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The Moment of Truth - Lesson 11

The Power of the Holy Spirit

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«Whatever you shall ask the Father in My name, He will give you.» (John 16:23)
Our Father,

It is a privilege to ask for Your assistance during our study of Your Word.

Open our eyes, Lord, that we may see and understand the work Your Holy Spirit can accomplish within each one of us.

We pray in His name.

Amen.
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John 14:16-18 Comments
[Jesus said,]

«And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth; (...) He dwells with you, and shall be in you.

I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.»
Before leaving His disciples, Jesus promised them that He would return.

He also promised that meanwhile He would send them a Helper as His successor.

This Helper is the Holy Spirit.

Now, who is the Holy Spirit, how can we receive Him, and what can He do for us? The Bible will give us clear answers to all our questions.
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John 10:30 Comments
[Jesus said,]

«I and My Father are one.»
First of all, the Bible presents God as being ONE, having been revealed to us as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

Therefore God communicates with us at three different levels which are:
  • The Father, in the creation, who is God FOR us.
     
  • The Son, in the redemption, who is God WITH us.
     
  • The Holy Spirit, in the sanctification, who is God WITHIN us.
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Matthew 28:19 Comments
[Jesus said,]

«Go you therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.»
The Bible suggests the idea of the Trinity, that is, one God revealed in three persons:
  • the Father;
  • the Son;
  • the Holy Spirit.
2 Corinthians 13:14
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.
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Luke 1:35 Comments
And the angel answered and said to [Mary],

«The Holy Ghost shall come on you, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow you.»
This verse, and a few others, has been interpreted by some theologians as demonstrating that the Holy Spirit is first and foremost a force, a power emanating from God.

However all these verses can also be understood from a different point of view, the Holy Spirit being, instead, a person.

The following verses demonstrate the Holy Spirit’s traits of personality, such as His intelligence, His emotions, and His will.
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The Holy Spirit is a person. First, let us note His intelligence:
He searches:
«The Spirit searches all things.» (1 Corinthians 2:10)

He hears:
«Whatever [the Spirit] shall hear, that shall He speak.» (John 16:13)

He speaks:
«The Spirit of your Father speaks in you.» (Matthew 10:20)
«The Holy Ghost said, “Separate Me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.”» (Acts 13:2)

He teaches:
«The Holy Ghost shall teach you.» (Luke 12:12)

He testifies:
«[The Spirit of truth] shall testify of Me.» (John 15:26)

He foretells:
«[The Spirit] will show you things to come.» (John 16:13)
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Now, let’s take a look at the emotions of the Holy Spirit:
He loves:
«(...) for the love of the Spirit.» (Romans 15:30)

He comforts:
«And walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, [the churches] were multiplied.» (Acts 9:31)
«But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost (...).» (John 14:26)

He helps:
«The Spirit also helps our infirmities.» (Romans 8:26)

He intercedes:
«[The Spirit] makes intercession for the saints.» (Romans 8:27)

He invites to repentance and salvation:
«And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” (...) And let him that is thirsty come. And whoever will, let him take the water of life freely.» (Revelation 22:17)
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Finally, let us note the will of the Holy Spirit:
He acts as He wants:
«But all these works that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as He will.» (1 Corinthians 12:11)

He leads:
«For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.» (Romans 8:14)

He prevents:
«They were forbidden of the Holy Ghost (...)» (Acts 16:6)
«They assayed to go into Bithynia: but the Spirit suffered them not.» (Acts 16:7)

He witnesses:
«The Holy Ghost also is a witness to us.» (Hebrews 10:15)

He reproves:
«[The Spirit] will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.» (John 16:8)
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The Holy Spirit is a person. Let us note how it is possible to:
Resist Him:
«You do always resist the Holy Ghost.» (Acts 7:51)

Lie to Him:
«Why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Ghost?» (Acts 5:3)

Test Him:
«How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord?» (Acts 5:9, NKJV)

Grieve Him:
«Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God.» (Ephesians 4:30)

Despise Him:
«Of how much sorer punishment, suppose you, shall he be thought worthy, who (...) has done despite to the Spirit of grace?» (Hebrews 10:29)

Blaspheme against Him:
«Whoever speaks against the Holy Ghost (...).» (Matthew 12:32)
«He that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost (...).» (Mark 3:29)
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Genesis 1:2 Comments
The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep.

And the Spirit of God moved on the face of the waters.
The Old Testament tells us about the Holy Spirit.

From the first chapter of the Bible, we see Him at work in the creation of the world.

He also makes people capable of carrying out the works commanded by God.
Exodus 31:1-4
And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying,

«See, I have called by name Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah.

And I have filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship, to devise cunning works.»
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2 Peter 1:21 Comments
For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. The divine inspiration of the Scriptures comes from the Holy Spirit.
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Matthew 3:16 Comments
And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water.

And see, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting on Him.
Before beginning His ministry on earth, Jesus was filled with the presence of the Holy Spirit.
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John 14:16,17 Comments
[Jesus said,]

«And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth.»
Before leaving them, Jesus reminded His disciples of the promise that they would soon receive the Holy Spirit.

As Jesus had recommended, they gathered in the upper room where they «all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication» (Acts 1:14).
Acts 1:5
[Jesus said,]

«You shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.»
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Acts 2:2-4 Comments
And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.

And there appeared to them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat on each of them.

And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
Filled with the Holy Spirit, the disciples preached the Good News of salvation in Jesus Christ with such power as had never been seen before!
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John 16:8 Comments
And when [the Helper] is come, He will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment. Now let’s look at the Holy Spirit’s role in our conversion.

First of all, the Spirit speaks to each one of us, in different ways, in order to make us realize our hopeless condition as sinners and our need of a Savior.
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1 Corinthians 12:3 Comments
No man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost. When we don’t harden our hearts to the influence of the Holy Spirit, He brings us to recognize that Jesus Christ is the only One who can save us.
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John 3:5 Comments
Jesus answered,

«Truly, truly, I say to you, except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.»
The Holy Spirit leads the sinner along the path of repentance, and from there He leads him to new birth, as we saw in our previous lessons.
Titus 3:5
Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost.
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Acts 2:38 Comments
Then Peter said to them,

«Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.»
The Holy Spirit accompanies and guides us in our spiritual progress.
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John 16:13 Comments
[The Spirit of truth] will guide you into all truth. For the repentant man, the Holy Spirit becomes a sure and precious Guide.
John 14:26
[The Holy Spirit] shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatever I have said to you.
Isaiah 30:21
Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying,

«This is the way, walk you in it,» when you turn to the right hand, and when you turn to the left.
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1 Corinthians 6:11 Comments
But you are washed, but you are sanctified, but you are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. The Holy Spirit does not take part only in our justification, but also in our sanctification (our lesson «A Transformed Life» explains these two words).
2 Thessalonians 2:13
God has from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth.
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1 Samuel 10:6 Comments
And the Spirit of the Lord will come on you, and you (...) shall be turned into another man. New birth can happen only through the Holy Spirit’s power.

Working within us, He will transform us day after day into the image of Jesus Christ.
John 14:17
[The Spirit of truth] dwells with you, and shall be in you.
Galatians 2:20
Nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me.
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Galatians 5:16,17 Comments
Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.

For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that you cannot do the things that you would.
The sinner has a natural tendency to go against God’s will.

Only the Holy Spirit can give the power to obey God.
Galatians 5:25
If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
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Galatians 5:19-23 Comments
Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, jealousies, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, contentions, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance.
What a transformation the Spirit can bring about in a penitent heart!
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Matthew 12:32 Comments
[Jesus said,]

«Whoever speaks against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.»
Since this lesson deals with the subject of the Holy Spirit, let us take a moment to define what is the sin against the Holy Spirit.

According to the Bible, this sin is unpardonable.

What does it consist of?
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Proverbs 28:13 Comments
He that covers his sins shall not prosper: but whoever confesses and forsakes them shall have mercy. We have seen that the Holy Spirit speaks to each person’s heart, to make him realize his sinful condition.

Whoever favorably answers to this call is led to repentance.
1 John 1:9
If we confess our sins, [God] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
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2 Thessalonians 2:10 Comments
(...) in them that perish, because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. Unfortunately, many will reject the invitation of the Holy Spirit, and will harden their hearts. Since God always respects our freedom of choice, there is no other way to save the one who refuses this salvation.

This attitude of constant rejection is the sin against the Holy Spirit.
Hebrews 2:3
How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?
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Hebrews 3:7,8,13 Comments
As the Holy Ghost said,

«To day if you will hear His voice, harden not your hearts,» (...) lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
A sinner who unceasingly rejects the call of the Holy Spirit ends up hardening his heart.

God has no other way to bring him to repent, ask forgiveness for his sins, and accept Jesus Christ as his personal Savior.

Such a man therefore commits the sin against the Holy Spirit, unpardonable since it consists of the rejection of God’s forgiveness.
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Romans 8:9 Comments
Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His. God ardently desires that we be filled with the Holy Spirit.

What must we do to receive the Holy Spirit?
Ephesians 5:18
Be filled with the Spirit.
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Luke 11:13 Comments
[Jesus said,]

«If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?»
If we sincerely desire that the Holy Spirit come into our hearts to transform us, and if we are willing to let Him work within us, the promise is certain: God will fill us with the Holy Spirit.
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John 14:15,16 Comments
[Jesus said,]

«If you love Me, keep My commandments.

And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever.»
If we are willing to obey God’s will as He reveals more and more of it each day, then He will fill us with more and more of His Spirit each day.
Acts 5:32
And we are His witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God has given to them that obey Him.
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John 7:38,39 Comments
[Jesus said,] «He that believes on Me, as the Scripture has said, “Out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.”»

But this spoke He of the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive.
Let’s not harden our heart to the unceasing call of the Holy Spirit, but let’s invite Him to come within us, that He may implant the life of Jesus in each one of us, and transform us into His image day after day.
Matthew 3:11
[Jesus] shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire.
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Let us thank God for His wonderful promise:
Almighty Lord,

We thank You for having shown us the important part the Holy Spirit plays in our conversion.

We humbly ask You, Lord, to fill each one of us with the Holy Spirit, so that He may transform our hearts, guide us every day in the truth, and above all help us to put this truth into practice as soon as He has revealed it to us through Your Word.

In Jesus Christ we pray.

Amen.
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Lesson 11 - Test The test of Lesson 11 is waiting for you!

Source of the Pictures of this Lesson
Screen 1: Photo in «Master Clips 500,000» by IMSI, CD #16, THA04038.JPG. Screen 2: In: «The Watchtower» magazine (April 15, 1991), Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, p.1. Screen 3: MUSIO, Nino. In: «Illustrated Bible Stories for Children» (HUGHES, Ray), Joshua Morris Publishing, 1988, p.103. Screen 4: BECCAFUMI, Domenico. «The Trinity» (1513), Pinacoteca Nazionale, Sienne. In: «La Peinture de la Renaissance Italienne» (BECK, James H.), Editions Könemann, 1999, p.455. Screen 5: Di COSIMO, Piero. «The Incarnation» (c. 1505), Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence. In: «La Peinture de la Renaissance Italienne» (BECK, James H.), Editions Könemann, 1999, p.335. Screen 6: «Hope Beyond 2000» advertisement, The Voice of Prophecy. Screen 7: Comstock Photo Library, London. In: «Revelation» (LORIE, Peter), Simon & Schuster, Labyrinth Publishing Ltd, 1994, p.75. Screen 8: HARLAN, Russell. In: «The Bible Story, volume 1» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.94. Used by permission. Copyright ©1953, 1981 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 9: In: «The Bible Story, volume 5» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.156. Used by permission. Copyright ©1955, 1983 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 10: RUDEEN, Herbert. In: «The Bible Story, volume 2» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.186. Used by permission. Copyright ©1954, 1982 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 11: AYRES, Robert. In: «La Sentinelle» magazine (September 1991), Pacific Press Publishing Association, p.8. Screen 12: In: «The Watchtower» magazine (August 1, 1993), Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, p.31. Screen 13: RUDEEN, Herbert. In: «Uncle Arthur’s Bible Book» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.479. Used by permission. Copyright ©1945, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1968, 1996 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Picture edited by Cyberspace Ministry. Screen 14: EL GRECO. «The Pentecost», Prado Museum, Madrid. In: «Great Bible Stories and Master Paintings» (RACHLEFF, Owen S.), New York, Abradale Press Publishers, p.367. Screen 15: ZINGARO, Charles. In: «Votre Bible et vous» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.48. Used by permission. Copyright ©1959, 1987 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 16: ANDERSON, Harry. In: «La Sentinelle» magazine (September 1980), p.11. Used by permission. Copyright ©1962, 1990 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 17: Photo from the Web site: http://cis.bentley.edu/students/savlon_dani/israel/day2c.html. Screen 18: JUSTINEN, Lars. In: «Practical Spiritual Gifts» (ZACKRISON, James W.), Pacific Press Publishing Association, 1996, front cover. Screen 19: Picture by Digital Imagery, Photodisc, 1999. In: «A Love Stronger than Death» magazine, Family Heritage Books, 2000, p.8. Screen 20: JUSTINEN, Lars. In: «Questionnaire Adulte de l’Ecole du Sabbat», Pacific Press Publishing Association, Third Quarter, 1995, front cover. Screen 21: In: «The Watchtower» magazine (February 1, 1991), New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, p.1. Screen 22: ANDERSON, Harry. In: «The Bible Story, volume 10» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.140. Used by permission. Copyright ©1957, 1985 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 23: In: «The Watchtower» magazine (November 1, 1990), New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, p.4. Picture edited by Cyberspace Ministry. Screen 24: HEASLIP, William. In: «The Bible Story, volume 7» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.127. Used by permission. Copyright ©1956, 1984 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Picture edited by Cyberspace Ministry. Screen 25: In: «The Watchtower» magazine (November 1, 1998), New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, p.17. Screen 26: In: «The Watchtower» magazine (June 1, 1998), New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, p.1. Screen 27: In: «The Watchtower» magazine (Novembre 1, 1985), New York, Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, p.1. Screen 28: TANK, Darrel. In: «La Sentinelle» magazine (April 1996), Pacific Press Publishing Association, p.14. Screen 29: Photo by IVANY, Jason. In: «Canadian Adventist Messenger» magazine (May 1999), SDA Church in Canada, front cover. Screen 30: LEE, Elfred. In: «Revelation Seminars», Seminars Unlimited, 1986, lesson #11 («L’Observation du Dimanche et l’Apocalypse»), p.3. Screen 31: In: «Questionnaire Adulte de l’Ecole du Sabbat», Pacific Press Publishing Association, Third Quarter, 2000, front cover. Screen 32: Photo in: «Master Clips 500,000» by IMSI, CD #16, C0000962.JPG.
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Lesson 11 - Test The test of Lesson 11 is waiting for you!