The Holy Spirit's Role
The Helper, the Holy Spirit - John 14:26
This age is peculiarly the dispensation of the Holy Spirit, in which Jesus cheers us not by His personal presence, as He will do soon enough, but by the indwelling and constant abiding of the Holy Spirit, who is forever the Comforter of the church. It is the Spirit's role to console the hearts of God's people. He convinces of sin; He illumines and instructs; but the main part of His work still lies in gladdening the hearts of the renewed, confirming the weak, and lifting up all those who are bowed down. He does this by revealing Jesus to them. The Holy Spirit consoles, but Christ is the consolation.
If we may use the figure, the Holy Spirit is the Physician, but Jesus is the medicine. He heals the wound, but it is by applying the holy ointment of Christ's name and grace. He does not take of His own things, but of the things of Christ. So if we give to the Holy Spirit the Greek name of Paraclete, as we sometimes do, then our heart confers on our blessed Lord Jesus the title of Paraclesis. If one is the Comforter, the other is the Comfort.
Now, with such rich provision for his need, why should the Christian be sad and despondent? The Holy Spirit has graciously committed to be your Comforter: Do you imagine, weak and trembling believer, that He will neglect this sacred trust? Do you suppose that He has undertaken what He cannot or will not perform? If it is His special work to strengthen you and to comfort you, do you suppose He has forgotten His business or that He will fail in fulfilling His loving task of sustaining you? Don't think so poorly of the tender and blessed Spirit whose name is the Comforter.
He delights to give the oil of joy for mourning and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. Trust in Him, and He will surely comfort you until the house of mourning is closed forever, and the marriage feast has begun.
Family Bible reading plan
verse 1 Ezekiel 45
verse 2 Psalms 99, 100, 101
Zeal Without Burnout: Seven Keys to a Lifelong Ministry of Sustainable Sacrifice by Christopher Ash
Thousands of people leave Christian ministry every month. They have not lost their love for Christ, or their desire to serve him. But for one reason or another, they are exhausted and simply cannot carry on. Christopher Ash knows this experience all too well. As a pastor of a growing church, and then in his role of training people for ministry, he has found himself on the edge of burnout a number of times and has pastored many young ministers who have reached the end of their tether.
His wisdom has been distilled into this short, accessible book, in which he reveals a neglected biblical truth and seven keys that flow from it. Understood properly, and built into our lives as Christians who are zealous to serve the Lord, they will serve to protect us from burnout, and keep us working for God's kingdom and glory.
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From Morning & Evening revised and edited by Alistair Begg copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.org.