The Holy Spirit and His Work
1. WHAT precious promise did Jesus make to His disciples shortly before His crucifixion?
"I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever." John 14:16.
2. Who is the Comforter, and what was He to do?
"But the Comforter, even the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said unto you." Verse 26, R.V.
3. Why cannot the world receive Him?
"Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him." Verse 17.
4. How intimate is His union with believers?
"But ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you." Same verse.
5. Whose presence does the Holy Spirit bring to the believers?
"I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you." Verse 18.
6. What promise is thus fulfilled?
"Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." Matt. 28:20. See also John 14:21-23.
7. What threefold union is thus established?
"At that day ye shall know that I am in My Father, and ye in Me, and I in you." Verse 20.
NOTE.-Rom. 8:9 shows the Spirit of each of the three persons of the Godhead to be one and the same Spirit.
8. How does Jesus, through the Spirit, seek an entrance to every heart?
"Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me." Rev. 3:20.
9. Why was it necessary for Christ to go away?
"Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him unto you." John 16:7.
10. What was the Comforter to do when He came?
"And when He is come, He will reprove [margin, convince] the world of sin, arid of righteousness, and of judgment." Verse 8.
11. By what other title is the Comforter designated?
"But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of Me." John 15:26.
12. What did Jesus say the Spirit of truth would do?
"Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come." John 16:13.
NOTE.-The Spirit speaks (1 Tim. 4:1); teaches (1 Cor. 2:3); bears witness (Rom. 8:16); makes intercession (Rom. 8:26); distributes the gifts (1 Cor. 12:11); and invites the sinner (Rev. 22:17).
13. Whom did Christ say the Holy Spirit would glorify?
"He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you." Verse 14.
NOTE.-It is plain from these scriptures that the Holy Spirit is the personal representative of Christ upon the earth, abiding in the church by dwelling in the hearts of the believers. It follows that any attempt to make a man the vicegerent of Christ in the place of the third person of the Godhead is an attempt to put man in the place of God. Thus does the fundamental principle of the Papacy set aside the person and work of the Holy Spirit.
14. How has God revealed to US the hidden things of the kingdom?
"But God hath revealed them unto us by His Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God." 1 Cor. 2:10.
15. Who moved upon the prophets to give their messages?
"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 Ghost." 2 Peter 1:21.
16. After Pentecost, how was the gospel preached?
"With the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven." I Peter 1:12.
17. How are believers sealed?
"In whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise." Eph. 1:13.
18. What warning is therefore given?
"Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption." Eph. 4:30.
19. Is there a limit to the strivings of God's Spirit?
"And the Lord said, My Spirit shall not always strive with man." Gen. 6:3.
NOTE.-The limit is determined by the creature rather than by the Creator. It is when there is an utter abandonment to evil, and further appeals would be without avail. God foreknowing all things, may designate a definite period of probation for man, as in the case of the one hundred and twenty years before the flood (Gen. 6:3); but His Spirit never ceases to strive with man as long as there is hope of his salvation.
20. For what did David pray?
"Cast me not away from Thy presence; and take not Thy Holy Spirit from me." Ps. 51:11.
21. How willing is God to give to us the Holy Spirit?
"If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?" Luke 1:13.
Fruit of the Spirit
1. WHAT is the fruit of the Spirit?
"The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance." Gal. 5:22,23.
2. What are the works of the flesh?
"Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry , witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like." Verses 19-21.
NOTE.-The evils here mentioned are a close parallel to the lists found in Matt. 15:18,19; Mark 7:20-23; Rom. 1:29-31; and 2 Tim. 3:1-5.
3. How may the works of the flesh be avoided?
"Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh." Gal. 5:16.
4. By what is the love of God shed abroad in the heart?
"The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us." Rom. 5:5.
5. What is love declared to be?
"And above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfectness." Col. 3:14, R.V.
6. By what does genuine faith work?
"For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love." Gal. 5:6.
7. What does love do?
"Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins." Prov. 10:12. "Have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins." 1 Peter 4:8.
8. Of what does the kingdom of God consist?
"For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost." Rom. 14:17.
NOTE.-It is the Christian's privilege to have righteousness, peace, and joy,-a righteousness which is of God by faith (Rom. 3:21,22); a peace that passeth understanding (Phil. 4:7), which the world can neither give nor take away; and a joy that rejoices evermore (1 Thess. 5:16; Phil. 4:4).
9. In what way does love manifest itself?
"Love suffereth long; and is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, does not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not its own, is not provoked, taketh not account of evil." 1 Cor. 13:4,5, R.V.
10. What does God's gentleness do for us?
"Thy gentleness hath made me great." Ps. 18:35.
11. What spirit should we show toward others?
"And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men." 2 Tim. 2:24.
12. What does the goodness of God do?
"Or despisest thou the riches of His goodness and forbearance and long-suffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?" Rom. 2:4.
13. How should we treat those who have wronged us?
"Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head." Rom. 12:19,20.
14. How does faith determine our standing with God?
"But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him." Heb. 11:6.
15. How does God regard the meek and quiet spirit?
"Whose adorning. . . let it be the hidden man of the heart, . . . even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price." 1 Peter 3:3,4.
16. In our Christian growth and experience, what is to accompany faith, courage, and knowledge?
"Add to your faith virtue [courage]; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance." 2 Peter 1:5,6.
NOTE.-One of the briefest and best definitions of temperance is self-control. The word in the text means much more than mere abstinence from intoxicating drinks,-the limited sense now frequently given to it. It means control, strength, power, or ascendency over exciting and evil passions of all kinds. It denotes the self-ru1e which the over-comer or converted man has over the evil propensities of his nature. Commenting on this passage, Dr. Albert Barnes says: "The influences of the Holy Spirit on the heart make a man moderate in all indulgences; teach him to restrain his passions, and to govern himself."
17. How highly is he commended who controls his spirit?
"He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city." Prov. 16:32.
18. What is said of all these different virtues?
"Against such there is no law." Gal. 5:23, last clause.
NOTE.-The law condemns sin. But all these things, being virtues, are in harmony with the law. They are produced by the Spirit; and the law, which is spiritual, cannot, therefore, condemn them.
19. From what condemnation does Spirit-leading save us?
"But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law." Verse 18.
20. To what unity are Christians exhorted?
"Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace." Eph. 4:3.
Gifts of the Spirit
1. CONCERNING what subject ought we to be informed?
"Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant." 1 Cor. 12:1.
2. When Christ ascended, what did He give to men?
"Wherefore He saith, When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive [margin, a multitude of captives], and gave gifts unto men." Eph. 4:8.
3. What were these gifts that Christ gave to men?
"And He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers." Verse 11.
4. How are these gifts elsewhere spoken of?
"And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues." 1 Cor. 12:28.
5. For what purpose were these gifts bestowed upon the church?
"For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: . . . that we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; but speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, which is the head, even Christ," Eph. 4:12-15.
6. What result is to be obtained by the exercise of the gifts in the church?
"Till we all come in [into, margin] the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ." Verse 13.
7. How is unity preserved in the diversities of gifts?
"Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit." 1 Cor. 12:4,
8. For what purpose is the manifestation of this one Spirit given?
"But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; to another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues." Verses 7-10.
9. Who controls the distribution of the gifts of the Spirit?
"But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as He will." Verse 11.
10. Was it God's design that all should possess the same gifts?
"Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles? have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret?" Verses 29,30.
11. Were the gifts of the Spirit to continue forever?
"Whether there be prophecies, they shall be done away; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall be done away." 1 Cor. 13:8, R.V.
12. When will the gifts of the Spirit be no longer needed?
"When that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away." Verse 10.
Bible Readings for the Home Circle (1914 Edition)