top of page
  • Writer's pictureMatt Beaney

#1045. The Spirit fills us with God’s love and hope (30/4/24)


On Sunday we had Dale Barlow, from the New Ground leadership team speaking on The Holy Spirit. This week’s devotionals are loosely based upon his message. Today we reflect upon how the Holy Spirit enables us to experience God’s love and hope. 

‘Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God.  Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance;  perseverance, character; and character, hope.  And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.’ (Romans 5:1-5) 

Lesson: The Holy Spirit wants to fill us with God’s love, and so drive out hopelessness and fill us with hope. 


To listen to this devotional, go to:



We’ve all had the experience of the sun breaking through the clouds with its warmth and light changing the feel of the day. The sun is always shining and above the clouds it’s always a lovely day, but from our perspective, below the weather, we don’t always benefit from this reality. Romans 5 is like a blazing sun as it tells us many amazing things. However, we need to experience and see these things with the ‘eyes of our hearts’ in order to enjoy the warmth and light of these truths. Too often we can know and believe truth withoutout really knowing them as a present, living, joy-filling reality. We need the Spirit who gives us fresh, experiential revelation of truth so that even in suffering we can know God’s love and hope. 


We are told that the Spirit enables us to have ‘hope’. Hope is the expectation and guarantee of good things in the future. We live in a world that is often hopeless - the environment, A.I. (artificial intelligence), war… and, inescapably, the sun coming to its natural end, will bring our world and all evidence that we even existed to an end! These, and any number of issues, undermine hope in the future, unless, we have the hope that the Spirit gives! 


What is the hope that the Spirit assures us of? It’s the ‘hope of the glory of God’. The hope of the glory of God involves at least three things:


i. Hope of heaven - The Spirit assures us we will not suffer God’s wrath and be condemned but, rather, that we will see God in His glory after our physical death.


ii. Hope of the new heavens - We will see God’s glory in the new creation when Jesus comes to restore all things. 


iii. Hope of glory - We will experience God’s glory as we are transformed into His likeness in that new heavens and new earth.  


The Spirit, as He pours out God’s love into our hearts, assures us that we will see, enjoy and be transformed by the glory of God! Our text intimates that sufferings can cause us to question our hope. However, those who are being filled with the Spirit, as Paul teaches, will be able to see God’s character and faith-building purpose in suffering. As were read:

‘ Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance;  perseverance, character; and character, hope.  And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.’ 

Those who have the love of God poured into their hearts by the Holy Spirit will be enable to see purpose and grow through trials. 


Response

The Holy Spirits wants to fill us with God’s love, and so drive out hopelessness and fill us with hope. Of course every Christian has the Spirit in them, however, not every Christian is experiencing ‘God’s love poured out in our hearts’. 

‘By the presence of the Spirit, God’s love, played out to the full in Christ, is an experienced reality in the heart of the believer. This is what the Spirit has so richly “shed abroad in our hearts.”’ (Paul, the Spirit, and the People of God, Gordon D. Fee)

Are you seeking to experience ‘God’s love… poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit’? Are the trials of life robbing you of hope? The alternative is to come to God and cry out for Him to fill you. The presence of the Spirit assures us of the acceptance, love, purpose and hope of God. Are you being infected by the hopelessness of this world? or are you allowing the Spirit to fill you with the hope of heaven and future glory? God, The Spirit, wants to help you to be able to say:

I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.  For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed.’ (Romans 8:18-19) 
 

COMMUNITY GROUP NOTES AND STUDY


1. Notices

It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News.

Please ensure that the members of your group are aware and familiar with using the daily devotionals, which are accessed in Church News, the Teaching button on the website and are now available on the major podcast platforms. 


2. Icebreaker

How has God been speaking to you from His Word this week and how has this helped you? 


3. Worship together

Let’s begin our time together by lifting our eyes and hearts to worship our great God. Perhaps you have readings and songs that you would like to use together. Let’s be open to the gifts that the Spirit wants to give in order to encourage one another.


4. Study and pray together

Our message on Sunday from Dale Barlow, was on The Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit has been promised to us. By His power, we are enabled to believe on Jesus. He causes us to be Born again and receive a new heart and outlook. He wants to fill, empower and impart His hope and comfort every day. 

Dale used a number of stories and texts to talk about the Holy Spirit. I suggest that you choose one or two texts from below from which to discuss and pray together: 

  • Did God speak to you about anything specifically from Sunday’s message?

  • John 14:16-20, 16:7, 7:37-39: What has Jesus promised us? How do we enter into and are we entering into His promise? 

  • What does Romans 5:1-5: What is our hope and how does the Holy Spirit help us to rejoice in it in all circumstances? 

  • 2 Corinthians 1:3-4: How does God teach us in suffering and what does this lead to?

  • Romans 15:13: What does the Holy Spirit enable us to do?

  • Romans 14:17: What are the attributes that mark out those who are in the Kingdom? 

  • SIV - How does the Holy Spirit lead and empower us into His mission? 

  • SIV - Do we have any stories of how we have ‘Served, Invested, and inVited’ recently?

  • Let’s pray together that, this week, we will have opportunities to ‘SIV’; and pray for anything else that's come out of our time in God’s Word.

33 views0 comments

Comments


bottom of page