Who are we?

In this blog, there will be a variety of material: thoughts on Bible books, book reviews, historical characters, aspects of Scottish church history and other things.

Saturday, 16 February 2013

The presence of the Spirit and our witness (John 16:8-11)

And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgement: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgement, because the ruler of this world is judged (John 16:8-11).

As Christ’s disciples, we will function as witnesses, speaking about Jesus to others on suitable occasions. How does this practice relate to the work of the Spirit? Here are four suggestions.

Firstly, the Holy Spirit convinces effectively. He has never lost a case yet concerning a person he was determined to save. Further he will be so effective that at the end of the day he will have convinced millions and millions of sinners. We have no reason to despair at the success of the gospel.

Secondly, our confidence should be in the Holy Spirit. People are not converted because a witness is intelligent or persuasive, although it is important that the disciple tells the truth about Jesus. Our confidence is to be in the unseen Witness and not in the visible witness.

Thirdly, we should pray earnestly that the Holy Spirit would bless our witness. Jesus promises that the Spirit will be given to those that ask for him (Luke 11:13). In connection to this, we should ensure that we are not doing anything that grieves the Spirit and causes him not to work through us.

Fourthly, how do we know that the Spirit is working? We know he is working not because we see peculiar experiences but because we see folk drawn to Calvary, who desire the righteousness of Jesus, and who long to be forgiven their sins. These desires never arose in a heart in which the Spirit is not working.

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