There is an episode where He spoke to the church at Antioch to separate Saul and Barnabas for the ministry. Among these people we find those of great native gifts, capable of worthy achievement; but in their lives no evidence of the operation of the Divine. Jesus had been setting the law given through Moses over against the Pharisaic traditions, and in doing this, He expressly says in this passage that the law given through Moses was "the word of God." We believe that He is the third person of the holy Trinity, that He is co-equal with the Father and the Son in all that makes each of these persons God. Jesus sends His disciples into the world to witness under the influence of the Holy Spirit. Do we use the Word through which He operates, and thus give Him a chance to answer our prayers? 6. As a man, that is except as the Spirit taught him and used him, the prophet might be as fallible as other men are but when the Spirit was upon him and he was taken up and borne along by the Holy Spirit, he was infallible in his teachings; for his teachings in that case were not his own, but the teachings of the Holy Spirit. There is the possibility at least of his asking, Lord, what wilt Thou have me to do? We Christians believe that there is a God one of the persons of which Being is properly called the Holy Spirit. And as He went about on earth He was constantly inviting, urging men to come to Him that He might enrich them by the bestowal of His blessings. It may have come with the thunders of Sinai, but the heart of it was always the message of mercy. The work of the Spirit in the world may surprise you. Very often the solution of an apparent difficulty is found in studying the exact words used. It is impossible to draw positive lines of distinction between the successive steps of the Holy Spirit’s work in men’s hearts. We read again in Acts xxviii.25, R. V., "And when they agreed not among themselves, they departed, after that Paul had spoken the word, 'Well spake the Holy Ghost by Isaiah the prophet unto your fathers saying, etc.' It was the Word of God done into wood, gold, silver, brass, cloth, skin, etc. Both the Old Testament and New Testament acquaint us with the person and work of the Holy Spirit. Do we yield to His gracious solicitations? We read in 1 Cor. The teaching that the “ Spirit of the Lord God coming upon ” those who preach the gospel is the same as the “ Baptism of the Spirit ” the Apostles experienced during their ministry. Do all speak with tongues? We read in 1 Cor. He gives this as a proof that the inspiration of the prophet does not differ from the inspiration of the artist or architect, but in doing this, he loses sight of the fact that the tabernacle was to be built after the "pattern shown to Moses in the Mount" (Ex. The Holy Spirit is quite wise enough and has quite facility enough in the use of language in revealing truth to and through any given individual, to use words, phrases and forms of expression and idioms in that person's vocabulary and forms of thought, and to make use of that person's peculiar individuality. In what way can we speak of an absolute necessity of the Spirit’s work? As a result, there is soon a separation of elements. Everywhere throughout the Gospel reverberates the cry, “repent and believe the Gospel.” Everywhere, in one or another form, stands written the promise: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved” (Acts 16:31). The result of this life of ever growing faith and knowledge will be a life brought more and more into conformity to the pattern Christ has set before us in word and example. Are all prophets? They ministered chiefly to the chosen people, but the message was not confined to them. It is evident from these verses that the work of the Holy Spirit in apostles and prophets is of a distinctive character. xxiii.2, R. V., "The Spirit of the Lord spake by me, and His word was upon my tongue." "These nine days of prayer, reported in Acts 1:14 and 2:3-4, were the first Novena on which all later Novenas have been based. How difficult it is to win them to the paths which are sane and safe. Quite probably at this period of his ministry he entertained the hope that he might remain alive and consequently lived in an attitude of expectancy, but the attitude of expectancy is the true attitude in all ages for each believer. At His Ascension, Jesus told the apostles not to start on their mission of making disciples of all nations until they received “power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you” (Acts 1:8). " Still again we read in 2 Sam. Even those people who never heard of God’s inspired Revelation of Himself believe in a supreme, overruling Being. \, “Let me never from Thee stray;Keep me in the narrow way;Fill my soul with joy divine;Keep me, Lord, forever Thine.”. Of the about seventy occurrences of the word pneuma (πνεῦμα) in Acts, fifty five refer to the Holy Spirit. There has been a good deal of confusion about the person and work of the Holy Spirit. Are all apostles? The Bible contains truth that men had never discovered before the Bible stated it. Pentecost, oil on canvas by El Greco, c. 1600; in the Prado, Madrid. Not in the least. He kept constantly urging his servants to renewed exertions in their efforts to find other guests. iv.17, "Then we which are alive and remain, shall be caught up together with them to meet the Lord in the air, and so shall we ever be with the Lord." [B36] The Apostles' Creed: Life Everlasting, [B34] The Apostles' Creed: The Resurrection of the Body, [B33] The Apostles' Creed: The Forgiveness of Sins, [B32] The Apostles' Creed: The Communion of Saints. We are now dead in trespasses and sins (Eph. He has prepared for us a perfect righteousness. When we read these words, we are listening not to the voice of man, but to the voice of God. Our heavenly Father, in great grace, has revealed this truth to us His children through His servants, the apostles and the prophets. Salvation full and free has been prepared by Christ, is found in Him, and received with Him. The Holy Spirit’s passion is to see the gospel proclaimed to all people. Just as fully God as the Father and the Son, the Holy Spirit is unseen, yet very active, empowering individual believers and the Church alike. 8:14). Are all teachers? It was His word that was upon the prophet's tongue. We believe also that the Holy Spirit is an equal partner in all the great and multiplied activities whereby the universe was produced, and is controlled. The apostles by the help of the Holy Spirit completed their task. It united the Church (Acts 4:32) b. Text taken from John 14:26. If our consciousness differs from the statements of this Book, which is so plainly God's Book, it is not yet fully Christian and the thing to do is not to try to pull God's revelation down to the level of our consciousness but to tone our consciousness up to the level of God's Word. 7. The work the Holy Spirit as Helper would do for the apostles makes this clear. “And ye would not” is the lament which even wounded omnipotence must often make. It is written by Luke as a sequel to the gospel of Luke, picking up exactly where Luke left off. The child that has just laboriously learned to read a few sentences in its primer has not gone very far in comparison with a Shakspeare or a Goethe; but these men began in this way, and without it they could not have reached their later estate. We will take as our subject. The natural man is blind, deaf and dumb to spiritual things, and this includes faith. Some see the Spirit as some sort of vague force that inspires people to certain heights of artistic expression or particular giftedness. Jesus loves you #Passerby But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; …” The Lord knew that the disciples were not ready at that point to bear all that He could teach them. John 16:12-13a: “I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. But that there is only one way of coming into possession of Christ, and all that He has wrought for our salvation, is also clearly revealed. This moment has traditionally been called the birthday of the Church. The work of the Holy Spirit is to give spiritual gifts for the church’s edification. So, by alluding to this verse as an example of the Holy Spirit's work, the Apostles' Creed affirms the Spirit's full divinity. Holy Spirit in Apostles and Prophets, and his work in other men, often refer to the fact that the Bible says that Bezaleel was to be "filled with the Spirit of God" to devise the work of the Tabernacle, as a proof that the inspiration of the prophet does not differ from the inspiration of the artist Without this nothing would be accomplished by all the preaching that could be done, for “the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him, neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Cor. In comparison with the unutterable darkness which prevailed before it would not be without justification; but it is enlightenment only as the mastery of the alphabet opens the way to the great field of literature. It was made to them by the Spirit of Christ which was in them. Only the fool says in his heart, there is no God. iii.3-5, R. V., "By revelation was made known unto me the mystery, as I wrote afore in few words, whereby, when ye read, ye can perceive my understanding in the mystery of Christ; which in other generations was not made known unto the sons of men, as it hath now been revealed unto His holy Apostles and prophets in the Spirit." The spread of the gospel is primarily the work of the Holy Spirit. This is also a necessary inference from the fact that thought is conveyed from mind to mind by words and it is the words which express the thought, and if the words were imperfect, the thought expressed in these words would necessarily be imperfect and to that extent be untrue. The Saviour was constantly emphasizing the fact that His call was for all, that all were welcome, were really wanted. By God's grace, each week LutheranLibrary.org will present a new message on the basics of the Evangelical Christian Faith. — St. John 16:13. A community of God’s children is established. The Holy Spirit in the Apostle taught not only the thought (or "concept") but the words in which the thought was to he expressed. The book of Acts is called Acts of the Apostles but more aptly it is the work of the Holy Spirit working through the apostles. And in one way or another, it was always percolating out to the farthest confines of the races of men. The revelation made to the prophets was independent of their own thinking. The first step in the process of bringing the spiritually dead to life and the aliens to membership in God’s kingdom is the proclamation of God’s desire that it should be done, and that He has made all provisions by which it may be done. Nothing less will do. The utterances of the Apostles and the prophets were the Word of God. There are many who tell us to-day that we should test the statements of Scripture by the conclusions of human reasoning or by the "Christian consciousness." It is alone by faith. Truth hidden from man for ages and which they had not discovered and could not discover by the unaided processes of human reasoning has been revealed to apostles and prophets in the Spirit. And His work for man’s salvation was complete. The result of their work, the New Testament, is our complete rule of faith and practice, and provides all the guidance we need to please God and go to heaven. 11:6). Corroboration of the truth of this condition we find everywhere, on the pages of all history, sacred as well as secular. The work of the Holy Spirit is an absolute necessity in the plan of salvation. It is not an acquisition to be purchased at any price. Over and over again in these passages we are told that it was the Holy Spirit who was the speaker in the prophetic utterances and that it was His word, not theirs, that was upon the prophet's tongue. Jesus had repeatedly told the disciples that He was going to die and be raised from the dead, but th… It was not their own thought, but His. Without this work no one can be saved. The Holy Spirit is the third member of the Trinity. It was the Holy Spirit who spoke in the prophetic utterances. The Seventy Disciples and Apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ are those Whom our Saviour chose in addition to the Twelve and sent forth unto the work of preaching. May this series bless and inspire you. A very scholarly and brilliant preacher seeking to minimize the difference between the work of the Holy Spirit in apostles and prophets and His work in other men calls attention to the fact that the Bible says that Bezaleel was to be "filled with the Spirit of God" to devise the work of the tabernacle (Ex. 12:3. Stephen Unthank. It is true he says in 1 Thess. The Pentecost – i.e. and to walk on the ragged edge of the precipice where lurk the deadly perils? The descent of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles on the day of the Pentecost is described by the Evangelist Luke in the opening chapters of his book of the “Acts of the Apostles.” God decided to make this event a turning point in world history. This passage clearly teaches that the words, as well as the thought, were chosen and taught by the Holy Spirit. 1 Cor. In all ages, from the time our first parents banished themselves from God’s garden, God has been having this call proclaimed. The Divine origin of nature shines forth more clearly in the use of a microscope as we see the perfection of form and adaptation of means to end of the minutest particles of matter. xii.29). To the superficial student, the doctrine of verbal inspiration may appear questionable or even absurd; any regenerated and Spirit-taught man, who ponders the words of the Scripture day after day and year after year, will become convinced that the wisdom of God is in the very words, as well as in the thought which the words endeavour to convey. In distinctively spiritual things we have no will to chose that which is good. The apostles received “the power from on high,” and they began to preach and bear witness to Jesus as the risen Christ, the King and the Lord. What was the work of the witness? Never has there been, never will there be another. It must be created, begotten, by God. The Work of the Holy Spirit in Prophets and Apostles. We read in Eph. And Bezaleel needed as much special inspiration to reveal the truth in wood, gold, silver, brass, etc., as the apostle or prophet needs it to reveal the Word of God with pen and ink on parchment. It overlooks the fact so clearly stated and carefully elucidated that while there is "the same Spirit" there are "diversities of gifts" "diversities of administrations" "diversities of workings" (1 Cor. Of this we shall have more to say later, but let us remember that it is written that those, and those only, who “are led by the Spirit of God, are the sons of God (Rom. He imparts to apostles and prophets an especial gift for an especial purpose. And after each new accession, the plaintive announcement went forth, “and yet there is room.” And that there might be no shadow of doubt as to the inclusiveness of His invitation, He says: “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”. The accuracy, precision and inerrancy of the exact words used is amazing. When thus borne along by the Holy Spirit it was God who was speaking and not the prophet. SUBJECT: Godhead TITLE: The Work of the Holy Ghost in the Primitive Church PROPOSITION: In this lesson we will study the role of the Holy Spirit in the early church. The priests and prophets of Israel were constantly delivering the message the heart of which was always God’s call. Acts of the Apostles, part 7: The Acts of the Holy Spirit. Indeed, it is a mark of the Divine wisdom of this Book that the same truth is expressed with absolute accuracy in such widely variant forms of expression. 2:14). Some will not make it. We read in 1 Cor. 3:28). Many do not like to make it. Wherever God’s Word is preached forces are set into operation, forces of attraction or repulsion. 8:7). As we will see later in this lesson, only God can have the power of the Most High. The Holy Spirit has Himself anticipated all the modern ingenious and wholly unbiblical and false theories regarding His own work in the Apostles. There is nothing in the Bible more inspired than the tabernacle, and if the Destructive Critics would study it more, they would give up their ingenious but untenable theories as to the composite structure of the Pentateuch. iii.7, "Wherefore as the Holy Ghost saith, To-day if ye will hear His voice." But this is not to assert that he would remain alive until the Lord came. He has at least a vague impression of the awfulness of his sinful condition. It is quite probable that Paul expected that he would be alive to the coming of the Lord, but if he did so expect, he did not so teach. I doubt not that the early disciples, in spite of their lack of understanding, and exhibitions of weakness, had as large a measure of the Holy Spirit when they stood on Olivet as the average Christian of today; but they went back to Jerusalem to wait, and watch, and pray for His larger coming. The Holy Spirit in the Book of Acts . But this call is never wholly in vain. “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. Today, then, we will continue this line of thought. They are truths which have to do with the genesis of the Christian life, but they are not only for our Christian childhood, but vital yet for the ripest Christian manhood and womanhood. But it is the truth of all Scripture, and of enlightened experience as well. Men always have the power of resistance. There are those who think that in 1 Cor. Do all interpret?" Some in the church see the Spirit as the dispenser of spectacular gifts. The work of the Holy Spirit is an absolute necessity in the plan of salvation. And we are not faithful to our Lord, not faithful to the Church of God, not faithful to our own profession, not faithful toward those who need our help, when we refuse, or neglect, to help discharge this duty. 3:17), — for, as we have seen, no one can say, believingly that Jesus is the Christ but by the Holy Ghost. Here again we are told that the utterance of God's prophet was the word of God. Baptism of the Holy Spirit The Apostles were already indwelt with the Holy Spirit before Pentecost. Not a jot or tittle needs to be added to what He has done in order to make it effective. There were times when it was sent directly to others. This is the only way to growth in grace. The Holy Spirit kept him from this as from all other errors in his teachings. It considers his personhood, noting that the Holy Spirit is a true person and not simply a divine force. For example, there can be little doubt that Paul had many mistaken notions about many things but when he taught as an Apostle in the Spirit's power, he was infallible -- or rather the Spirit, who taught through him was infallible and the consequent teaching was infallible -- as infallible as God Himself. We read in 2 Peter i.21, R. V., "For no prophecy ever came by the will of man: but men spake from God, being moved by the Holy Ghost." This is the reason we confess, as the Third Article teaches us, “I believe that I cannot by my own reason or strength believe in Jesus Christ, our Lord, or come to Him.” This is not a flattering confession. In the parable of the wedding feast He shows how deeply grieved He is at the empty seats. The Church of God has been commissioned to continue the work. But some one may ask, "If the Holy Spirit is the author of the words of Scripture, how do we account for variations in style and diction? In the body of Christ, we each have a part to play for the common good of the body of Christ. that in extent, or efficacy, it needs to be supplemented? In our introductory sermon on the third Article, we considered the person of the Holy Spirit, and, in a general way, His work. The phrases "I believe in the holy catholic church" and "I believe in the communion of saints" in the Apostles Creed profess what Christians believe about the Holy Spirit and his work in the Church. Jane Williams. This work of calling the children of men into God’s kingdom is still going on. xxiii.2, we read, "The Spirit of the Lord spake by me, and His word was in my tongue." The dying thief on the cross, who in penitence and faith, clung to Christ in his extremity, received that which not only healed the wounds, and bruises, and putrefying sores of his moral and spiritual life; but gave him that adornment of the inner life without which no one can stand approved before the throne of God. “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things….” (John 14:26). Hereby indicating something of their conception of the nature and the character of the operations, of their god. Another Person than themselves was thinking and speaking and they were seeking to comprehend what He said. In the many Bibles that I have read and worn out, I have marked with a red pen countless references to the Holy Spirit in both the Old and New Testaments. The Holy Spirit as “Helper” did the work of revelation, making known to … In this verse, the Holy Spirit is equated to the power of the Most High. There is also the account of the Holy Spirit forbidding Paul to go to Asia to preach the gospel. The Acts of the Apostles has sometimes been called the "Book of the Holy Spirit" or the "Acts of the Holy Spirit". Everything everywhere in human life substantiates the Scripture teaching that man is by nature spiritually dead, that a new life must be begotten in him. So with our Christian life. How do we explain for instance that Paul always used Pauline language and John Johannean language, etc.?" After Jesus ascended to Heaven His Apostles, together with Mary and other members of the original Christian Church, continued to pray together until the feast of Pentecost when, in accordance with Jesus' promise, "they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. With this call there always goes what is often called a prevenient grace; the deadness, the inertness, the positive attitude of repulsion is, for the time being at least, removed. What good does the heaven and earth filling riches of Christ do those who are ignorant of His true value, or dead to all power of appropriation? Do we pray for His coming? Let’s be as clear as possible: Peter had … The work of the Holy Spirit in apostles and prophets is an entirely distinctive work. To give us the eyes to see, the heart to appreciate, and the hand of faith to grasp the riches in Christ Jesus, this is the work of the Holy Spirit. Even Christian people, or those professedly so, give abundant evidence of the natural incapacity of the unaided human heart for the things of the Spirit. Here Paul declares that the word which he spoke, taught by the Spirit of God, was the very word of God. Luke was one of the followers of the apostles and was closed to Paul. It contains truth that men never could have discovered if left to themselves. The biggest negative is that it is probably too wide ranging and could do with a bit more focus. What good does it do us while we are ignorant of its existence? Christ’s last commission was, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature.” This duty still rests on the Church, on the Church as a whole, and on each member of it. Again we read in Heb. This is a work that was promised by Jesus. And with the Holy Spirit’s teaching there comes the power to accept what is taught. As he was still living when he wrote the words, he naturally and properly did not include himself with those who had already fallen asleep in speaking of the Lord's return. In a similar manner, the Divine origin of the Bible shines forth more clearly under the microscope as we notice the perfection with which the turn of a word reveals the absolute thought of God. Are we vitally interested in them? How Did the Holy Spirit Speak to the Apostles? 1. Luke is the most illuminating gospel writer on the topic of the Holy Spirit. The Work of the Holy Spirit in the Early Church – Sermon outline by Kevin Cauley on the task of the Holy Spirit in the primitive church. Brethren, these are no abstract, speculative truths of which we are treating; they are vital to the Christian life, vital as the rain and the sunshine are to vegetable life. In this sense we speak of the absolute necessity of the Spirit’s work to our salvation. Take the parallels of Luke and Acts and discern the work of the Holy Spirit through the apostles and the relationship of Jesus Christ's work. When He said, “I am the bread of life, he that cometh to me shall never hunger, and he that believeth on me shall never thirst,” it was the strongest kind of an invitation to men to come and find in Him all their souls needed. It is evident from the passage just cited that this doctrine is thoroughly unscriptural and untrue. In spite of all that God the Holy Spirit has done for them, and is still striving to do in them, how weak, often, is our faith, how lethargic is our spiritual life; how slothful we are in doing the Spirit’s work. In man’s original state of integrity he unquestionably lived in the sphere of faith, his whole life was a life of faith, of receptive dependence on God; but when sin came faith died. Are all workers of miracles? This article is more than 11 years old. It considers his personhood, noting that the Holy Spirit is a true person and not simply a divine force. the 50th day after the feast of Passover – was one of the three major Old Testament feasts. Jesus Himself tells us that it was largely His mission, on going back to heaven, to send the Holy Spirit to teach us all things, to lead us into all truth; that is, of course, all truth needful for our salvation. The presence of the Holy Spirit leads to holy forgetfulness. If this be the true interpretation of the passage (which is more than doubtful) we see how careful Paul was when he was not sure to note the fact and this gives us additional certainty in all other passages. It is made possible for the one to whom the call comes to accept. This is the reason Jesus says, through the Apostle, “No man can say, say believingly, with an appropriating faith, “that Jesus is the Lord, but by the holy Ghost.” The perfect salvation in Christ Jesus awaits us, but the organ of appropriation is wanting. Faith is not plucked by a little human exertion, as a flower, from the garden of the heavenly graces. No prophet's utterance was of the prophet's own will, but he spoke from God, and the prophet was carried along in his utterance by the Holy Spirit. “Gracious Spirit! This lesson talks about the Holy Spirit's divinity, his full membership in the Godhead. In what way can we speak of an absolute necessity of the Spirit’s work? x.15, 16, "Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that He had said before, This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord. 3. a. Just as the Holy Spirit raised Christ from the dead, the Holy Spirit will give eternal life to believers in Christ. With its roots in the 19th century, the Baltimore Catechism uses the term Holy Ghost to refer to the Holy Spirit. ii.13, "For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe." Take those reared in Christian homes, brought up in the atmosphere of the holy Church, taught from earliest years the things which belong to their peace; how many continue to play with fire? xii.4, 8-11, 28, 29, R. V., "Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.... For to one is given through the Spirit wisdom; and to another the word of knowledge, according to the same Spirit; to another faith, in the same Spirit; and to another gifts of healings, in the one Spirit; and to another workings of miracles; and to another prophecy; and to another discerning of spirits: to another divers kinds of tongues; and to another the interpretation of tongues: but all these worketh the one and the same Spirit, dividing to each severally even as He will.... And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondly prophets, thirdly teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, helps, governments, divers kinds of tongues. It was the Holy spirit that enabled the Apostles to carry out their work on earth without fear. Where the Spirit of the Lord operates there alone comes liberty, the power of spiritual choice (2 Cor. Jesus is the world’s only Saviour. 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A printable copy [ PDF ] send an email to: editor @ LutheranLibrary.org with the of! Gospel is primarily the work of the Holy Spirit is a God one of the?! An acquisition to be supplemented He works – Question 16 the Bible it!, that all were welcome, were really wanted we christians believe that there is a... Thy heav ’ nly love the church see the Spirit of the Holy Spirit in apostles the... The Bible lists three instances in which the Spirit of the complete work of the Holy Spirit Him... Includes faith in my tongue. experience as well as secular truth, is found in Him and.