By Carl H. Stevens, Jr.
Carl H. Stevens Jr. was the pastor of Greater Grace
World Outreach located in Baltimore, Maryland.
Pastor Stevens was also chancellor of Maryland Bible
College & Seminary and host of the international
Christian radio program “The Grace Hour.” This
booklet was created from messages preached by
Pastor Stevens can be seen weekly on cable
television stations throughout the United States.
Call us for information regarding programming in
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise noted, are from
the King James Version. Italics for emphasis are ours.
P.O. BOX 18715
BALTIMORE, MD 21206
Printed in Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.
Copyright © 2001
Grace Publications is a ministry of
Greater Grace World Outreach, Inc.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Chapter 1 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
THE SPIRIT BEARS WITNESS
Chapter 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
THE SUBSTANCE OF CONVICTION
Chapter 3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
COMMUNION, CONSISTENCY, AND COMMUNICATION
CONCLUSION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
In the Bible, the number three is very important.
Jesus raised three people from the dead:
Jairus’ daughter (Mark 5:22-24;35-42) , Lazarus
(John 11:38-44), and the widow’s son
(Luke 7:12-15). Three
On the Cross, the sign above Jesus’ head
(naming the “offense” he was guilty of) was written
in three languages (John 19:19-20), indicating
the fullness of man’s rejection of the Messiah.
Jesus was raised on the third day (Luke13:32).
As members of the human race, created in
the image of God, we have three dimensions:
the spirit (God-consciousness), the soul (selfconsciousness),
and the body (world consciousness),
in 1 Thessalonians 5:23. Together, these
three dimensions form the instrument through
which Jesus performs it all (1 Thessalonians 5:24).
Everyone has problems. Yet, a person who is
always worn down by problems often lives in
only two dimensions—the soul and the body—
in his relationship with God. The human spirit,
which is the God-conscious dimension, is designed
to bring in light from the Word of God
through the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit
(Psalm 119:130). If we are not functioning in the
truth of the Word of God stored in the human
spirit, God’s light will not enter in, no matter
how much we go to church.
There two kinds of Christians around today:
those who do not see heat when it comes and
those who do not see good when it comes
(Jeremiah 17:5-8). We are talking about positive
Spirit-filled Christians versus negative thinkers.
The difference is that when the Word of God enters
into Spirit-filled believers, they experience
divine good and do not see the “heat” of adversity.
They allow the Word of God to quicken
their human spirit, engaging the third dimension
of Christian living.
How can you live in the third dimension and
go from being a person who doesn’t see good
when it comes to a person who doesn’t see heat
when it comes? This booklet will show you how.
THE SPIRIT BEARS WITNESS
“Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man
that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm,
and whose heart departeth from the LORD.
“For he shall be like the heath in the desert,
and shall not see when good cometh; but shall
inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a
salt land and not inhabited.
“Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD,
and whose hope the LORD is.
“For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters,
and that spreadeth out her roots by the
river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but
her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful
in the year of drought, neither shall cease from
yielding fruit” (Jeremiah 17:5-9).
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God,
they are the sons of God.
“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage
again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit
of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
“The Spirit itself beareth witness with our
spirit, that we are the children of God”
Two dimensions cannot describe an object
that has substance. Two lines cannot enclose a
figure or form. Three lines—marking the dimensions
of length, breadth, and depth—are necessary.
The number “three” stands for things that
are substantial, complete, entire, and necessary.
In the natural realm, objects are divided into
three kingdoms: the plant kingdom, the mineral
kingdom, and the animal kingdom. In the spiritual
realm, we have body, soul, and spirit
(1 Thessalonians 5:23).
But until a person is saved, his human spirit
is inactive because of Adam’s sin (Romans 5:12).
Once he is born again by receiving Christ as his
Savior, he has the opportunity to choose life continually
(Romans 5:21). That keeps him “seated above” in his
experience—living in three dimensions of Christian life.
Three distinct Persons who have absolute
oneness make up the Trinity. God the Father is
sovereign; Jesus Christ the Son is our Redeemer;
and the Holy Spirit, co-equal with God and
Jesus Christ, glorifies Jesus Christ in us (John 16:14)
and also guides us as adopted children.
If the third Person, the Holy Spirit, is not allowed
to have His way in us, we are never
guided into God’s truth. We may be sincere, but
we are not led in divine guidance. We need to
have this third dimension at work in us. Only
the Spirit can bring this divine dimension to life.
It is important that we learn three-dimensional
praying. Discover the Father’s plan, experience
Christ’s execution of that plan, and witness the
Holy Spirit’s power and revelation of Christ’s
availability—three dimensions in action.
Tender Mercies in Action
“To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David,
when Nathan the prophet came unto him, after
he had gone in to Bathsheba. Have mercy upon
me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness:
according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies
blot out my transgressions” (Psalm 51:1).
“Tender mercies.” I recently learned something
brand-new about this. It means that God
makes an unconditional commitment regardless
of us. It is God committing us to the Finished
Work of Christ, to the sealing of the Holy Spirit,
to eternal life that we can never lose. God has
committed us to sonship forever. This is exactly
the picture that is expressed in this verse.
These tender mercies come toward us. For
this reason, David will be prince in the Millennial
Reign in spite of the sinful things that he did
in his life. In God’s mind, David never turned
aside (1 Kings 15:5). The Word of God tells us
that we have the sure mercies of David
(Isaiah 55:3; Acts 13:34).
When we understand this, we will see God
move as we have never seen before.
The Power of Expectation
My soul waits only upon God. My expectation
is from Him (Psalm 62:5), and this expectation
shall not be cut off (Proverbs 23:18, Proverbs 24:14).
In entering into the third dimension, we enter into
a phase of consistency. The Resurrection is over
and the Ascension is ours. The power of God
is now available for three-dimensional
friendships, three-dimensional relationships,
and three-dimensional marriages.
Though we are saved and the Trinity dwells
in us, if the Spirit is grieved, then we do not
have the life of three-dimensional Christianity.
We are powerless. Christ is not glorified in the
details of life.
The most beautiful thing is three—God’s
number of fullness. There is the principle of
being filled with the fullness of the Godhead
bodily (Ephesians 3:19). There is the fullness of
Christ (Ephesians 4:13, Colossians 2:9).
When I operate in the third dimension, my
marriage becomes amazing. The third dimension
brings in abundant life. It brings in absolute
forgiveness. It brings in the tender mercies of
A man who had some very serious health
problems was healed recently. He was even
healed of a herniated disk. Three-dimensional
praying brought in a wonderful healing, praise
God. We have many documented reports of
healing as the direct result of prayer.
“Thou hast delivered me from the strivings
of the people; and thou hast made me the head
of the heathen: a people whom I have not
known shall serve me” (Psalm 18:43).
David praised God for delivering him from
the strivings of the people. Oh, I know a lot of
precious people who strive nonetheless. A striving
person comes out of experiencing a problem
about six times a week, only to go right back
into another one.
Thank God that all of us can be delivered
from that kind of lifestyle. If we understand that
Jesus’ tomb is empty, then striving will go away.
We won’t see the heat when it comes because we
know that nothing is impossible with God. God
Almighty is on our side. Beyond that, He is in
us. The power of the Holy Spirit is in us.
THE SUBSTANCE OF CONVICTION
“Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the
wilderness to be tempted of the devil.
“And when he had fasted forty days and
forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.
“And when the tempter came to him, he
said, If thou be the Son of God, command that
these stones be made bread.
“But he answered and said, It is written,
Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every
word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
“Then the devil taketh him up into the holy
city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,
“And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of
God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall
give his angels charge concerning thee: and in
their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any
time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
“Jesus said unto him, It is written again,
Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
“Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding
high mountain, and sheweth him all the
kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;
“And saith unto him, All these things will I
give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship
“Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence,
Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the
Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
“Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold,
angels came and ministered unto him”
Notice, Jesus always answered the devil
with “It is written….It is written….It is written.”
Three times Jesus said this, speaking of the perfection
of the Word of God. It other words, Jesus
was telling Satan, “You can’t touch this, devil!”
“It is written….”
“It is written….”
“It is written….”
Satan had to flee.
Still, Satan does try to take away from the
Word, add to the Word, and alter the Word (Revelation 22:18-19;
Deuteronomy 4:2; 11:16-20). He tries to take from
the Word so that we won’t be complete, so we
won’t be mature. Satan tries to add to the Word
so that we will live in a kind of “liberty” that is
not the liberty we have in Christ
(Galatians 5:1; Romans 8:21). Also, the devil tries
to alter the Word of God so that we think that
we don’t have to submit to it.
In Genesis 3, Eve failed three times when
confronted by Satan. But Jesus Christ answered,
“It is written” three times when tempted by
Satan. The truth experienced in the third dimension
of the human spirit gives us complete and
“Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he
shall give thee the desires of thine heart.
“Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also
in him; and he shall bring it to pass.
“And he shall bring forth thy righteousness
as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday.
“Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for
him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth
in his way, because of the man who
bringeth wicked devices to pass” (Psalm 37:4-7).
When we began our ministry, the desire of
our heart was to have a building, fill it up, and
send missionaries into all the world. Our desire
was to have oneness, unity, and peace. Our desire
was to go forward with supernatural grace and
supernatural power in a supernatural expectation.
Oh, the things God is going to do for those
who let Him by committing their way unto the
Lord. Trust in Him, and He will bring these
things to pass. Pick up some promises from God
today and believe, and He will give you the desires
of your heart.
When the Father, the Son, and the Holy
Spirit take over, we have fullness. We see that
nothing is impossible with God (Luke 1:37). The
very things that seem impossible for us are possible
with God (Matthew 19:26).
Bible Evidence of Conviction
“And when he is come, he will reprove the
world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
“Of sin, because they believe not on me;
“Of righteousness, because I go to my Father,
and ye see me no more;
“Of judgment, because the prince of this
world is judged” (John 16:8-11).
If a Christian is not living in the third dimension,
he will have no conviction. He may be
living with God the Father and redemption
through Jesus Christ, but without the Illuminator—
the Holy Spirit—fully operating, he will
have no conviction. God’s viewpoint cannot be
interpreted through the Holy Spirit in his life.
God may do something supernatural right in
front of him, but he will not be moved by it.
Many decent churches preach the Gospel
but do not go soul winning. They have no outreach
program and they are grieving the Holy
Spirit. There is no conviction prompting them to
grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus
The first thing the Holy Spirit does is to convict.
When a Christian makes a decision to withdraw
from attending a Spirit-filled church, he is
not convicted. He can hear any kind of message,
but he rationalizes, regulates, and eliminates its
effect in his life. No conviction.
The Spirit convicts as He did in the Word of
God. Joseph’s brothers were convicted when
they met Joseph again years after selling him
into slavery (see Genesis 45:4-5). They came
under great conviction when he revealed himself
Isaiah was convicted when he saw the Lord
high and lifted up, in Isaiah 6. Three seraphim
were singing, “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of
hosts.” All Isaiah could see was the seraphim’s
wings. Smoke came in and the temple began to
“Woe is me, for I am undone; because I am a
man of unclean lips,” Isaiah said (see Isaiah 6:5).
As far as we know, this was the first time in his
ministry that the prophet was convicted. Then
the seraphim took a live coal from off the altar
and touched Isaiah’s lips, saying, “Thine iniquity
is taken away, and thy sin purged” (Isaiah 6:7).
The Trinity asked, “Whom shall I send, and
who will go for us?”
“Here am I; send me,” responded the
Conviction is such a precious and sacred
thing. We are so limited in our knowledge of absolutes.
When we start with absolute love, absolute
grace, absolute power, absolute holiness,
and absolute promises, we will find absolute answers.
God’s Moves Bring Changes
God moves in the third dimension and the
result is conviction.
Jonah ran when he was told to preach in
Nineveh. He spent three days in a big fish and,
finally, came under conviction. He went and
preached and the city repented for the wicked,
wicked things it was doing. Many lives were
Ezra was convicted and he then identified
with the people of Israel (Ezra 9:6). He preached
to them and the people got right. Ezra’s conviction
led to their conviction and ultimately obedience.
Another picture of conviction involved Peter
after he denied Christ three times. Jesus appeared
to Peter and the disciples many times
after His resurrection. Peter didn’t want to see
Jesus. He was so filled with guilt, so filled with
shame and remorse. But the Holy Spirit,
breathed out by Jesus upon the disciples, began
to convict Peter’s conscience. God wooed Peter
through love and through forgiveness by conviction.
In the seventh chapter of Romans, we can
see Paul the apostle under tremendous conviction
and in deep trouble with his soul. But he
came right out of it by receiving the revelation
of Romans 8, starting with verse one, “There is
therefore now no condemnation….”
As long as a minister and ministry have conviction,
they have something very, very precious.
One of the most difficult things to watch
when you are praying for someone is when the
Word isn’t received as a two-edged sword,
bringing conviction the way it should.
This is important because, sooner or later,
every one of God’s people has to come to a decision.
We are constantly in a place where we have
to come to a decision. Conviction leads to right
decisions. Without right decisions, we have no
Whenever I read something or hear something
that I know is for me, I immediately write
it down. I allow the conviction to lead me into a
conversion. No matter how small a thing it is, I
agree with the Spirit and say, “That is for me.”
I believe with all my heart that God wants
His people to come to right decisions through
choosing life (Deuteronomy 30:15), so we can be
blessed. We have a tremendous future in front of
us. We have such possibilities. We don’t know
when Christ is coming. We know not when we
are to meet Him. So, we need to be a people who
allow the Word of God to bring in faith and let
faith execute conviction and let conviction bring
in a conversion to make right decisions.
COMMUNION, CONSISTENCY, AND COMMUNICATION
When we consider decisions, we are brought
into conclusions. Every single matter has a conclusion.
As we get alone with God and let the
Holy Spirit minister, we realize that in every
area of our lives we need a conviction for a conclusion.
We have to continually ask ourselves,
“If I keep making these decisions, where will
they lead me in my conclusion?” What will be
the end result?
As a pastor, it is most difficult to watch seasonal
Christians throw their lives away. I feel so
helpless in seeing isolated individuals make a
series of decisions against convictions. No longer
do they respond to the Word of God, because
they have established their own Christian philosophy,
void of the whole truth. They have already
decided what they will believe and what they
are not going to accept, based upon self-preferences.
It is so crucial that we do not react negatively
when God allows us to face verbal or physical
challenges in our lives. We must not respond
in self-defense and self-preservation. As
we abide in faith-rest, filled with the Holy Spirit,
God will operate freely through us. We will
reveal His character in the situation.
God wants us to have a conviction of what
sin is. God wants to have the conviction of judgment
because the prince of the world is judged.
He wants us to have the conviction of God’s
righteousness and Satan’s defeat. God’s righteousness
is our righteousness, and that takes
away any possibility of satanic victory in our
Steadfast and Immovable
“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast,
unmoveable, always abounding in the
work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that
your labour is not in vain in the Lord”
(1 Corinthians 15:58).
With conviction comes consistency. To be
steadfast means that we determine to go forward
without change or equivocation. There is
no hesitation but a determination to do right.
I thank God for everyone who is steadfast.
The blessing of a pastor is when he sees people
remain steadfast as an army in the Finished
Work. Steadfast people don’t leave the devil
much room to play with them.
Another thing conviction does is make us
immovable. “I have set the LORD always before
me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be
moved” (Psalm 16:8). Finances, health troubles,
domestic problems—none of these things can
move me because the Lord is before my face.
Consider someone who is immovable because of
conviction and conversion; one who has humility
in agreeing with God no matter what is happening.
Those who are steadfast and immovable always
abound in the work of the Lord. If I am abounding
in the Lord’s work, then I am occupied with Christ.
When I am occupied with Christ, then I enter into
faith-rest. Resting in God’s love by faith is the
greatest manifestation of maturity we can ever
have (Zephaniah 3:17).
Thank God for faith-resting in love. That
means I am not resting in what I do, I am not
resting in how I feel, I am not resting in what I
don’t do, but I am resting in what He did. I am
resting in Calvary’s love, which never changes
and is so supreme.
“That the communication of thy faith may
become effectual by the acknowledging of every
good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus”
Another effective principle for three-dimensional
Christians is godly communication. Philemon 6
refers to how we communicate according to
the power of the residency that is at work in
our hearts in a residual process of responding.
We have this precious life of God. Oh, I am so
grateful for the life of God. It is so precious, so
precious. Just to be saved, to have God’s life
and get up with it, to go to sleep with it, to face
situations with it is a marvelous, wonderful, glorious
thing. As His vessels on earth, we have the
privilege of communicating what is within us—
releasing that life according to the power in us.
It is a very sacred thing to be on this planet
at this time, in the midst of everything that is
going on in terms of worldly compromise and
lasciviousness. Here, we have the privilege to be
able to communicate life from heaven through
our human vessels.
All of this leads to communion, which is so
precious. As I release and express the Word of
God, I am also eating His bread, feeding on His
doctrine, drinking the “new wine” of the Holy
Spirit, experiencing the joy of eternal life.
No wonder the psalmist and Joshua said
that their delight was in “meditating on the
Word of God day and night” (Psalm 1:2; Joshua 1:8).
From meditation comes communion. Communion
is being still before God: He speaks, we
respond. He speaks again, we respond. Then,
He gives illumination that blesses us now and
will help us in the future. Our communion is by
eating His flesh and drinking His blood. It is
that great and wonderful principle of meditation
in the third dimension of the resurrection power
“Then the same day at evening, being the
first day of the week, when the doors were shut
where the disciples were assembled for fear of
the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and
saith unto them, Peace be unto you.
“And when he had so said, he shewed unto
them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples
glad, when they saw the Lord.
“Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be
unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so
send I you.
“And when he had said this, he breathed on
them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy
[Spirit]” (John 20:19-22).
After He was resurrected, Jesus appeared to
the disciples in the upper room. The doors were
locked because of fear. Yet, Jesus showed Himself
to the disciples—and they were glad that
they saw the Lord.
“Peace be unto you,” Jesus said to them.
“Don’t fear. I want you to have a three-dimensional
peace. I am risen. Peace, love, forgiveness—
it is all yours. Access to the throne of
God—it’s yours! Power is now inside of you.
Promises are inside of you. The Trinity is inside
As we use the promises of God, we leap forward
in areas we have never known. God will
go beyond what we ask or think. More than
waiting to be gracious to us, God gets the greatest
blessing out of blessing us, to give us happiness
and joy. He gets a great blessing out of
answering our prayers. He gets a great blessing
when we let Him love us.
The Spirit, the water, and the Word bear witness
on earth. They bear witness to the grace of
God; they bear witness that His Work is finished.
We have all things pertaining to life and
godliness through living in the third dimension,
which is complete, substantial, and more than
We have all received a gift of grace—a grace
that is so beautiful. Everyone who is born again
has been given a measure of that grace
(Ephesians 4:7). As three-dimensional Christians, we
have the opportunity to grow in grace and in exceeding
faith (2 Thessalonians 1:3). We have an
amazing privilege to have the wonderful,
matchless, unsearchable grace of God as the
premise for our every presupposition, the
premise for every decision, and the premise for
every new opportunity.
Father, thank You that you have given us the provision
to participate in Your life in every way—body,
soul, and spirit—as three-dimensional Christians. In
Jesus’ name, Amen.