March 5, 2010

Chapter 12 The Holy Spirit

We believe in the Holy Spirit, The Lord, the giver of Life...
  1. The doctrine of the Holy Spirit helps us in liturgy & worship because it is truth.  We cling to the Holy Spirit - confessing this truth, we can rejoice in the life that comes to us through the Holy Spirit.
  2. Two good images of the Holy Spirit can be drawn right from the beginning, from Genesis.  The Spirit of God hovering over the darkness provides a portrait of light bringing hope to darkness.  The Spirit of God also breathed life into Adam.  He is the bringer of life.  Light & Life are perfect images for the Holy Spirit.
  3. The creed's section on the Holy Spirit was expanded and defined (or refined) at the Council of Constantinople in 381.
  4. In ancient times, divine power was often viewed as impersonal, some 'force' outside of us or 'the gods'.  the Bible clearly identifies the Holy Spirit as personal, one who can be grieved, using the personal pronoun "He".
  5. The Holy Spirit cannot be detached from God, He is permanently connected because He is God.  the Bible teaches the Trinity - Father, Son & Holy Spirit.
  6. There is unity & diversity in the person of God.  An equality of essence with a distinction in function.
  7. The Holy Spirit functions in what could be termed a 'self-diminishing manner'. He does not draw attention to Himself, but rather points to or reveals to us the Father & the Son.  he comes to us as a light, illuminating for us the truth of God.
  8. Regeneration is the work of the Holy Spirit in us, making us alive in Christ.  He brings us the life of Christ even as we were dead in our sins.
  9. The Holy Spirit works in our lives daily.  He loves us, teaches us, guides us, convicts us of sin, intercedes on our behalf, and testifies to us of the love of God.  He plays many roles in our lives - serving us, lovingly & personally.  he walks with us as our closest friend.
  10. The Holy Spirit comes gently to open our hearts to be able to embrace the gift of salvation through Christ.  We are won to Christ by love.
  11. Verses:
    Luke 11:13  "If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!"
    John 6:63  "The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life."
    1 Cor 2:9-14  However, as it is written:  "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived
       what God has prepared for those who love him"—but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words.The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.
    Eph 4:3-6  Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when you were called— one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
    Eph 4:30   And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.