The Work Of The Holy Spirit THE WORK OF THE HOLY SPIRIT John 16:7-11 (NLT) 7 But in fact, it is best for you that I go away, because if I don’t, the Advocate won’t come. If I do go away, then I will send him to you. 8 And when he comes, he will convict the world of its sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment. 9 The world’s sin is that it refuses to believe in me. 10 Righteousness is available because I go to the Father, and you will see me no more. 11 Judgment will come because the ruler of this world has already been judged. Throughout the centuries there have been debates and misunderstandings concerning the person and work of the Holy Spirit. Some think of The Holy Spirit as an “it”, an impersonal being or a “divine force.” He is neither. The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity—just as much God as the Father and the Son. Gregory of Nazianzus writes, “The deity of the Holy Spirit ought to be clearly recognized in Scripture. Look at these facts: Christ is born; the Spirit is His forerunner. Christ is baptized; the Spirit bears witness. Christ is tempted; the Spirit leads Him up. Christ ascends; the Spirit takes His place. What great things are there in the character of God which are not found in the Spirit? What titles which belong to God are not also applied to Him? He is called the Spirit of God, the Spirit of Christ, the mind of Christ, the Spirit of the Lord, the Spirit of adoption, of truth, of liberty; the Spirit of wisdom, of understanding, of counsel, of might, of knowledge, of godliness, of the fear of God. This only begins to show how unlimited He is. In order to consider the unlimited power and work of the Holy Spirit let us look at the various works of the Holy Spirit that Jesus told us that He would accomplish in our lives. I. THE HOLY SPIRIT CONVICTS THE HEART (John 16:7-8). “But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment:” A. The Holy Spirit removes all doubt of our guilt from our heart. Three major aspects of the ministry of the Holy Spirit are described in (John 16:8-15) 1. To the world—conviction of sin, righteousness, and judgment. 2. To the disciples—direction and truth. 3. To Jesus— revealing him more perfectly to and through those who represent him. The key to this first aspect of the Spirit’s ministry is the word "convict" (elencho). KJV translates it "reprove," but that rendering is not strong enough. The word is a legal term that means to pronounce a judicial verdict by which the guilt of the culprit at the bar of justice is defined and fixed. The Spirit does not merely accuse men of sin, he brings to them an inescapable sense of guilt so that they realize their shame and helplessness before God. B. The Holy Spirit reveals to us our inability to save ourselves. He has come to convict a sinful unbelieving world that is consequently lost and unable to save itself. As He reveals our sin He reveals our shortcomings. Romans 3:22-23 (ESV) says: “The righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…” II. THE HOLY SPIRIT CONVINCES THE HEART (John 16:9-15). A. The Holy Spirit convinces us of our need to believe. 1. The Holy Spirit reveals the evil of rejecting God’s message. “…in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; 2. The Holy Spirit reveals the holiness of God. “…in regard to righteousness because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer;…” 3. The Holy Spirit reveals the victory over Satan. “…and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.” The Cross was the utter condemnation and defeat of the "prince of this world." "Condemned" is in the perfect tense (kekritai), which expresses a settled state. Satan is already under judgment; the sentence is fixed and permanent. B. The Holy Spirit convinces us of our present and future victory (John 16:12-15). Jesus said, “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 bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.” NIV 1. The Holy Spirit guides us. 2. The Holy Spirit speaks to us. 3. The Holy Spirit reveals God’s glory to us. 4. The Holy Spirit gives us all things. The Holy Spirit is able to move upon the human heart in ways that we often would not believe prior to seeing it take place. However, He does so in a powerful way to make us aware of His presence and of our own needs. By. Rev. Rick Hill Jr., D.Div.