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The Holy Spirit & You, Part 2 | The Work of the Spirit

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
January 25, 2023 3:00 am

The Holy Spirit & You, Part 2 | The Work of the Spirit

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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January 25, 2023 3:00 am

In our natural bodies, there are many things inside that keep us alive, although we’ve never seen them. Antibodies, clotting agents, intestinal flora, white blood cells. Now, spiritually speaking, there are invisible forces at work that want to help us and save us, although other forces want to destroy us. Today on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie points out the work of God’s Spirit acquaints us with our sin, and acquaints us with our Savior. It’s important we know how to respond.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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You're listening to A New Beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast made possible by Harvest Partners, helping people everywhere know God.

Visit our website and learn more about Harvest Partners at Go to Jesus and your sins will be forgiven. Go to Jesus and that righteousness will be placed in your account. Go to Jesus and your questions will be answered. He shows you the sin that He brings you to the Savior.

That's it. The work of the Holy Spirit. In our natural bodies, there are many things inside that keep us alive, although we've never seen them.

Antibodies, clotting agents, intestinal flora, white blood cells. Now spiritually speaking, there are invisible forces at work that want to help us and save us, although other forces want to destroy us. Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie points out the work of God's Spirit acquaints us with our sin and acquaints us with our Savior.

It's important we know how to respond. This is the day, the day when life begins. You know, when I turn on the television these days, man, there's just so much bad stuff, isn't there? Just tragedy layered on tragedy. I see so much sin on display. You see selfishness. You see violence. You see murder. You hear of all these horrible things happening. And I'm just talking about the cartoons on Saturday morning.

No, seriously though. It's just, it's sort of like sin is on display every day, every night for us all to see. So what is the worst sin a person could possibly commit? Is it stealing? Is it murder? Is it adultery? Those are bad sins for sure. But let me re-ask the question, what sin offends God more than any other?

I think you might be surprised by my answer. Here in John chapter 16 we're looking together at the work of the Holy Spirit and the life of the non-believer. In our last message we focused primarily on the work of the Holy Spirit and the life of the Christian. Now we're looking at the work that He wants to do in the life of the person who is not yet a Christian. We're in John 16 starting at verse 7. Jesus says, Well stop there. The Holy Spirit of God. Clearly the most misunderstood and misrepresented member of the Trinity. It seems whenever there is something weird going on it always gets blamed on the Holy Spirit.

Right? You flip the channels. You come to some Christian TV station.

I might put that in quotes in some cases. And you see people coming under the power of the Spirit. They're falling on the floor. They're shrieking. They're laughing uncontrollably.

They're barking like dogs. And the preacher says, This is the Holy Spirit. And they even make it sound more holy. So when you hear holy spiritual.

I don't know if I want that you know. I want to just tell you all that crazy stuff. That is not the Holy Spirit.

That is just crazy stuff. Because the Bible tells us what the work of the Holy Spirit is. Jesus makes an amazing statement to begin with here in John 16. He says, It is to your advantage I go away. For if I do not go away the Helper will not come to you but if I depart I will send him to you. Remember in our last message on the Holy Spirit we talked about the word that the word helper comes from.

It is parakletos in Greek. One who is called alongside to help is the definition of it. It speaks of an advocate in a court of law among other things. So Jesus is actually saying, It is better for you that I go away. It is to your benefit or to your advantage that I go away. Otherwise the Holy Spirit would not come to you in this way.

Now that amazes me because it seems to me. Oh no. The best thing would be to have Jesus with us physically. I mean how amazing would that be? Imagine if Jesus was sitting in church with you. Just next to you isn't Jesus. I mean you couldn't stop looking at him. He is God. What is God doing now? And you would find yourself just staring at him. Wanting to hear whatever he had to say.

Anything he would do. But Jesus is saying, It is actually better for you that I go away. Because then the Holy Spirit, the parakletos, the helper, the advocate, the counselor will come to you.

Notice He says in verse 8, when He has come. Remember we pointed out that the Holy Spirit is not a force. He is a personality. Because sometimes people think He is just some power out there. Like something out of Star Wars or something.

No. The Holy Spirit has a distinct personality. Though He is likened in Scripture to fire and a dove and other things. In reality He is always referred to as a He. And that is a capital He because He is part of the Trinity.

So here is a quick review of what we already saw. The Holy Spirit has come to convict us of our sin. You could also just interchange the word convince with convict. He has come to convince us of our sin. Verse 8. John 16.

When He has come He will convict or convince the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. You see one's ignorance of sin, righteousness, and judgment can bring their destruction. So God has sent His Holy Spirit to make the non-believer aware of this.

Before we can appreciate the solution we have to see the real problem. So we need to be convicted by the Spirit. Because there is no conversion without conviction. Being a Christian is not just living a better life. Jesus is not just helpful. He is our only hope.

He has not come to improve our life. He comes to save our life. And so we need to realize that only the Holy Spirit can show us our real need.

You know it is interesting that the word convict means to cross examine. The Holy Spirit has come to cross examine us with the purpose of convicting or refuting an opponent. He doesn't come to just convict the world in general but to specifically show them their lacking and the righteousness they need to get to heaven.

This is a very important distinction. It is not just sins in general. The Holy Spirit has come to show you the biggest sin of all. The sin of self-righteousness. And in its place God wants to give you His righteousness. I bring this up because every time you turn around people are thinking that they get to heaven by good works. You know I guess I don't expect non-believers to know much about this. But when I hear Christians or at least professed believers still subscribing to an idea like this it just seems insane to me.

But people do still think this. That well you know if you live a good life you will get to heaven. And if you live a bad life then you will go to hell. Listen.

Use flash. There are good people that are going to go to hell and there are bad people that are going to go to heaven. So well that makes no sense at all. Well it is biblical.

Let me explain. Being a good person will not get you to heaven. You can be a good person but if you think you are so good you don't know Jesus you can end up in hell. And you can be a bad person.

A very bad person. But if you repent of your sin even if it is on your deathbed Christ will forgive you and let you into heaven. Because heaven is not for good people. It is for forgiven people. Ok so I raised a question earlier. What is the worst sin?

So what is it? Is it adultery? Is it stealing? Is it taking the Lord's name in vain? Well a recent survey was done among British Christians. And they were asked to identify the most and least important of the Ten Commandments. And right away that is a bad premise.

Where I am going to rate the Ten Commandments. Houston we have a problem. Or should I say instead London we have a problem right? Ok so back to the Brits. Ninety-three percent of them still felt thou shall not commit murder was valid. Good to know. So my next trip to England I guess I won't get killed hopefully. Ninety-three percent still felt thou shall not steal was a valid commandment.

And then it starts to drop after that. Eighty-seven percent thought thou shall not bear false witness was still good. But only 23 percent felt thou shall not take the name of the Lord in vain was still valid today. Sixty-eight percent of British Christians. I failed to point that out.

Did I say that earlier? These are Christians in quote. They think it is ok to take the Lord's name in vain. Sixty-eight percent.

No. And then this one is the most amazing of all. Only 20 percent thought having other gods before them was wrong. In fact 68 percent thought it was just fine to have other gods before the Lord. Really.

How interesting. God doesn't see it that way. Because when He gives the Ten Commandments He doesn't start with thou shall not murder. He doesn't start with you shall not take the Lord's name in vain.

He starts by saying I am the Lord your God. Have no other gods before me. It is a big deal to God you see. And then a second commandment. You shall have no graven images. Which is really an extension of what the first commandment says. You know where you are now going to worship something in the place of God.

Because it comes down to this. If I have another god before me it is all downhill from there. And then those other commandments will be broken as well.

Let me turn it around. If I put Him first in my life the other commandments will fall into place. Jesus summed it up this way. He says if you will love the Lord your God with all of your heart all of your soul and all of your mind and love your neighbor as yourself you will fulfill the commandments.

How does that work? Well if I love God with all of my heart soul and mind I am not going to have another god before him. I am not going to worship a graven image. I am not going to take his name in vain. If I love my neighbor as myself I am not going to kill him because that is not very neighborly is it? I am not going to steal from him. I am not going to lie to her.

I am not going to covet what belongs to them. You see so these crazy so-called Christians can't just go to the commandments and decide what is valid and what isn't valid. God's Word does not change according to the mores or culture of our times.

The reality is we should be conforming culture to God rather than expecting God to conform to our culture. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of this important message in just a moment. It's so encouraging when we hear that listeners are growing by hearing these studies. Hi Pastor Greg. Thank you for your ministry and commitment to share the gospel with others. My wife and I have listened to you on the radio for over 10 years and I download your messages through the Harvest app weekly. We've been Harvest partners for about a year now and are so thankful we can share in your ministry. I love that you give an invitation to accept Jesus at the end of your messages. I'm so thankful that many people come to us saving faith each week. God bless you and your family. It's a privilege to bring these studies your way and we're thankful for our Harvest partners who make them possible. Would you consider partnering with us so they can continue? Make a donation online at

That's Well Pastor Greg returns to his message now. It's a study called The Holy Spirit and You Part 2.

Ok so what is the worst sin that we can commit against the Lord? I'm going to answer that next week. No I'll answer it now. You probably already know the answer.

Here it is. You're taking notes. The worst sin and then one of the most far reaching consequences that you can commit is not believing in Jesus Christ. Say no Greg you're wrong. Murder is worse. Well no actually those are outgrowths of the sin inside of the person who does not know God but saying no to Christ is a complete rejection of the work of the Holy Spirit.

The root of all of our problems. The worst sin you can commit is not believing and you will be judged for that. So the Holy Spirit number two now has come to bring us to Jesus. He says in verse 9, I've come to convince them of sin because they do not believe in me.

You know it's interesting. Sin. Not sins. Sometimes we I think in the church major on minors. And by that I mean we sort of get the cart before the horse. We'll kind of focus on lifestyle choices that are sinful and we'll harp on those things.

Here's my objective. I want to establish a dialogue with a person regardless of what sinful choice they've made. So if they're living with their boyfriend or girlfriend out of wedlock or if they're gay or if they're a liar or a thief or all the above you know hey I want to first talk to them about their need for Jesus because this is the way I see it. If they'll come to Jesus everything else will get sorted out. But if I focus on those things and never get around to telling them about Jesus I can in effect drive them away. And I think a lot of times people think of the church as being against everything. And we're going to speak out on what the Bible says and say what it says on whatever topic it is we're addressing. But our message is the gospel and we want people to believe and then their lives will change as a result. So the Holy Spirit has come to show us that.

To bring us to Jesus. Verse 13. When He the Spirit of truth has come He'll guide you into all truth. He will not speak in His own. He will speak only what He hears. And He'll tell you what is to come.

He'll bring glory to me by taking what is mine and making it known to you. See if you refuse to believe in Jesus you're effectively calling the Holy Spirit a liar. Because 1 John 5 10 says he that believes in the name of the Son of God has this witness in himself. He that does not believe has made him a liar because he has not believed the record that God has given of his Son. That's called insulting the Spirit. So the Holy Spirit comes and shows you you're a sinner. And you need Jesus and you say I do not. I'm a good person.

I don't need Jesus. Oh so you're calling him a liar? No you're putting words in my mouth Ben.

Actually I'm not. Because if you're rejecting the work that the Holy Spirit has come to do to show you you're not righteous enough to get to heaven. And show you that Jesus is the answer. You're effectively saying he's a liar.

Number 3. The Holy Spirit has come to show us our need for righteousness. Look at verse 10. He says of righteousness because I go to my Father and you see me no more.

Now here's the funny thing. Most people believe in heaven today 72 percent. But as I said earlier they think living a good life will get them there. But yet the Bible says all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. It says there is not good.

No not one. And the Bible also says in James 2 10 if you offend in one point of the law you're guilty of all of it. Now the Bible is not saying that there are not good people. There are good people. Let me take it a step further. I've met people who are not Christians that are good people and in some cases better people than some Christians I know.

Does that make sense? When I say good I mean they're friendly. They're trustworthy. They're considerate.

So they're good people in that regard. This is not about if you're a good guy or a good girl. This is about if you're good enough to get to heaven and no one's that good. You say well I'm pretty good actually. You're not as good as you think you are. And you're much worse than you think you are.

That's the truth. Because one sin is enough to keep you out of heaven. And trust me you've committed a lot more than one sin. And so have I. So the Holy Spirit has come to show me this about myself.

Listen to this. Even on my best day my righteousness my goodness the benevolent kind considerate things that I do are pretty much throwaway. Because Isaiah 64 6 says my righteousness is as filthy rags. But then what about the bad days? And those are bad.

So think about all of that. Even on your best day you don't even get close. And on your bad days you're so so far away. So the Holy Spirit comes to show me that I need Jesus. He shows me I'm not righteous enough.

I'm not good enough. Not so I will be driven away in despair but so I will run to the cross. See that's what he does. He says you are bad. You are sinful.

There's the answer. And he lights the way. It's Jesus. Go to Jesus and your sins will be forgiven. Go to Jesus and that righteousness will be placed in your account. Go to Jesus and your questions will be answered. That's a very important distinction. He shows you the sin then he brings you to the Savior.

And that's it. The work of the Holy Spirit. Pastor Greg Laurie with great insight on how the Spirit points to sin and then points to the Savior.

Such an important role. A life saving role in the lives of believers. You're listening to A New Beginning and there's more to come in this study called The Holy Spirit and You Part 2.

It's one of our listeners most requested messages of the past year. Well Pastor Greg we're so excited about your new film Jesus Revolution coming out very soon. And you pointed out it's a realistic look at the Jesus movement. That great spiritual awakening during the late 60s and early 70s. And you pointed out that your bold audacious dream for this movie is that it would lay the groundwork for the next spiritual awakening. We need it and the time is right for it. Would you say the conditions are similar now as compared to the late 60s and early 70s?

Yes I would. Very similar. In fact I can't think of any two decades that are more alike than the late 60s early 70s in this moment in American history. Certainly I wouldn't say that of the 80s the 90s or even the early 2000s.

But right now it's so parallel. It's even kind of interesting how certain drugs have made a comeback. Weed is so widespread marijuana.

More people smoke marijuana today than cigarettes. And LSD has made a comeback. And these are bad things by the way. And those are drugs that my generation experimented with myself included.

Searching for answers and of course not finding them. But then just the divide between generations. The racial division which was very strong in the late 60s. Just the general chaos.

So many things are similar. And we had a revolution. But it wasn't a political revolution. It wasn't a moral revolution. It was a Jesus revolution.

Now interestingly we did not call it that. We called it the Jesus movement. But it was Time magazine that dubbed it Jesus revolution.

And I think Time saw something that we may not have seen. It was a revolution. The word revolution means an upheaval. You know and it's where things are changed dramatically.

But revolution also means going in a complete circle right. So it was like a returning back to what I believe was New Testament Christianity. And so when I became a Christian in 1970 at the age of 17. I did not know I was in a spiritual awakening.

I just went to this church called Calvary Chapel. It was alive. It was overflowing with people of all ages. God was at work. And I had walked right into the middle of a bona fide spiritual awakening.

And I had a front row seat. And I saw spiritual things happen. I saw the birth of what we call contemporary Christian music now. Back then we called it Jesus music. I saw the birth of modern praise and worship. And a whole new approach to doing church.

That all is rooted back in those days. And so wow I look back and I think God I was able to be there. And now other people can see what it was like. When you watch this film Jesus revolution.

You're going to feel in many ways like you're going back in time. And that was our hope. As I spoke with the director John Irwin. You know I had vivid memories of details. You know I'm a designer.

You know before I was a preacher I was an artist. And so I remember I noticed things. I noticed colors and textures and other things. So I gave him as much detail as I could.

And I tell you he captured lightning in a bottle. There are scenes in this film where you feel like you're there experiencing it for yourself. It's very interesting when older people watch this movie.

It's sort of a flashback to use a 60s term. They remember like when my character Greg is baptized. I see people get tears in their eyes. They're reflecting back on their own conversion. But when young people watch it.

It's an entirely different experience. It's almost as though they're experiencing it themselves. Now.

In real time. So I think this movie is going to reach people of all ages. And I'm hoping that young people are impacted.

And I'm hoping that they'll see it and say. We want this to happen in our generation. We want our own Jesus movement. And in this film played a role in that. We would be so excited.

You know it's been said. The fame of revival spreads the flame of revival. So this is a revival story.

And our hope and prayer is that it's not just a film. But that it creates a movement. That it moves people toward God. And inspires a generation of younger people to pray for their own Jesus revolution. Yeah. Yeah.

That's right. It's something we can all use as a tool to help bring friends and loved ones face to face with the hope of the gospel. We hope you'll plan to see Jesus Revolution when it premieres the third week of February. It has the gospel message built right in. And we also hope you'll pray that God uses this as an instrument to bring many people to him. And we hope you'll partner with us to keep spreading the good news in creative ways such as this. If you can invest in this work right now, we'd like to send you Pastor Greg's book called Jesus Revolution. Read it before you see the film.

It obviously goes into much more detail. And it would be our privilege to send this to you as a thank you gift for your donation. So call us anytime at 1-800-821-3300.

That's 1-800-821-3300. Or write A New Beginning, Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514. Or go online to You know, there's nothing like curing the Word of God and worshiping the Lord together. I want to encourage you to join us for something we call Harvest at Home. It happens every Saturday and Sunday at You can join Christians literally from around the world as we worship and we study the Word of God together.

So join us for Harvest at Home at Well, next time, Pastor Greg comes back with more insight on the way the Holy Spirit works in our lives, convicting us of our sin and pointing us to our Savior. Join us here on A New Beginning with pastor and Bible teacher, Greg Laurie. This is the day, the day when life begins Thanks for listening to A New Beginning with Greg Laurie, a podcast made possible by Harvest Partners. Helping people everywhere know God. Sign up for daily devotions and learn how to become a Harvest Partner at
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-25 05:26:39 / 2023-01-25 05:36:41 / 10

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