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The Identity of the Holy Spirit – Part 1

Living in the Light / Anne Graham Lotz
The Truth Network Radio
May 15, 2022 3:00 pm

The Identity of the Holy Spirit – Part 1

Living in the Light / Anne Graham Lotz

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Here's Anne Graham Lotz. Sometimes you just wish Jesus was here and we could see him and we could hold his hand and we could pour out our needs and our fears and our hopes and our dreams. And he is here in the person of the Holy Spirit. That's who Jesus is. That's who the Holy Spirit is. He is Jesus in me.

That was Anne Graham Lotz with an insight into today's program. At Pentecost, Jesus told his disciples that he would soon be leaving them, but then he promised that he would send them the Holy Spirit so they would not be left alone. But who is the Holy Spirit? Let's join Anne now as she gives seven important points to help you understand the identity of the Holy Spirit, Jesus in me. Who is the Holy Spirit? When I was growing up, to be honest, I don't remember being taught about the Holy Spirit.

And maybe I was, I just don't remember. And I know when we went to church, and we went to church every Sunday, I heard about the Holy Spirit, but only like in the benediction, God bless you in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. And then baptisms, I baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.

And then weddings, I pronounce you man and wife in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost. He was referred to as a ghost. And as a little girl, that was sort of off-putting for me, so I feel like I just ignored him. It wasn't necessary for me to know about the Holy Spirit, and so I just focused more on God the Father and Jesus. And the Holy Spirit maybe has been referred to as a ghost because he's invisible, and he's mysterious. Jesus said in John chapter 3, The Holy Spirit is like the wind that blows where it pleases.

You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it has come from or where it's going. And I think he was implying there's a mystery to the Holy Spirit. So I wrote a poetic description of the Holy Spirit, and this is poetic, don't take it literally, but anyway it's blessed me. The Holy Spirit is the fire of God that ignites us, the breath of God that stirs us, the wind of God that shakes us, the whisper of God that calms us, the life of God that quickens us, the dew of God that refreshes us, the lamp of God that guides us, the voice of God that convicts us, the force of God that empowers us, the heart of God that comforts us, the strength of God that carries us, the arms of God that cradle us, the hands of God that lift us, the oil of God that heals us, the anointing of God that gifts us and teaches us and gladdens us, and the seal of God that validates us. And who is the Holy Spirit? The Holy Spirit is Jesus in me. So would you turn in your Bibles to the Gospel of John chapter 16?

And I want to read verses 5 through 16. And this takes place, by the way, in the upstairs room after the Last Supper. And Jesus has been there with His disciples. Do you remember He washed their feet? Then He dismissed Judas, and He taught His disciples about heaven, and He taught them that He was the vine.

They are the branches. He taught them about persecution. And then in chapter 16, He teaches them about the Holy Spirit. They're beginning to get the idea He's leaving. And so they're sitting there.

I think they're becoming terrified to think that He's leaving, and they're going to be responsible for carrying on His ministry and His visible absence. And so this is what He says to them. Now I'm going to Him who sent Me, yet none of you asks Me, Where are you going? Because I have said these things, you're filled with grief. But I tell you the truth. It's for your good that I'm going away.

I just have to stop there because that's a stunning thing to say. That it's a good thing for the visible Jesus to be leaving. And the reason, He says, that it's a good thing is because the Holy Spirit is coming. And He says, Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you. That's another name for the Holy Spirit.

If I go, I will send Him to you. So in other words, it's better to have the Holy Spirit here than the visible Jesus. That's an amazing thing to say. So when He comes, He'll convict the world of guilt in regard to sin, righteousness, and judgment. Going down to verse 12.

I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when He, the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on His own. He will speak only what He hears. And He will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to Me by taking from what is Mine and making it known to you.

All that belongs to the Father is Mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is Mine and make it known to you. In a little while, you will see Me no more. And then after a little while, you will see Me.

And I tucked in that last verse because it's very interesting. Was Jesus referring to after the resurrection when He appeared to Mary at the empty tomb and then He disappeared? And He appeared to the disciples on the Emmaus road and then He disappeared. And He appeared to the disciples in the upstairs room and then He disappeared. He appeared to the disciples on the shore of Galilee and then He disappeared.

And all this coming and going. And what was He doing? Was He teaching them about the Holy Spirit?

That whether you can see Me or not, I'm present in your life. So who is the Holy Spirit? There are seven things about the Holy Spirit I want to point out to you. And the first is that the Holy Spirit is a person. And ten times in these eleven verses He has referred to with a personal pronoun, He or Him.

So I just want to put it out there on the table that the Holy Spirit is not a ghost. He is not an it. He is not a flame of fire. He is not a dove. He is not an emotion.

He is not an ecstatic experience. The Holy Spirit is a living, invisible person. And He has a mind to think and emotions to feel and a will to act. And we refer to Him as the third person of the Trinity.

And I don't know if you're like me but maybe you've thought of Him as sort of a P.S. You know, we have the grand glorious God the Father and then the beloved Son. And then P.S., by the way, there's the Holy Spirit. But He is referred to as the third person of the Trinity not because He is the least or an afterthought. Because He is the third to be more fully revealed in Scripture. So in the Old Testament you have God the Son, God the Holy Spirit are present. God the Father is the one who is primarily revealed in the Old Testament. In the Gospels, God the Father and God the Holy Spirit are also present but it's God the Son who is primarily revealed. In Acts and the Epistles, God the Father and God the Son are also present but it's God the Holy Spirit who is primarily revealed. So He's referred to as the third person of the Trinity. And in the Bible, names reveal character.

I think we mentioned that where Peter was named Simon because that means wishy-washy, impulsive, compulsive. And then Jesus said, I'm going to change your name to Peter because you're going to be so strong you'll strengthen the other disciples and you'll strengthen people in their faith. Jesus, His name means Savior, Rescuer, Deliverer. And so the names given to the Holy Spirit reveal something of His character and who He is.

And I'm not going to go through all of His names but I want to touch on one. In chapter 14 verse 16 Jesus said, I'm going to ask the Father to give you another counselor. And meaning He's a counselor and He's going to ask the Father to give you another counselor and the word another means exactly the same as. So that's where I have the title for the book and where I have He is Jesus in me. He is exactly the same as Jesus but without the physical body, without the skin and bones and He is Jesus in us.

He's another Jesus so to speak. So the Holy Spirit is available to come into us and Jesus said that He is in us in the person of the Holy Spirit. I was up in the cabin sitting on the porch and I just pulled up, there were two rockers and I pulled up one rocker and just invited Jesus in the person of the Holy Spirit to sit in that other rocker.

And I just talked through this weekend and some of the things that were concerning me and just talked it out with Him. And sometimes you just wish Jesus was here and we could see Him and we could hold His hand and we could pour out our needs and our fears and our hopes and our dreams. And He is here in the person of the Holy Spirit. That's who Jesus is. That's who the Holy Spirit is. He is Jesus in me.

So not only His person but His presence. Jesus said in verse 7, I will send Him to you. So when did that take place? It took place at Pentecost after Jesus ascended into heaven. There were 10 days when the disciples met in the upstairs room and they met for prayer and you know one of the things they were praying is Jesus keep your promise. Ask the Father to send down the Spirit and 10 days later on the Feast of Pentecost, I'm assuming they're in the temple area because of what happened and they hear the sound of rushing wind.

The wind wasn't blowing, the leaves weren't scurrying but there was a sound of a tornado moving through. And then John looks at Peter and he has a flame of fire on his head and Peter looks at Matthew and he has a flame of fire on his head. And they all have a flame of fire on their heads and they're filled with this intense awareness of the presence of Jesus and they're filled with praise and worship. And they open their mouths in a symphony of praise and everyone in Jerusalem hears the gospel in his own language and the disciples knew the Holy Spirit had come.

And that was a pivotal point in human history. There will never be another Pentecost by the way. Just as there was Bethlehem and there will never be another Bethlehem, the cross will never be another cross, the resurrection will never be another. The coming of the Holy Spirit was a unique historical event. We can pray for another Pentecost and by that we want a revival and an outpouring of the Holy Spirit to change the hearts of people.

But there will never be another Pentecost because I want to explain to you the difference before and after. In the Old Testament, saints placed their faith in Jesus but by faith. They didn't know his name, they didn't understand the details but every time they sinned and they came to the temple and they took a little spotless lamb. And this was an obedience to God's word that told them this is how you have your sin atoned for.

They grasped the lamb with both hands. It was as though the guilt of their sin traveled along their arm, was conveyed to the little lamb, the sinner took the knife and killed the lamb and the priest took the blood and sprinkled on the altar to make atonement for the sin of that person. And so every time in the Old Testament somebody sinned and they took the little lamb and they went through that ritual and they sacrificed it, then it was as though God was saying I owe you forgiveness. I owe you forgiveness because the people knew according to Hebrews the blood of lambs and bulls and goats can't take away sin. So you wonder if every time they did that and they walked away, am I really forgiven?

Has my sin really been atoned for? But they did it by faith because that's what God said to do. And so they were looking forward to the cross, okay?

And they were made right with God when they kept those ceremonies and their sacrifices according to what God said and did it from their heart. And then came the day when John the Baptist pointed out the man walking beside the Jordan River and he says there goes the lamb of God who will take away the sin of the world. And when Jesus died on the cross, he was the lamb of God sacrificed for the sin of the world and through his blood and death God paid up all of those I owe you notes, all right? You and I on this side of the cross, we're saved in the same way. We're saved by faith. We're made right with God like the saints in the Old Testament were.

They brought the little lamb but they were obeying God's word, coming and sacrificing and claiming the blood of the land to make atonement for their sin. You and I, we look back to the cross and I'm so thankful we don't have to go to a temple and we don't have to kill a lamb, we don't have to have blood spurting everywhere. We just come to the cross and we grasp the lamb of God with our hands of faith and we confess our sin and it's as though the guilt of our sin is transferred to the lamb of God and it's our sin that caused the death of Jesus. Not the Romans, not the Jews, God used them of course but it's my sin that nailed them to the cross. And then God takes the blood and covers me with it, sprinkles it and I'm forgiven.

My sin is atoned for. So before the cross they look towards Jesus, after the cross we look back to Jesus but you and I have something added that the Old Testament saints knew nothing about. In the Old Testament the Holy Spirit would come upon somebody to equip them to work with gold and linen in the temple. For instance Saul of Kish was the first king of Israel and the Holy Spirit came upon him to anoint him to be a king. He was a keeper of donkeys and the anointing of the Holy Spirit transformed him into a leader of a nation. And then when Saul sinned, God removed the Holy Spirit from him. So then David was anointed king, the second king of Israel and the Holy Spirit came upon him to anoint him to lead Israel and he did.

And then when he sinned with Bathsheba, do you remember what he prayed? Don't take your Holy Spirit from me. Because he knew the Holy Spirit could be given and the Holy Spirit could be taken away. In the New Testament after Pentecost, when you and I come to the cross and we confess our sin and our guilt is transferred to the Lamb of God and our sin is atoned for and we're forgiven and we claim Jesus as our Savior and we open up our heart and we receive the Holy Spirit to come into us. He comes into us never to leave us, never to forsake us. That is a permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Praise God.

So when I was a little girl, I've referred to it, but I was across the valley in my parents' home in my upstairs bedroom. I'd watched a picture about Jesus on television and when it came to the scene of the cross I knew that he had died for me. And that was just the Holy Spirit stirring in my heart and so I got down on my knees beside my bed and I told God I was sorry for my sin. I asked him to forgive me and I wanted the death of Jesus to count even if it was just for me. And I asked for forgiveness and invited him to come into my heart. So I asked Jesus to come into my heart. I did not understand as a little girl about the Holy Spirit, but Jesus knew what I was talking about, okay? So when I asked Jesus to come into my heart, he came into me in the person of the Holy Spirit. Jesus couldn't possibly come into anybody.

He's living in a man's body, up in heaven, getting ready to come back and rule the world. When he comes into us, it's in the person of the Holy Spirit. I used the illustration of the Virgin Mary. You remember when the angel told her she was going to conceive and she said, How can that be? And the angel said, The Holy Spirit is going to come upon you and you're going to conceive the life of the Son of God.

And Mary said, Be it unto me according to your will. And she conceived the physical life of Jesus on the inside of her. It was a miracle. And the same thing happens to you and me when we confess our sin and we repent and we tell God we're sorry and we claim Jesus as our Savior and we open up our hearts and we receive him into us. He comes into us and we conceive the spiritual life of Jesus.

And that's a miracle too. And it's the person of the Holy Spirit who comes in. He is Jesus in you and in me. So I'm going to ask you again, maybe somebody who's watching online who wasn't here the other night, but when have you received the Holy Spirit? And don't misunderstand me. If you've received Jesus, that's the same thing, all right?

We're not going to get caught up in semantics. I just want you to understand that when you invite Jesus to come into your heart, he comes in in the person of the Holy Spirit. But you understand from that message, unless you have the new creation, unless you've been born again, you cannot possibly see God. You cannot possibly go to heaven. There's nothing in that old nature that can stand before God. That's your flesh.

It's going to drop off. So you must be born again, Jesus said. When were you born again? I can remember the day.

It was a good Friday when I watched that program. I can't remember if I was seven, eight, or nine years of age, but somewhere along there. And maybe you can't remember a specific time, but you know there was a time when you confessed your sin and asked Jesus to come into your heart.

If you don't remember a specific time, how do you know there was? So that's what I'm challenging you. Don't leave this mountain.

Don't stop watching the seminar. Don't turn off your computer or whatever until you make sure that Jesus, who's been on the outside of you, now comes inside of you in the person of the Holy Spirit. So the Holy Spirit, his presence, he indwells us, but there's something else also that he's available to fill us. And Ephesians 5, 18 says to be filled with the Holy Spirit. And this is something I think is logical. When we invite the Holy Spirit to come into us, we get all of the Holy Spirit we're ever going to get.

You know that? Because he's a person and you don't get a person in pieces. So when I was a little girl and I invited Jesus to come into my heart, he came into me and I had all of the Holy Spirit at that point in time that I was ever going to have. The difference comes as he gets more of us. And those circles, you know, as we add to our new nature, he has more capacity, if we can put it that way, within us, to fill us until other people can see Jesus in us. And so he's available to fill us.

The best definition for filling that I've heard is moment by moment surrender to his moment by moment control. And that has to do with those choices. One after another, just moment by moment, day by day, week by week, year by year, making the choices to yield our lives to him. And when we sin, we quickly confess it. We know we've been forgiven.

Praise God. We don't have to come back for forgiveness. All of our sin is forgiven. But we come back to confess it, that we might be cleansed, that we might be filled, and refilled, and refilled, and refilled. Because sin, I don't know about you, but I'm a sinner. And so I still sin. And when I sin, I have to confess it and tell God I'm sorry and ask him to cleanse me and then ask him to fill me afresh. So it's important that you and I are filled with the holiest spirit. One, because it's a command. Be filled.

That's not an option. So if I can use this illustration across the valley where my parents' home is, there's a mountain road, a driveway, that goes up to their home. And you come around one bend, and it's a sharp bend. And right at the bend, there's a spring that bubbles up beside the road. And the spring used to bubble up and cover the road with the spring water.

And in the wintertime, when it was freezing cold, the road would freeze over and it created a hazard for cars that were driving on the road. So Mother went to that spring, and she put a wooden bucket at the spring, and then she ran a pipe into the spring. So the water from the spring ran through the pipe into the wooden bucket. When it overflowed, it went beside the road, and the ice hazard was removed. From time to time, it would come down, and the water was back over the road, and something had clogged up that pipe.

So she would take a stick, and she would run it through the pipe, and out would come a little slippery salamander, or a rotted leaf, or a hard little pebble, and she'd remove it. And then the water would flow freely again, fill up the bucket, and then the hazard was removed. So don't take the illustration too far, but if I can just say it this way, that the Holy Spirit wants to fill us, and the conduit, you know, the vessel into our lives, we need to keep clean. And sin can block the flow of the Holy Spirit. In fact, it can block the flow of the Holy Spirit to the point that you think you don't have Him anymore.

You'll think He's been removed. And that's what quenching the Holy Spirit is. So you take the stick, and I don't mean to be superficial at all, but you take the cross, and you run it through that pipe of your life, and maybe there's a slippery salamander, or something nasty, it could be a habit, it could be the way you talk, it could be something you indulge in, and you bring it to the cross.

Maybe it's a rotted leaf, a memory, an unforgiveness, maybe that would be the pebble, something hard, like bitterness, or anger, unforgiveness, and you just bring it to the cross, and you give it to the Lord, and ask Him to remove it, and cleanse you, so that you can be filled with the Holy Spirit. Whatever that thing is that's blocking the flow of the Holy Spirit, it's not worth clinging to when it keeps you from being filled, because to be filled with the Holy Spirit, that's where the blessing is, that's where the joy is, it doesn't matter your circumstances, that's where the peace of God rules. Be filled with the Holy Spirit. In one of the appendix of the new book, I put in there steps how to be filled and how to maintain the filling of the Holy Spirit, very practical with all the scriptures and everything, but basically, it's moment by moment surrender to the moment by moment control of the Holy Spirit. And when we think of those circles and all the choices that we make, this leads us to the next point I want to share with you about the power of the Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit will empower you to make those choices.

You choose. So in other words, you know that we're to forgive each other. You apply that to the person who's wounded you, and then you follow through in obedience to forgive that person, reach out and bless that person. It's the Holy Spirit who will give you the power to do that. So all the different examples we used yesterday, it's the Holy Spirit. We know what the Bible says, and we put off the old man, we put on the new man, and then we live it out. It's the Holy Spirit that empowers us to live it out. Praise God! The Holy Spirit sets us free from this body of death one choice at a time, but make no mistake about it, we can't do it on our own, which is where the frustration is, but the Holy Spirit, as we yield our lives to Him, He will do it in and through us. So we make the choice, and then we follow through in obedience, but He gives us the power to do it.

The Holy Spirit is God. And I just want to encourage somebody sitting here, and you looked at those two circles, and you saw yourself as one who's lived most of your life in your old nature, and you're desperate because now you've wasted your life, and you don't know how much time you have left, and you want something to show for the life when you get to heaven. Listen to me. I believe the Lord just whispered to you this morning that He can blossom you as you yield your life to Him, and you start making choices according to what you know God's Word says, and you obey God's Word, and the Holy Spirit would help you to live it out, and redeem the time that you have left. According to Joel, restore the years that the locusts have eaten.

So don't think that you've wasted your life, and now it's too late, and you might as well just feel sorry for yourself, and bury yourself in your old nature. Don't do that. The Holy Spirit will give you the power. You make the choices. You know it, and you apply it, and He will give you the strength and the power to obey, to follow through in obedience.

Yes, He will, and I know He will. I know, okay. He's done it for me. So He has the power to change me and to change you, and one of the best examples is Peter himself. Peter before Pentecost, do you remember at the trials of Jesus, after he had bragged and said he didn't know what those other disciples would do, but he would never deny his Lord, and then three times that night, when a little servant girl, people standing beside the fire, we think you're one of us. No, I'm not. We hear the Galilean accent. We think you're.

No, I'm not. And then he cursed and said he never knew Jesus. He was so afraid of the opinions of other people, and then 50 days later, 10 days after the ascension of Jesus, on that day of Pentecost, and the Holy Spirit has come into Peter, and He stands up in front of the very people who had shouted, crucify Him, crucify Him, in front of the very people that had condemned Him to death on the Sanhedrin, in front of the very soldiers who had nailed Him to the cross, and He said, this Jesus whom you crucified is both Lord and Christ. And they shouted out, they were so convicted, what must we do to be saved? And Peter told them, repent and be baptized and you'll be saved, and they did and they were, but do you see the difference in Peter? That's the Holy Spirit. .
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-18 11:04:04 / 2023-04-18 11:15:24 / 11

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