Topic: Sunday Message Verse: Romans 8:1–8:2, 2 Corinthians 3:17–3:18, Philippians 1:6, Galatians 5:16–5:17, Galatians 5:19–5:23, Galatians 5:24–5:25
Week three in a series about the Holy Spirit—what the Bible teaches about Him and who He wants to be for us.
How does the Holy Spirit speak to us?
Because we have the indwelling Holy Spirit in us. And because we have the complete Bible as God's Word to us ... The primary way we hear from God today is when the Spirit of God speaks through the Word of God to our spirits within us.
It’s not an audible voice, but it is a genuine, spiritual impression—one that always confirms (not contradicts) the truth of Scripture
Better Versions of Ourselves
The Holy Spirit is able to take imperfect, inconsistent, and self-centered people, and turn us into better versions of ourselves—better in the sense that we can increasingly become more like Jesus in “who we are, what we do, and how we love.”
The Holy Spirit & Life-Change
(1) Change is possible. Romans 8:1-2
This is no longer about our best self trying to overcome our worst self. We now have the power of God is us--the Holy Spirit who gives us life and sets us free.
(2) Change is progressive. 2 Corinthians 3:17-18
We are saved in an instant, but we grow over time. So while change won't happen over night, the Holy Spirit is transforming us into the likeness of Jesus in ever-increasing ways.
(3) Change is promised. Philippians 1:6
We can be confident that there is nothing "out there" or nothing in us that can stand in the way of God fulfilling His promise to bring to completion the good work of change that He's started in us.
Romans 8:1-2 NIV
1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2 because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.
2 Corinthians 3:17-18 NIV
17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18 And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lordʼs glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
Philippians 1:6 NIV
6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Galatians 5:16-17 NIV
16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.
Walk by the Spirit
Walking by the Spirit means living in moment-by-moment dependence upon God, far more than just a one-time decision. It's on-going submission to and cooperation with the Holy Spirit and His work in our lives. Walking implies effort. Walking implies movement. Walking implies direction. Am I headed toward God and His will? Or away from Him and in pursuit of my own agenda?
Measuring Change - Outcomes not Inputs
Your church attendance, church giving, church involvement, church friendships, church commitments--these are all good spiritual inputs. Inputs like these can help us change, but they don’t necessarily mean that we’ve changed. No, the true measure of change isn’t the inputs, but rather the outcomes, or as the Bible puts it: "the fruit of our lives."
Galatians 5:19-23 NIV
19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:24-25 NIV
24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
Connections Questions 10.30.16
The Holy Spirit not only wants to change you, but He also is able to make that happen if you are willing to cooperate with His work. Pastor Dan
1. Have you tried a diet or exercise program at one time or another? How did it go? What would you say makes a life-change like this really happen?
2. Do you think becoming more like Jesus in how we think, speak, and act happens in the same way? If not, how is life-change as a Christian different?
3. Read Galatians 5:16-26. According to these verses . . .
· How would you define the “sinful nature”? How does it operate in our lives as Christians?
· What role does the Holy Spirit have in changing us?
· What is our part?
4. How do we know when we’re really and deeply changing? How can we make it matter more to us, rather than being satisfied with where we are? What’s at stake if we stop becoming more like Christ?
5. Think of something you want God to change in you. What can you do to cooperate with the Holy Spirit’s desire and ability to transform you? How could others in your group support you along the way?