The Spirit of God and Christ

Text: Romans 8.9-11                                      6/18/2017

Main Point: The Spirit dwells in every Christian

  1. What does the Holy Spirit do?[1]
    1. The Holy Spirit empowers
      1. He gives life
        1. Creation, Psalm 104:30, “When you send forth your Spirit, they are created.” (Job 34:14-15)
        2. Regeneration, John 6:63, “The Spirit gives life, the flesh profits nothing” (John 3:5-8; 2 Cor 3:6)
        3. Resurrection, Romans 8:11, “If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit which dwells in you.”
      2. He gives power for service
        1. Old Testament examples- Joshua was given the ability to lead (Num 27:18; Deut 34:9) and the judges were empowered by the Spirit (Judges 3:10; 6:34; 11:29; 13:25). David was given the Holy Spirit (1 Sam 16:13). Bezalel was given skill by the Holy Spirit (Ex 31:3; 35:31).
        2. Messiah, “And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord” (Is 11:2; 42:1; 61:1; Mt 3:16; 4:14, 18).
        3. New Testament examples, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you” (Acts 1:8). Miracles (Acts 6:5, 8; Rom 15:19; 1 Cor 2:4), preaching (Acts 4:8, 31; 6:10; 1 Thess 1:5; 1 Peter 1:12), spiritual gifts (1 Cor 12:11), prayer (Rom 8:26; Eph 2:18; 1 Cor 12:10-11), overcoming spiritual resistence (Mt 12:28; Acts 13:9-11; 1 Cor 12:10; Eph 6:17)
      3. The Holy Spirit purifies

Since this member of the Trinity is called the Holy Spirit, it is not surprising to find that one of his primary activities is to cleanse us from sin and to ‘sanctify us’ or make us more holy in actual conduct of life’ (Grudem, 639).

  1. The Spirit convicts us of sin (John 16:9)
  2. The cleansing power of the Holy Spirit in conversion (1 Cor 6:11; Titus 3:5; Mt 3:11; Luke 3:16)
  3. The power of the Holy Spirit to change us (2 Cor 3:18; Gal 5:22-23; 2 Thess 2:13; 1 Peter 1:2; Rom 8:4, 13).
  1. The Holy Spirit reveals
    1. The Holy Spirit inspires God’s word (2 Tim 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21)
    2. The Holy Spirit makes it possible for us to understand what God has done for us (1 Cor 2:12-15; Eph 1:17-19; Ps 119:18)
    3. The Holy Spirit revealed God’s word to the prophets (Num 24:2; Ezek 11:5; Zech 7:12; 2 Peter 1:21)
    4. The Holy Spirit guided the apostles into all the truth (John 16:13; Eph 3:5)
    5. The Holy Spirit makes the presence of God known (Jesus’ baptism, John 1:32; wind and fire, Acts 2:2-3; tongues, Acts 2:4; 10:44-46,
    6. The Holy Spirit makes the presence of God known in the believer (Spirit speaks to our spirits, Rom 8:16; cries Abba Father, Gal 4:6; down payment of our future fellowship with God, 2 Cor 1:22; 5:5; 1 John 4:13)
    7. The Holy Spirit leads the believer (Rom 8:4, 14; Gal 5:16, 18, 25; Acts 8:29; 10:19-20; 11:12; 13:2)
  2. The Holy Spirit unifies
    1. Creates a new community (Joel 2; Acts 2:16-18, 44-47; 1 Cor 12:13; Col 3:14)
    2. Fellowship of the Spirit (2 Cor 13:14; Phil 2:1-2; Eph 2:18, 22; 4:3)
    3. Differing gifts bring us together (1 Cor 12:7, 11, 21)
  3. The Holy Spirit gives stronger or weaker evidence of the presence and blessing of God according to our response to him
    1. In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit empowered people but left them when they continued in sin (Samson, Judges 13:25 and 16:20; Saul, 1 Sam 16:14; and Israel, Is 63:10)
    2. The Holy Spirit remained on Jesus and was given to him without measure (John 1:32; 3:34)
    3. We are warned not to continue in sin or unbelief and thereby grieve, quench, or outrage the Spirit (Eph 4:30; 1 Thess 5:19; Heb 10:26-21; Acts 5:3-9).
    4. Those who despise the presence of God made manifest in the Holy Spirit are guilty of blasphemy of the Spirit (Mark 3:29).
    5. The Spirit who dwells in the Christian (1 Cor 3:16; 6:19-20), gifts the Christian (1 Cor 12:11), helps the Christian guard the truth (2 Tim 1:14), and gives ministries to Christians (Acts 20:28). The goal is for the believer to be led by the Spirit such that rivers of living water flow from the believer into every situation (John 7:38-39).
    6. When we are led by the Spirit and depend on the Spirit, we will grow in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.
    7. Grudem, “To be filled with the Holy Spirit is to be filled with the immediate presence of God himself, and it therefore will result in feeling what God feels, desiring what God desires, doing what God wants, speaking by God’s power, praying and ministering in God’s strength, and knowing with the knowledge which God himself gives (649).
  4. Test yourself. Are you a Christian? (Romans 8:9-11)

2 Corinthians 13:5-6

  1. Does the Spirit of God dwell in you? (9a)
    1. Continually dwelling/living
    2. Promise of the New Covenant- indwelling Spirit, Ezekiel 36:26-27, “And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to talk in my statutes and be care to obey my rules.”
    3. Decreasing hostility toward God
    4. Increasing submission to God
    5. An increasing concern about the desires of your flesh
    6. An increasing desire to please God
    7. Africa- Aberchi- cement for the well
  2. You cannot be ruled by the flesh and have the Spirit of Christ (9b)
    1. Have- continually
    2. The evidence of salvation is God’s presence, through his Spirit, in your life. A Christian has the Spirit of Christ. In salvation Jesus gives us His Holy Spirit.
    3. Forgiveness by Christ and union with Christ can never be separated from the indwelling presence of the Spirit
    4. Notice “Spirit”, “Spirit of God,” and “Spirit of Christ.” Trinitarian- also, the Holy Spirit is the means by which we enjoy the presence of the Father and Son in our lives.
  3. Is Christ in you? (10)
    1. Through union with Christ the body of sin is brought to nothing- 6:6
      1. Sanctification- continually growing in holiness
    2. Who will deliver me from this body of death- 7:24
      1. Growing awareness of your need for Christ
    3. Valley of Dry Bones- Ezekiel 37:14, “I will put my Spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it, declares the Lord.” To possess righteousness is to possess the Spirit and the Spirit is the assurance of life
    4. The Holy Spirit applies the fruit of Christ’s redemptive mission to the lives of the believers (Harrison, 89)
    5. The Holy Spirit is life because of righteousness
    6. The Holy Spirit within you is the means by which you live a righteous life
    7. The marks of a believer are a desire to please God and join in his mission of redemption through Jesus Christ. A child, or adult, who has no desire to live a holy life, win the lost, or make disciples, that person, is not a Christian. Because of the indwelling Spirit, Christians seek to please God. There will be a basic simple desire in the believer to do what God wants and when disobedience is discovered, there will be repentance.
  4. Does the Spirit of God dwell in you? (11)
    1. The Spirit within you is the means by which the Father will one day raise your body from the grave and make it new
    2. He who began a good work in you will complete it on the day of Christ Jesus (Philippians 1:6)
    3. The promise of the resurrection gives shape to the way you do life. The presence of the Holy Spirit in you gradually brings your fear of death to nothing.
  5. What sets the general direction of your life?

We all struggle with sin and we all stumble in many ways. I’m not setting up an unrealistic standard of perfection. Instead I want you to think about your decisions and your dreams. What rules you? What guides you? What corrects you? What concerns you? If you have the Spirit of Christ then you will have a desire to please the Father. You will feel drawn to do your work in such a way that God is pleased. If you have the Spirit of God you will have an awareness of the presence of God. You will experience pain or discouragement when you do something against God’s will. You will love your Christian brothers and sisters. But if your life is governed by getting as much as possible for yourself, friend, you are in trouble. Those who are in the flesh, ruled by the flesh, or governed by the flesh are in a state of hostility toward God and headed toward death. You cannot serve God and the flesh.

And being afraid of hell is no assurance of salvation either. The demons were worried that Jesus was going to throw them into hell (Mt 8:29; Lk 4:34). A fear of torment is no assurance of salvation. Assurance of salvation comes from the presence of the Father and Son in you by the means of the Holy Spirit. The Father works in you his desire to glorify and show the greatness of the Son. The Son works in you his desire to think, and speak, and do all things according to the Father. The Spirit leads you away from sin and the desires of the flesh. There is in you, sometimes big sometimes small, sometimes known to you and sometimes seen only by those around you, there is in you a gradual growth toward God and godliness.  Do you have it? Do you have the Holy Spirit?

[1] Adapted from Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology, 634-639

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