Knowing the Holy Spirit

Sermon: “Knowing the Holy Spirit”

Series: Stand-alone message, not part of a series

Bible Text: John 16:4-15

Preached May 19, 2013 by David Ridenhour

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We took a break last week from our series in the book of Titus to consider the life-changing event in the church, which saw the Holy Spirit come at Pentecost.

What is Pentecost? Dr. Robert Webber in his book Ancient-Future Time describes it this way:

"Pentecost plays a crucial role in salvation history. Yet there are many communities that claim to be Gospel oriented who do not celebrate Pentecost. In order to bring God's people into a full experience of the Good News, an emphasis on Pentecost is necessary. Broadly speaking, Pentecost brings understanding to the followers of Jesus, empowers them in ministry, establishes the church, and points to the end of history when the kingdom of Christ will be established over all the earth. The Pentecost service ends one season in the Christian year and begins another. Pentecost Sunday ends the extraordinary season that began on the first Sunday of Advent. In approximately six months the church has been carried through all the saving events of God--his incarnation, manifestation to the world, life, death, resurrection, and ascension as well as the coming of the Holy Spirit. All these crucial events form faith and the spiritual life. The church is born on Pentecost Sunday with the coming of the Holy Spirit. After Pentecost witnesses the spread of the gospel and the growth and trials of the early church."

The Three R's of the Spirit

The Spirit's ROLE is to serve as the advocate of God in heaven, and continue to testify to the ongoing work of Jesus Christ on earth until he comes again. The RESPONSIBILITY of the Spirit is to convict the world concerning Sin, Righteousness, and Judgment. The RESOURCE of the Spirit is to be our guide and friend.

What Would Metrocrest Look Like if the Spirit Poured Out Blessing?

  1. That we would be a people LABORING to work out our salvation with fear and trembling in the power of the Holy Spirit. The third membership vow that we take when we join this church asks: “Do you now resolve and promise, in humble reliance upon the grace of the Holy Spirit, that you will endeavor to live as becomes the followers of Christ?” But we forget the part about the Holy Sprit, and instead rely on ourselves.
  2. That we would be a people LONGING to join in the work of the Holy Spirit by having all that we say, think, and do be a living testimony that brings and points glory back to Jesus.
  3. That we would be a people LOOKING at the pattern of our lives, and discerning whether it is in step with, or out of line with, the lyric, rhythm, melody, and dance of the Gospel of Christ.
  4. That we would be a people LEADING under the influence of the Spirit’s rule and reign, rather than our own decrees and designs.
  5. That we would be a people LOVING the world around us and those gathered here with us, remembering that the only reason we love God is because he first sought, saved, and set apart us, not the other way around.

Our Father, this is our prayer. We don’t want to reduce the Holy Spirit to be an artifact to be studied. We want to live, and move, and have our being in conscious awareness that this same Spirit, attested by the Scriptures, is the Spirit at work within our lives. Make our labors empowered, our longings heavenward, our looking clear and our leading sure.