2012-12-12 - The Holy Spirit and Salvation
The Epistles of John ~ Part 81 ~ 1 John 4
It is the presence of the Holy Spirit that is the final validation of Salvation. Without the Holy Spirit, no unregenerate can be saved. And when saved, the new believer is simultaneously indwelt by the Spirit.
"You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ" (Romans 8:9).
The presence of the Spirit results in the believer glorifying God. What some theologians seem to forget is, it is the Spirit's function to glorify Christ - not Himself. This is why it is inappropriate to allow a focus on the Holy Spirit to obscure the glory of Christ.
"When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me" (John 15:26).
It is important to note that John is saying believers will not only testify for Christ, but they will be accurate, under leading of the Holy Spirit, in their testimony. The problem with the false teachers was, though they talked about Jesus Christ, he was a different Christ. The proof of salvation is an orthodox testimony of the incarnation. Only those who are of Christ will testify accurately to Who He is.
Confidence of salvation is dependent on Who God is, not our deserving it. God, in His loving mercy, took on human form and died for sin. We are saved because He loves us, not because we deserve it. And it is the presence of the Holy Spirit that makes God's love real in us.
"And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us" (Romans 5:5).
To be continued.