This week, as we continue our 6-week study on the person of the Holy Spirit, we will be looking at the teaching ministry of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus names the Spirit the ‘Spirit of truth’. The Spirit teaches the truth about who God is and what He requires of us:
“But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth…” (John 16:13)
“I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever – the Spirit of truth.” (John 14:16-17)
HE TEACHES US FROM SCRIPTURE
A truly Spirit-filled people will love the bible; their meetings and community will be rich in scripture reading and study. We read of the Jerusalem church that as the Spirit came, many became Christians, but they also bore the fruit of the Spirit who loves scripture. As we read,
‘Those who accepted his message were baptised, and about three thousand were added to their number that day. They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.’ (Acts 2:41-42)
THE SPIRIT INSPIRED THE BIBLE WRITERS
‘All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness…’ (2 Timothy 3:16 )
‘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)
The word of God is always under attack. The devil knows that if he can shake or move our confidence from scripture, he renders us powerless. The devil (and our flesh) want us to depend on history, science, statistics, anecdote, philosophy etc. These things have their place, but, the scriptures are the ‘sword of the Spirit’ (Eph. 6:17). So, when talking about the work of the Holy Spirit, for example, do we search the scriptures? Do we weigh the books we read and experiences we have on a subject against scripture?
It is common for people to subtly undermine scripture by saying “Well, of course, the writers were men of their time and culture so it has things that we must reject... but it does contain truth.” Scripture teaches that ‘All scripture is God-breathed…’ We cannot pick the bits that don’t offend us or others. Now, it’s not a virtue to seek to offend people. The Spirit will lead us in the wise and loving use of His word.
Memorising Scripture is an important but often neglected discipline. We often find it easier to quote the pop songs of our youth than scripture. A mind filled with the words of God is like a person who puts what is beautiful and needful into their home. Many of us treat our minds like a rubbish dump rather than a home - it collects any old junk that happens to be thrown our way. Let’s shut 'the door’ on lies and filth and seek to do the hard work of filling our minds with truth.
Let's memorise some scriptures on the work of the spirit (there have been loads in this series). Here are a few that I’ve learned and you may like to use:
His Spirit, 1 Corinthians 3:16 Don't you know that you yourselves are God's temple and that God's Spirit lives in you? 1 Corinthians 3:16
His Spirit 1 Corinthians 2:12 We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. 1 Corinthians 2:12
His Spirit Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22
His Spirit Romans 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13
Spirit of sonship Galatians 4:6-7 Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, "Abba, Father." So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir. Galatians 4:6-7
Spirit of sonship Romans 8:15-16 For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father." The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. Romans 8:15-16