Have you ever wondered why the Spirit of God is called the “Holy” Spirit? In Scripture, we find it is the Holy Spirit who cleanses us of sin and brings transformation in our lives. Let’s explore what that means.
The Holy Spirit Cleanses Us
In John 3, a man named Nicodemus encountered Jesus. Jesus said to him, “No one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again” (v. 3 NIV). This seemed impossible to Nicodemus. How could anyone be born a second time? But Jesus went on to say that we must be born again—born of the Spirit. Sin leads only to death, separating us from God, the source of life. But through the Holy Spirit, we are given new life and set free from our old life of sin. In 2 Corinthians 5:17, Paul stated, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
This, in part, is why the Spirit of God is called the Holy Spirit. Remember, we do not save ourselves. Upon belief in Christ, it is God’s Spirit who cleanses us of sin and declares us daughters of the Living God, holy in His sight.
Hear Paul’s words from Romans 8:14–16: “For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children” (NIV). In what ways have you been living in fear that you aren’t good enough or don’t measure up? May you receive this truth today: You are a holy, beloved child of God. A new creation. The Spirit says so.
The Holy Spirit Causes Growth
After we come to Christ and experience new life in the Spirit, the Holy Spirit continues to be at work in us. The apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 1:6, “he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” How does God go about completing His good work in our lives?
According to Scripture, it is through the Holy Spirit that God continually transforms us more and more into the image of Christ. We do not, by our own strength and power, make ourselves more Christlike. The Holy Spirit brings about this change in us. We certainly have a part to play, since we create space in our lives where we might be open and receptive to the Holy Spirit’s work in us. We create space through the practice of spiritual habits like Scripture reading, confession of sin, living in community, and serving others. But ultimately, it is God at work in us, through the Holy Spirit, that brings about change in our lives.
What transformation do you long for the Holy Spirit to bring about in your life?
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