holy spirit

What Does the Holy Spirit Do?

The true God breaks into our deception-filled world to reveal himself to us in the person of his Son. In and of itself, however, this doesn’t lift the deception of the flesh from our hearts and eyes. We are yet dead in sin, blind, and lovers of “darkness rather than light” (Jn 3:19). As long as the god of this age blinds us (2 Cor 4:4), we inevitably and habitually suppress the truth. Thus the light of God’s revelation in Jesus would fall on blind eyes and never benefit us if God’s plan of salvation stopped there.

Yet God didn’t stop there. God knew that if we were ever to enter into a saving relationship with him, he not only would have to be revealed to us, he would have to be revealed in us. So God didn’t stop with sending his Son to dwell among us; he also sent his Spirit to reside within us. God not only speaks to us and lives the truth for us in his Son, he also opens our eyes and ears to see and hear this truth by the sending of the Spirit.

The main work of the Holy Spirit, then, is not to supplement what the Son did but to apply what the Son did to the lives of God’s people. He glorifies Christ by revealing him to his children (Jn 16;14). He does not speak of himself (Jn 16:13) but rather causes people to behold the glory of the Lord in the face of Jesus Christ, thereby transforming them into this glory (2 Cor 3:17-18).

Whereas Satan blinds the minds of unbelievers, the Holy Spirit opens our minds and causes us to see the truth—the truth of who God is and the truth of who we are. The Holy Spirit manifests the truth of our fallen condition and thereby produces conviction and repentance in our lives. The Holy Spirit opens the hearts and minds of people so we are able to receive the truth that Jesus Christ is Lord and in him become children of God. The Holy Spirit also infuses people with the love of Christ so that we may live in the truth.

In doing all of this, the Spirit of truth is simply pointing people to the one who is truth, Jesus Christ. He is confronting and reversing the deceptive assumptions of the flesh in our lives. He is unveiling the true God for us, revealed in Jesus Christ, so that he might reveal our true identity as people who are loved by God.

—Adapted from Seeing is Believing, pages 56-57.

Image by Lawrence OP via Flickr

Category:
Tags: , ,

Related Reading

Responding to Von Balthasar on the Trinity and Suffering

Recently in his blog, The Dish, Andrew Sullivan pointed to an interesting article from The Other Journal called “Evil, the New Atheism, and the God of the Trinity,” written by Jacob H. Friesenhahn.  One of the reasons I love Sullivan’s blog is that he dares to include meaty theological pieces like this right alongside of…

Podcast: Must We Try So Hard to Listen to God?

Cody and Dan are walking in darkness. Greg tries to show them the light.  Also, consider supporting ReKnew. You can do so HERE.  http://traffic.libsyn.com/askgregboyd/Episode_0437.mp3

The Holy Spirit Behind the Scenes

In John 17 we read Jesus’ prayer to be one with each another in Christ. Jesus prayed that his disciples … may be one. As you, Father are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us. … I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one,…

How to Produce the Fruit of the Spirit

When the New Testament tells us to be loving, joyful, peaceful, kind and so on, it is not giving us a new set of behaviors that we are to strive to accomplish. Striving to attain them means nothing if they are sought as ethical ideals or to meet a set of religious rules. They have…

A Brief Theology of God’s Love

The most profound truth of the Bible is that “God is love” (1 John 4:8, 16). This is the most fundamental thing to be said about God, for it encompasses everything else that can be said about God. Peter Kreft explains this passage it this way: Love is God’s essence. Nowhere else does Scripture express…

Why God Made You

The life God has for each one of us is a life of perfect love, one that eternally unites us with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This is why God made us. It’s what we long for, to love and be loved. However, things like the love of the Trinity are not part of…

Tags: ,