Garry continued his series on ‘Being & Doing’ tonight, looking at the family of God and how the Holy Spirit helps us. Col 1:1-2 reminds us that we are God’s holy people, ‘brothers and sisters’, and Rom 8:9-17 talks about how the Spirit of God confirms our identity as God’s children, enabling us to cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ We have been adopted into God’s family and are now heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ.
Most of us have little expereince of adoption. Marriage is the closest relationship we know where we acquire not only a spouse but a welcome into a new family, who will undoubtedly have different ways of doing things. But when a child is adopted into a family, there is a transference from one family to another, and the old family has no legal claim on the child anymore. Our adoption into God’s family means we are transferred from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of light; the Holy Spirit takes up residence in us and opens up a whole new spiritual realm to us. He guides us, guards us, protects us and leads us (as Paul experienced when the Holy Spirit stopped him going to some areas and drew him to Macedonia, Acts 16.) He also reminds us of what God says to us and lights our lives and paths (Ps 119:105).
The Holy Spirit’s words are powerful (like dynamite) and creative, encouraging and helping us. He reminds us that we are no longer slaves to sin, ruled by the evil one and destined for destruction but are now children of God, cherished and given access to all that belongs to God. The Holy Spirit confirms or corroborates our identity, but we see that there is sacrifice involved. Paul was warned of this (Acts 9:15-16) and we too need to understand the need to give up some things in order to gain what God has for us. Sacrifice may not always be seen or rewarded in this life, but we can trust that God sees all we do and will reward us. As Rom 8:22-25 reminds us, there is so much more to be revealed. The Holy Spirit acts as a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance (Eph 1:13-14). He is a pledge like an engagement ring that there is a wedding to come, that if God is for us, no one can be against us. Can we trust the Giver of Good Gifts with our lives?