Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Talk Tuesday-The HOLY SPIRIT Series: The Work of The FATHER, The SON and The HOLY SPIRIT in Salvation

Welcome back BGOers! How are you enjoying the series on the HOLY SPIRIT? Write us and let us know. This week, we resume with looking at the work of the The FATHER, The SON and The HOLY SPIRIT in Salvation.

Firstly, why do we need to be saved? Can't our own righteous acts atone for our sins? The answer is, “No.” Ever since The Fall in the Garden of Eden, humanity has suffered the wages of sin, which is death. Even the Prophet Isaiah laments, “How then can we be saved? All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away,” Isaiah 64:5-6, NIV.

So there is no way for us to earn our way back to GOD, or atone for our sins. Yet GOD The Father, in His infinite love, mercy and grace, makes a way for us. He sent His Son JESUS as the atoning sacrifice. His blood cleanses us, He justifies us before the Father and His righteousness then becomes ours-it is imputed to us.

21 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. Romans 3:21-24, NIV

The only caveat...we have to repent and believe. Repentance involves a sorrowful acknowledgment of our sinfulness and a conscious decision to turn away from it. “10 For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death,” 2 Corinthians 7:10, NKJV. Faith happens when we turn towards JESUS, believing in what He did on the cross and accepting it. Neither of these actions can happen without the HOLY SPIRIT. “ one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit,” 1 Corinthians 12:3, NKJV.

The HOLY SPIRIT then acts in our lives to bring about a newness-a complete change. “'You must repent,' Peter answered, 'and everyone of you must be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit,” Acts 2:38, NJB. It is this gift of the HOLY SPIRIT working in our lives that brings about regeneration and sanctification.

Join us next week as we continue to look at the work of The HOLY SPIRIT in Salvation. We leave you with the following scripture until then:

5 Jesus replied: In all truth I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born through water and the Spirit; 6 what is born of human nature is human; what is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not be surprised when I say: You must be born from above. 8 The wind blows where it pleases; you can hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit. John 3:5-8, NJB.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Talk Tuesday-The HOLY SPIRIT Series: The Day of Pentecost

JESUS promised the HOLY SPIRIT. After the crucifixion, JESUS rose from the grave and appeared to the disciples. He said, “49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high,” Luke 24:49, NIV. They obeyed. Then came the Day of Pentecost!

“1 When Pentecost day came round, they had all met together, 2 when suddenly there came from heaven a sound as of a violent wind which filled the entire house in which they were sitting; 3 and there appeared to them tongues as of fire; these separated and came to rest on the head of each of them. 4 They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak different languages as the Spirit gave them power to express themselves. 5 Now there were devout men living in Jerusalem from every nation under heaven, 6 and at this sound they all assembled, and each one was bewildered to hear these men speaking his own language.” Acts 2:1-6, NJB

Those who saw it were confused. They either wondered what it meant or believed the men to be drunk. Peter stood up, and explained to them that they were witnessing the fulfillment of scripture from the prophet Joel, “And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh,” Acts 2:17, NKJV (Joel 2:28 NIV/NKJV; Joel 3:1 NJB).

He explained that JESUS is the fulfillment of GOD's promise to King David, that he is the CHRIST, the MESSIAH. “ 32 God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of it. 33 Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear,” Acts 2:32-33, NIV. “36 “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah,” Acts 2:36, NIV.

Then comes the most important message of all. “38 Then Peter said to them, 'Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call,'” Acts 2:38-39, NKJV.

What they were witnessing was the POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT! That very day, those who accepted the salvation message were baptized, and received the gift of the HOLY SPIRIT. This is what JESUS was referring to when he spoke of, “what my Father has promised” Luke 24:49. The HOLY SPIRIT is the promise, the gift and the power of GOD!!!

Join us next week as we look at the work of the FATHER, THE SON and THE HOLY SPIRIT in salvation. We leave you with the following blessing until then:

“13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in your faith, so that in the power of the Holy Spirit you may be rich in hope,” Romans 15:13, NJB.