by Pastor David Grey
“And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven.” — Luke 24:49
For the next several weeks, I will focus on a subject that has been largely neglected in the church with far-reaching consequences.
I refer to the ministry of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer. Oh, we hear much about the gifts and dramatic manifestations of the Spirit but little about His actual work in us; little about the necessity of walking carefully and consistently in the Spirit and even less yet about the holiness He desires to produce in us, though this holiness is the very reason He was sent to us.
This neglect is why we see so little of His power in the church, the body of Christ. It is why so many have fallen into the error of the Galatian believers who Paul said began their new lives in the Spirit, but were now trying to perfect their faith in the flesh.
This general failure in the church is the reason, Samuel Chadwick, writing more than a century ago, concluded that, “The Holy Spirit has been shut out from the province in which He is indispensable. Christianity has been reconstructed without Him.”
The Christian life simply is not possible without the Holy Spirit. Anything we might try to pass off as Christian without Him falls into the category Paul spoke of as having a form of godliness while denying the only power that can produce true godliness in one’s life.
Paul actually said that we should have nothing to do with people who profess to be believers but live that way. (2 Timothy 3:5). Undoubtedly this is so that the world and believers, alike, would not be confused about which life is Christian.
That the believer would have power for holy living is the whole reason for “The Incarnation of the Holy Spirit.”
This phrase may seem strange since you have probably never heard nor even thought of Pentecost in those terms. Neither have many others, evidently, for when I typed that phrase into Google, the only responses that came back related to the Holy Spirit’s role in the incarnation of Jesus Christ.
To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News. You can subscribe by calling 598-6397 or click on the link on our home page.