For June 20, 2021
Before leaving, the Lord Jesus Christ promised that His Spirit would abide with us and be inside us,
And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Advocate who will never leave you. 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. No, I will not abandon you as orphans—I will come to you (John 14:16-18 NLT).
The Holy Spirit’s mission is to seal the redemptive work of Christ as He inhabits our hearts. While inside us, He molds our thoughts, words, and actions into Christ’s likeness so that we can be Christ-like before this dark and tasteless world—as light and salt,
Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven (Matthew 5:14–16 AKJV).
Forgiven and restored to God through our faith in the death Jesus performed at Calvary, and in His resurrection, which signaled God’s approval of Jesus’ salvific, vicarious sacrifice performed for our benefit as well.
The Holy Spirit enables us to grow morally and spiritually in ways that honor Christ. The resulting works do not secure our salvation, Jesus does. Works are a byproduct of the Holy Spirit’s work within that produces godly, moral choices, and selfless, noble acts, as one writer attests,
That in this conflict the Holy Spirit enables the Christian, through increasing faith, more fully and consciously to appropriate Christ, and thus progressively to make a conquest of the remaining sinfulness of his [or her] nature.1
Romans 8:1 (NKJV) tells us, “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” The Holy Spirit is essential to the development of our progressive yearning for godly things like reading His Word, praying, worshipping, fellowshipping, and serving others. Simultaneously, He develops within us a growing disdain for worldly things that stunt our spiritual growth and hinder our fellowship with God.
Although we walk in the Spirit, we will never achieve perfection in this life. However, Jesus Christ yet makes intercession for us when we grieve the Holy Spirit by walking in sin and not in the Spirit. We can disobey or rebel against the Lord out of pride, selfishness, or spite like children having temper tantrums.
But like the Prodigal Son, eventually we “come to ourselves” by turning from our sin and returning to the Lord, mindful of what He did for us at Calvary. Then, we rely on the Spirit to help us not repeat the same sins. In essence, He reminds us that we cannot please the Lord by pursuing sin and selfishness.
The good news is that our imperfection does not signal our defeat. It only reminds us how far from Christ’s perfection we are and of how we must rely on Him to grow stronger each day. Jesus Christ was the only perfect example, and He can help us live a life of moral and spiritual excellence that contrasts our former life of sin.
As Jeremiah and the Apostle Paul observe, our boasting is never directed toward us and our feeble works. It always point toward the Lord who is at work inside us (Jeremiah 9:24, 1 Corinthians 1:31). Won’t you allow the Holy Spirit to work wonders in your life today?
What a Wonderful Savior!