The Work of the Spirit
“And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying “Abba, Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir with God.”(Gal. 4:6-7).
In the last chapter of Luke we are told that after the Resurrection of the Lord, He appeared to the Apostles and told them that He would be sending the promise of the Father upon them. Then Paul explains in the first chapter of Acts that the promise of the Father is the power of the Holy Spirit which would come upon the Apostles at the event of Pentecost. Here, we see the sending of the Holy Spirit as the comforter who would fulfill the New Covenant prophecy of Ezekiel 11:19, by giving believers a new heart and writing God’s law in it.
The Holy Spirit arrives onto the world scene at Pentecost, with His ministry of transformation and as applicator of the redemptive work of Christ. The Christian is dependent on the ministry of the Spirit from the time of his regeneration until his glorification. The work of the Spirit is presented by John in chap. 16 of his gospel. This passage, along with many others dispersed throughout the scriptures reveal His work.
Regeneration is a major work of the Spirit. Illumination is another major work as He reveals the truths and wisdom of Scripture to the believer. The Apostle Paul explains in 2 Cor. 3:15-18, that the unbeliever is spiritually blind as if a veil covers his heart. When a person comes to faith in Christ the veil is removed by the Spirit, allowing him the ability to understand God’s revelation. (Diligent work and study of the scriptures is still required).
There are two aspects of the work of the Spirit which are vital in the growth of the Christian. These are being filled with The Spirit, and being led by The Spirit. To be led by the Spirit is to rely on the guidance of the indwelling Spirit as he leads the believer toward righteousness and Christlikeness. Following the leading of the Spirit brings the believer to obedience to the will of God, instead of the will of self or the flesh. Being filled with the Spirit is to be brought under His control and influence. The filling of the Spirit in a Christian is related to his spiritual maturity. The greater the maturity, the greater the Spirit fills him. A mature believer is going to submit much more of his/her life over to the Spirit for filling.
Ten Works of the Spirit
- The Spirit teaches.
- The Spirit dwells in believers and fills them.
- The Spirit gives revelation, wisdom, and power.
- The Spirit guides believers in all truth through illumination.
- The Spirit gives spiritual gifts.
- The Spirit seals believers as God’s possessions.
- The Spirit intercedes for believers in accordance with God’s will.
- The Spirit regenerates persons.
- The Spirit sanctifies believers.