Friday, November 08, 2013

What The Holy Spirit Is Doing With You

Let’s talk about “ministry,” a fairly archaic word.  If anyone calls me a minister—“Let’s welcome Minister Harris”—I cringe, at least inwardly.  But it’s an important word, nevertheless.  Its essential meaning is “service” or “assistance.”  To illustrate consider the following statement: 

“The ministry of the law, which rightly condemns me, brings out my failures, but the ministry of the Spirit brings out His success.”

The good work of the law—the assistance it gives—has always been to condemn and bring death.  On the other hand, the work or service of the Holy Spirit is always to rightly convince believers of our complete and eternal righteousness in Christ.  One good work (that former work) brought imprisonment.  The old covenant believers were never free nor far from their sin, but through endless, repetitive and gory sacrifices, they were ever reminded of it.  Please read Hebrews 10, and you’ll find it there.  But just imagine an innocent animal being sacrificed every year for the sins of the people—you and the guy next to you—and you would know that sin was not finished and put away—you were not free of it.  “Hey, Moishe, what are doing at this time next year?”  “Same as you, Ibrahim.  Got it on the calendar—don’t worry.  See you next year.”  Every year this is what happened.

But this good work—this New Covenant ministry—convinces us (or convicts us, if you like) that we have been made free from our sin through one final sacrifice and have been given the righteousness of Another, our Savior Jesus Christ.  Now that’s a ministry!  And that’s the ministry we’re all involved in.

There is no more calling up Moishe and arranging to meet up at the sacrificial altar on Sunday.  “Want to get lunch at Cracker Barrel after we get free of our sins, Moishe?”  There is now no more sacrifice for sin, because the ONE SACRIFICE ended it!  Please don’t denigrate Jesus’ sacrifice by believing you’ve got to add your particular sacrifice into the mix in order to get free of your sin.  That’s a deadly sacrifice.  If you’ve received Jesus, you’re alive and free!  “Wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” (2 Corinthians 3:17).  In Him “we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:14).

Listen to what the apostle Paul wrote, rather well acquainted himself with the two agreements, the two ministries, God made for believers:

2 Corinthians 3:6-11 He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.  7 Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, transitory though it was, 8 will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? 9 If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! 10 For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. 11 And if what was transitory came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts! 

So, what are you feeling right now?  Stop and think.  Stop.  Think.  According to the scriptures, the Holy Spirit is right now working to convince you of what Jesus has given you and made you to be—righteous!  Well off with God.  Perfect.  The biblical phrase “to convict” means to “convince utterly.”  What a good thing that is!  “Moishe!  In Christ there’s an end to sacrifice and there’s freedom from sin!  Oh, my God!  Can you believe it?”

And the answer is:  “Yes!”  That’s the ministry of the Spirit, and that’s what He will be doing with you today.  And tomorrow.  And the day after that.  Serving freedom and life in Christ is what’s on His everyday menu.  How cool is that?

(This is a transcript of yesterday’s video, “What The Holy Spirit Is Doing With You,” and is for those who might rather read than watch.  To see the video, click

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