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This Sunday we looked at our fourth core value.  We are eager to experience the active presence and ministry of the Holy Spirit at Redeemer.  Toward that end, we considered three questions: Who is the Holy Spirit?, What does the Holy Spirit do?, and How can we experience the presence and ministry of the Holy Spirit?  You can listen to the message here.  The Bible makes it clear that the Holy Spirit is God, in the same way that the Father is God and the Son is God.  The doctrine of the Trinity teaches us that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit share all the characteristics that are true of God generally, such as God’s eternality, omni-presence, and omniscience.  The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are accomplishing the work of redemption in synergy.  Therefore there is no contradiction when the life of a follower of Jesus is described by phrases, used throughout the New Testament, such as, “with the Spirit,” “by the Spirit,” “according to the Spirit,” and “in the Spirit.”

Wayne Grudem writes, “The work of the Holy Spirit is to manifest the active presence of God in the world, and especially in the church.” (Systematic Theology, p. 634)  To further consider what the Holy Spirit does, we looked at ten aspects of the Holy Spirit’s work.  I will list each of these, with one scripture reference, below.

We value the Holy Spirit’s converting work.

John 16:8-11 And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.

We value the Holy Spirit’s regenerating work.

John 3:3-6 Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”  Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”  Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

We value the Holy Spirit’s indwelling work.

John 14:16-17 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.

We value the Holy Spirit’s empowering work.

Luke 24:49 And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.

We value the Holy Spirit’s illuminating work.

John 16:13-14 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you.

We value the Holy Spirit’s teaching work.

John 14:26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

We value the Holy Spirit’s directing work.

Acts 16:6-9 And they went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia.  And when they had come up to Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them.  So, passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas.  And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing there, urging him and saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.”

We value the Holy Spirit’s interceding work.

Romans 8:26-27 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

We value the Holy Spirit’s sanctifying work.

Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.

We value the Holy Spirit’s gifting work.

1 Corinthians 12:4-11 Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.

Consider these questions:

1. What is your reaction when you hear the phrase, “The Holy Spirit is God”?

2. What aspect of the Spirit’s work are you in need of right now?

3. How can you cultivate an awareness of the Spirit’s presence in one area of your life?

May the Holy Spirit be at work in you this season,

Alex