One of the great challenges facing Christians is not necessarily what they believe, but how they live.
Living in the Holy Spirit’s Power
By Mark A. Finley
One of the great challenges facing Christians is not necessarily what they believe, but how they live. Beliefs are important, because what we believe shapes our understanding of life and leads to changes in our lifestyle. Biblical truths, rightly understood, change our lives through the power of the Holy Spirit. If our beliefs make little difference in how we live, we have misunderstood their purpose. In this month’s lesson we will discover how the Holy Spirit empowers us to live godly lives by applying the truths we believe to our daily lives.
1 Compare Isaiah 42:1-4 and Matthew 12:18-21. Describe the impact of the Holy Spirit upon Jesus’ life and ministry.
Jesus was conceived of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:35), ministered in the power of the Spirit (Luke 4:14), and faced the temptations of Satan in the wilderness in the strength of the Spirit (Matt. 4:1). Jesus lived a Spirit-filled life and invites us to do the same.
2 What effect does the Holy Spirit have on our daily lives? Read Romans 8:11-14.
A careful reading of these verses reveals that the Holy Spirit does three very practical things for each believer. First, the Spirit gives us spiritual life (verse 11). Second, the Holy Spirit enables us to triumph over the inclinations and desires of the flesh (verse 13). Third, the Holy Spirit leads us to the reality that even while living in this world we are children of God (verse 14).
3 Read Ephesians 3:14-21. What was Paul’s great longing for the believers in Ephesus? What role did he see the Holy Spirit playing in their lives?
4 Read Galatians 3:1-5. What was the apostle’s concern with the church at Galatia? What tragic mistake did some Galatian Christians make? How can we apply Paul’s counsel to our own lives?
Evidently some Christians in Galatia were attempting to live their Christian lives in their own strength rather than in the power of the Holy Spirit. Any attempt to face the temptations of the evil one in our own strength is doomed to failure. Battling evil in the Holy Spirit’s power ensures victory.
5 What do the following Bible writers tell us about the ministry of the Holy Spirit in the life of each believer?
Read James 4:5; 1 Peter 3:18; 1 John 3:24.
6 What did Jesus say is one of the functions of the Holy Spirit? Read John 14:17; 16:13.
The Holy Spirit leads us to understand the truth about Jesus and His Word. The Spirit guides us into an understanding of the Bible and the truths it contains. The Spirit works within us to live in harmony with those eternal truths. We can praise God that His Spirit not only guides us into all truth, but strengthens us so we can apply these truths to our lives.
Our hearts can rejoice that the One who reveals truth changes our lives through the truth He reveals, so we can represent His love before our friends and neighbors. It is one thing to know truth; it is quite another to have our hearts broken by the Holy Spirit and our lives transformed through His power to live in us.
Invite the Holy Spirit into your life today. Ask Him to strengthen you to live the truth you believe.