|Posted on January 21, 2021 at 11:05 AM|
I can’t think of a greater blessing from God than that which Jesus gave to his followers concerning the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. I know it is incredulous to the world, but for anyone who has experienced the new birth by faith in Christ that first “taste” of their personal salvation is amazing. Wonderful as that might have been, however, it was just the beginning of what Jesus promised for our lives in this world.
Being a realist Jesus knew by first hand experience the troubles we would face in this ungodly world. In fact, he told his followers to expect all kinds of hassles, persecution, tribulation, etc. But in the same context he gave us the assurance that we would receive “another of the same kind of Comforter” that he was with his disciples. He referred to him as the Spirit of truth and noted that the world could not receive him because they couldn’t see him and couldn’t relate to him. In strong contrast to those of the world Jesus promised his disciples they would would recognize him because lived with them and would be in them (John 14: 17). That promise was fulfilled the night Jesus met with his disciples after his resurrection saying, “Peace be unto you: As my Father has sent me, even so send I you” (John 20: 21). John notes that after he had said that he “breathe on them” and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit”.
The apostle Paul describes same experience for all believers by saying, “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man hath not the Spirit of Christ he is none of his” (Romans 8: 9). All who are born of the Spirit have the Spirit of God living in them to fulfill the promise Jesus gave to his disciple concerning his comfort in this world. The indwelling Spirit of God comforts us by teaching us, guiding us into all truth, reminding us of what Jesus has said, and making Jesus real to us. What he produces in us is called the “fruit of the Spirit” by Paul in Galatians 5: 22 and includes love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance-the very character of Christ.
Followers of Christ are not left to their own devices to figure out how to live in this world. Neither are they faced with the task of trying to figure out what is right and what is wrong in any given situation. More importantly, believers are not required to try as hard as they can to make themselves do what is right and quit doing what is wrong. Jesus has not abandoned us as orphans in this world trying to survive on our own. Instead, he has given us the indwelling Spirit of God to lead us personally in all that we do or say. Learning to relying on the personal leadership and comfort of the indwelling Spirit of God is the greatest privilege we have this side of heaven.
No matter what we are faced with in this world, we can be assured of the leadership and comfort of the Spirit living within. We are never left on our own to flounder in confusion and suffer in sorrow and pain alone. The Comforter within is with us regardless of our circumstances in this world and will go with us to the end. It is this supernatural resource within that gives us the confidence we need to truly overcome the world.