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XXII. THE HOLY GHOST
‘And because ye are sons, God sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, Abba, Father.’ -- Gal. 4:6
The great gift of the Father, through whom He obtained salvation and brought it near to us, is the Son. On the other hand, the great gift of the Son, whom He sends to us from the Father, to apply to us an inner and effectual salvation, is the Holy Spirit. (John 7:38; 14:16,26; Acts 1:4; 2:33; 1 Cor. 3:16) As the Son reveals and glorifies the Father, so the Spirit reveals and glorifies the Son. (John 15:26; 16:14,15; 1 Cor. 2:8,12; 12:3) The Spirit is in us to transfer to us the life and the salvation that are prepared in Jesus, and to make them wholly ours. (Job 14:17,21; Rom. 8:2; Eph. 3:17,19) Jesus who is in heaven is made present in us, dwells in us, by the Spirit. We have seen that in order to become partaker of Jesus there are always two things necessary: the knowledge of the sin that is in us, and of the redemption that is in Him. It is the Holy Spirit who continually promotes this double work in believers. He reproves and comforts, He convinces of sin and He glorifies Christ. (John 16:9,14)
The Spirit convinces of sin. He is the light and the fire of God, through whom sin is unveiled and consumed. He is ‘the Spirit of judgment and of burning,’ by whom God purifies His people. (Isa. 4:4; Zech. 12:10,11; Matt. 3:11,12) To the anxious soul who complains that he does not feel his sin deeply enough, we must often say that there is no limit as to how deep his repentance must be. He must come daily just as he is; the deepest conviction often times comes after conversion. To the young convert we have simply to say: let the Spirit who is in you convince you always of sin. Sin, which formerly you knew but by name, He will make you hate. Sin, which you had not seen in the hidden depths of your heart, He will make you know, and with shame confess. Sin, of which you fancied that it was not with you, and which you had judged severely in others, He will point out to you in yourself. (Ps. 139:7,23; Isa. 10:17; Matt. 7:5; Rom. 14:4; 1 Cor. 2:10; 14:24,25) And He will teach you with repentance and self-condemnation to cast yourself upon grace as entirely sinful, in order to be thereby redeemed and purified from it.
Beloved brother, the Holy Spirit is in you as the light and fire of God to unveil and to consume sin. The temple of God is holy, and this temple you are. Let the Holy Spirit in you have full mastery to point out and expel sin. (Ps. 19:13; 139:23; Mic. 3:8; 1 Cor. 3:17; 2 Cor. 3:17; 5:16) After He makes you know sin, He will at every turn make you know Jesus as your life and your sanctification.
And then shall the Spirit who rebukes also comfort. He will glorify Jesus in you, will take what is in Jesus and make it known to you. He will give you knowledge concerning the power of Jesus’ blood to cleanse, (1 John 1:7; 5:6) and the power of Jesus’ indwelling to keep. (John 14:21,23; Eph. 3:17; 1 John 3:24; 4:13) He will make you see how literally, how completely, how certainly Jesus is with you every moment, to do Himself all his own Jesus-work in you. Yea, in the Holy Spirit, the living, almighty, and ever-present Jesus shall be your portion; you shall also know this, and have the full enjoyment of it. The Holy Spirit will teach you to bring all your sin and sinfulness to Jesus, and to know Jesus with His complete redemption from sin as your own. As the Spirit of sanctification, He will drive out sin in order that He may cause Jesus to dwell in you. (Rom. 1:4; 5:5; 8:2,13; 1 Pet. 1:2)
Beloved young Christian, take time to understand and to become filled with the truth: the Holy Spirit is in you. Review all the assurances of God’s word that this is so. (Rom. 8:14,16; 1 Cor. 6:19; 2 Cor. 1:22; 6:16; Eph. 1:13) Pray, think not for a moment of living as a Christian without the indwelling of the Spirit. Take pains to have your heart filled with the faith that the Spirit dwells in you, and will do His mighty work, for through faith the Spirit comes and works (Gal. 3:2,5,15; 5:5) Have a great reverence for the work of the Spirit in you. Seek Him every day to believe, to obey, to trust, and He will take and make known to you all that there is in Jesus. He will make Jesus very glorious to you and in you.
O my Father, I thank Thee for this gift which Jesus sent me from Thee, the Father. I thank Thee that I am now the temple of Thy Spirit, and that He dwells in me. Lord, teach me to believe this with the whole heart, and to live in the world as one who knows that the Spirit of God is in him to lead him. Teach me to think with deep reverence and filial awe on this, that God is in me. Lord, in that faith I have the power to be holy. Holy Spirit, reveal to me all that sin is in me. Holy Spirit, reveal to me all that Jesus is in me. Amen.
1. The knowledge of the person and the work of the Holy Spirit is for us of just as much importance as the knowledge of the person and the work of Christ.
2. Concerning the Holy Spirit, we must endeavour especially to hold fast the truth that He is given as the fruit of the work of Jesus for us, that He is the power of the life of Jesus in us, and that through Him, Jesus Himself, with His full salvation, dwells in us.
3. In order to enjoy all this, we must be filled with the Spirit. This simply means, emptied of all else and full of Jesus. To deny ourselves, to take up the cross, to follow Jesus. Or rather, this is the way in which the Spirit leads us to His fulness. No one has the power to enter fully into the death of Jesus but he who is led by the Spirit. But He takes him that desires this by the hand and brings him.
4. As the whole of salvation, the whole of the new life is by faith, so is this also true of the gift and the working of the Holy Spirit. By faith, not by works -- not in feeling, do I receive Him, am I led by Him, am I filled with Him.
5. As clear and definite as my faith is in the work that Jesus only and alone finished for me, so clear and definite must faith be in the work that the Holy Spirit accomplishes in me, to work in me the willing and the performing of all that is necessary for my salvation.
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