We are a community built on God’s Truth.
So how do we know God’s Truth? We don’t have to guess. He makes it clear.
We learn Truth and read it in the written Word of God. Truth is born in the character and heart of the Father.
We see Truth in Jesus, the Living Word of God. He shows us how to live God’s Truth in this life.
We are transformed by Truth as the Holy Spirit, the Inner Word, moves in to our house and counsels us.
This is how God speaks to us! Born in the character of the Father, modeled in the life of Jesus, and infused in us through the Holy Spirit.
How the Holy Spirit leads us to God’s Truth:
By INSPIRATION [2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Pet. 1:21]. Yes, the scriptures were written by men, but it all was born in the heart of God, inspired by the Holy Spirit and directed by him. The Word of God is inspired, and we are inspired by the Word of God.
By ILLUMINATION. Have you ever read scripture and had it reach out and grab you? That is the Holy Spirit in the moment speaking to you. We can’t understand God’s Truth without the Holy Spirit who shines the spotlight on Truth and makes it alive and fresh to us.
By INFUSION. The Holy Spirit implants God’s Word into our life to bring regeneration (renewal, restoration). He transforms how we live with his pervasive Presence. Rather than being the friend you occasionally meet for coffee, the Holy Spirit moves into your house — and changes us!
By INTERCESSION. When we don’t understand scripture, the Holy Spirit works on our behalf. If we get hung up, all we have to do is ask. I am relatively mechanically uninclined, so whenever I have car trouble, it’s sometimes a challenge for me to be able to communicate to the tech the problem I’m having. And when they start asking questions about engine size and component parts, the silence on my end of the phone confirms their suspicions that I don’t know what I’m talking about. The tech always manages to figure out the problem and communicate to the mechanic who fixes it. In the same way, the Holy Spirit steps in to ask what we don’t even know to ask for.
By INSTRUCTION. The Holy Spirit is our teacher and mentor [John 14:26]. A teacher helps us understand; a mentor helps us walk it out. The Holy Spirit does both!
By IMPELLING. The Holy Spirit takes us by the hand and ‘guides us into all Truth’ [John 16:13]. He moves us along, shepherding us, guiding us, and encouraging us as we walk out the Truth. This summer, I took my 7-year old son for a hike on the Natchez Loop Trail in Mt Rainier National Park. The 3-mile loop is hard work for little legs, but with a little food, a little water, a little rest, and a lot of encouragement, he made it. Every step of the way, I kept saying to him, “Wait until you see it!” And when we popped around the corner and he caught a glimpse of the mountain, it was all worthwhile. The Holy Spirit encourages and guides us until we reach our destination! Wait until you see it…
By IRRITATION. Yes, the Holy Spirit is that nagging Voice that convicts us of wrongdoing [John 16:7-11]. It is annoying and irritating, but this is a gift! The discipline of the LORD doesn’t come from anger; it comes from his Truth wrapped in his love.
The HS inspires, illuminates, infuses, intercedes, instructs, impels, and irritates. He cooperates with the Father and the Son to lead us into God’s Truth and Life.
Too often, we think of the Holy Spirit as a feeling we can pump up, whip up, or conjure up; a fetish we can use, abuse, or channel to get what we want; a force that is impersonal, coercible, or contradictory to God’s Word or Jesus.
But He is not.
He is the indwelling Presence of God who leads us into all Truth cooperatively with the Father and the Son.