Brothers and Sisters,
What a joy and privilege it is to be a part of the body of Christ. When we receive Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are adopted into his family. And as we gather for worship week over week, we gather as the body of Christ, the people of God, brothers and sisters in Christ, to be encouraged and confronted by the word of Christ. Christ is our King, and he has given us the his word as a means of grace – that is, a means whereby he builds us up in the faith. Today, as the week is at its mid-point, may we be in prayer that the Lord would be powerfully present as we gather this Lord’s Day for worship. And may we walk with Christ and in his strength throughout the remainder of the week.
During the next several weeks, be on the lookout for upcoming men’s and women’s studies and fellowship events.
And this week’s devotional is the third in a three-part series on the function of the Holy Spirit.
From the Pastor’s Desk
“The Spirit of Truth”
John 16:13, “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth.”
Two weeks ago, we concluded our study with the truth that the primary function of the Holy Spirit – the third person of the Trinity – is to glorify the Son – to shine on the Son. One way he does this, as we considered last week, is by convicting us of our sin. The Spirit accompanies the Word as it is faithfully preached, or as it is read, and shines into our hearts the truth of the gospel. That is to say, the Spirit shows us more of our sin and more of the wonderful glories of Christ!
But not only does the Spirit bring glory to the Son by convicting us of our sin; but also the Spirit brings glory to God by the inspiration of the Word. Jesus says to the Apostles in John 16:12-13: “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.” In these verses, Jesus tells the Apostles that the Holy Spirit will guide them into all truth – namely, the truth concerning the person and work of Christ. These verses are foundational to the church’s doctrine of the inspiration of the Bible. Simply put, the Bible is the inspired word of God. The Spirit guided the Apostles – Christ’s divinely selected representatives (Eph 2:20) – as they wrote the New Testament; thereby assuring them (and us) that what they wrote is exactly what God intended them to write (2 Tim 3:16). In fact, in John 17:17, Jesus declares that the word (the Bible) is the truth – the very standard of truth! Peter’s words in 2 Peter 1:21 are an excellent commentary on what Jesus says in John 16:12-13. In that text, Peter says – referring to the writing or the production of the Scriptures – that “men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” Men spoke – the Apostles spoke … but they were carried along by the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth. And the New Testament that you hold in your hands, or that sits on your bedside table, is the fulfillment of Christ’s promise to his Apostles in John 16:12-13.
Brothers and sisters, Christ is glorified as his word – the inspired word – the word written by men as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit – the word of truth – the word that culminates in the life, death, and resurrection of Christ – is proclaimed far and wide. Christ is glorified as the inspired Word of God penetrates to the farthest reaches of the globe (Acts 1:8). Christ is glorified as lost sinners read or hear the Word and cast themselves on Him alone for salvation.
To return to our original topic of the Spirit’s function of brining glory to the Son … we have reflected on two specific ways by which the Spirit does this – conviction of sin, and the inspiration of the Word. As we are confronted with the truth of God’s inspired word, we are brought low as sinners; and we are brought to the cross of the Savior!