THE HOLY SPIRIT AS ONE OF US
Dr. W. A. Criswell
6-4-78 10:30 a.m.
On the radio and on television you are sharing with us the morning service of the First Baptist Church in Dallas. This is the pastor bringing the message entitled The Holy Spirit as One of Us. This is the first time that I can ever remember in the half a century in which I have been a pastor, that I have ever presented a doctrinal study at the morning preaching hour. But it just seemed to me that it is something that would please God if I did it.
In preaching through the Book of Acts, before coming to chapter 16, there is a verse in the fifteenth chapter of the Book of Acts that captured my prayerful thought— Acts 15:28: “For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us.” That is one of the most amazing texts that I have ever read in all the Word of God. The two are there together, thinking, deliberating, deciding: one is God the Holy Spirit, and the other is a man made out of dust. Yet they are in that verse together in comradeship, in fellowship, in partnership and in communion. Could it be that one of those two, the Holy Spirit, is really and actually God? “It seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us”; partners in fellowship, in comradeship, in deciding, in communion, in deliberation, in thinking. “It seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us.” Is it really God who is thus fellowshipping with us as a comrade and as a companion?
So our first study concerns the deity of the Holy Spirit. There is no question but that the Bible presents the godhood of the Holy Spirit. In the baptismal formula in Matthew 28:19, “baptizing them in the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,” “name” is singular. God we know as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In Christian experience expressed in our baptism, we know God as triune. Our salvation was thought by God the Father; it was brought by God the Son; and it was wrought by God the Holy Spirit.
- God the Father loved us and sent His Son to die for us [John 3:16].
- God the Son suffered and gave His life and was buried that our sins might be taken away [1 Corinthians 15:3-4].
- And God the Holy Spirit raised Him from the dead [Romans 1:4];
- There to intercede for us at the right hand of God in heaven [Romans 8:34].
And the same Holy Spirit shall also raise us up from the dead [Romans 8:11]. In that baptismal formula, the triune God is presented, but whose name is One. The one true God is triune, Three in One [Matthew 28:19].
For example, in the beautiful benedictory sentence in 2 Corinthians 13:14, “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit, be with you now and for ever. Amen.” God is one in essence, in being, in equality, in attributes, in power, and in glory; the three, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Whatever can be said of God can be said of the Holy Spirit. He is eternal: Hebrews 9:14, “Christ, through the eternal Spirit offered Himself to God.” He is omnipotent: Genesis 1:2, “And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” He is omniscient; that is, He knows all that God knows: 1 Corinthians 2:10-11, “For the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God . . . Even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.” He is omnipresent; He is everywhere, all of Him present everywhere at the same time and instant. This beautiful passage in the one hundred thirty-ninth Psalm:
Whither shall I go from Thy Spirit? And whither shall I flee from Thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, Thou art there.
If you go to the farthest star, to the very edge of creation, there will you find all of the Spirit of God.
If I make my bed in Sheol, in the grave, behold, Thou art there.
If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;
Even there shall Thy hand lead me, and Thy right hand shall guide me.
If I say, Surely, surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me.
Yea, the darkness hideth not from Thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to Thee.
He is “the Spirit of holiness,” Romans 1:4. He is “the Spirit of life,” Romans 8:2. He is “the Spirit of truth,” John 14:17. He is the Spirit of God who lives in the temples of our bodies, 1 Corinthians 6:19. He is to be worshipped, adored, loved, obeyed. We are on most holy ground, thus speaking of the Spirit of God. We need to take off our shoes as we stand in His presence and as He moves in our souls [Joshua 5:15]. The truth involved is most sacred and precious.
The works of the Holy Spirit are literally, actually, the works of God. The Holy Spirit is the Author of the Holy Scriptures, this Bible. The Bible was written over a period of beyond fifteen hundred years by over forty writers, and it is contained in sixty-six different books; and yet it is one Book. Its unity is undeniable. It has one Author: the Spirit of the living God—2 Timothy 3:16 says, “Pasa graphē theopneustos.” Pasa, “every, all,” graphē, “Scripture,” theopneustos, “is God-breathed.” All of the Scripture, all of it, every syllable and sentence is the Spirit of God in word and in utterance. It is the breath, the ruach, the pneuma of the living God.
Second Peter 1:20-21 in the King James Version reads like this: “No prophecy of the Scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.” Now you don’t get the literal idea when I read that in that English translation. I have written it out here actually from the Word itself, from the Greek text itself. You listen to it: “Every prophecy of Scripture of its own origination did not come into being. For not by the will of man was brought forth at any time a prophecy, but by the Holy Spirit being borne, spoke the holy men of God.” The Scripture there is saying that the Holy Bible did not originate in the mind of the writer. The moving Spirit in them that caused Scripture to be written was the Spirit of God! What the man wrote was what the Holy Spirit of God moved in him to write.
This is poignantly illustrated in the life of David. In 2 Samuel 23:1-2: “Now these be the last words of David. David the son of Jesse said, and the man who was raised up on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet psalmist of Israel, said: The Spirit of the Lord spake by me, and His word was in my tongue.” When we read those psalms of David, we are reading the utterances of the Holy Spirit of God. Look at, for example, Psalm 22:16: “They pierced My hands and My feet”; and verse 18, “They part My garments among them, and cast lots upon My vesture” [Psalm 22:18]. Did David ever experience anything like that? Were his hands ever pierced? Were his feet ever nail-driven through? Were his garments ever parted by lot? No, no such thing as that was ever experienced by the king of Israel. What David was doing, he was writing by prophecy a description of the sufferings of our Lord. It is the Spirit speaking through him that gave rise to the words in the Bible. Thus it came about that in Acts 1:16 it can be said, quote, “The Holy Spirit by the mouth of David spake,” then the quotation [Acts 1:17].
This is also illustrated in the life of Ezekiel the prophet. Ezekiel 2:2, “The Spirit entered into me when He spake unto me, and set me on my feet, that I heard Him that spake unto me.” And Ezekiel wrote down the vision that the Spirit of God gave to him [Ezekiel 2:3-8]. And the words are the words of the moving Spirit of the Lord.
Now in that revelation, in that Bible, there are two words that were used: one is “revelation” and the other is “inspiration” [2 Peter 1:21]. “Revelation” refers to the content, what is revealed [2 Peter 1:20]; and “inspiration” refers to the transmission of the message of God. The revelations written in the Bible were given by the Holy Spirit: the disclosure of things that no man could ever know, such as in the beginning of the creation, and the disclosure of the prophecies of things that are yet to come that no man could ever know. These are the revelations of the Spirit of God. Now, the correctness of the record, the inerrancy and infallibility of the written Word is the work of inspiration by the Holy Spirit [1 Peter 1:21]. That it is recorded free from error is the result of the guiding hand of the Spirit of God; the Holy Word that I hold in my hand [2 Peter 1:20-21].
He is not only the Author of the Scriptures [2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21], but He is the great teacher and illuminator. John 14:26 avows, “But the Comforter, the paraklētos, the Paraclete, which is the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things.” And John 16:13, “When He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth.” It is a very profitable thing to sit down at the feet of a man of God and listen to the lesson that he brings, or to listen to the sermon that he preaches. But, the ultimate and final authority of what you believe and to what you give your soul does not lie in a man, ever; but it lies in the leadership, the pedagogical inerrancy of the Holy Spirit of God Himself. Listen to the man, listen to the teacher, listen to the preacher, but let God’s Spirit teach you the ultimate truth of what the man is saying. Is it the truth of God? Is it not the truth of God? “The Holy Spirit will guide you into all truth” [John 16:13].
He not only is the Author of Scripture, and He is not only our great Teacher and Illuminator, you can learn for yourself, He will teach you; but He is also the instrument of regeneration. He convicts of sin. John 16:8, “When He is come He will reprove,” that’s the King James Version, “elegchō, convict the world of sin.” And He regenerates the soul: John 3:5, “Jesus answered, Verily, verily, truly, truly, amen, amen, I say unto you, Except a man be born of water, the washing of the water of the word, except a man be born of water, of the word, and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” “The wind bloweth where it listeth . . . so is every one that is born of the Spirit” [John 3:8]. He regenerates our souls: Titus 3:5-6, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, by the renewing of the Holy Spirit; which He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our God.”
If the gospel is effective unto salvation, it is the work of the Holy Spirit of God. Zechariah 4:6, “Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, saith the Lord.” And 1 Corinthians 2:4, “And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.” First Thessalonians 1:5, “But our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit, and in great assurance.” We cannot convert anyone; not even the smallest child. All we can do is to witness and to pray. It is the Spirit of God that regenerates the heart [Titus 3:5-6]. “If any one be in Christ, he is a new creation” [2 Corinthians 5:17]; and that fashioning anew is the same Spirit of God that created the world in the beginning [Genesis 1:1-2]. He creates a new somebody when He regenerates you [John 3:3, 7].
Again, He is the Comforter, the paraklētos, the Paraclete in the Christian life. John 14:16-17, “I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Paraclete, that He may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him: but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.” He helps our infirmities: Romans 8:26, “Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities.” Beat down, and weak, and helpless, and discouraged, and frustrated, almost in despair, the Spirit of God lifts us up. He encourages us, He stands by us, He sees us through.
He helps us in prayer: Romans 8:26-27, “For we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit Himself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And He that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because He maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.” Sometimes I would think we pray our best when we can’t couch the words in syllables and in sentences. The burden’s too great and the grief is too deep and the sorrow too pervading; can’t even say it in words. But God who searches the heart listens to the Spirit as He prays, as He intercedes for us with groanings which cannot be uttered [Romans 8:26].
Again, the Spirit speaks to the churches: Revelation 2:7, “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith to the churches.” Sometimes I’m afraid we are so worldly and so busily about things of this life that we can’t hear the voice of the Spirit of the living God.
Again, time would fail me to speak of the Holy Spirit in creation: Psalm 33:6, 104:30, Job 33:4, Job 26:13. Time would fail me to speak of the Holy Spirit in the life of Christ. He was begotten by the Holy Spirit: Luke 1:35, “The Spirit shall overshadow thee, the holy power of God shall overshadow thee: wherefore also that holy thing that shall be born of thee, shall be called the Son of God.” The Holy Spirit begot in the womb of the virgin Mary the body of Jesus our Lord, that He might have a sacrifice to be made for our sins. A spirit could never make that sacrifice. As the Scriptures say, “A body hast thou prepared for Me” [Hebrews 10:5], that He might have blood and flesh to make atonement for our souls. “For it is the blood that maketh atonement for the soul” [Leviticus 17:11]. And the Holy Spirit fashioned the body of Christ in the womb of Mary [Luke 1:35], that He might make atonement for our sins.
At His baptism in the Jordan River, our Lord was endowed for His messianic ministry by the overshadowing, the enduement, the endowment of the Holy Spirit: Matthew 3:16. His life before men and God was lived filled with the Spirit: Jesus, full of the Spirit, was ever His enduring name [Luke 4:1, Acts 10:38], His wonder-working power and presence. He was, our Lord Jesus was raised from the dead by the power of the Holy Spirit [Romans 1:4]. And it was in the power and unction of the Holy Spirit that Jesus gave commission and commandment to the apostles, in Acts 1:2.
Nor do I have time to speak of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer and the working ministries of the church. At the time of our regeneration by the Holy Spirit we were baptized by that same Spirit into the body of Christ; 1 Corinthians 12:13, “For by one Spirit, the Holy Spirit of God, were we all baptized into the body of Christ.” The baptizing work of the Holy Spirit is found in our addition to the church, the body of Christ. When I am saved, when I am regenerated, in that instant the Holy Spirit baptizes me, adds me to the body of Christ [1 Corinthians 12:13].
May I pause and parenthesize here to point out to you that, whenever you interpret Scripture correctly, it will all fit beautifully together like a mosaic, and every little piece will have its part to make up the whole beautiful picture. But if you don’t interpret Scripture correctly it will have a jagged edge to it; it doesn’t fit. Here is a wonderful example of it: the Bible avows that when I am saved, at that moment I am baptized by the Holy Spirit into the body of Christ; I am added to the body of our Lord [1 Corinthians 12:13].
Then the Bible will say that if a man is ever regenerated, if he’s ever saved, he’s saved forever: “For I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any one pluck them out of My Father’s hand. My Father, who gave them Me, is greater than all . . . I and My Father are one” [John 10:28-30]. The baptizing work of the Holy Spirit when we are saved adds us to the body of Christ; and being in the body of Christ, we are there forever and forever [1 Corinthians 12:13]. It is a fanciful idea, strange and alien to the mind of God and to the Holy Scriptures, that one could be added to the body of Christ and then taken out of the body, and then added, and then taken out; saved and lost, saved and lost. No such doctrine as that is ever found in the Holy Scriptures, written by the Holy Spirit of God [2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21]. You see, Paul in writing that in the twelfth chapter of the first Corinthian letter, he said we’re like a hand, and we’re like a foot, and we’re like an eye, and we’re like an ear: and the foot doesn’t say to the hand, “I have no need of thee.” And the hand doesn’t say to the eye, “I have no need of thee.” And the eye doesn’t say to the ear, “I have no need of thee.” But all the members of the body are vital for its life and function [1 Corinthians 12:14-21]. So it is in the Holy Spirit as He adds us to the church [1 Corinthians 12:13]: some of us are like a hand, some of us are like a foot, some of us are like an eye, some of us are like an ear. But it is fanciful and alien to the mind of God and to the Scriptures that a hand be added and then taken off, that an eye be added and then taken out, that a foot be added and then cut off, and then put back, and back and forth. You see, when you interpret Scripture perfectly and accurately and according to the mind of the Spirit of God, it will always fit. We are baptized into the body of Christ by the Holy Spirit [1 Corinthians 12:13]; and being baptized, added to the body of Christ, we are there forever and forever [John 10:28-30].
Now some of us may be a sorry hand, and others of us may be a sorry foot, and then there’s a whole lot of innards on the inside of me that I ain’t never seen; some of us may be a sorry gizzard, or a sorry pancreas, or a sorry pituitary gland, or semimembranosus or tensor fasciae latae, the Lord only knows. But all of these little old things on the inside of me and around me and everything in me, they are vital. And though I can’t sometimes see and understand, yet they have a place to play in the functioning of the body. And that’s the way with all of God’s people. Some of you are very seen and very prominent, and some of you are hardly seen at all; but all of us have a vital part in that body of Christ. And being added, we are a part, a member of the body of Christ forever and ever and ever. We are saved forever and ever and ever [John 3:16, 10:27-30].
We all, each one, are commanded to be filled with the Holy Spirit: Ephesians 5:18. And in His sovereign grace and in His elective choice, each one of the members of the church, the body of Christ, is given gifts for the strengthening and edification of the congregation: 1 Corinthians 12:7-11. You have one gift, and you have another, and you have another; and all of God’s people, all of them are given gifts by the Holy Spirit of God that the church may be full of vitality and vibrancy and life, that it may march, that it may be victorious in the world. That is the work of the Holy Spirit.
Now, this amazing and unbelievable thing said in our text: “It seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us” [Acts 15:28]. Yet even though deity, sovereign deity, the Holy Spirit is one of us [Acts 15:28]. There is an amazing avowal in that text: the Holy Spirit is somebody as you are somebody. The Holy Spirit is a person as you are a person. Now the word “persons” to describe the Trinity is never used in the Bible; it is never used to describe the Godhead. The word “persons” to refer to the Trinity was first used by Tertullian in about 200 AD, in his and his fellow apologists’ confrontation with Sabellius. Tertullian, in my humble opinion—he was the first Latin father, and in my humble opinion he was the greatest. Tertullian flourished about 200 AD, and he used that word “person” to refer to the Godhead in his controversy with Sabellius.
This man Sabellius, who himself was a brilliant theologian, looked upon the Holy Spirit as just one of the modes of the expressions of the manifestations of God. He looked upon the Holy Spirit as an energy, an influence, an effulgence, an influence. In controverting Sabellius, the best word Tertullian and his fellow Christian apologists could find was the word “person”: the Holy Spirit is a person in the same sense that God the Father is a person, and in the same sense that Jesus the Son of God is a person. And in the history of the Christological and theological controversies of the church, let me point out to you something that is inevitably true: in those controversies you will always find that a denial of the personality of the Holy Spirit ensues in a denial of the Holy Trinity. It makes Unitarians out of Christians, and Unitarians are not Christians. They are philosophers, they are speculators, they are humanists; they are not Christians. According to the Holy Scriptures, the Holy Spirit is a full-orbed personality. Someone who can think, the Holy Spirit can think, He has mind and understanding. He is Someone who can feel; He has emotion and sensibilities. He is Someone who can will; He has volition, choice, and purpose. And He is Someone who can do, who works in our world.
First, the Holy Spirit can think: He has mind and intelligence; 1 Corinthians 2:11. “For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? Even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.” The Holy Spirit feels; He is sensitive. He can be hurt just as you can be hurt; Ephesians 4:30, “Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.” The Holy Spirit wills, He chooses, He purposes; 1 Corinthians 12:7 and then verse 11: “But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal [1 Corinthians 12:7]. But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as He will” [1 Corinthians 12:11]. It is the elective purpose of God that a certain gift is given to you. God chooses that: you don’t seek it, you don’t buy it, you don’t learn it, it is an endowment from heaven; it is something bestowed upon you. And that elective choice is the work of the Holy Spirit of God [1 Corinthians 12:7, 11].
The Holy Spirit works; He does; He moves. As we have previously discussed in this study, He moved the writing of the Holy Scriptures [2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21]; He regenerates our souls [John 3:3]; He strengthens us in our Christian life [Galatians 5:16]; He raised Jesus from the dead [Romans 1:4]; He shall raise us from the dead [Romans 8:11]; He bestows spiritual gifts [1 Corinthians 12:7-11]; and He speaks authoritatively to the churches [1 Corinthians 2:12].
Now may I lastly speak of the relationship between the Persons in the Godhead, in the Trinity? There are two lines of teaching that are found all through these Holy Scriptures, and all the way through will you find it. One line insists upon the unity of the Godhead: there is one God. A passage out of the Old Testament: Deuteronomy 6:4, the great shema of Judaism: Shema, “Hear, hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord.” That is the great basic commitment of Judaism.
You find the same dedication and avowal in the New Testament: 1 Corinthians 8:4, 6, “There is none other God but one.” And that revelation you will find all the way through the Bible, from the beginning to the ending. God is one—monotheism.
But there is another line of revelation in the Bible, all the way through; and that revelation reveals distinctions in the Godhead. For example, in the Old Testament, Exodus 23:20-21: “Behold, I send My Angel”— capital “A”—“before thee. . .Beware of Him, obey His voice, provoke Him not; for My name is in Him”; that is, “I am He and He is I.” Look: [Genesis 48:15-16]; Jacob says, “The God who fed me, the Angel”—capital—“who redeemed me from all evil.” All through the Bible there are distinctions made in the Godhead.
It starts off like that: bereshith bara elohim [Genesis 1:1-2. I-m, i-m in Hebrew is plural: a cherub and a cherubim, a seraph and a seraphim; —im is plural, and elohim, el is God, and elohim, plural. The first time the name of God is named in the Bible, it is a plural word. All through the Bible there follows that line of distinction in the Godhead. And, of course, it comes to full light and revelation in the New Testament, such as the baptismal formula: “In the name,” singular, “of the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit” [Matthew 28:19]. And in that beautiful benedictory that closes the second Corinthian letter: “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion and fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with you for ever” [2 Corinthians 13:14]. The distinctions in the Godhead are always present in the Bible.
Now we speak of the great and mighty work and assignment of the Holy Spirit. The mighty work and the great assignment of the Spirit of God is to glorify Jesus, to testify and to witness to the Lord Jesus. John 16:13-14: “He shall not speak of Himself; He shall glorify Me.” The Holy Spirit does not call attention to Himself; but He points to the Lord Jesus Christ, always. If I could put in the mouth these words, it would be true of the Holy Spirit: “Not I, but Christ” [Galatians 2:20]. And any man of God who speaks in the power and unction of the Holy Spirit is just like that: “Not I, but Christ” [Galatians 2:20].
If it is Paul, that’s what Paul will say: “Not I, but Christ.” If it is a godly teacher: “Not I, but Christ.” If it is a godly pastor and preacher: “Not I, but Christ”; pointing to Him, always pointing to Him; exalting and magnifying our wonderful Lord.
The Holy Spirit is called “the Spirit of God” in Matthew 3:16. He is called “the Spirit of Christ” in Romans 8:9. And He is called “the Spirit of Jesus” in Philippians 1:19. The Holy Spirit takes the place of the resurrected, glorified, ascended Lord Jesus [Acts 1:9-10] in our hearts and in our lives. If Jesus were here in the flesh, He could show us, and teach us, and guide us, and inspire us, and encourage us every step of the way and every moment of the day. But Jesus is ascended into heaven, there to make intercession for us at the right hand of God [Romans 8:34]. But with us, and in us, and by us, and for us is the Holy Spirit of Jesus [John 14:16-17, 16:7-15]: Jesus Himself. When we have the Spirit of Jesus in our hearts and in our lives, we have the Lord and Savior Himself in our hearts and in our lives. According to the words of the Scriptures in describing our human experience, it is impossible to distinguish between them: the Spirit of Jesus that He has given to us and Jesus who is at the right hand of God interceding for us in heaven [Romans 8:34].
For example, in 1 Corinthians 6:19, “Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit which is in you.” Then in Galatians 2:20, the same apostle Paul says it like this: “Christ liveth in me.” The Holy Spirit of God takes up His residence in this earthly tabernacle, this body, this temple; and Paul calls the indwelling of that Holy Spirit of God in this house of clay, he calls it “Christ liveth in me” [Galatians 2:20].
What is given to us by the Holy Spirit is Christ: Christ transcendent, Christ unlimited, Christ gloriously victorious, all of Him, our Lord Christ, forever and forever. This is the Holy Spirit in His work in the world today. Always pointing to Jesus, always looking to Jesus, always speaking about Jesus, always inviting to Jesus, always encouraging to trust in, believe in, have confidence in, commit life and soul to the Lord Jesus: that’s the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives [John 16:13-15]. And when I listen to His voice as He points to Jesus, if I listen to His voice and trust His witness, I’m saved. The same Holy Spirit that points to the Lord, when I listen, when I respond, He regenerates my soul [Titus 3:5]; I become a Christian, I am saved. That is the work of the Holy Spirit of God.
There is life for a look at the Crucified One—
the great office of the Holy Spirit is to point us to the Lord Jesus, to look to Him [John 16:13-15]—
There is life for a look at the Crucified One—
not looking at the church, or looking at the preacher, or looking at the ordinances; but looking to Jesus—
There is life for a look at the Crucified One,
There is life at this moment for thee;
Then look, sinner, look unto Him and be saved,
Unto Him who was nailed to the tree.
[“There Is Life for a Look at The Crucified One,” Amelia M. Hull]
The great office and ministry of the third Person in the Godhead is to exalt the blessed Lord Jesus, to turn our eyes upon Him, to find life, and forgiveness, and promise, and glory, and resurrection, and heaven in His gracious ministries, in His loving heart, in His atoning sacrifice [John 15:26]. And if I listen to the voice of the Spirit of God, I am saved, I am regenerated [Acts 16:31]. That’s what it is to become a Christian.
There are many thousands of you who have listened to this study on radio and on television. Wherever you are, have you been listening on the radio? Would you drive in your car, stop it, pull to the side of the road, you’ve been listening to the message on your car radio. Drive to the side of the road and bow your head, and say, “Lord Jesus, the Holy Spirit has pointed me to Thee; and today I look. Forgive my sin [1 John 1:9]. Write my name in the Book of Life [Revelation 20:12, 15, 21:27]. Create in me a new heart and a new spirit” [Psalm 51:10]. If you do, you’ll be saved now and forever [John 3:16, 10:27-30]. You will be a new man. You will be a new person. You will be a new somebody. And that new somebody will be happy, and glad, and victorious, and heaven-bound!
Have you listened to this doctrinal study on television? Has the Spirit of God spoken to you? Where are you? Are you in the living room? Kneel down by the side of the chair. Are you in the bedroom? Kneel down by the side of the bed, say, “Lord Jesus, the Spirit of God has spoken to me, and today I look in faith, in acceptance to the Lord Jesus.” If you will, the Holy Spirit of God who is God Himself will remake you and change you; you will be a new creation [2 Corinthians 5:17], a new somebody else.
And in the great throng that are in this auditorium today: “Pastor, God has spoken to me. The Spirit has pointed me to the Lord Jesus. His office has been fulfilled in my heart and in my life. And today I look in faith to the Lord Jesus [Ephesians 2:8], dying for my sins [1 Corinthians 15:3], raised to declare me righteous and to present me someday faultless before the throne of glory [Jude 1:24], and promising to walk by my side in strength and victory every continuing step of the way [Matthew 28:20]. I believe, I accept, I look; and I am coming” [Romans 10:9-10]. A family you to put your life with us in the church; or a couple you beginning your life together as the days and the years unfold, happy in one another and in Him; or just one somebody you, “The Lord has spoken; I have heard His voice and I am coming.” In a moment we shall stand…