by Dr. Ray Self
The Work of the Holy Spirit in Relation to Jesus Christ
The scriptures speak clearly of a divine order in relation to our knowledge and revelation of the Lord. The Father is revealed by the Son and the Son is revealed by the Holy Spirit. John 16:14-15 says, "He (the Holy Spirit) shall glorify Me (Jesus): for He shall receive of Mine, and shall shew it unto you. All things that the Father hath are Mine: therefore said I, that He shall take of Mine, and shall shew it unto you."
The Holy Spirit is continually bringing glory and honor to Christ. This is a key way to discern if a spirit is the Holy Spirit or a demonic spirit. One of the primary ways the Holy Spirit works is through glory and revelation of Jesus. John 15:26 says, "But when the Comforter is come . . . He shall testify of Me," and in John 16:14 Jesus tells us, "He shall glorify Me." The Holy Spirit brings revelation and understanding that we can never have through natural means. Jesus is the revelation of God and the Holy Spirit is the interpretation of that revelation. It is more than a simple translation. The Holy Spirit brings a deep level of understanding that becomes the foundation for a personal relationship with Christ. Without this revelation it is difficult to know Christ personally. The Holy Spirit creates a living union with Christ and the believer, making Christ very real in our lives.
In the person of Christ the Holy Spirit was and is active. Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit. "But when he (Joseph) had considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, 'Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit'" (Matthew 1:20 NASV). This is confirmed by two additional scriptures: Luke 1:35 and Matthew 1:18. This conception of Jesus brought a sinless purity that fulfilled scripture and was necessary for Him to do what He was sent into the world to accomplish. His ultimate sacrifice was perfect and able to redeem mankind because of who He was and the purity of the D.N.A. of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus was not a new being called into life, but One who existed eternally who by His conception was about to enter into a vital relationship with mankind. It is important to realize that Jesus has been with us from the beginning of time. He has always existed. He is God.
Another work of the Holy Spirit in the life of Christ was when Jesus the child was brought into the temple the Holy Spirit was waiting to receive Him. A man named Simeon was filled with the Spirit waiting for the savior to be revealed. He prophesied over baby Jesus to the amazement of His parents. (Luke 2:25-30) Jesus' reception in the Temple was arranged by the Holy Spirit.. The Holy Spirit was waiting to receive Christ just as He is waiting for us today. Just like with Jesus, the Holy Spirit prepares the way and goes before us the believer for what is to come. God is full of surprises but the Holy Spirit keeps us ready to receive whatever wonders the Lord has planned.
Jesus' growth was attributed to the Holy Spirit: "And the Child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon Him" (Luke 2:40). By age 12 the rabbis were amazed as they listened to Him. This was because of the Holy Spirit and a fulfillment of prophecy as foretold in Isaiah 11:2: "And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord." The Spirit gave Jesus the knowledge that He needed for His ministry. It was not a man acquired knowledge (God does make use of manmade knowledge) but it was a supernatural knowledge straight from His heavenly Father God did not grow Himself, for Jesus is the "Alpha and the Omega." But Jesus’ humanity had to grow and develop just like any other man’s. He had to be God and He had to be man. This was the only way Jesus could successfully mediate for us.
He was led by the Holy Spirit into the wilderness (see Matthew 4:1, Mark 1:12, 13). During the entire time of the wilderness experience the Holy Spirit was working with Jesus’ human nature to overcome severe temptations of the devil. He did not have victory because He was God incarnate, but because the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit allowed His humanity to overcome Satan. By the power of the Holy Spirit we too can overcome Satan and his temptations. Christians are not necessarily out of the will of God for suffering temptation. Jesus certainly was not out of God’s will when He was tempted. This is a lesson that all Christians need to learn. Jesus was and still is our model.
Concerning Christ’s earthly ministry, Jesus was God but He was also man and He ministered through the direction and power of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit anointed Jesus with power for His ministry, as shown in Matthew 3:16: "And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon Him." The Holy Spirit equipped Him for the purpose of His ministry. This anointing of the Holy Spirit was a key in Jesus accomplishing His destiny. It is the same key that is necessary for us. It was not until after the Spirit came upon Him that we hear of Him teaching and preaching. Matthew 4:17 says, "From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, 'Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.'" Jesus’ ministry time began with the baptism of the Holy Spirit. He gave clear instructions to His disciples to also wait for the Holy Spirit before they were to begin their ministry (see Luke 24:49).
Jesus announced His mission statement after the Holy Spirit came upon Him. In Luke 4:18 Jesus tells us, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He hath anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He hath sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised." I personally believe that this is a mission statement for all believers, because Jesus told us that we are to do the same works as Him and more (see John 14:12).
The Holy Spirit was working in Jesus’ healing ministry. Acts 10:38 shows us, "How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with Him." The anointing of the Holy Spirit preceded Jesus' great ministry miracles.
The Holy Spirit was active in Christ’s deliverance ministry. Matthew 12:28 reads, "But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you." Deliverance from demons is equated to the kingdom of God. Demons are evicted by the authority of Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit.
The work of the Holy Spirit was the power required for Christ’s death and resurrection. He was enabled by the Holy Spirit to make the perfect sacrifice of His own body. "How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? (Hebrews 9:14). He was raised from the dead by the Holy Spirit. But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in you" (Romans 8:11).
The Holy Spirit was at work concerning Christ's ministry to the church. Acts 1:2b shares that, "He through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom He had chosen." Jesus' directions for the church came through the communication of the Holy Spirit. His directives are still spoken today through the work of the Spirit. Obedience to the Holy Spirit is what separates a Spirit-led church from a church led by man's directives. The distinction is as far as life is from death. Man can only manufacture dead things; the Holy Spirit brings life to the soul of man and life to the church.
The Holy Spirit is bestowed by Christ. Peter on the day of Pentecost explained the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and where He came from: "Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He has poured out this which you see and hear" (Acts 2:33, RSV).
There is no other way to carry out the ministry of Christ except through the power of the Holy Spirit. John 14:12 says, "Verily. verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto My Father." This scripture seems like an impossibility and it is without the supernatural working of the Holy Spirit.
Understanding the works of the Holy Spirit helps us to get to know the third person of the trinity. I hope that you, at this point, are developing a deeper appreciation for who the Holy Spirit actually is. But reader there is so much more. Let us continue in our study.
Chapter Two Review - The Holy Spirit Lesson 2
Chapter Review is for Study Purposes Only - It is not Necessary to Submit Your Review Answers