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The Pillar and Ground of Truth

“The Person of the Holy Spirit” Luke 24:44-49, Acts 1:1-8

Date:March 10, 2024
Author: Wayne J. Edwards



With a broken heart, I quote from A.W. Tozer.

“I wonder if there was ever a time when true spiritual worship was at a lower ebb. To great sections of the church, the art of worship has been lost entirely, and in its place has come that strange and foreign thing called the ‘program.’ This word has been borrowed from the stage and applied with sad wisdom to the public service which now passes for worship among us. The church that can’t worship must be entertained. And men who can’t lead a church to worship must provide the entertainment.”

“Our mistake is that we want God to send revival on our terms. We want to get the power of God into our hands, to call it to us that it may work for us in promoting and furthering our kind of Christianity. We want to be in charge, guiding the chariot through the religious sky in the direction we want it to go, shouting “Glory to God,” but modestly accepting a share of the glory for ourselves in a nice inoffensive sort of way. We are calling on God to send fire on our altars, completely ignoring the fact that they are OUR altars and not God’s.”

“If the Holy Spirit was withdrawn from the church today, 95 percent of what we do would go on and no one would know the difference. If the Holy Spirit had been withdrawn from the New Testament church, 95 percent of what they did would stop, and everybody would know the difference.” “The tragedy and woe of the hour is that we neglect the most important One who could possibly be in our midst–the Holy Spirit of God. Then, in order to make up for His absence, we have to do something to keep up our own spirits.”

This Sunday, we continue our sermon series on the Church as the Pillar and Ground of Truth. The title of this sermon is “The Person of the Holy Spirit”

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Old Testament Reading – Psalm 51:1-13
New Testament Reading – Romans 8:1-17

The Pillar and Ground of Truth
“The Person of the Holy Spirit”
Luke 24:44-49, Acts 1:1-8

Wayne J. Edwards, Pastor

While churches sing, “God in three Persons, Blessed Trinity,” only 25% of those who claim to be Christians have a strong belief in the Triune nature of God – One God, manifested in three distinct personages: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

  • We can accept the concept of God the Father because we see the universe, and therefore, there must be a Father Creator who brought everything that exists into being.
    • Genesis 1:1 – “In beginning, God.”
  • We can accept the concept of God the Son because even the secular historians document the birth, life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth.
    • John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world He gave His only begotten Son.”
  • The concept of the Holy Spirit is difficult to accept because, as Paul said in 1 Corinthians 3:14, “The natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God…he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.”
  • However, the doctrine of the Holy Spirit stands as one of the essential doctrines of the Christian Faith.

   Those who deny the triune nature of God:

  • Are not truly saved, for the whole process of salvation is the evidence of the work of the Holy Spirit within us – the call, our regeneration, conversion, justification, sanctification, and future glorification.
  • Do not have the ability to live the victorious Christian life; they haven’t the power to resist sin, Satan, or his evil schemes.
  • Do not have the assurance of their eternal salvation, which means God cannot use them as witnesses of His saving power.
  • Deny the incarnation of Jesus Christ, and without His incarnation there is no salvation for us in His death, and no future for us in His resurrection.

“If we think of the Holy Spirit only as an impersonal power or influence, then our thought will constantly be, how can I get hold of and use the Holy Spirit; but if we think of Him in the biblical way as a divine Person, infinitely wise, infinitely holy, infinitely tender, then our thought will constantly be, ‘How can the Holy Spirit get hold of and use me?’”
R.A. Torrey

   A Brief Review of the Triune God:

  • God the Father – the Ancient of Days, the Planner, Designer, Creator, Initiator, and Redeemer. To reject God’s Fatherhood is to deny who He says He is, which makes God a liar.
  • God the Son – the physical presence of God on earth; He is the human instrument through which God the Father’s desires are carried out.
    • Jesus’ name in Hebrew was “Yeshua,” which meant Savior.
    • Christ comes from the Greek word “Christos,” which means “the Anointed One,” or “the Sent One.”
  • God the Holy Spirit – the expressed power of God on earth and mankind.
    • As revealed in His work at Creation – Genesis 1:2
    • As revealed in His work at Pentecost – Acts 2:1-47
    • As revealed in His ability to transform sinners into saints – Acts 1:1ff

1. The Promise of the Holy Spirit – Luke 24:44-49 – Vs. 49 – “And behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you.”

  • Just as there was a promise of the coming of the Messiah, a promise fulfilled in the Person of Jesus Christ, there was also a promise of the coming of the Holy Spirit in great power.
  • The prophet Joel voiced that promise at least 700 years before the birth of Jesus Christ – Joel 2:28 – “I will pour out My Spirit upon all flesh.”
  • In Acts 1:4, Jesus told His disciples to “wait in Jerusalem for what the Father had promised.” In Acts 1:5, He identified that promise as the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
  • In Acts 2:1-47, Luke said that promise was fulfilled on the Day of Pentecost, as Jesus’ disciples were empowered to preach the gospel in the various languages of the people who were in the City of Jerusalem for the annual observance of Pentecost, and the Bible says about 3000 people were saved.

2. The Person of the Holy Spirit – John 14:16-17 – “And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever; Even the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him; for He dwelleth with you and shall be with you.”

  • In the Old Testament God lived with His people – Exodus 29:45, “I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God.”
  • In the New Testament God indwells His people through the power of the Holy Spirit – 1 Corinthians 3:16 – “Ye are the temple of God, and the Spirit of God dwells in you.”
  • The Hebrew word for Spirit is “Ruah,” and the Greek word for Spirit is “Pneuma.” Both words mean “breath or wind,” – an unseen force that enables ordinary men and women to do extra-ordinary or supernatural things
  • From Genesis 1:1 – Revelation 22, the Holy Spirit is actively involved in God’s plan for man’s redemption.
  • In Acts 1:1, Luke said he wrote his gospel about all that Jesus began to do and to teach, but in this new book, he wanted to write about what the Holy Spirit continued to do and to teach.

3. The Presence of the Holy Spirit – John 14:16 – “That He may abide with you forever!”

  • Jesus was limited by His physical body to a specific place and time, even though He was, at all times, God of very God.
  • However, the Holy Spirit is unlimited and can be present with all the people everywhere, even at the same time.
  • Until Jesus returns, both unbelievers and believers are under the power and influence of the Holy Spirit.
  • To those who are unsaved:
    • The Holy Spirit is the voice of conviction, warning them of the judgment of God if they do not repent.
    • The only unpardonable sin is the continual rejection of the conviction of the Holy Spirit. In Genesis 6:3, God said, “My Spirit will not always strive with man.”
  • To those who are saved:
    • The Holy Spirit “indwells” every Christian who has died to self and surrendered their lives unto the Lordship of Christ.
    • He sanctifies that person as a temple of the Holy Spirit, and He will continue to clean it of all sin until it becomes a perfect reflection of God’s glory, so God can use that person to draw others to see their need for a savior, and Jesus Christ as the Savior they need.

4. The Power of the Holy Spirit – Galatians 5:19-22 – Vs. 22 – “The fruit of the Spirit is love.”

  • While every believer is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, not every believer is continually filled with the Holy Spirit.
  • In Galatians 5:19-22, the Apostle Paul described those who are filled and empowered by the Holy Spirit and warned those who are still yielding to the desires of the flesh that if they continue, they will not inherit the kingdom of God.
  • Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to empower us to live the victorious Christian life. However, the Holy Spirit will only enter the heart that is empty of self and sin and boasts of nothing except an aching void. To reject the Holy Spirit is to insult God the Father and God the Son for the work they did to achieve your eternal salvation.