Summary: The Holy Spirit guides us into the truth, strengthens us, intercedes in prayer, and marks us as belongng to God.
God the Holy Spirit, Part 2 Eph. 1:13, 14
INTRO.: This message is the final one in our series on “The God We Worship.” Last week we discussed the Holy Spirit as the One who reveals the Father through the inspired Word, provides power to the Church, enables the second birth, and lives in the Christian and the Church.
Today, we will discuss God the Holy Spirit in relation to His ministry to individual Christians. There is a lot of misunderstanding about this and we sometimes have unreal expectations.
Before we begin, we need to remind ourselves the Holy Spirit is not a feeling, attitude, or impersonal force. He is not an “it.” He is the third Person of the Trinity. He is God.
Let’s see what He has to offer us.
I. He is our guide as we seek to serve God:
A. Paul and his companions were constantly aware of His Presence as they traveled. Acts 16:6-10
1. Paul is on his second missionary journey. The Holy Spirit won’t allow preaching in Asia.
2. When he wanted to enter Bithynia, he was not allowed.
3. Then God revealed in a dream that his destination was Macedonia.
4. We aren’t sure just how God led in the first two instances. Maybe opposition, lack of opportunities.
5. We don’t always see the H. S. working, but when one door is closed, He may have something better for us. Trust His wisdom.
B. Jesus gave a promise in John 16:13. “when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth.”
1. This promise was made to Jesus’ apostles, not to us.
2. We can’t expect direct revelation from God. We may make mistakes assuming we can.
3. The Spirit was given to the Apostles to make them reliable witnesses.
4. However else the Spirit may guide us, His main means is the written Word, the Bible.
II. He gives us strength. Eph. 3:16-19
A. Look at Paul’s prayer for the Ephesian Church.
1. We don’t always know how God strengthens, but He does.
2. He does it through the Holy Spirit.
3. He does this so Christ may dwell in our hearts through faith.
4. The apostle wants us to experience the love of God in all its fullness.
5. Note the paradox. know this love that surpasses knowledge. It seems impossible, but
B. With God all things are possible. V. 20
1. He is the God of pleasant surprises.
2. In the worst of times, He is working in us.
3. A few words from the Bible, a prayer, a moment of meditation and depending on God gives the strength needed for every challenge.
III. He intercedes for us in prayer: Rom. 8:26, 27
A. ILLUS.: an elderly lady dying in a nursing home asked me to pray for her death. I couldn’t do it. I prayed, “Father, work your will,” trusting God’s Spirit to intercede
1. I know the Holy Spirit made my prayer acceptable.
2. If we do our best, our prayers will be made acceptable to God.
3. We have a friend who stands beside us when we pray and says, “Father, he means . . .”
B. The Spirit knows the mind of God and is able to reveal His will to us.
1. That same knowledge enables Him to intercede for us according to the will of God.
2. There are times when we simply don’t have the words to express our need. God knows.
IV. We are marked with the Holy Spirit as belonging to God. Eph. 1:13, 14
A. ILLUS.:As a Notary Public, I often put my seal on a document to certify it genuine. If I placed my seal over your signature, it was guaranteed to be yours. Once notarized, the document could not be changed.
1. God has sealed us with the Holy Spirit.
2. This means we belong to Him. We are genuinely His.
3. Rom 8:16 “The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.”
4. When Jesus returns, He will identify His people by the Presence of the Holy Spirit in their lives.
B. If you are a Christian, you have God’s Spirit living in you. You received Him at baptism.
1. He is a deposit on our Heavenly inheritance.
2. ILLUS.: We bought a house and made a rather large down payment in order to keep monthly payments down. I gave the seller permission to check my credit and he said, “That’s not necessary. I know if you have that mush invested you won’t risk losing it by defaulting on payments.”
3. The Holy Spirit is God’s investment in us. He guarantees the title to our Heavenly home.
4. If you will allow Him, He will help you live the Christian life.