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What Do We Expect from The Holy Spirit? — 16 Comments

  1. Maurice, your approach to the differing opinions brings some logic to the table in my opinion. A SDA student in Keene Texas was curios as to why there was so much dissention in there class over the Holy Spirit. Even whether the Holy Spirit existed or not. As you mentioned reasons for some of the displays of emotion would make one wonder who was being glorified. Their are many questions to think about as to the nature and purpose of the Holy Spirit. In reading John16:13,14 and John15:26, How is "He" understood? We know one of the definitions for Spirit Is :Greek Pnuema , breath or current of air. I am sure similar questions come to mind. Where better to seek understanding than, THE HOLY SPIRIT?

  2. I think the preparation for the latter rain of the Holy Spirit is done by the Holy Spirit in our lives through our invitation. The disciples were in the upper room in one accord through the working of the Holy Spirit.

    I think that the most important work of the Holy Spirit in our lives is not in the seemingly great acts like raising people from the dead or speaking in tongues but rather in producing the thoughts and feelings within us that motivate the mind of Christ and the righteousness of Christ in our daily lives moment by moment and issue by issue. The other mighty powers will come when our characters are ready for it.

    • I think you bring up a very valid point when you point out that the Holy Spirit manifests Itself in our lives with routine acts everyday, moment by moment. These moments add up to large steps towards self denial when we put aside our need to do something for selfish reasons that will create more harm than good.

  3. Thanks so much for this artcle Maurice. Way back in a previous century, I was in a church that was studying "The Coming of the Comforter." Everyone was praying for the Holy Spirit. After a few months however people stopped coming to the study, and a few (we only had a few to begin with) stopped coming to church at all. I asked God why He didn't just come when the church was on its "high" and had it all together. He revealed to me that He was not coming back for a church on a spiritual roller coaster, but for a church that will walk with Him consistently like Enoch did.

  4. Some have looked at the current need for the Holy Spirit among us as being the reluctance of God to impart this greatest Gift. Yet, this withholding is not what God wants to do, and is nothing more than what anyone would do in withholding the car keys from an intoxicated friend or family member. As long as we remain intoxicated by sin in even it's most "harmless" and acceptable manifestations, we are incapable of receiving and benefiting from the indwelling Spirit of God, who will not dwell where another remains in charge of the will.

    When Jesus received the Spirit of God following His baptism, He was fully yielded to His Father's Word and Will, and demonstrated this emptiness of SELF over the next 40 days and the remainder of His life on this earth, especially in Gethsemane and all that followed His resignation to take [our] cup given Him to drink in place of our needing to (deservedly) drink it ourselves. God's will was Jesus' only path in this life. Is it ours? The Holy Spirit is eagerly given when it is.

    Our prayer should be to become like Gideon's "empty earthen pitchers" in which the light would not be extinguished, and when broken, allows that light to shine unobstructed, piercing the darkness and shining forth as the Glory of God(Isa 60:1-3).

    Yes Maurice, too much of the wrong spirit seen too often. Self must cease.

  5. Galatians reminds us that the Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,gentleness, and self-control in a person's life. Scripture is very clear about the outcome of the HS's presence in our lives. His sanctifying work seals our life in Christ and makes others curious about knowing the Christ whom we serve. When we have the HS we draw, not repel. We may not have to initially give out a track or go from door to door, but can still spread His sweet fragrance within our sphere of influence - at work, in our neighborhood, at the local community convenience store..."and they'll know that we are Christians by our love" the song says. So when we invite our neighbors, co-workers or store owner to church, they will want to come into our warm loving fellowship. Yielding to His influence is so critical to our salvation and that of others.

  6. Maurice, consider that God created us each one unique from one another and gave us different gifts. For this reason, He loves us each one in a way that shows us just how much he cares about us. We each are blessed with a special relationship with the Lord, our God. I am one of those “spiritual” people who loves more than anything to feel the power of the presence of the Lord. When I am singing to the Lord with all my heart and He honors me by covering me with His presence, it does bring tears of joy to my eyes, the joy of knowing that He loves me so much. When I am praying about an area of my life and feel the Holy Spirit, I know that He is changing me. When I am asking and He speaks to me, I know that it is settled and have complete confidence. It is the Holy Spirit who changes us to be like Jesus, to love our neighbor as ourselves. In Psalm 51:11 after David had sinned with Bathsheba, David said, “Cast me not away from thy presence and take not thy Holy Spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation and uphold me with thy free spirit.” Remember King David leaping and dancing before the Lord? Jesus promises us, “But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me…” He also said, “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also and greater works than these shall he do because I go unto my Father” (John 14:12). That is the cry of our hearts. It IS all about Him.

    • I am very much aware of how different we all are. My wife is much more emotional than I, yet we both respect one another's personalities. The real danger is that we describe "Unity" as bing all the same. How boring that would be, even for an introverted academic like me.

      There are two things that concern me:

      The emphasis I see in some churches on the display of emotion as evidence of the effect of the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit are described quite well in Gal 5:22,23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. That does not preclude the display of emotion, but without that sort of fruit the emotional experience in empty.

      The other concern I have is that we pray for the Holy Spirit and expect some sort of epiphany experience as a result. One of my ideas about God is: God is supernatural but we works through some very ordinary people like you and me. Too many of us have some sort of expectation that the Holy Spirit will reveal itself to us through some supernatural event, but we ignore the gentle breeze of his presence. Take for example an education student of mine who was always praying for the Holy Spirit to guide her what do. She was still praying this prayer after 4 years of training. In the end I said to her, "The fact that you are still having doubts about teaching after 4 years of training may indicate that the Holy Spirit has been saying to you all along that you need to choose a different career more suited to your personality." Sometimes we keep looking for the epiphany when the Holy Spirit has spoken already.

      • Ashton may i chip in please,in reference to Acts 2:1..
        talking of the preparation,the ascending of the HS and the aftermath of a transformed disciples.Jesus was categorical,he said am going but a will send HS to be with you.
        (i)We have to be empty of self,faithful,trustworthy,patientand acknowledge God's ways
        (ii)We have to repent and accept Jesus as our saviour
        (iii)We have to be baptized and live like Christ then you will be a good environment for the HS.

  7. What ever our personal desires are, even though they are what may be labeled as admirable, I think of the story in Acts 4:32-37 and 5:1-11, of Ananias and Sapphira. How often do we do the wrong things for the right reason? We want to rush ahead of God's plans but forget Acts 1:7,8. We might pattern the argument between the church members in Corinth as to who is more important, Paul or Peter or Apollos. 1Cor 3:18-22. We are all Christ's.

  8. I am so glad that God made each of us in His image and His image is so diverse. I am glad that the God who said "Come let us reason together" also said "Taste and see that the Lord is Good". That He who said "be silent and I will teach you wisdom" also said "the righteous shout for joy are glad". Isn't it wonderful how the Holy Spirit reaches each of us! And how He gifts us use His indwelling to reach others. The young mother overwhelmed by responsibilities can be reached by the emotional worshipper who sees the pain in her eyes - comes and embraces her more effectively than the logical person who attempts to direct her to the reasons for her condition. The individual who needs answers for the deep questions of the Bible is more effectively reached by a logical, prayful study of the Word than an emotional praise-set. While the health professional who has to be logical all week be uplifted by the Spirit-filled songs of praise and worship.

    Isn't it wonderful how great God is and how each temperament and personality can be reached by the Holy Spirit who is indeed God.

    • I have a question that rises from your comment Denise; which was Jesus..."emotional worshiper" or "logical person"? Is there always to be such narrowness in our manners, or are we, in our fallen state often just too narrow in our personal preferences and focus? You know, "conservative" OR "liberal", "traditional" OR "progressive", etc? Can there be a proper balance in all these separate states of being rigid and incomplete? Didn't Jesus have the best response for every person who came to Him with a need? Isn't He our example?

      Will we not be found "complete" in Him?

      Yes, there will still be diversity in gifts, natural abilities, personality, etc, but no rigid, narrow manners that so often might offend another. For instance, the "logical" person could be tempered with genuine concern and interest in the person more than just the "problem and it's solution" alone. The emotional person could be balanced with practical knowledge and relevant solutions. Etc. I believe that when possessed by the Holy Spirit, Who is perfectly balanced, our lack of balance will become balanced and we will be effective witnesses of the love of God for sinners. Sure, God will match the need with the most effective helper should it be required, and that helper will possess a lovely balance in their ability, knowledge and manners.

      It's not about all being the same, but rather, none being individually too narrow and unbalanced. God's grace is sufficient.

  9. One of the manifestations of the Spirit is,'love'.
    One of the less discussed, signs of the times according to Matt.24 is that the, "Love of many has waxed cold".
    One of the signs that will set apart the disciples of Jehovah from that of the cold dark world, is that they have 'Love for another'
    The persistent neighbor received the requested bread due to the fact that he was not easily deterred. "How much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him." Continually, AskSeeKnock
    We are encouraged by the following words, "men always ought to pray and not lose heart".
    I have tasted and seen that He is good and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him; indeed my heart and flesh cry out for the Living God because I recognize my need, my wretchedness as did Jacob. There was a storm on the immediate horizon for Jacob, as well as there is a storm awaiting us. This impending storm led Jacob to cry out to the Lord in the midst of the struggle, "I will not let go until You bless me!". Needless to say, his unwillingness kept him clinging to the Angel and He was blessed because of it.
    By God's grace, I too refuse to let go until blessed from on high with the power of His Spirit. Jesus said that He could do nothing on His own, He understood His constant need of the Father and it was this communion with heaven that enabled the Son of God to do the work that He did and also to overcome.
    We are called to overcome as He overcame; this overcoming and yet surrendering mindset will consist of a constant connection with heaven unlike we are accustomed thus far.
    The miracle of the heart is what we as a body of believers desperately need and it is such a miracle that many of us are crying out for as I type. The worldwide Seventh Day Adventist church is unitedly gathering together for ten days asking, even pleading with Jehovah for the Holy Spirit.
    I encourage all to not let go of the arm of God, He is soon to come and it is imperative that we be prepare now. It takes work and persistence to maintain a heart of ceaseless prayer (God help my unbelief!). Being clothed from on high with His Righteousness, takes an understadning that only He can do the much needed work in us yet we are required to collaberate with Him and that takes much prayer.
    Please consider joining us, if you have not already, for the remainder of this yearly set apart time of prayer for Revival and Reformation.
    For more information please visit http://www.revivalandreformation.org/home-old
    May we be perfected in knowing His selfless love and go out to minister with those around us. As the Father was glorified through Christ, may we bring glory to Him, though Not by human might,nor human strength, or human intelligence and the like but by the Power of the Holy Spirit.
    Be encouraged, Your sister in Christ

  10. What an interesting topic {The Holy Spirit} I pray every morning for Him to come be w/me for the day. He teach's me, when I study God's word. When I see someone needs a encouraging word, a smile, He puts it into my heart, to share the love of Jesus, by being pleasant, saying something or doing a kind deed, for 'em. To me that's having the HS in my heart. Gal.5:22 is my goal in life everyday.

  11. The original question was "What do we expect from the Holy Spirit? Romans 8:1-9 gives us pertinent information as to what we expect from the Holy Spirit. God has made provision for our spiritual needs in Isiah 61:10-11. I often ask that Christ robe of righteousness cover my sinful condition. Like the force of gravity, sin pulls at our human nature. The Holy Spirit can and will combat and lift us from those tendencies. That is what we aught to pray for and what we expect.


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