The next three posts in the Empowered Series will reference six points about how the Holy Spirit reveals truth as mentioned in Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology. We’ll explore how the Holy Spirit revealed himself in scripture so that we can better understand how God reveals himself in our own life.
The Holy Spirit works personally and individually in the life of every Christian. God knows what you need in order to fulfill his purpose in and for you. The way he reveals himself to you may not be the same as he reveals himself to me. In fact, I believe God speaks to you in your own love language and makes himself known in ways that will motivate you to deeper faith so you can fulfill his purpose in your life.
In my own life, the Holy Spirit will put words in my thoughts that seem direct and out of the blue. They are contrary to my self-defeating thoughts and are based on actions that will minister to others and give God glory. God’s voice will never contradict the Bible. In fact, many times the Holy Spirit will bring scripture to my mind.
It’s difficult to write on this subject because people feel strongly about how the Holy Spirit reveals himself and shows his presence today. This has been a struggle for me because I truly want to know the truth about how the Holy Spirit works. But I’ve come to see that churches are divided on the topic of the Holy Spirit. This is ironic since one of the works of the Holy Spirit is to unify us.
So I want you to know, I’m not writing this series to give a position or a stance. In fact, I’m on my own journey where I’m learning to discern the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I may not be where someone else is. And I know I have a lot to learn.
These posts are a reflection of my own desire to know more and dig deeper. My faith is growing as I’m learning to step out in obedience and trust when I discern the Holy Spirit’s guidance. When I have questions, I ask God for wisdom and search scripture.
The most important thing Christians can do is seek God with their whole heart.
Love others in their journey. Allow the Holy Spirit to work in the life of another believer when you think they should believe something they don’t. Because God will do the work, so there’s no need for dissension and division.
Some of the best advice I’ve been given is to not try to be the Holy Spirit for someone else. I am not your Holy Spirit. And I’m not trying to be the Holy Spirit in these posts. But I’m hoping to lay a foundation so you can discover how God works in your own life and let the Holy Spirit speak to your own heart.
I’m a seeker, still seeking.
One of my favorite hymns is, “As the deer pants for the water, so my soul longeth after you. You alone are my heart’s desire and I long to worship you.”
The more I desire the Holy Spirit to reveal truth to me, the more I’ve seen him work in my own life.
In order to not make these posts too long, I’ve divided this topic (How the Holy Spirit Reveals Himself) into three parts. I’ll share 2 ways in each post.
1. Revelation to Prophets and Apostles
2 Timothy 3:16 tells us all scripture is inspired by God. The Holy Spirit revealed God’s words through the prophets and apostles as they wrote down the scriptures.
“Above all you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things. For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” 2 Peter 1:20-21
Jesus knew the disciples couldn’t bear to have too much revealed to them about what was to come. Soon Jesus would die and his physical presence would no longer be with them. But after his death and resurrection, the Holy Spirit would come to help them further the message of the gospel.
“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you. “John 16:13-15
Take Away: The Holy Spirit guides us all into knowing the truth about Christ and his purpose for our lives. The Holy Spirit speaks through you when you share Christ with others.
2. He Gives Evidence of God’s Presence
Has the Holy Spirit ever revealed himself to you in such a way that gave evidence to the existence of God and his involvement in your life?
There have been many times I was certain the Holy Spirit was making himself known to me. They typically haven’t come during the times I expected them or thought they would or should come. But these unexpected moments have solidified my faith that God is real and active. I mention some of them in this post.
The Holy Spirit made himself known to others by showing his activity in the life of believers in the Old and New Testament. The Holy Spirit made is presence evident when he descended as a dove when Jesus was baptized. (John 1:32). The Holy Spirit empowered the old testament prophets to prophesy.
Take away: The Holy Spirit reveals himself to you in personal ways that solidify your faith and trust in him.
–Our changed life is evidence of the Holy Spirit working.
Have you ever met someone and sensed God’s power in them was stronger than their flesh? Stronger than fear? Stronger than their need for approval? Stronger than insecurity?
“Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” John 7:38
When we walk in the spirit, our life gives glory to God. People will notice our joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Galatians 5:22)
“You however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ. But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness. And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.” Romans 8:9-11
Take away: The Holy Spirit manifests himself to others when we walk in the spirit and not in the flesh.
-He gives us spiritual gifts that manifest his presence (1 Corinthians 12:7-11) God gives spiritual gifts to every believer to strengthen the church so believers can accomplish his will.
Take away: God has given you a spiritual gift you can use to accomplish God’s will for your life and spread the gospel.
-He performs miracles
God performed many miracles in the Bible. We may not always know why sometimes he chooses to perform miracles and other times, he doesn’t. But we can trust in the goodness of God no matter what.
Has God done a miracle in your life? He has in mine. That’s another post I still need to write.
“God also testified to it by signs, wonders, and various miracles, and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will” Hebrews 2:4
Take Away: Miracles reveal the divine work of God and the Holy Spirit.
-He works through our weakness to give evidence of God’s presence
“My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration to the Spirit’s power so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom but on God’s power.”
“When the Holy Spirit works in various ways that can be perceived by believers and unbelievers, this encourages people’s faith that God is near and that he is working to fulfill his purposes in the church and to bring blessings to his people.” (Wayne Grudem)
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9
When you allow God to use you, your weakness is not displayed—God’s power is!
Take away: Don’t be afraid to let God use you when you are weak. Accept your weakness and let God transform them into his strength.
Ok, that’s all for now. Next week we will talk about two other ways the Holy Spirit reveals himself.
Has God ever done a miracle in your life? I would love for you to share in the comments.
Welcome to the Empowered Blog Series. Here are the first four posts in this series.