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Sermon #2453 — Miscellaneous Sermons

 

Title:               The Power of the Holy Ghost

 

Text:                            Romans 15:13

Subject:                     Displays of the Power of the Holy Spirit

Reading:       1 Thessalonians 1:1-10

 

(1) Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

(2) We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers; (3) Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father; (4) Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God.

(5) For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake. (6) And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost: (7) So that ye were ensamples to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia.

(8) For from you sounded out the word of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place your faith to God-ward is spread abroad; so that we need not to speak anything.

(9) For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; (10) And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.


 

Introduction

 

My text is Romans 1513.

 

(Romans 15:13) “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.”

 

As God enables me, I want to talk to you about — The Power of the Holy Ghost. Romans 15:13 teaches us that…

 

Proposition: All of God’s saving operations of grace are wrought in us by “the power of the Holy Ghost.”

Š      We have joy and peace in Christ only by “the power of the Holy Ghost.”

Š      We have joy and peace in believing only by “the power of the Holy Ghost.”

Š      And believing God, trusting Christ, we abound in hope only by “the power of the Holy Ghost.”

 

(Romans 15:13) “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.”

 

Power is the peculiar prerogative of God, and God alone (Psalm 62:11).

 

(Psalm 62:11) “God hath spoken once; twice have I heard this; that power belongeth unto God.”

 

God is God. And power belongs to him. If he delegates a portion of it to his creatures, it is still his power. Though the sun is “as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber and rejoiceth as a strong man to run his race” (Psalm 19:5), it has no power except as God gives it. The mightiest angels near his throne, excelling in strength, have no might except that which their Maker gives to them. Leviathan and Behemoth, those majestic creatures that are found in earth, owe their strength to God who fashioned their bones of steel and made their sinews of brass. When we think of man, if he has might or power, it is so small and insignificant that we can scarcely call it power. Yet, when kings hold their scepter, when tyrants command their armies, when mighty dictators rule nations — still the “power belongeth unto God.

 

This exclusive prerogative of God is to be found in each of the three persons of the glorious Trinity.

Š      God the Father has power. By his word the heavens were made and all the hosts of them. By his strength all things stand. And through him they fulfil their God ordained purpose.

Š      God the Son has power. Like the Father, he is the Creator of all things. — “Without him was not anything made that was made,” and “by him all things consist.” And he upholds all things byhe word of his power.

Š      And God the Holy Spirit has power. — “The power of the Holy Ghost” is that power by which the Triune Jehovah gives life and faith and salvation to chosen redeemed sinners.

 

Oh, may you know the omnipotent, effectual, irresistible power of the Holy Ghost this hour! Oh, may “the power of the Holy Ghost” fall upon me and enable me to speak the words of the living God to your souls, for Christ’s sake! — It is by “the power of the Holy Ghost” that God our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, saves his people, establishes his kingdom, and builds his church.

 

Divisions: In this message want to show you “the power of the Holy Ghost” in three ways. Here are three ways in which “the power of the Holy Ghost” is displayed.

1.    The Outward and Visible Displays of It

2.    The Inward and Spiritual Manifestations of It, and

3.    The Future and Expected Works of It

 

Outward Displays

 

1stWe see the power of God the Holy Spirit in the outward, visible displays of it. The power of the Sprit has never been dormant. It constantly exerts itself. Much has been done by the Spirit of God already, things that could never have been accomplished by any being except the Infinite, Eternal, Almighty Jehovah, of whom the Holy Spirit is one person. There are four works which are the outward and manifest displays of the power of the Spirit:

1.    Creation Works

2.    Resurrection Works

3.    Works of Attestation or of Witness, and

4.    Works of Grace.

Of each of these works I will speak very briefly.

 

1.    God the Holy Spirit manifested the omnipotence of his power in his mighty creation works.

 

Though not very often, yet occasionally, in Scripture creation is ascribed to God the Holy Ghost, as well as to the Father and the Son. The creation of the heavens above is said to be the work of God the Spirit (Job 26:13).

 

(Job 26:13) “By his Spirit he hath garnished the heavens; his hand hath formed the crooked serpent.”

 

All the stars of heaven are said to have been placed aloft by the Spirit. And Job specifically tells us that the constellation called the “crooked serpent,” is his handiwork. He “binds the sweet influences of the Pleiades” and “loosens the bands of Orion” (Job 38:31). He made all the stars that shine in heaven. The heavens were garnished by his hands. And he formed the crooked serpent by his might.

 

So, also, in those continued acts of creation which are still performed in the world. The bringing forth of men and animals, their birth and generation, are ascribed to “the power of the Holy Ghost” (Psalm 104:29).

 

(Psalm 104:29) “Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled; thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust. Thou sendest forth thy Spirit, they are created; and thou renewest the face of the earth.”

 

Yes, the creation of every life is the work of the Spirit. And the creation of all life in the universe is as much to be ascribed to the power of the Spirit as the first garnishing of the heavens or the fashioning of the crooked serpent.

 

Genesis 1 — But if you turn back to the first chapter of Genesis, you will distinctly see the Spirit’s peculiar operation of power upon the universe in creation. Creation was his work, as much so as it was the work of God the Father and God the Son.

 

(Genesis 1:1-2) “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (2) And the earth was (became) without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.”

 

We do not know how long ago God created this globe. Most conservative commentators and theologians argue strongly that the earth is young (6,000 to 10,000 years old). Personally, I see no reason to make that argument. I have no objection to it, but I see no reason to insist upon it. I am more inclined to agree with C. H. Spurgeon, who suggested that the earth was created…

 

“many millions of years before the time of Adam. Our planet has passed through various stages of existence, and different kinds of creatures have lived on its surface, all of which have been fashioned by God. But before that era came, wherein man should be its principal tenant and monarch, the Creator gave up the world to confusion. He allowed the inward fires to burst up from beneath, and melt all the solid matter, so that all kinds of substances were commingled in one vast mass of disorder. The only name you could give to the world, then, was that it was a chaotic mass of matter. What it should be, you could not guess or define. It was entirely ‘without form and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep.’ The Spirit came, and stretching his broad wings, bade the darkness disperse and, as he moved over it, all the different portions of matter came into their places. It was no longer ‘without form, and void,’ but became round, like its sister planets, and moved, singing the high praises of God — not discordantly, as it had done before, but as one great note in the vast scale of creation.”

 

Could we have seen the earth in all its darkness, chaos, and confusion, we would have thought, “Who can make a world out of this?” The answer would have been, “The power of the Spirit can do it. By the omnipotent power of his will all the things come together. ‘The power of the Holy Ghost’ brought order where there was nothing but confusion before.”

 

What a beautiful picture of grace we have in the opening verses of the Book of God!

 

(Genesis 1:1-3) “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (2) And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. (3) And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.”

 

Š      Man’s Original Creation

Š      Ruin by a Fall — Empty Darkness and Chaos!

Š      The Moving of the Spirit

Š      The New Creation of Light

 

Christ’s Body — We have seen something of the Spirit’s work in creation. But there was one particular instance of creation in which the Holy Spirit was distinctly concerned — the formation of the body of our Lord Jesus Christ. Though our Lord Jesus Christ was born of a woman and made in the likeness of sinful flesh, yet the power by which he was begotten was entirely in God the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:30-35). The Savior himself declared it (Hebrews 10:5-10).

 

(Luke 1:30-35) “And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. (31) And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. (32) He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: (33) And he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. (34) Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? (35) And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore, also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.”

 

(Hebrews 10:5-10) “Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: (6) In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. (7) Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God. (8) Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law; (9) Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. (10) By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.”

 

Our Savior was begotten of the Holy Ghost. — “That holy thing which is born of (Mary’s virgin womb) is the Son of the Highest.” The physical frame of the Lord Jesus Christ was the work of the Holy Spirit. He fashioned and formed him by omnipotent power and infinite wisdom.

 

2.    A second manifestation of the Holy Spirit’s power is to be found in the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

If you have ever studied this subject, you may have been perplexed to discover that the resurrection of Christ is sometimes ascribed to the Lord Jesus himself. By virtue of his own power and godhead he could not be held by the bonds of death. As he had power to laid down his life, he had power to take it up again (John 10:17).

 

In other places, our Savior’s resurrection from the dead is ascribed to God the Father. — “He raised him up from the dead” (Acts 13:34). — God the Father raised him up, “having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that he should be holden of it” (Acts 2:24).

 

And Holy Scripture declares that our Lord Jesus Christ was raised from the dead by the power of God the Holy Ghost.

Š      He was raised by the Father. God the Father said, “Loose the prisoner. Let him go. Justice is satisfied. My law requires no more satisfaction. Vengeance has its due. Let him go.” — (Romans 4:25)

Š      Our almighty Savior was raised from the dead by his own majesty and power, because he had the right to come out of the grave. He burst the bonds of death because he could no longer be holden of them. Death no longer had a claim on him.

Š      And he was raised by God the Holy Ghost who gave the energy of life again to his mortal frame, after he had laid in the tomb for three days and nights (1 Peter 3:18; Romans 8:11; 1 Timothy 3:16).

 

(1 Peter 3:18) “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit.”

 

(Romans 8:11) “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.”

 

(1 Timothy 3:16) “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.”

 

What a great display this is of “the power of the Holy Ghost!” Could we have stepped in, as the angels did, into the Savior’s tomb, we would have seen there his sleeping body, sleeping in hope of the resurrection (Psalm 16:9-10). We would have found his lifeless body as cold as that of any other corpse. But when “the power of the Holy Ghost” came upon him, he arose in the majesty of his eternal divinity and in the majesty of his immortal humanity, God and man in one, God in our flesh resurrected to live forever, “King of kings and Lord of lords” (Revelation 19:16), “Prince of the kings of the earth” (Revelation 1:5).

 

3.    The third display of “the power of the Holy Ghost” is to be seen in his attesting works, the works by which he attested that Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ of God. Our Savior said, “There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true” (John 5:32).

 

Earthly Ministry — When he went into the river Jordan to be baptized by John the Baptist, the Holy Spirit descended upon him like a dove and proclaimed him God’s beloved Son. Later, when Christ Jesus raised the dead, healed the leper, healed diseases, caused the lame to walk, gave sight to the blind, ears to the deaf, and speech to the dumb, when he cast out demons by the word of his power, commanded the stormy seas to be calm, and multiplied the loaves and fishes, all was done by “the power of the Holy Ghost.” The Spirit dwelt in the man Christ Jesus without measure. And by “the power of the Holy Ghost” all those miracles were accomplished. By those miracles he performed the Holy Ghost said, over and over again, “This is the Christ of God!” — (See Matthew 11:3-6; Luke 7:19-23)

 

Pentecost — Then, after our Redeemer’s ascension into Heaven, “the power of the Holy Ghost” openly and manifestly attested that the man crucified at Jerusalem and raised up from the dead is Jesus the Christ, when he came on the Day of Pentecost like a rushing mighty wind upon the assembled apostles and cloven tongues sat upon them. He attested the ministries of those holy apostles by giving them the ability to preach the gospel in languages they had never learned as he gave them utterance.

 

Also, miraculous deeds were wrought by them, verifying that they were indeed apostles of the Christ (Mark 16:20; Hebrews 2:4; Acts 5:12).

Š      The Lame Man at the Temple (Acts 3:7-11)

Š      Multitudes of Sick Folks (Acts 5:14-16)

Š      Stephen’s Great Wonders and Miracles (Acts 6:8)

Š      Peter’s Healing Aeneas of Palsy (Acts 9:32)

Š      Peter’s Raising Dorcas from the Dead at Joppa (Acts 9:36-43)

Š      Paul’s Healing the Sick and Casting Out Devils at Ephesus (Acts 19:11-12), and in Troas (Acts 20:8-12) and Melita (Acts 28:3-9)

 

Great, miraculous deeds were wrought by the apostles as well as their Master, so that by “the power of the Holy Ghost” many believed. God the Holy Spirit has omnipotent power, because he is himself God, the third person of the holy Trinity.

 

4.    A fourth outward display of “the power of the Holy Ghost” is to be seen in his mighty works of grace by the gospel.

 

In the 8th chapter of Acts, we read about a sorcerer named Simon who bewitched the people, “giving out that himself was some great one” (Acts 8:9). Everyone in town said, “This man is the great power of God” (Acts 8:10). Then Philip came preaching the gospel in “the power of the Holy Ghost!

 

(Acts 8:11-13) “And to him they had regard, because that of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries. (12) But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. (13) Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done.”

 

In modern times, too, as men have gone forth with the Word of God in their hands preaching as the Spirit opened the door and gave them utterance, we see “the power of the Holy Ghost” displayed.

Š      David Brainard among American Indians

Š      Walter and Cody Groover in Mexico

Š      Cliff and Lance Hellar in New Guinea

Š      Clay Curtis in Princeton

Š      Jim Wilson in Wichita Falls

Š      Russell Smyth in Ballymoney

 

Let the gospel be preached in “the power of the Holy Ghost,” and you will see that it has power still, omnipotent power, to open the eyes of poor blind sinners, unstop deaf ears, cause the lame to leap, and raise the dead (Hebrews 4:12; 1 Thessalonians 1:4-10).

 

(Hebrews 4:12) “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”

 

(1 Thessalonians 1:1-10) “Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. (2) We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers; (3) Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father; (4) Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God. (5) For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake. (6) And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost: (7) So that ye were ensamples to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia. (8) For from you sounded out the word of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place your faith to God-ward is spread abroad; so that we need not to speak anything. (9) For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; (10) And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.”

 

Inward Manifestations

 

2nd — All those outward displays of “the power of the Holy Ghost” are things that may be seen. But there are also inward manifestations of his power that must be experienced and felt. Those outward things none can deny. But these inward manifestations of “the power of the Holy Ghost” none can know except by the experience of God’s saving grace.

 

I use the word “felt” with great caution because in this age of delusional Pentecostal revivalism most people think religion is nothing but a spiritual or emotional spasm. And mere doctrinalists think matters spoken of as things “felt” are not intellectual. But God’s saving grace is something felt within. I wouldn’t give a wooden nickel for a religion that is all feeling. And I wouldn’t give a wooden nickel for any religion that has no feeling.

Š      An awakened man feels his awaking.

Š      A sick man healed feels healing.

Š      A freed man feels freedom.

Š      A thirsty man feels his thirst quenched.

Š      A hungry man feels fulness when he has eaten.

Š      And a dead man feels life when he has been resurrected by “the power of the Holy Ghost.

 

We have his witness within. Let me call your attention to two or three things by which “the power of the Holy Ghost” is displayed inwardly and spiritually in the experience of God’s saving grace.

 

1.    First, “the power of the Holy Ghost” by which the hearts of men are broken by the revelation of Christ in them is an inward, felt, experienced display of that power.

 

The Lord God declares that the heart of fallen man is as obstinate and hard “as an adamant stone” (Zechariah 7:12). The adamant stone is a legendary stone of impenetrable hardness. It was thought to be harder than flint (Ezekiel 3:9). How hard, how impenetrable, how unbreakable the heart of man must be, if the Lord God compares it to an adamant stone!

 

Oh, how hard the heart of man is! Nothing can break it! Nothing can penetrate it! — Nothing but omnipotent grace! Bless God, there is hope for such hard hearts! The legendary adamant stone was thought the hardest of all stones, harder than the nether millstone (Job 41:24). Fire could not burn it, or even cause it to be heated, except on its very surface. The adamant stone could not be broken by a hammer. Yet, this hardest of all stones, as the legend goes, when soaked in a goat’s blood was melted, dissolved, and broken, like an aspirin in water. So, the hardest heart of the most obstinate sinner is melted, dissolved, and broken by “the power of the Holy Ghost” when sprinkled with the precious blood of Christ, the sinner’s Paschal Lamb and Scapegoat.

 

Nothing can break the heart but the almighty, efficacious, irresistible grace of God — “The power of the Holy Ghost!” Nothing can soften the stony, adamant heart except the precious blood of Christ sprinkled upon it by the Spirit of God, declaring the forgiveness of sin.

 

That is my hope and prayer to God for you. — If God the Holy Spirit sprinkles your heart with the blood of Christ, if he will apply the blood to you, you will look upon him you have pierced and mourn. Miracles will never penetrate your hard heart. Judgments will never break your heart. Tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, and earthquakes, though ever so frightening, will never penetrate the heart of a sinner. Affliction will never break it. The law, with all its threats and curses, will never break the heart of man. Hell itself cannot break the rebel heart of man. But the blood of Christ can!

 

The blood of Christ, sprinkled on stony hearts as hard an impenetrable as adamant, breaks the hard heart of man, humbles the sinner, and bows him as a contrite one before the throne of God’s free grace, causing him to cry like the Publican, “God be propitious to me, the sinner. Have mercy upon me through the sin-atoning blood of your dear Son!”

 

The Spirit of God alone has power over a man’s heart. We cannot reach the soul, but “the power of the Holy Ghost” can. — If my Beloved will put in his hand by the hole in the door, your bowels will move for him. He can give a sense of blood-bought pardon that dissolves a heart of stone.

 

“Lord, now indeed I find

Thy power and Thine alone

Can change the leopard’s spots

And melt the heart of stone.”

 

He can make Sinai’s thunders audible. He can make the sweet whisperings of Calvary love enter into the soul. He has power over the heart of man. Salvation comes to sinners, “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts” (Zechariah 4:6; John 6:63; Romans 9:16).

 

(John 6:63) “It is the Spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”

 

(Romans 9:16) “So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.”

 

2.    Second, it is only by “the power of the Holy Ghost” that will of man is conquered.

 

The will of man is not easily bent. It is a stubborn thing. In all men, once the will is once stirred to opposition, there is nothing can be done with them. Multitudes dream of free-will! What an absurdity! Where is free-will to be found? Once there was free-will in Paradise; and a terrible mess free-will made of everything! Free-will spoiled Eden and turned Adam out of the garden. Free-will was once in heaven; but it tumbled Lucifer and a third part of the stars of heaven into the abyss. I want nothing to do with free-will! Pilate delivered the Lord Jesus to man’s imaginary free-will; and free-will crucified the Lord of Glory! Free-will religion is free-will blasphemy.

Š      No man can change another’s will.

Š      No man can change his own will.

Š      All the religious maneuverings on earth can do nothing to change a man’s will.

 

I find the old proverb very true, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.” And though I can bring you all to the water of life, I cannot make you drink. I cannot turn your will. I cannot coax you into faith. No man has power over another’s will. But “the power of the Holy Ghost” does! — (Psalms 65:4; 110:3)

 

(Psalm 65:4) “Blessed is the man whom thou choosest, and causest to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in thy courts: we shall be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, even of thy holy temple.”

 

(Psalm 11:3) “Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power, in the beauties of holiness from the womb of the morning: thou hast the dew of thy youth.”

 

He makes the unwilling sinner so willing that he who was obstinate now hurries to the cross. He who laughed at Christ crucified now hangs on his mercy. He who blasphemed God now prays. And he who would not believe is now made by “the power of the Holy Ghost” to not only willingly, but gladly and eagerly believe on the Son of God, rejoicing in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:3). God the Holy Spirit has power over the will.

 

3.    And “the power of the Holy Ghost” is felt power in the day by day life experience of God’s saving grace in Christ.

 

Š      The Relief of Guilt Removed

Š      The Joy of Holiness and Love Perfected

Š      The Warfare Within

 

“I really believe that Christ is all in salvation and yet I constantly look within for evidences of salvation. I really believe that God is sovereign and yet I worry and complain. I really believe that God is the first cause of all things yet I can harbor anger and resentment. I really desire likeness to Christ yet I still have a desire for sin. Why these contradictions? Because I have two natures — the nature of the first birth and the nature of the second birth. One that always believes; one that never believes. One that always sins, one that never sins. These two natures operating in my one consciousness. Hence my cry, “Lord, I believe, help Thou mine unbelief.”Pastor Todd Nibert

 

Š      The Sweet Evidence of Faith — The Testimony of God

 

(Romans 8:14-18) “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. (15) For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. (16) The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: (17) And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. (18) For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

 

Expected Displays

 

3rdI must be very brief as I try to wrap this message up by setting before you some desired and expected future displays of “the power of the Holy Ghost.

 

God the Holy Spirit still has some things to do by which he will display his great power. He has more yet to do until the consummation of all things. Until the Son himself becomes subject to the Father, it shall not be said by God the Holy Spirit as it was by God the Son at Calvary, “It is finished.” What is it “the power of the Holy Ghost” is yet to accomplish?

 

1.    First, he has yet to finish his good work in you (Philippians 1:6).

 

The work of God the Spirit in you is but a work begun.

Š      Regeneration

Š      Light Bestowed

Š      Kept by the Power of God

Š      Relentless Warfare

Š      Temptations and Trials

Š      Falls and Recoveries

Š      Foes and Fortifications

Š      Wounds Given and Scars of Honor

Š      Victory after Victory unto Victory!

 

(Philippians 1:3-11) “I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, (4) Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, (5) For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now; (6) Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: (7) Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel, ye all are partakers of my grace. (8) For God is my record, how greatly I long after you all in the bowels of Jesus Christ. (9) And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; (10) That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ; (11) Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.”

 

My soul rejoices to know that the day is coming when my God shall finish the work which he has begun me (Romans 7:24-25; 2 Corinthians 4:17-5:2; Romans 8:17).

 

(Romans 7:24-25) “O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? (25) I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

 

(2 Corinthians 4:17-5:2) “Our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; (18) While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal. (5:1) For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. (2) For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven.”

 

(Romans 8:17) “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”

 

Oh happy, happy hour! May it be hastened! At that very moment when I depart this body of sin and death, I will have my last baptism in the Holy Spirit’s fire. I will never again pass through the fiery furnace. All dross will be gone. O glorious hour! O blessed moment!

Š      No more deep valleys!

Š      No more battles to fight!

Š      No more foes to face!

Š      No more heartbreak!

Š      No more regret!

Š      No more sorrow!

Š      No more days of adversity!

Š      No more dark nights!

Š      No more troubling tempests!

Š      No more sin!

 

2.    Another great work of the Holy Spirit, which is yet to be accomplished, is what the old writers called “the bringing on of the latter-day glory.

 

Very little is said about it in our day, but if I read this Book aright there is a day coming when “the Spirit of life from God” will be poured out upon his church and “a great voice from heaven” shall be heard in the earth (Revelation 11:11). There are diversities of operations. And for many years now the diversified operations of God have consisted in very little out pouring of the Spirit. Faithful gospel preachers faithfully do their work. But we seem to plug along in dull routine — preaching — preaching — preaching. But little good is done. I hope a fresh era has dawned upon us. But I am confident that the hour is coming. Perhaps we are upon the edge of it! We are not going to be dragging on forever like Pharaoh with the wheels off his chariot. Soon, the gospel of God’s free grace in Christ will be preached everywhere and the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth as the waters cover the sea! — My heart dances at the thought of it!

 

3.    Then, in the end, the same power which raised Jesus Christ from the dead, shall also quicken your mortal bodies in the great resurrection day when Christ comes again in his glorious second advent (2 Thessalonians 1:7-10).

 

If we could cut the green sod off the face of the earth and look about six feet deep into its bowels, what a world would appear! What should we see? Bones, carcasses, rottenness, worms, corruption. And you would say, Can these dry bones live? Yes! “In a moment! In the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump, the dead shall be raised.” He speaks and the dead are alive! See them scattered! Bone comes to his bone! See them naked. Flesh comes upon them! See them still lifeless. “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain!” When the wind of the Holy Spirit comes they live. And they stand upon their feet an exceeding great army.

 

(2 Thessalonians 1:7-10) “To you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, (8) In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: (9) Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; (10) When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.”

 

Application

 

Let us never question or in the least fail to depend upon “the power of the Holy Ghost.” Child of God, never distrust “the power of the Holy Ghost” to carry you to heaven.

 

“His tried Almighty arm

Is raised for your defense.

Where is the power can reach you there?

Or what can pluck you thence?”

 

The power of the Holy Spirit is our bulwark. His omnipotence defends us. Can our enemies overcome omnipotence? Can they wrestle with the Almighty and hurl him to the ground? Until they can, they can do us no harm!

 

Knowing “the power of the Holy Ghost,why should we doubt anything? Is anything hard for God?

Š      Your Son or Daughter?

Š      Your Husband or Wife?

Š      The Mother or Father?

Š      Your Neighbors?

Š      The Reviving of God’s Church?

Š      The Filling of this Chapel?

 

Oh, poor sinner, I have hope for you! I am here to proclaim to you the hope of salvation for you by Christ Jesus, because salvation comes to poor, lost, doomed, damned, helpless sinners like you only by “the power of the Holy Ghost!” He can save you as well as anybody else. He can…

Š      Make You Willing to Trust Christ!

Š      Melt Your Adamant Heart!

Š      Give You Life and Faith in Christ!

Š      Keep Your in Grace!

Š      Bring You to Heaven!

 

Come, now, O Spirit of God, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live, for Christ’s sake!

 

Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

Don Fortner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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