Holy Spirit's Prayer
Brothers :
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27. Holy Spirit's Prayer

Through Wordless Groans

Hands Holding GlobeAccording to Saint Paul, the Holy Spirit prayer helps Christians to pray even in their weakness. He writes to Christians in Romans 8.26, "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans." The Holy Spirit prays to God for us with sighs too deep for words. Saint Paul further explains in 1 Corinthians 14.2, "For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people but God. Indeed, no one understands them. They utter mysteries by the Spirit." In this passage, "a tongue" may mean "in another language."

True Unity in Christ

The Holy Spirit's prayer creates true unity in Christ. Saint Paul explains in 1 Corinthians 12.13, "For we were all baptized by one Spirit to form one body - whether Jewish people or Gentiles, slave or free — and we were all given the one Spirit to drink." The phrase "by one spirit" may also be translated as "with one spirit" or "in one spirit." The people of God are united in their devotional lives by, in, or with the Holy Spirit. Saint Clement of Rome (35-99 AD) describes this symbol of holiness as the holy people in prayer. Christians reflect and share the divine glory and holiness as the Holy Spirit prays for us. God's extraordinary righteousness is close, particularly in the holiest people, as in the saints' lives in this and former ages.

Walk By The Spirit

SearchlightThe Holy Spirit's word expresses to God the desires of our hearts with groans that ordinary language cannot understand. With the Holy Spirit's introduction into Christians' lives in the New Testament era, they entered into a new relationship to the law. Saint Paul writes in Galatians 5.18, in a section on life in the Spirit, "So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. The flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit contrary to the flesh. They conflict with each other so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if the Spirit leads you, you are not under the law." The phrase "you are not to do whatever you want" may mean "you do not do what you want." Being led by the Spirit, you are not under the bondage of trying to please God by minute legal observations to receive new birth or holiness. One cannot follow the Spirit and the law simultaneously, but regrettably, that is what many Christians attempt to do.

Sword of the Spirit

A sword, like the Holy Spirit's word, can be used defensively or offensively. It is functional either way. Such is the Holy Spirit, whether he convicts a person of sin or urges repentance and reformation. Saint Paul explains in Ephesians 6.17, "Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God." The helmet of salvation renews the mind by understanding that everything we receive comes through Christ. The Spirit's Sword is God's Word, which in the Holy Scriptures is the story of Christ and the Cross. Mark Twain says, "It is not those passages of Scripture I do not understand that bother me, but those that I do understand." In the Lord's Prayer, the phrase "hallowed be thy name" can be enlarged to, "Let thy light and sound be my experience in holy of holies, that is the part of me that is at home and peace with God."

Prompt and Present

CounsellorThe Holy Spirit works in the Christian to prompt us to present Jesus Christ to those around us. The Holy Spirit works in us is to direct and uphold us wherever we may be. The Psalmist writes in Psalm 139.10 that wherever you are, "even there, your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast."

Holy Spirit Prompt

Jesus describes the Holy Spirit's work in the Christian in John 14.26, "But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and remind you of everything I have said to you." The Holy Spirit is a reminder, a teacher, a prompter, and this is his work. God the Father sent the Holy Spirit, in the name of Jesus, to enable his followers to engage in a teaching and counseling ministry. The Holy Spirit is called "The Advocate." To advocate is to support or defend like a lawyer or a counselor publicly.

Spirit of Truth

John 15.26 records the words of Jesus, "When the Advocate 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." The Scriptures often call the Holy Spirit "the spirit of truth." Jesus describes the Spirit's role in his ministry in John 16.13, "But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own. He will speak what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come." We do not know whether the Holy Spirit hears from the Father or the Son. That does not matter. The verse stresses the close relationship between the Three. The Holy Spirit bears witness to Jesus, and this is a sure sign that he is at work if the Spirit's work triggers the gospel proclamation. The Holy Spirit also tells the believer of what is yet to come! ✞

"Holy Spirit's Prayer"
by Ron Meacock © 2021

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