The Holy Spirit and You (5)
“The Holy Spirit – making you like Jesus”
Today we continue in our discussion of the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives by looking at the work of the Holy Spirit in making us like Jesus
Listen to this talk (or download – right click here and ‘Save as’):
1. The Priority of becoming like Jesus
What is it that Christians really want from their Christianity?
- If we were to ask a room full of Christians what they want from their faith, and got absolute honesty, you would get a range of answers that would include, spiritual reality, excitement, healing, company, friendship, good worship…the list goes on. However…
What is it that God really wants from our Christianity?
- We need God’s agenda to be our agenda. And the word clearly shows that God’s agenda for us has Holiness or Christ – likeness right up near the top.
- ( Eph 4 v.24; Heb 12 v.14; 1 Thess 4 v 7; 2 Tim 1 v 9; 1 Peter 1 v 15-16)
2. The Process of becoming like Jesus
a) The Three stages of becoming like Jesus:
1. New Birth – when we were born again God started the process of comforting us to his likeness.
2. Sanctification – throughout our lives the Holy Spirit is at work in us to make us like Jesus.
3. Glorification – that Process is complete when we go to be with him at the end of our lives, or when Jesus returns
The Great Process of Sanctification
The Work of the Spirit (2 Corinthians 3 v 15-18) – God produces Christ-likeness in us by His Holy Spirit – we can not do it ourselves
The Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5 v.22-25) – fruit does not appear instantaneously, it happens over a period of time and gradually.
The Place of Co-operation (Roman 6 v.13-14) – although we saw above that Sanctification is the result of the work of the Holy Spirit, Scripture is very clear that we have a responsibility to co-operate with the Holy Spirit in producing it.
The Certainty of Opposition (Romans 7 v 14-25) – the day to day life of the Christian is a life of battling with Sin.
The Reality of Victory (Romans 7 v. 24-25) – it is possible to see victory in this life over sin by the power of God at work in us.
“I am not what I ought to be — ah, how imperfect and deficient! I am not what I wish to be — I abhor what is evil, and I would cleave to what is good! I am not what I hope to be — soon, soon shall I put off mortality, and with mortality all sin and imperfection. Yet, though I am not what I ought to be, nor what I wish to be, nor what I hope to be, I can truly say, I am not what I once was; a slave to sin and Satan; and I can heartily join with the apostle, and acknowledge, “By the grace of God I am what I am.”
3. The Practice of becoming like Jesus
Be Filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5 v 18)
Immerse yourself in the word (John 17 v 17)
Integrate yourself into Fellowship (Hebrews 10 v 24-25)
Control your mind (Romans 8 v 5-8)
Exercise your will (Eph 4 v 24; Heb 12 v 14)
Keep short accounts with God (I John 1 v 9)
Finally – there are few subjects in the Christian life that have the potential to make us feel discouraged, than considering ourselves against the Biblical command to “be Holy”. However we have to understand that God takes full responsibility for the finished product – and he always finishes what he starts!
Romans 8 v 28 ff
”And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.”