Summary: Second in a series of teachings on the doctrine of the Holy Spirit. The Helper that Jesus said was to our "advantage" that He leave so that the Holy Spirit might come.
The following was written in “Christian Life” magazine:
“In many Christian circles the Holy Spirit is either neglected, forgotten, or misunderstood. The One given to unite the body of Christ is the center of controversy. So often Christian work is so rigidly programmed that it seems we need no longer depend on Him. Yet Jesus said, "Without Me you can do nothing."
The late Dr. A. W. Tozer, author and pastor, said, "If the Holy Spirit was withdrawn from the church today, 95 percent of what we do would go on and no one would know the difference.
“If the Holy Spirit had been withdrawn from the New Testament church, 95 percent of what they did would stop, and everybody would know the difference."
We are reclaiming a lost truth of the Easter Story. Jesus himself told His disciples within just days of His crucifixion, and subsequent resurrection the words we find in John 16:7 (read through verse 14).
He said, “It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you.”
So if it is to our advantage, it would be wise to reclaim the truth of the Holy Spirit, or for some of us. . .begin for the first time to discover who this Holy Spirit is.
Overview my utilization of different styles of preaching –
the next couple of week’s will be teaching that provides a devotional outline for the week.
The challenge of a broad spectrum audience –
If you are theologically astute: this is an opportunity to memorize
If you are new to the doctrine: this is an opportunity to discover a great advantage in the Christian walk.
There was a family from a remote area who was making their first visit to a big city. They checked in to a grand hotel and stood in amazement at the impressive sight.
As they left the reception desk they came to the elevator entrance. Well they’d never seen an elevator before, and so they just stared at it, unable to figure out what it was for.
They saw an old lady hobble towards the elevator, aged, wrinkled, hunched over, and inside the elevator she went.
The door closed, and about a minute later, the door opened and out came a stunningly good-looking young woman. Flowing hair, smooth skin, high heels, just beautiful. And the father couldn’t stop staring. After just a brief pause, and without even turning his head he patted his son’s arm and said, "Son, go get your mother."
When we don’t know what something is. When we don’t understand how something works. When we aren’t aware of how something operates, we can draw all kinds of conclusions – some that turn out to be accurate.
In the case of the Holy Spirit, many that end up being false. Stigmas, assumptions, hesitations, and even fears. So lets get to know who this Holy Spirit is.
Growing up, one stigma/stumbling block I had to deal with was the mystery of the name – the Holy Ghost.
Ghost = the spirit of a dead person, but the Holy Spirit was a live before the incarnation & Jesus lives eternally.
So Holy Ghost is not a fitting name in today’s venacular.
There is also the mystery of the being:
Mystery of Jesus – Fully Human, Fully God
Similar mystery of the Holy Spirit –
Divine Characteristics, and Human Characteristics
DIVINE CHARACTERISTICS –
ETERNAL – Has always been, and will always be
Mentorship meetings with friend, studying Hebrews.
Hebrews 9:13-14, “For if the sprinkling of defiled persons with the blood of goats and bulls and with the ashes of a heifer sanctifies for the purification of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.”
The word “Eternal” = without beginning and without end.
The Holy Spirit is like Sabwafair. Remember that cartoon? “Sabwafair is everywhere?”
Omnipresent = everywhere
Favorite Psalm. Psalm 139:7-10
“Where shall I go from your Spirit?
Or where shall I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
If I take the wings of the morning
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
even there your hand shall lead me,
and your right hand shall hold me.”
OMNIPOTENT – means He is all powerful
Luke 1:35, “And the angel answered her, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you’”
When the Holy Spirit comes upon us – He comes with all the power of Almighty God. Nothing is more powerful.