The Doctrine of the Holy Spirit
In Christian circles the mention of the Holy Spirit can invoke a number of emotions and reactions; some immediately think of televangelists and healing rallies, and some think of one who regenerates hearts and reveals scripture to our souls. So often our experiences and past church teachings sway our view of the third person of the Trinity...
2. The Coming Promise Part 1
Often times when discussing the Holy Spirit we only think of him in a New Testament sense. We examine how He interacted with the Apostles and early church, how He interacts with us now and works in our hearts, but we rarely think through the Spirit’s work in the Old Testament. If the trinity is coeternal and coequal then the Holy Spirit has been at work in human history from the beginning, as Genesis 1:2 affirms.
3. The Coming Promise Part 2
On the day of Pentecost, the Counselor and the third member of the Trinity was introduced to the believers on earth. The Spirit’s engagement with the believers empowered them to carry out the mission of Christ in the world, namely, to make disciples of all nations. This is the mission of the church in this age. We are to be about what the Spirit is about because the Spirit is the current expression of the Kingdom of God in our day and age.
4. The Coming Promise Part 3
As we’ve learned the past few weeks, the Holy Spirit can be a confusing person to understand and interact with. Our tendencies are to either overvalue his presence and physical manifestations or just pretend that He just enlightens scripture and regenerates hearts. We know that both of those extremes aren’t helpful to our walk with Christ.
5. Our Guide to all Truth
One of the most fundamental things that the Holy Spirit does is convict us of sin. The Spirit gives us the power to look inward and understand the idols of our hearts. He illuminates our sin and points us to the glorious grace that Christ gives us. Repentance is very important. Christian growth is warfare. It’s worth asking the tough questions and doing the hard work of discovering what leads us away from this glorious God.
6. The Holy Spirit our Teacher
7. Walking in the Spirit Part 1
We need to embrace the convicting work of the Spirit in our lives and use it as an opportunity to know Christ more deeply. Our ability to interact with the Spirit’s conviction is a blessing that many of us fail to take advantage of. Typically when we as Christians feel conviction we run from it or remain distant from it, but sin is pervasive in our hearts and needs to be worked against through the power of the Spirit.
8. Walking in the Spirit Part 2
The Holy Spirit’s work in our heart and His conviction of sin are not random acts. They are intentional. He’s in it for the long haul, as well. His work is rarely an immediate change. He works slowly through meditation and study of the word, prayer, and community. His work may seem slow and painful, and may come in ways that we do not desire or expect, but it is a good work and a loving work. His work in us is for our good, our joy, and for the glory of God.
9. Distinguishing His Voice
As we move throughout our lives, there are a plethora of voices that we listen to and take guidance from. We gain information as we work, navigate relationships, and spend time with our families. These voices influence the way that we think and act towards others and ourselves. Today we will touch on three common voices in our lives.
10. The Practicality of the Spirit / Grace Leads to Strength
God is a God of rest, a God of peace. Paul, in 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24, gives us some insight into the Christian life and the beauty of resting in the God of peace. As we walk through these verses we will find that God sanctifies us, purifies us, keeps us, and brings us peace; and the best part is that He does it, not us. He restores and keeps us blameless by advocating for us and paying the great debt that we owed. He gives us rest.
11. Emotional Transformation
As we talk through the Spirit’s personal interaction with us as believers, one of the areas that is crucial to understand is the role that emotions play in the Christian life. We all have them; and they can range in depth and width in any given moment. How we feel, what we desire, and how we imagine life to be, all play a part in our interactions with both God and others.
Emotions are one of the hardest things to control and are a large part of how we live our lives.
12. A View From Above
The entire section in Colossians 3 is in present active indicative tense. Paul is communicating the present, ongoing control of our thinking but also combined with his power in us. The Holy Spirit works in our hearts but He also enables us to work with Him in our transformation. We are actively setting our minds on the things of the Spirit and actively putting to death the deeds of the flesh.
13. What I Know Vs What I Feel
The church at Colossae struggled with a heresy that had permeated the church. This heresy taught that human self-control and will power could overcome unrighteousness. They believed that their self-effort could help them gain righteousness. Paul, in his letter to them, confronts this falsehood and pushes them instead to remember their life in Christ.
With a new identity comes a new way of living. We cannot be made new but not begin to act like new people. The tendency is for us as new creations in Christ to continue to live and act like we once were. We must learn to think and act in new ways with the new self rather than old ways with the new self.
15. The Gifts: An Intro
Spiritual gifts in the church is an enormous topic that has received much press in the Christian community within the past few decades, especially regarding the more spectacular gifts. The gifts are an extremely important part of a believer’s life and the life of the gospel community, but they tend to be either misused or completely eliminated in the life of the church.
16. Naturally Supernatural
As Paul works through in His passages on the gifts, he doesn’t see these supernatural gifts as an addition or “next level” to Christianity. He saw them as a necessary part of our life in Christ. Our identity does not rest upon our giftings or our ability to perform miracles and speak in tongues. We are identified with Christ in His death and our purpose comes out of our newfound life in Him. The gifts in the church are also way more diverse than simply the more “spectacular” gifts of healing and prophecy. The lists of the gifts range from administration to hospitality. We must be careful not to fall
into the temptation of looking at our gifts as a barometer for our maturity in Christ.
17. Purpose and Practice