He gives us the strength to say “no” to sin, and so, “yes” to God — say “yes” to God — and to say “yes” to obedience. And only God can do that. The Holy Spirit is God, and he does those mighty works in our lives and in our world. He rules over every event. He saves us, literally. He brings salvation that Jesus Christ earned into our lives and makes it ours. And He continues to change us until we meet Jesus someday.
Life in the Spirit
This lack of personal development is just sheer laziness on the part of many, and as a result, the church is happy just paying someone else to look after their Christianity. We need to address the fundamental issues facing Christendom with Scripture and Scripture alone.
God’s whole counsel includes both the bad news about our natural state and the good news about God’s plan to redeem us.
Christ has become merely a means to an end, and believers are induced to come to the Master’s table, not to experience fellowship and intimacy with the Master, but to enjoy what is on the Master’s table. In sharp distinction to this message, the Jesus of the Scriptures is not a means to an end; He is the end (cf. Phil. 3:7-8). McCullough writes, “the church is more often influenced by cultural trends than theological commitments. Our obsession with self has led us astray into the temple of idols: in particular the god-of-my-comfort, and the god-of-my-success.” Shakespeare says it most succinctly, “you pay a great deal too dear for what’s given freely.”
Since we do not belong to ourselves, we should cease to live for ourselves, but should rather deny ourselves. We are not our own: in so far as we can, let us therefore forget ourselves and all that is ours. Since we belong to God, we should live and die for God alone, and order all parts of our lives by his will alone. Thus, we are God’s: let us therefore live for him and die for him.
The Holy Spirit will take us in hand, time and again, over our breaches of the law of unselfish love; if we respond He will write part of that law in our hearts. We, in fact, are ourselves changed, from one degree of glory to another, but always in the direction of liberty –‘where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom’ (2 Corinthians 3:17).