BIBLE STUDY GUIDES

Lesson 10 - The work of the spirit

The work of the Holy Spirit is immeasurably great. It is from this Source that power and efficiency come to the worker for God; and the Holy Spirit is the Comforter, as the personal presence of Christ to the soul. He who looks to Christ in simple, childlike faith is made a partaker of the divine nature through the agency of the Holy Spirit. When led by the Spirit of God, the Christian may know that he is made complete in Him who is the head of all things. As Christ was glorified on the day of Pentecost, so will He again be glorified in the closing work of the gospel, when He shall prepare a people to stand the final test, in the closing conflict of the great controversy, when the earth is lightened with the glory of God, we shall see a work similar to that which was wrought when the disciples, filled with the Holy Spirit, proclaimed the power of a risen Saviour. The light of heaven penetrated the darkened minds of those who had been deceived by the enemies of Christ, and the false representation of Him was rejected; for through the efficacy of the Holy Spirit, they now saw Him exalted to be a Prince and Saviour, to give repentance unto Israel, and remission of sins. Christ was glorified through the power of the Holy Spirit resting upon men.{YRP 177.1,2}

Part 1: THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH

Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come. (John 16:13)

One of the main tasks accomplished by the holy spirit is that of guiding believers into all truth. The thought that God has given us such a gift is a wonderful one and one which should be a source of assurance to all genuine Christians. In this time of the clamouring of many voices, when many winds of doctrine are blowing about, God’s promise to his children is still sure: Those who trust in Him will be led into truth by His holy spirit.

What Old Testament promise is fulfilled by the gift of the spirit? Isa. 54:13; Jer. 31:34; 1 John 2:27

The disciples were men who knew how to speak and pray sincerely, men who could take hold of the might of the Strength of Israel. . . . They could hold forth the word of life because they had received the heavenly anointing. They expected much, and therefore they attempted much. Christ had revealed Himself to them, and to Him they looked for guidance. Their understanding of truth and their power to withstand opposition were proportionate to their conformity to God’s will. Jesus Christ, the wisdom and power of God, was the theme of every discourse. His name—the only name given under heaven whereby men can be saved—was by them exalted. As they proclaimed the completeness of Christ, the risen Saviour, their words moved hearts, and men and women were won to the gospel. Multitudes who had reviled the Saviour’s name and despised His power now confessed themselves disciples of the Crucified. {AA 594.1}

What rule can we apply in discerning truth in this time of widespread confusion? 1 John 4: 1-3

The need of man requires a Saviour who can feel with us because He passed over the same ground that we must pass over. (Heb. 2:17,18). He experienced our temptations and knew our trials. The teaching that Christ was possessed of the powers of Almighty God such as we can never have is a devilish doctrine which removes our Saviour far from the realm of humanity. If Jesus was not fully human, limited as all men are, then how could He understand what we must pass through? (Heb. 4:15). This is why John states that it is the spirit of antichrist which denies that Jesus came in the flesh. Antichrist would have us believe that Jesus was not completely human. This, according to the apostle John is one way by which we may be able to tell whether a person is a messenger of God or of the devil.

In order to understand and to know truth we must be possessed of the spirit of truth.

Part 2: THE HOLY SPIRIT

But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; (16) Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. (1 Pet 1:15-16)

“We have in our midst those heavenly messengers who listen to every discourse. And not only do the listeners pass under the inspection of these angels who keep up the communication between heaven and earth, but the minister, also, who preaches the word of God. And if the worshipers bear in mind that when assembled for worship they are in the company of beings who dwell in the presence of the holy God, earthly thoughts will be banished from their minds. To realize that these heavenly beings are in the midst of an assembly where the word of God is spoken by his messengers, solemnizes the heart.” {RH, July 19, 1887 par. 5}

What event emphasizes the fact that sin cannot dwell in the presence of God’s holy spirit? Acts 5:3-5

“.... Ananias and Sapphira grieved the Holy Spirit by yielding to feelings of covetousness. They began to regret their promise and soon lost the sweet influence of the blessing that had warmed their hearts with a desire to do large things in behalf of the cause of Christ. .... they deliberately decided to sell their property and pretend to give all the proceeds into the general fund, but really to keep a large share for themselves. Thus they would secure their living from the common store and at the same time gain the high esteem of their brethren.

But God hates hypocrisy and falsehood. Ananias and Sapphira practiced fraud in their dealing with God; they lied to the Holy Spirit, and their sin was visited with swift and terrible judgment. ...” {AA 72}

What realization should lead us to seek absolute purity and holiness? 1 Cor. 6:17-20

“All men have been bought with this infinite price. By pouring the whole treasury of heaven into this world, by giving us in Christ all heaven, God has purchased the will, the affections, the mind, the soul, of every human being. . . . All men are the Lord’s property.

This expression, “bought with a price,” means everything to us. In consideration of the price paid for us, shall we not yield our bodies and souls up to Him who has bought us with His blood? Shall not that which He has redeemed be kept in as wholesome and pure and holy a condition as possible? . . . Our very flesh He has saved at an infinite cost, giving His own flesh for the life of the world.” {HP 198.4}

A recognition of the holiness of God will awaken desires of purity of life and heart in all who are truly His children.

Part 3: THE SPIRIT OF PROPHECY

And Moses said unto him, Enviest thou for my sake? would God that all the LORD’S people were prophets, and that the LORD would put his spirit upon them! (Num 11:29)

At creation before Adam and eve sin, it was God’s pleasure to come down in the cool of the day to commune with His children. When they disobeyed God and sinned they immediately sought to hide themselves from God. By sin they were alienated from him.

“The wrath of God still hung over Adam, but the execution of the sentence of death was delayed, and the indignation of God was restrained, because Christ had entered upon the work of becoming man’s Redeemer. ... The holy and infinite God, who dwelleth in light unapproachable, could no longer talk with man. No communication could now exist directly between man and his Maker.. ..” {Confrontation, 20}

How did God continue to communicate with man after sin made face to face communion impossible? Num 12:6; Heb. 1:1,2

Through the holy spirit the gift of prophecy was imparted to chosen men and through this medium, God communicated His will to His people.

“Through holy angels God revealed to Enoch His purpose to destroy the world by a flood, and He also opened more fully to him the plan of redemption. By the spirit of prophecy He carried him down through the generations that should live after the Flood, and showed him the great events connected with the second coming of Christ and the end of the world.” {PP 85.5}

Which spiritual gift will be prominent among God’s people in the last days? Joel 2:28,29; Rev. 12:17

“In immediate connection with the scenes of the great day of God, the Lord by the prophet Joel has promised a special manifestation of His Spirit. Joel 2:28. This prophecy received a partial fulfillment in the outpouring of the Spirit on the day of Pentecost; but it will reach its full accomplishment in the manifestation of divine grace which will attend the closing work of the gospel. . . .

At this time the special endowment of divine grace and power is not less needful to the church than in apostolic days.

God will today endow men and women with power from above, as He endowed those who on the day of Pentecost heard the word of salvation. At this very hour His Spirit and His grace are for all who need them and will take Him at His word.“ {FLB 292}

God desires fellowship with us. When open communication was broken by sin, He still found a way for us to be in contact with Him.

Part 4: THE GLORY OF GOD

(John 17:5) And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.

“Christ is to live in His human agents, and work through their faculties, and act through their capabilities. Their will must be submitted to His will, they must act with His Spirit that it may be no more they that live, but Christ that liveth in them. Jesus is seeking to impress upon them the thought that in giving His Holy Spirit He is giving to them the glory which the Father has given Him, that He and His people may be one in God. Our way and will must be in submission to God’s will, knowing that it is holy, just, and good.” —Signs of the Times, Oct. 3, 1892

“Christ came forth from the tomb glorified, and the Roman guard beheld Him. Their eyes were riveted upon the face of Him whom they had so recently mocked and derided. In this glorified Being they beheld the prisoner whom they had seen in the judgment hall, the one for whom they had plaited a crown of thorns.... The decree of heaven had loosed the captive. Mountains piled upon mountains over His sepulcher could not have prevented Him from coming forth.” {DA 780.3}

By what means are we enabled to become one (united) with Christ and His Father? John 17:22,23; John 14:17,18

“The scion is engrafted into the living vine, and fiber by fiber, vein by vein, it grows into the vine stock. The life of the vine becomes the life of the branch. So the soul dead in trespasses and sins receives life through connection with Christ. By faith in Him as a personal Saviour the union is formed. The sinner unites his weakness to Christ’s strength, his emptiness to Christ’s fullness, his frailty to Christ’s enduring might. Then he has the mind of Christ. The humanity of Christ has touched our humanity, and our humanity has touched divinity. Thus through the agency of the Holy Spirit man becomes a partaker of the divine nature. He is accepted in the Beloved.” {DA 675.3}

How does Isaiah describe God’s last great work for humanity? Isa. 60:1-3

“Those who wait for the Bridegroom’s coming are to say to the people, “Behold your God.” The last rays of merciful light, the last message of mercy to be given to the world, is a revelation of His character of love. The children of God are to manifest His glory. In their own life and character they are to reveal what the grace of God has done for them.

The light of the Sun of Righteousness is to shine forth in good works—in words of truth and deeds of holiness.” {COL 416.1}

Only by partaking of God’s glory (the holy spirit) will it be possible for us to glorify Him.

Part 5: THE GRACE OF GOD

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: (Eph 2:8)

Salvation is the gift of God. We cannot gain it by the performance of good works. it is of grace. The word “grace” is often defined as meaning, “unmerited favour.” This is its first meaning and refers to the fact that God regards us with favour and good-will in spite of the fact that we deserve nothing from His hand. However, as we will see in a moment, the grace of God does not only refer to His attitude towards us.

“The church is the repository of the riches of the grace of Christ; and through the church will eventually be made manifest, even to “the principalities and powers in heavenly places,” the final and full display of the love of God. Ephesians 3:10.” {AA 9.1}

God’s grace is His “unmerited favour.” Does this refer only to His attitude of good will, or is there more involved? Eph. 4:7,8; Rom. 6:14

To be under grace means to be the recipients of God’s power, by means of the holy spirit. When we try to obey God’s law simply because the law says so, we find that it is an impossible task. Under the government of the law, we cannot do the things we want to do. (Romans 7:14-23). However, when God sends His holy spirit to take control of our lives, the life of Christ is reproduced in us and we find that the things which we found impossible before, are now accomplished through the power of God.

“Everyone in whose heart Christ abides, everyone who will show forth His love to the world, is a worker together with God for the blessing of humanity. As he receives from the Saviour grace to impart to others, from his whole being flows forth the tide of spiritual life.” {AA 13.2}

What quality must we have before we can become partakers of the grace of God? (James 4:6)

“As Saul yielded himself fully to the convicting power of the Holy Spirit, he saw the mistakes of his life and recognized the far-reaching claims of the law of God. He who had been a proud Pharisee, confident that he was justified by his good works, now bowed before God with the humility and simplicity of a little child, confessing his own unworthiness and pleading the merits of a crucified and risen Saviour. Saul longed to come into full harmony and communion with the Father and the Son; and in the intensity of his desire for pardon and acceptance he offered up fervent supplications to the throne of grace.” {AA 119.2}

Every sin that is sincerely confessed to God will be undoubtedly forgiven.

Part 6: THE COMFORTER

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. (Psa 23:4)

“Those who are loyal to God’s law will not always find the way smooth. God has not promised his people exemption from trials, but he has promised that which is far better. He has said: “As thy days, so shall thy strength be.” “My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness.” “The God of all comfort, who comforteth us in all our tribulation.” “As the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth.” All who love and fear God will suffer persecution. But Jesus will be near to sustain everyone who is afflicted for the truth’s sake. When in the prison of Philippi, the scourged and heavily-manacled servants of Christ had such divine consolation that they sang praises to God, and the walls resounded with their triumph. To these faithful messengers, that cold dungeon, reeking with dampness, was made as the gate of heaven. The glory of the Sun of Righteousness beamed forth into that inner prison, making it radiant with a divine effulgence.”   {ST, March 3, 1890 par. 4}

What was Paul’s testimony in the midst of great trials? 2 Cor. 7:4

“The grace of God sustained Paul in his imprisonment, enabling him to rejoice in tribulation. With faith and assurance he wrote to his Philippian brethren that his imprisonment had resulted in the furtherance of the gospel. “I would ye should understand, brethren,” he declared, “that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel; so that my bonds with Christ are manifest in all the palace, and in all other places; and many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.” {AA 480.2}

Who is the source of comfort to God’s people? John 14:26; 2 Thess. 2:16,17

“With the consecrated worker for God, in whatever place he may be, the Holy Spirit abides. The words spoken to the disciples are spoken also to us. The Comforter is ours as well as theirs. The Spirit furnishes the strength that sustains striving, wrestling souls in every emergency, amidst the hatred of the world, and the realization of their own failures and mistakes. In sorrow and affliction, when the outlook seems dark and the future perplexing, and we feel helpless and alone,—these are the times when, in answer to the prayer of faith, the Holy Spirit brings comfort to the heart.” {AA 51.1}

Though we are subject to the infirmities and trials of flesh, we may always find comfort in the consciousness of an ever present God.

Restoration Ministries

Restoration Ministries is dedicated to the promotion of the truths contained in the word of God. In particular to the restoration of those truths which have been cast down to the ground and trampled underfoot by the papacy, and adopted by her daughters.

Our purpose is to motivate men and women to commit themselves wholly to the task of personal preparation for the coming of the Lord, and to the taking of the final warning message to every nation, kindred, tongue and people.

Website: www.restorationministry.com

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