Summary: The Holy Spirit works for His people to ensure their inheritance in the covenant of grace!
Last week I showed you that the Holy Spirit is a distinct Witness within the Godhead (I Jn. 5:7). He is God and He’s worthy of all the same praises as the Father and the Word. Tonight I want to go a little bit further and see that:
II. The Holy Spirit has specific OPERATIONS within the Godhead
What does He do? That’s the question. And how does knowing His operations help us to see Him as a distinct Witness, and how does it all reveal more about the covenant of grace? I hope that by answering these that we’ll find ourselves with not only a better theological understanding, but also with strengthened faith and patience. My hope is that we’ll find ourselves comforted by the Comforter.
And so, to do this let’s start with our main verse and see that He is a witness of the covenant:
For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one (I Jn. 5:7).
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. 16The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: 17And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together (Rom. 8:15-17).
The Spirit actually gives a testimony that we belong to God and that we’ll inherit all the blessings of the promise. Talk about assurance!
Also, in the Old Testament we see that the Spirit is involved in creation and is the source of life:
The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters […] God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness (Gen. 1:2, 26).
In this account of creation we see that the Holy Spirit is involved. “God” is always a singular noun but note the plural words which follow. The Holy Spirit was involved in creation. We find in the New Testament that He gives spiritual life:
The letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life (II Cor. 3:6).
And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you (Rom. 8:10-11).
We find in both Testaments that the Holy Spirit is a teacher:
Thou gavest also thy good spirit to instruct them, and withheldest not thy manna from their mouth, and gavest them water for their thirst (Neh. 9:20).
Teach me to do thy will; for thou art my God: thy spirit is good; lead me into the land of uprightness (Ps. 143:10).
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come (Jn. 16:13).
In the New Testament we learn that Christ is our Mediator, but we also see that the Holy Spirit prays for us and leads us in prayer when we’re unable to pray:
Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered (Rom. 8:26).
He makes us walk in holiness:
A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. 27And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. 28And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God (Ez. 36:26-28).
Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart (II Cor. 3:3).
For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live (Rom. 8:13).
He fights against the wicked:
But they rebelled, and vexed his holy Spirit: therefore he was turned to be their enemy, and he fought against them (Is. 63:10).