Welcome back BGOers! How are you enjoying the series on the HOLY SPIRIT? Write us and let us know. This week, we resume with looking at the work of the The FATHER, The SON and The HOLY SPIRIT in Salvation.
Firstly, why do we need to be saved? Can't our own righteous acts atone for our sins? The answer is, “No.” Ever since The Fall in the Garden of Eden, humanity has suffered the wages of sin, which is death. Even the Prophet Isaiah laments, “How then can we be saved? 6 All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away,” Isaiah 64:5-6, NIV.
So there is no way for us to earn our way back to GOD, or atone for our sins. Yet GOD The Father, in His infinite love, mercy and grace, makes a way for us. He sent His Son JESUS as the atoning sacrifice. His blood cleanses us, He justifies us before the Father and His righteousness then becomes ours-it is imputed to us.
21 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22 This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. Romans 3:21-24, NIV
The only caveat...we have to repent and believe. Repentance involves a sorrowful acknowledgment of our sinfulness and a conscious decision to turn away from it. “10 For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death,” 2 Corinthians 7:10, NKJV. Faith happens when we turn towards JESUS, believing in what He did on the cross and accepting it. Neither of these actions can happen without the HOLY SPIRIT. “...no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit,” 1 Corinthians 12:3, NKJV.
The HOLY SPIRIT then acts in our lives to bring about a newness-a complete change. “'You must repent,' Peter answered, 'and everyone of you must be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit,” Acts 2:38, NJB. It is this gift of the HOLY SPIRIT working in our lives that brings about regeneration and sanctification.
Join us next week as we continue to look at the work of The HOLY SPIRIT in Salvation. We leave you with the following scripture until then:
5 Jesus replied: In all truth I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born through water and the Spirit; 6 what is born of human nature is human; what is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not be surprised when I say: You must be born from above. 8 The wind blows where it pleases; you can hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit. John 3:5-8, NJB.