Jesus introduces the Holy Spirit, and sets out His work on earth. He takes us to a new level of life, the presence of God in us and the dynamic of a relationship with the living God. This dynamic from God, is by the Holy Spirit. The Spirit has a number of titles – Comforter, Advocate, Helper…. The presence of the Spirit of God takes us away from ‘Religion’, trying to reach God through rituals and living to a set of rules. The Spirit lives in us to empower a new life.
John 14 v 16-18 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you.17 He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him. But you know him, because he lives with you now and later will be in you.*18 No, I will not abandon you as orphans—I will come to you.
- How does the Holy Spirit come to us?
- What does the Holy Spirit do in our lives?
Who is the Holy Spirit?
The Spirit of God is a person is in His own right (Trinity). He has a personality and a role in the Lord’s work among us. When we work with someone it is good to understand them. When we do, we can work with them not against them. The texts on this page aim to explore some of the Characteristics of the Spirit so we can be sensitive to Him.
Ephesians 4:29-30 29 Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them. 30 And do not bring sorrow to God’s Holy Spirit by the way you live. Remember, he has identified you as his own,* guaranteeing that you will be saved on the day of redemption.
- What does it mean that the Spirit has identified us as His own?
- How could we grieve the Holy Spirit?
Live by the Spirit
The Spirit of God within us has power to change us – He recreates our character to love. He does this when we live by the Spirit. Is there something that you do that you hate yourself for? God is able by His grace to change us. We can find ourselves trying to live by the Bible’s rules. This misses what God is seeking to work in us, and is called living under the law. Just as those who love will seek the good of the one they love, so those who live by the Spirit will seek the good of their Father in heaven. Those who try to impose a law on themselves become fixated on whether or not they have broken the law. Those who focus on God, delight to do His will and are given power to do so.
Romans 8:1-4 1 So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.2 And because you belong to him, the power* of the life-giving Spirit has freed you* from the power of sin that leads to death.3 The law of Moses was unable to save us because of the weakness of our sinful nature.* So God did what the law could not do. He sent his own Son in a body like the bodies we sinners have. And in that body God declared an end to sin’s control over us by giving his Son as a sacrifice for our sins.4 He did this so that the just requirement of the law would be fully satisfied for us, who no longer follow our sinful nature but instead follow the Spirit.
- What has God done to free us from domination by law?
- How are we to live in the new way?
The Spirit’s Fruit
As we walk with God, so the Spirit of God works in us our lives demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit. Since God is love, our character becomes transformed to express His love.
When looking to see if God is at work many are distracted by the spectacular and miraculous. These extraordinary things are often seen in the gifts of the Spirit. These are good, but God is far more interested in the more subtle expression of His work; the transforming of a person’s Character to become like Christ. This is seen in the fruit.
Galatians 5:22-26 22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there.25 Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives.26 Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.
- How is the fruit of the Spirit described?
- How are these fruit at odds with our human passions?