6 Biblical Characteristics of the Holy Spirit and Why He Is Absolutely Necessary For Us Today

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

I believe that the Holy Spirit is just as relevant today as he was during the time of the birth of the Church in the book of Acts. By the Holy Spirit I mean what God intended for us beyond the infilling of him at the moment of salvation. I'm referring to the fullness of his Spirit which Jesus referred to the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the power, gifts and miracles that come with that. Let me give you six reasons why we need the Holy Spirit today.

#1 - God manifests himself to man through his Holy Spirit.
By his very nature, God is a God of relationship and created man for that very reason. In Genesis we read that God came and walked with Adam in the Garden of Eden. Throughout the Old Testament God dwelt among man and revealed himself through a cloud, a burning bush, a pillar of fire and smoke and various other tangible ways. Then his Son, Jesus took on flesh, was born of the virgin Mary and now God manifested himself through his son. God then dwelt with us. After Jesus was crucified, rose from the dead and ascended into heaven, he now manifests himself to man through the Holy Spirit. Now God dwells in us.

We need the Holy Spirit today because God chooses to reveal himself to the world by dwelling in us. This allows the world to see him, touch him and be touched by him.

#2 - He brings a life of supernatural power
Without Him you are left to deal with problems requiring supernatural strength with limited, human resources.
We are left powerless without him. Ephesians 6:12  says, "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." 

#3 - He brings a life of spiritual freedom
Without Him you are subject to the will of your flesh. We all know from experience that we do not have the power to successfully overcome our flesh. If we did, we would live in a Utopian society of perfect, sinless people. That is where the Holy Spirit comes in. Galatians 5:16 says, "So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature."

#4 - He brings a life of fullness
Without Him you are settling for less than what God has for you. I am amazed at how little we are willing to settle for in life. Left to ourselves, we will always take the path that requires the least effort. We may still make it to heaven but we will miss out on so much. God is not a "good enough" God. He is a "more than enough" God. John 10:10 says, "I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."

#5 - He brings a life of transformation
Without Him you are doomed to stay the way you are. The reason why we struggle so much in life is because of one simple fact - we fail to die to self. God can not raise us to new life without us dying first. There can be no resurrection without death. Galatians 2:20 says, "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me."

#6 - He brings a life of authentic witness.
Without Him you can not be an effective witness. Jesus told his disciples in Acts 1:8 that we would receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon us (baptism in the Holy Spirit) and we will be his witnesses. This verse has been horribly misinterpreted as saying "witnesses for me" when it literally means "witnesses of me." The Holy Spirit doesn't just give us power to tell the world about him. He empowers us to physically demonstrate the power of the resurrected Christ through the life of supernatural transformation. His Holy Spirit dwelling in us now puts us on the same level as the Apostles who personally witnessed Jesus in his resurrected body. They saw him with their own eyes and touched him with their own hands. They were living proof of him. Now, by the Holy Spirit, we have that same personal, eyewitness testimony. The problem with the Church today is that we are merely trying to witness for Jesus when the world needs a witness of him.

As you can see, this promise that Peter told us about in Acts that was for our children, our children's children and all those who are far off, is so much more than speaking in tongues as many have so wrongly made it. That comes with it but is not the point. We need the Holy Spirit today and the world needs a Church that is filled by God's Spirit.

I hope I have somehow given you a clearer picture of what I believe is, apart from our salvation, the most important element of our life as believers today. My prayer is that we would have a deepening hunger and desire for all that God has for us, especially his Holy Spirit.
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