September 24, 2017

Why We Have the Holy Spirit (part 2)

{Click here to read part 1}

The world forever changed at that great Day of Pentecost. From then on, every disciple of Christ would receive His very Spirit as a permanent and constant companion. From then on, every believer in Jesus Christ would have a guarantee within his very soul of a future with God Himself.

What an amazing, miraculous thing! That God Himself, the Creator of the universe and Ruler over all, would share His own Spirit with a flawed, rebellious creation. That God would give part of Himself to each one of us, to create a more intimate union and loving relationship!

I think that sometimes we’re not aware enough of the Holy Spirit. I don’t think we notice all the ways He helps and strengthens us. I think we overlook many of His ministrations.

Because the Holy Spirit is more than just a promise for the future… He is for the here and now. He is for our own benefit! {<–click here to tweet that!}

And if we ignore what the Holy Spirit can do, then we are essentially rejecting Him!

If you don’t realize all the ways He can strengthen and empower you, then you are wasting a miraculous gift from God. If you ignore how He can mature and establish you, then you are making His presence in your life worthless.

None of us would willingly or purposely do that — but we might unintentionally, out of ignorance.

We have this great gift from God! Why waste it? Why ignore it?

Acts and Romans and Galatians (among other epistles) are filled with facts about the Holy Spirit. They tell us how He works and why He indwells every Christian. They give us reasons to honor Him and love Him.

The Holy Spirit is not just a cricket, or an angel on your shoulder. He is not just some “inner moral compass.” He is the very spirit of God the Father, with His own personality and ministries.

So what are some of those ministries? What does the Holy Spirit do for every believer?*

He convicts. John 16:7-11
He convinces men of their sin and their need for a Savior.

He gives freedom. Romans 8:13, 2 Corinthians 3:17, Galatians 5:16-18
He breaks our bondage to sin and the law, and enables us to walk in His ways.

He fills and sanctifies. Romans 8:13, Ephesians 5:18
He helps transform our nature from old and sinful, to new and holy and pleasing to God.

He produces fruit. Galatians 5:22-23
He works in our lives to produce the outward effects of Christ-likeness.

He teaches. John 14:26, 1 Corinthians 2:10-13
He gives understanding, as we read and study the Scriptures.

He offers assurance. Romans 8:14-16, Galatians 4:6-7
He confirms within us our new relationship with God: children and heirs.

He enables fellowship. 2 Corinthians 13:14, Philippians 2:1
He is the medium of true community, or partnership, for all believers.

He fights for us. Ephesians 6:17-18
He provides the most powerful weapons to use against Satan: prayer and the Word of God.

He intercedes for us. Romans 8:26-27
He pleads and appeals for us, according to God’s will, when we “do not know what to pray for as we ought.”

He gives spiritual gifts. 1 Corinthians 12:7-11
He endows every believer with abilities, to serve and edify other believers.

He calls to ministry. Acts 13:2-3, Acts 20:28
He specifically directs certain people to preaching and evangelistic ministries.

He empowers for evangelism. Acts 1:8
He gives believers an extra measure of power to boldly proclaim the gospel.

 

What other ministries can you think of? What are some of your favorite ways the Holy Spirit helps us?

 

*Note: this list is not exhaustive. If you want to further study the doctrine of the Holy Spirit, and His ministries to believers, my suggestion is to read that section in a good basic theology book, such as Ryrie’s Basic Theology or Grudem’s Systematic Theology {affiliate links}.

 


Comments

  1. Wonderful! We just finished a whole series on the Fruit of the Spirit and we really learned a lot about the Holy Spirit. I could not agree more that through ignorance we don’t receive the help we might otherwise! Thanks for a great post.

    • That sounds like a great series, Helene! I love that you studied not just the fruits, but the Provider of those fruits! I think we could all benefit from focusing more on the Holy Spirit’s presence in our lives. Thanks so much for the encouragement 🙂

  2. Nicely done, Elizabeth. I really appreciated reading this in contrast to something I read earlier this week that encouraged Christians to seek after the signs gifts of the Holy Spirit — healings, tongues, etc. And this was a transcript from a mainstream pastors conference (for some reason, the transcript is no longer available). Thanks for sharing truth with clarity!

    • Suzanne, I tried to be careful with this… I personally believe the sign gifts ended with the apostles (although some of them will return during the Tribulation) but I didn’t really want to stir up controversy with that!

  3. I pinned this. Great list of scripture backed functions of the Holy Spirit. “Ignoring the Holy Spirit, we are rejecting Him.” That’s a powerful statement! How often do I ignore thus reject something amazing? Something heavenly? Thank you for sharing this post at Into the Word! Have a great rest of the week!!

Trackbacks

  1. […] Click here to read part 2! […]

  2. […] And then I happened to land on 1 Corinthians 13, the great chapter on love. I didn’t think love was the problem, because I love my husband like crazy! But I decided to read through the chapter for some reason. All I can say is the Spirit Himself must have led me there {yet another ministry of His!}. […]

  3. […] That continual dependence on God is made possible by His Spirit dwelling in us. […]