jesus began to teach by the sea side, He taught by parables because only the disciples could understand the mysteries of the kingdom. Understanding of the mysteries was only given to converted Christians who followed Christ. "Those who studied and searched for truth." That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them. (Mark 4:12, Luke 8:10). Quoting from Isaiah (6:9-10). "So that seeing they see, and do not perceive, and hearing they hear, and do not understand," etc. The expression appears to be proverbial; and relates to those who might see what they now overlook through inattention and folly. (Matthew 13:14-15). If you won't even crack the surface, the seed will not take. You will never understand God's Word if you do not show interest or search for the truth. Settling for traditions of men and false teachings will not cut it. God will keep the truth from those who will just grab at anything so they feel spiritually safe. Why? Because their eyes are closed and they did not care. Just as many do not care today. They have time for everything the world has to offer, but little time to study and search for truth in God's Word. These people will continue in the "spirit of slumber" until they are called, convert, and search for truth.
So we see that the "spirit of slumber" can come form God if we show no interest in the knowledge of His Word. If you have problems understanding what you have been taught concerning scripture; maybe you need a new teacher. One who teaches chapter by chapter with wisdom and knowledge from God. When you follow tradition of men and false teachings, God will not allow you to see the truth, but let you stay in a "stupor" or "spirit of slumber" as long as you like. It's your choice my friend. You can listen to the words of man, or the Word of God!
Keep The Faith,