We are very fortunate that the Lord has seen fit to give us the Bible. It was never His purpose to leave us totally in the dark, and indeed He wants to show us all that we need to be able to live lives of holiness as we walk with Jesus and await the hope of salvation that is to come.
In these few scriptures then we see that the Lord has seen fit to give us an insight into the work of the Holy Spirit and to gain some understanding of the Holy Spirit at work.
I am aware that there are many great mysteries yet to be uncovered in the bible and there are many people who do not fully understand who or what the Holy Spirit is, let alone the work He has been given by God to carry out. Well, here we see one of the key works that the Holy Spirit has been tasked to do and it is to our great benefit when we understand and apply this teaching.
Work of the Holy Spirit
The very basic work of the Holy Spirit as far as man is concerned at the highest level is to do the work of transformation in us.
All of mankind begin life the same. We are all born in a state of sin that we inherited from our forbears going back to Adam and Eve and we earn the right to die as we live our lives and carry out sin in one or many of its forms.
But this is not what God wants. As Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 2:3-4,
3 This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
We see Jesus also said words in a similar vein in Luke 19:10,
For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
So it is neither the will of the Father nor the Son that anyone be lost to the power of sin and so end up in destruction. It is their will that all of mankind might be saved if at all possible. But many will not be saved for they reject the truth and they reject God choosing instead to follow their own passions, lusts and desires and so fall deeper and deeper into sin.
However, for those who do choose to follow Jesus, additional help is provided in the form of the Holy Spirit. Because man is imperfect and will continue to fail and fall without the help of God, man needs to be transformed.
The work of the Holy Spirit is the work of transformation in and of us. It is His job to take this sinful and evil nature of ours and to progressively cut away the dross, destroy the evil influences in our nature and to work a transformation in our hearts and minds. This is the principal work of the Holy Spirit in this age. It is the reason why God gave us the Holy Spirit and we see that this work of slow and steady transformation is the work of the spirit in 2 Corinthians 3:18,
And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
So this is the work. But how does the Holy Spirit do this work?
Our Role in Transformation.
Upon coming to the Lord and repenting of our sins we are to be baptised into Jesus’s death to be able to be set free from our sin through His sacrifice. The first thing then we must do is to believe we are freed from sin and also the law, which I have written about a number of times in the past. Faith is the first key to enabling the work of the Holy Spirit.
Then we must use the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome our weaknesses and temptations by taking control of our thinking and taking every thought captive to obey Christ. Consider these scriptures for a moment where these points were identified.
3 For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. 5 We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ. (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)
Here we are told that we must take control of our thinking and we do this by using the power of the Holy Spirit for the war we are waging is a spiritual war. Our obedience to Christ is spiritual rather than physical.
For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. (Romans 8:13)
Note the words I have placed a bold emphasis on in this scripture. It tells us our role in the process of transformation. YOU must put to death the deeds of the flesh, that is, the desires, passions and lusts that work in you to tempt you to do wrong. These are the things YOU must put to death as they arise in you. How? By using the power of the Holy Spirit. When YOU put to death the deeds of the flesh by the power of the Holy Spirit, it is the spirit that does the work in you as it falls in behind your decision to take the necessary action to kill the fleshly deed that is causing your problems.
Prayer in the Spirit.
But how does the spirit do this and what does it mean to “use” the power of the Holy Spirit? This brings us back to the scriptures in Romans 8:26-27.
26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. 27 And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
It is when our passions, lusts and desires rise up in us to tempt us to do wrong that we are at our weakest point. This is when the devil tempts and lures us also. And if we allow these things to run their course they will more often than not lead to sin.
This is what the first few words of this section is referring to. When we are at our weakest the Holy Spirit helps us. It is by praying in the spirit that the Holy Spirit intercedes to God on our behalf to lift us up and provide the strength we need to overcome the problems besetting us.
But how do we pray in the spirit you might ask? Well, this is speaking in tongues for that is what speaking in tongues is. It is the Holy Spirit speaking or praying to God using our mouth and tongue, but using a language unknown to the speaker so that He can deal directly with God on our behalf.
When we speak in tongues it is the Holy Spirit interceding to God on our behalf and petitioning God for what we need to overcome. Often when we are at our weakest, especially when we have hit rock bottom or are despairing of a particular situation, we do not even know what we need to pray for. Sometimes all we can do is to go to God and say, “HELP ME!”
But when we hand the problem to the Holy Spirit through the prayer language of speaking in tongues, He deals directly with God on our behalf and says to God, “Here is the problem and this is what is needed.” And sometimes it is the exact opposite of what we think we need.
There are times for example when we may want to escape a situation. But the Holy Spirit goes to God and says, “No. He needs this to be strengthened. Let him go through it.”
This is the Holy Spirit at work and this is how we interact and play our role in this work of transformation. When we are weak or tempted, that is when we speak in tongues to hand it over to God through using the power of the Holy Spirit in prayer who then acts upon the matter in the way that is best for us.
That is not all we do for we should pray our own words as well and make our requests known to God for He wants to hear what WE have to say. But when we speak in tongues it becomes much easier for the Holy Spirit then takes over the issue and the resolution is often not far away. If nothing else, by using tongues we are walking in the spirit and so our peace is restored as we hand the matter over to God.
Naturally to be able to do this you need to receive the Holy Spirit and the gift of tongues, which is available to all who seek it from the Father. This is one gift that is available to all who come to Jesus if they ask and seek it. And God gives the gift of the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues because these are essential to completing the work of transformation in us, and God wants all His children transformed into the image of Jesus Christ.
If you don’t have the gift of the Holy Spirit and/or the gift of tongues, then search my website as I have numerous articles about these things. Or alternatively you can drop me an email if there is anything specific you would like to know or discuss.
You might also like:
Have You Drunk The Living Water
Bearing Witness To Jesus
Pentecost And Receiving The Holy Spirit
Speaking In Tongues
Promise Of Salvation
Receiving The Holy Spirit
Mistaken For Gods
The Kingdom Of God Is Within You Parable Of The Leaven
John The Baptist Beheaded
Ask And It Will Be Given You
You Shall Receive Power
Baptism And Receiving The Holy Spirit
Restored By Grace
Why We Suffer
You Are Not A Sinner
Change Your Behaviour
Oops I Did It Again
What Are You Thinking About
Walking In The Spirit