Glorious Spirit (Part Five)

By Andy Reeves

Believer’s Hope In Christ

The Holy Spirit applies the work of Christ to believers, resulting in adoption into God’s kingdom as co-heirs with Christ. This is one of the most precious truths in Scripture because the Holy Spirit takes what the Son has and declares it to God’s people. The Holy Spirit’s presence in our lives confirms our adoption. If someone is led by the Holy Spirit, they are sons of God and co-heirs with Christ. The Holy Spirit is the down payment and guarantee of our inheritance.[1] Because the Holy Spirit is the guarantee of our inheritancem it further increases our confidence in the work of Christ and the application of redemption to our lives. “The Spirit makes both Jew and Gentile God’s children and thus heirs together of God’s final glory…finally the Spirit is the eschatological down payment, the firstfruits, of the future, including the final resurrection and glorification of the present mortal body.”[2] The Holy Spirit both confirms our inheritance in Christ and gives us greater confidence in our salvation. God will not abandon us, the Holy Spirit in our lives confirms this reality. Christ’s work on the cross secured our salvation and the Holy Spirit guarantees our inheritance. Therefore, we have confidence in this life to pursue Christ because we know that the Holy Spirit guarantees our inheritance. While at times believers may grow faint-hearted, they can remember that the presence of the Holy Spirit guarantees that a believer is accepted, loved and cherished by God.

Presence of God in Church Life

God’s glorification of the Holy Spirit impacts a Church’s life and fellowship. Since the Holy Spirit possesses a greater covenant ministry, sanctifies believers, and provides them with hope in Christ, each local church should represent God’s presence among them. This final implication of the glorification of the Holy Spirit builds on the last three implications. Essentially, the presence of the Holy Spirit indicates the very presence of God. The Holy Spirit’s presence in the church should be visible to those outside the church and powerfully felt by those inside the church. The church should be led by faithful pastors who submit to the leading of the Holy Spirit. The church, led by the Holy Spirit, should affirm the leadership in what it does. A church marked by division is a church where the Holy Spirit has been grieved, there are unbelievers present, or people living in sin. A divided church conceals the Holy Spirit from view due to its sin. Believers in every church must work together to keep the bond of unity, quickly apologize, and forgive each other. Believers must open themselves to correction by others and see the Holy Spirit’s guidance in the correction. Finally, the Holy Spirit’s presence in a church represents that our Trinitarian God dwells in that church. The Holy Spirit’s activity marks a church that possesses the stamp of guarantee of acceptance by God. God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit work powerfully through a church that submits to the leading and direction of the Holy Spirit.


 

[1] 2 Corinthians 5:5; Ephesians 1:14.

[2] Fee, God’s Empowering Presence, 516.


 

Andy Reeves is married to Hannah and a student at SBTS.

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