The Convincer

Description

In this message, we learn that the Holy Spirit convinces us of our righteousness.

That is a great story and I am really proud of Hayden and Emily for just being willing to listen to the voice of God and respond to what he was putting on their hearts. And, that is what this Missional Move has always been about it is been about listening to the voice of God to reach more people for Jesus Christ. In a sense, there are literally hundreds of stories, just like Hayden and Emily’s across Valley Creek church and I wanted us to share that one with you as a snapshot, to just show you that man, there are people in this church who are hearing the voice of God, who are responding, who are moving forward, and sometimes when we get to see somebody else’s faith, it builds our faith and inspires us.

And, for those of you that are maybe new to Valley Creek and you are thinking what is a Missional Move, a Missional Move is basically when we take our next step to create space, so, somebody else can take their next step on their spiritual journey, and in September and October here in the church, we talked about Missional Move Acts 18 for Valley Creek. And, we believe that God’s asked us to do three different things, to expand the Flower Mound campus here we just need more space obviously look around you. We need a larger Worship Center here at the Flower Mound campus. And, we are also going to Denton to start Valley Creek Denton campus, which will be the same Valley Creek church just in Denton to move into a new neighborhood, to reach people with the grace and truth of Jesus Christ and then go to India, and start a Ministry School for church planners and start the first 20 churches that come out of that Ministry School and so we have well on the way of that Missional Move. And, it is all because people like Hayden and Emily were willing to listen to the voice of God and take the next step. It is because people like you are willing to listen to the voice of God and take their next step, and so I am excited we are getting close.

We are about three or four weeks away from walls going up and walls coming down. Here at the farm on campus construction is getting really, really close when you drive out today, you can even see there is markings all over the place from surveyors. And, so, we are getting really close, we are going to finally get the space that we need here the Flower Mound campus. We have almost found our location in Denton, the Indian Ministry School is often running, they are already in training, great things are happening, so, we are few weeks away. And, so, here is what I want to say, for those of you that are part of the Missional Move, let us keep moving forward, keep seeking God, keep being committed, keep being faithful to give what God has put on your heart in the Missional Move let us keep moving forward because it is happening, and we are reaching more people for Jesus Christ which is what the Missional Move has always been about. And, so, in a few weeks I am going to give you a full update on where we are with everything, give you all the details on all the different places, I am really excited to share that stuff with you, but until then, let us not turn people away who want to come to know Jesus Christ.

So, here is what I need to ask you, I do not ask you to do a lot of things I invite you to a lot of things, I do not ask you to do a lot of things. I need about 250 of you to leave this service and go to the 12, the 9, or either 1 on Saturday, okay. And, everybody said I am willing, okay. I need about 250 of you to give up your seat to go to a different service. We have turned people away every single week so far this year at this service just because we are full, we cannot fit any more people in here and so we are so close to having a new Worship Center, with more seats and more space, let us not turn people away between now and then, who are coming to know the name of Jesus Christ, you want to come and hear about the hope of the gospel and the love of Jesus, maybe you are a part of the Missional Move is just to say I will go to a different service that maybe is not as convenient for me and my family just for the next few months until we get this space created. So, maybe like 250 of you can go hang out at the 12 o’clock with our 12 o’clock service.

12 o’clock, you guys are awesome. We love you, you have an incredible community, and 250 of your friends just agreed to come to your service so get ready to welcome them in the next few weeks because we do not want to turn away people who want to come to know about Jesus, okay. Are you with me, okay. Three of us are going to move next week to a different server, the rest of use apparently it sounds like we are going to be here. This is about reaching the people for Jesus. We are on a series called chapter two, beginning of relationship with the Holy Spirit and we have been talking about who is the Holy Spirit in our lives, what does Jesus have to say about the spirit and I think God is activating some new great things in our church as we are talking about the spirit and inviting him into our lives, and last week we talked about the Holy Spirit and we said that he speaks, and that he guides. And, here we are one week into our fast and I hope you are hearing him speak and guide you as you are going through this fasting and then let me just go ahead and ask anybody get grumpy this week because of things are fasting. Come, on it is okay to be honest.

Anybody can go, I did about day 4, one of the things I am fasting is coffee. I found myself really grumpy in the morning when I wanted a cup of coffee and if you find yourself getting grumpy when you fast it is a good thing, because what it is reminding you is that you are very dependent upon the things of this world and we want to be dependent upon Jesus Christ. So, when I wake up in the morning and I want to go turn on that coffee pot before I do anything else and I find myself a little grumpy. It reminds me that I do not want a hunger and thirst for the things of the world, I want to hunger and thirst for the kingdom of God and for Jesus Christ. And, so, as we go through this fast if you find yourself a little grumpy, that is a good thing that is part of purging things out of your life creating space for God to come and move and fill you with himself. If you have your Bible turn with me to John 16 and Galatians 5. John 16 and Galatians 5, last week we looked at John 16 and I told you there is three things in John 16 that Jesus tells us about the Holy Spirit and we talked about two of them we said that the Holy Spirit speaks and that he guides. And, today I want to share with you the third thing and here is what I want to do.

I want to blow up one of the biggest myths I think we have about the Holy Spirit. I think a lot of us have had some bad teaching, we have some bad theology, and there are some myths that we believe about the Holy Spirit that are incredibly damaging to our spiritual journey and I want to try to blow those up today. And, so, pick it up with me John 16, starting in Verse 5, this is Jesus speaking. Now, I am going to him who sent me, yet none of you asked me where are you going, because I have said these things you are filled with grief, but I will tell you the truth, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go the counselor or the Holy Spirit, so, Jesus says the Holy Spirit is your personal counselor in your life, the counselor will not come to you but if I go, I will send them to you. When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment in regard the sin because men do not believe in me, in regard to righteousness because I am going to the Father where you can see me no longer, and in regard to judgment because the prints of this world now stands condemned.

I have much more to say to you more than you can now bear but when He, the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all truth. One of the biggest misconceptions I think we have about the Holy Spirit is we believe he is the constant convector of our lives. I think we believe that the Holy Spirit’s role in our life just to convict us of sin, that he is there to point out our failures and our shortcomings and our faults and our mistakes that he is just waiting for us to mess up, so, we can point it out and pop us on the head that the Holy Spirit is there to convict us of our sin and tell us how disappointed God is with us, for some reason we have bought into this bad theology, this misconception that the Holy Spirit’s role in our lives is just to convict us of sin, but that is not true. Holy Spirit is not there to your face and your garbage. And, if you think about it, it is caused a massive separation, if we believe that and I think a lot of us believe it subconsciously.

Because it has got a massive separation in your relationship with the Holy Spirit because why do you want to have a relationship with somebody who is going to constantly point out your failures. Nobody wants to be friends with a neg, do they, I mean anybody here who want to be friends with an neg. No, we do not want to be around people that always finding out the failures and the faults and the flaws. If we believe that about the Holy Spirit we separate ourselves from him, we pull away from them because we think man, I already know I mess up I do not need somebody walking around telling me that I mess up but that is not the role of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Two thoughts, I want to share with you today and hopefully we can blow this myth up together. First thing is this, the Holy Spirit convinces us of our righteousness. Holy Spirit convinces us of our righteousness. Look at Verse 8, it says when he comes, he will convict the world. The word convict, what does that mean. It is like a big Bible word, a theological word, we are not so sure what it means, what really simple to convict just means to convince.

The original language was written in, convict means to convince, and if you convince somebody all you are doing is changing their paradigm, you are changing their perspective, their belief structure, you are getting them to view something from a different angle, so, to convict means to convince, which just means to change your perspective or your paradigm your belief, the way you view something. Let us say, I was going to try to convince you that next year the Dallas Cowboys were going to win the Super Bowl. That would be hard work, would not it, but if I could convince you that the Cowboys were going to win the Super Bowl, I would change your perspective or your paradigm or your belief structure because I know that many of you believe the Cowboys are going to win the Super Bowl next year, I would have to change the view, the way you look at things as much as we hope, we do not believe it, but if I can convince you I would convict you, change your perspective or your view that is what Jesus says the Holy Spirit has come to do, and he is come to do that in three specific areas in our lives. So, here is what I want to do we are going to break these next three verses down, you need to stay with me on this theology, because if you get it, I am telling you, it will change your walk with God, and then we will get to some really practical stuff.

Verse 9, the Spirit has come to convinced Jesus says, in regard to sin because men do not believe in me. So, the Spirit has come to convict or to convince of sin because men do not believe in me, who is Jesus talking about at that point. He is talking about unbelievers, men who do not believe in him. The Spirit has come to convince the world or unbelievers of their sin because they do not believe in Jesus. The Spirit’s Role on the life of the unbeliever, is to convince them that they have a broken relationship with God, that they have rejected Jesus Christ, that they have guilt, that they have a debt that they cannot pay back, that they are hopeless and lost and broken without Jesus, the Holy Spirit’s role in the life of the unbeliever the person in the world is to convince them that they need Jesus Christ. And, notice it uses the word sin singular, not sins plural.

Sin singular the spirit is there to convince of sin, not sins, which means the spirit is not walking around with an unbelievers saying oh, you just stole, oh, you just lied, oh you just cheated. That is not what he is there to do, he is there to convince of one sin and that sin is the rejection of Jesus Christ. All sin comes from the unbelief in Jesus Christ, so, he is there to convince them that they have rejected Jesus and that they need Jesus. In fact, no one can come to Jesus Christ without the convincing of the Holy Spirit. First Corinthians 12:3, no one can say Jesus is Lord, except by the Holy Spirit, it is the Spirit who convinces us, that we need Jesus Christ that draws us to him. Do you remember when you first met Jesus, I mean I do, I remember feeling incredibly guilty, I remember being so aware of my sin and being so aware of my need for Jesus Christ that was the spirit convincing me that I needed Jesus Christ. That is what he does in the life of the unbeliever. I do not know about you but I would say that is a good thing, do not you think.

It is a good thing that the Spirit convinces the world that they need Jesus Christ, but it goes on in Verse 10, the second thing, the spirit convinces in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father where you can see me no longer. Spirit convinces of righteousness, what is righteousness. Righteousness is not right living. It is not right behavior, it is not right doing, that is what we think righteousness is, righteousness is right standing with God that is what righteousness means. It means right standing with God, so, Jesus says the Spirit has come to convince in regard to righteousness right standing with God, because I am going to the Father where you can see me no longer. Now, who is Jesus talking about. He is talking to the disciples. This is the last supper, his disciples are sitting there, he is sharing the last things on his heart, he is now talking to the disciples, so, he says to the disciples guys the spirit is going to come to convince you of righteousness because I am going to the Father where you can see me no longer, which means the Holy Spirit’s role in the life of the believer is to convince us of our righteousness.

Holy Spirit’s main role in the life of the believer is not to convince you of sin. It is to convince you of righteousness, that you have right standing with God, no matter what you do, no matter where you go, no matter what has happened because of Jesus Christ because he has gone to the Father, the Spirit’s role in the life of the believer is to convince us that we are righteous, that we have right standing with God, it is not to convict you of sin. I do not know about you, but I do not need to be convinced that I am a sinner, anybody want to agree with me on that. Come on, you need to be convinced you are a sinner. I do not need to be convinced, just ask my wife, she will tell you very clearly, I mean I know I am a sinner, I make mistakes, I fall, I mess up I know, I do not need to be convinced that I was convinced of that when I got saved the Spirit came into my life convinced me I have rejected Jesus.

I was convinced if it that I do not need to be convinced that I am a sinner and I bet the same is true with you, you probably have a great spouse or a parent or friend that constantly reminds you of your sin and failures, and your short coming. We do not need to be convinced that, listen I need to be convinced that I am righteous. I do not struggle believing I am a sinner, I certainly struggle believing that I have right standing with God, no matter what happens in this life. Listen to these verses. Second Corinthians 5:17, Therefore anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the oldest gone and the new has come. Second Corinthians 5:21, God made him Jesus, who knew no sin to be sin for us so that in Him, we might become the righteousness of God. Hebrews 8:12, For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins, no more. When you are in Jesus Christ, you are righteous, you have right standing with God, not because of what you do but because of what Jesus has done.

And, the spirit is there to convince you of that. Listen, if God says he will forget my sins and remember them no more, why would the Holy Spirit want to constantly be pointing them back out to me, and reminding me of them and rubbing my face in them. That sounds pretty inconsistent, does not it. It is not his role to convince me I am righteous. So, practically, okay, stay with me, practically, here is how this works. I am walking through life and I am tempted. There is a temptation right there in front of me maybe it is an action, an attitude, whatever it is, I am tempted what is the Holy Spirit doing. Holy Spirit is right there with me and he is the spirit of truth. He is trying to guide me into truth, so, when I am tempted by this thing, the Spirit saying John let us not do that and John that is not who we are any more, John that is dangerous, John that is going to hurt us, John let us not do that and the sirens are going off, the warning lights, the yield symbol, let us not do this, right. He is saying turn right, turn right, turn right John, do not turn left, turn right, this is not good for us, the spirit is there trying to guide me into all truth, he is the Spirit of Truth.

And, lot of us we think that is the conviction of the Holy Spirit, that is not conviction, he is not convicting you, he is trying to guide you into all truth, he is saying turn right, do not turn left. But, what if I choose to turn left and I fall to that temptation and I make the mistake and I step into sin and I willfully do something that I know I am not supposed to do. Now, what is the spirit doing, the spirit is still there with me, but the Spirit is not there to now remind me of how bad I am or how much I have disappointed God or to make me feel guilty or to rub my face in my garbage, the spirit is right there with me to convince me that I am still righteous. He says John, even though you just did that you are still righteous in Jesus Christ. That sins already been taken care of, that sins already been paid for, that sin has already been defeated because of the work of the cross of Jesus Christ you are still righteous. Have you ever thought of the Holy Spirit that way.

We do not think about him that way. We have been taught and trained, and we have these guilt feelings inside of us that we think come from God that he is wants to make us feel bad and awful, and how disappointed He is in us, that is not the Holy Spirit’s role for the believer, he is there to convince you that you are righteous, that you have right standing with God. Let me ask you it like this, what do you do right after you sin, in your life really practically, you are walking through life there is the temptation Spirit tells you to turn right you turn left, and you know you did something wrong I mean, what do you do, what is your response at that point. Most of us we run and we hide from God, and then what we do, if you are most of humanity we run and we hide from God. We feel ashamed, we feel bad, we feel guilty, we know we were wrong, so, we want to get away from. We do not want to come to church. We do not want to worship, we do not read the Bible, we want to get around the community of believers, we do not want to pray, we want to get as far away from God as we possibly, we want to run because we feel bad, we feel guilty, and we do not want to have our face rubbed in it.

And, that is what humanity has done since the beginning. Adam and Eve they take the fruit and they bite it and then when they do, they hide from God. And, I am convinced that a lot of us lose days, weeks, months, years of our lives hiding from God because of sin that is already been paid for. We hide from God, because of sin that we commit that has already been paid for, we run and we hide. Some of you are sitting in here today you have been hiding from God for years because of something in your past and you are afraid to approach him or to engage, or you are trying to figure out how you can earn it back or re-deserve God’s favor and you are like, we run and hide from sin that is already been paid for. Listen, do you realize all of your sin has already been paid for, your past sin has been paid for, your present sin has been paid for, your future sin has already been paid for, sin you have not even committed yet, it is already been taken care of.

Think about like this 2000 years ago Jesus hung on the cross and he took care of all sin. And, at that point in time all your sin was future, was it not. Unless you are 2013, years old, some of you may be. All of your sin at that point in time it was future and Jesus on the cross and he said it is finished. Your future sin has already been taken care of. So, when you sin, the spirit is not there to rub your face in it and he is there to convince you. Let us run to God because he is already taken care of that sin, even if you just committed it, you do not need to go and run and hiding and earn it back and feel bad and beat yourself, Jesus was already beaten for you. Let us go run and ride to God. He is there to convince us of Romans 8:1, Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. He is there to tell you are clean, and your holy and you are pure, yeah, you do not feel like it, but that is the truth about who you are, the spirit is telling you it is because of Jesus Christ, it is not rubbing your face and he is telling you, it is already taken care of.

Imagine how different your life would be, if instead of running from God, we ran to God when we sent. Imagine how different life would be, the moment I just do something stupid and I know I should not have done that, instead of trying to avoid God for a while, if I just heard and said man Jesus, thank you for that has already been forgiven because the cross of Jesus Christ and I come to you right now. That is what the Holy Spirit’s trying to do, he is trying to draw you to Jesus to convince you it is already done. See the Holy Spirit is the greatest champion of your life, he believes more in you than you believe in yourself, and he is trying to make you conscious of righteousness, not conscious of sin. Think of my son, a little boy he makes a mistake and fails, I do not want to show it to make him conscious or his failure, I want to convince him that he is forgiven. I want to convince him that he is loved, I want to convince my son that he is a mighty man of God and convinced him of who he is, that is what the Spirit is trying to do. You see only the Holy Spirit knows your true identity.

In a world where everybody wants to define you, based on where you came from, what you look like, what you have done, only the spirit hold your spiritual birth certificate. Listen to this, John 3, 5, and 6, Jesus answered, I will tell you the truth. No one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit, gives birth to Spirit. When you were born on this earth your parents were given a birth certificate, flesh gives birth to flesh that birth certificate. And, as you grew older, they told you about who you are and in that birth certificate defines your identity on this earth, who you are in the flesh, but Jesus says Spirit gives birth to spirit. And, when you were born into the kingdom of God when you became a follower of Jesus Christ, it was the Spirit who you were born again through and now the spirit he holds your spiritual birth certificate. And, as you walk through this life, he holds that birth certificate and he is trying to convince you of your true identity, he is saying, it does not matter what anybody else says about you, I have got the birth certificate right here and it says on the birth certificate you are righteous, it does not matter what you do, you are righteous, this is your identity and as you grow he is trying to convince you of that truth, and it is not about what you do and it is about what Jesus Christ has done.

You see righteousness, your righteousness does not change based on what you do, because it is determined by what Jesus has already done. Can you catch that, you are right standing with God, never changes based on what you do, because it is been determined based on what Jesus has done. You cannot add to your righteousness, you cannot take away from your righteousness. Same is true with your identity, your identity does not change based on what you do, because it is been determined by what Jesus has done, he holds the birth certificate, he knows your true identity. That is the role of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer, to convince you of your righteousness. Are you with me on that, is that makes sense. It is a paradigm shift, I mean it looking at things totally different because that is not what we are taught. That is not what we have come to believe, but that is the Spirit Jesus says.

It goes on third thing in Verse 11, and in regard to judgment because the prince of this world now stands condemned, in other words the spirit is there to convince you that Satan has already been defeated, that Satan has no right or authority or power in your life. You see the Bible says Satan is the great accuser that he is the father of lies. So, his whole role in your life is to accuse you. So, it is Satan’s voice when you sin, that says, you should be so ashamed of yourself. It is Satan’s voice when you make a mistake that says you better run and hide from God because He is not going to take this one well. It is Satan’s voice that whispers to you and says, I thought you were better than this, I mean seriously you are going to struggle with that. That is the accuser. And, for some reason we have been taught to believe that is the Holy Spirit convicting us of sin, that is garbage, there is no condemnation. The Bible says, For those who are in Christ Jesus that is not the voice of the Spirit, the voice of the spirit is Satan’s been defeated, you are righteous because of Jesus Christ, that is what he is trying to convince you off..

See Jesus says the Holy Spirit is the great helper, advocate, comforter, counselor of your life. Would it be helpful or comforting to have your face constantly rubbed into your sin, yes or no. No. Would it be helpful to be constantly reminded that no matter what you do, you still have a right standing with God. Yes. And, the reason we struggle believing that it is because the world remembers our stuff, your spouse remembers your failures, your kids remember your mistakes, your friends they do not forget the things that you do wrong, but God does. And, so, if you are here today, listen to me. If you are here today and you have been struggling with guilt and shame over something in the past for a long time, you are listening into the wrong voice. If you have guilt and shame and you are a follower of Jesus Christ, you are listening to the wrong voice, because the Holy Spirit would say to you today, it is been paid for, it is done, you are righteous run to God and receive what he has to say about you.

I hope for some of you is that you can receive that today and let go of that guilt you have been carrying around for years, and hiding from God. Now, let me go ahead and say this because I know it is such a paradigm shift I can see your wheel, some of you are spinning so fast and then trying to get this Listen, I am not saying the Holy Spirit never convicts you of sin. Some sin is so deep and so deceptive we do not even know it is sin, the Spirit will come and he will try to guide us out of it, it will be the Spirit of truth to lead us out of there. But, when he comes, he is not trying to make you feel bad or guilty, what he is trying to do is, man, this isn’t good for you. He wants to show you the truth and the Bible says you will know the truth and the truth will set you free. Not trying to make you feel guilty, he is trying to lead you into freedom. And, some of you, you are sitting there and you are thinking, John, you cannot teach people this, if you teach people this and they know that they are always righteous with God, you are going to give them a license to sin, listen to people need a license to sin. No.

Do you need one, I do not need one. Let us to do it anyways, right. We do not need a license to sin, are you kidding me. Listen to this, it is about grace Titus 2:11 and 12, For the grace of God that brings salvation as appeared to all men it Grace, Grace, Grace, Grace teaches us to say no to ungodliness and worldly passions and to live self-controlled upright and godly lives in this present age, it is grace that leads us to truth, it is the grace of Jesus Christ that empowers us to live the truth of the gospel. That is why the spirit is there to convince us of righteousness because it changes our whole perspective on life. And, I think it is really important for you to know that at Valley Creek church our whole ministry is built on this. We want to partner with the Holy Spirit, the Bible says, the law kills, but the Spirit gives life, I want to partner with the spirit and we say we are a life giving church, what does that mean, it means we are partner with the Spirit. Listen, do you want to come in here every week and have me get up here and just hammer on sin. Is that sound fun. You would probably stop coming.

I do not want to do it, I do not want to get up here and hammer on it. I would not about the grossest of sin, I will talk about the greatness of God. I want to talk about who we are in Jesus Christ. I want to talk about listening to the voice of the spirit, I want to talk about or identity, I want to talk about revelation of grace, Kingdom living, a high view of Jesus, that is the stuff that changes us. Romans 2:4 says, It is God’s kindness that leads you to repentance, it is the kindness of Jesus Christ that says you have right standing, no matter what you do because of what I have done that ultimately brings change in your life. That is life giving church, that is the Holy Spirit. And, when you start to catch that it changes everything. It is like I am righteous, I do not need to do that anymore. I am righteous, I do not even want to do that, that is not even interesting. I am righteous, I need to do that to have somebody make me feel good about my identity, I already know my identity the Spirit has told me that I am righteous. I am not even interested in that I already know who I am, it changes everything.

He is not there to make you feel bad and guilty, he is there to convince you as a follower of Jesus Christ that you are righteous, okay. Are you with me with me, change that paradigm, Bible says be transformed by the renewing of your mind, see it differently and man it will bring the change that you want to see. Now, that is the first thing. Second thing is this really quick, Holy Spirit empowers us to live righteously. So, he convinces us of our righteousness, but then he empowers us to live righteously. Flip over to Galatians 5, real quick, let me read this to you. In Verse 16, So, I say live by the Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature, for the sinful nature desires was is contrary to the Spirit and the Spirit was contrary to the sinful nature, they were in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. Is that sound like anybody’s spiritual journey. It is okay to be honest and admit it, you are still righteous in Jesus Christ. Yeah, it sounds like mine.

We do what we do not want to do and we find ourselves not able to do the things we want to do and it is the spirit and the sinful nature inside of us and there are in this battle and they are colliding with one another, and we struggle with it and the reason we struggle believing that we are righteous in Jesus Christ is because so often we do not live very righteously. And, what ends up happening is we show up in a religious circle, we come to church a small group whatever and we share with people that we are not able to do the things that we want to do. We are falling short, we have got this struggle in our life and what are we told, try harder. Try harder, get your act together, man. Stop doing that, clean yourself up, read the Bible, pray, come to church early stay later, I mean come on, try harder, I can give you a bullet list of 100 different things that you need to just start, you just need to try harder. Listen, can I tell you today, you cannot try hard enough to bring the change you want to see. You cannot try hard enough to bring the change you want to see.

Verse 16, So, I say, live by the Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. It is the Spirit and only the Spirit that gives you the power to bring the change you want to see. And, a lot of us, we get so excited about the Holy Spirit yeah let us talk about the Holy Spirit, the power, I mean prophecy and speaking in tongues and healing and miracles and a supernatural, all that stuff is great, it is true and we need it. Listen, the greatest power the Holy Spirit gives you is to live like Jesus Christ. Greatest power Spirit gives you is to live with the character of Jesus Christ. Let me give you a silly illustration. Let us say I want to buy a brand new car, okay. I have got money in my pocket, I have saved up, I have done the research, I am all excited, I go to a car dealer and I do not know where you go, here is where I go, I go to a Ford dealer and I get a brand new Ford F-150, four doors, four wheel drive, I get the jacked up lift kit, big mud, rubber tires, you what the big knobs on it, spray in bedliner, brush guard winch, leather, navigation, DVD, all that stuff.

That is kind of car I would get, when you tell the story, you can have any kind of care you want, that is what I am going to buy in the story, okay, that is where I would go and get. And, so, I go into the dealer and I am all excited, and he these points on every feature all the stuff and I am super excited how incredible this thing is, I but it 10s of 1000s of dollars. I pull off the lot and for the first week it is amazing. I go on and pick up my friends look at my new truck, this is awesome and drive around and show people, I go off road and couple of times, get stuck got to pull that winch outs, pulls it out, man, yeah, right. So, I am talking about, some of you will buy a wimpy car, yeah, a truck with a winch, that is what you buy. So, I am loving this truck, it is incredible and after about a week I am driving down the highway and all of a sudden and I will pullover, you got to be kidding me, this thing is a piece of junk. You got sold me a truck that does not work.
I am furious, I get on the phone and call the dealer, he feels terrible right because man, that is brand new a 1000s of dollars and, so, oh, dude you sold me a piece of junk this thing does not work. He says, sir, I am so sorry. He says can I ask you a couple of questions maybe we can figure out what is wrong. I said sure, he said, well the key turns, turn the key, yeah, the key turns. He says, when you turn the key on is there a power, I mean like the battery, does the radio turn on, I turn on the radio comes out, yeah. The battery is good, so, I look on your dashboard and there is like a temperature gauge there he says the truck overheated, look no, truck has not overheated and all of sudden he goes silent for a minute. He says, sir, he goes, can I ask you, when was the last time you filled the truck up with gas, what are you talking about, yeah, once you fill up with gas. Filled up with gas, I just spent a $40,000 on this truck, I am not filling it up, it should need gas, you should need gas, what I am talking about, I am putting liquor gas in this thing, I am just driving around, you told me what are going to do all this stuff and then it is incredible and it is not working, it is a piece of junk, and what is that guy is going to say to me, sir, no matter what you do, that truck is never going to run until you put gas in it.

I does not matter how great you think it is, is not going to fire up until you fill it up with gas. Do you realize that is how a lot of us live our Christian life. We get saved, we pull off the lot, we all are excited about Jesus, a week down the road things break down and we say, see, it does not work, all that stuff in the Bible, it is a joke, abundant life it does not work. I cannot get rid of my habitual sin, it just came back, be joyful on all circumstances I cannot be joyful with the things that, I did does not work, they ripped me off, they sold me a bunch of lies, and why, because you never filled up with the power of the Holy Spirit. And, you can sit there all day long and try as hard as you want. It is not going to work until you fill up with the power of the Spirit, like filling up with gas in your brand new truck, you cannot live the abundant Christian life without the power of the Spirit. Look at these verses, Verse 19, The acts of the sinful nature are obvious, sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissension, factions, envy, drunkenness, orgies and the like.

Does that sound like a good way to mess up your life. Yes. And, here is the good news, that is all you can produce on your own. It is the acts of the sinful nature, you try harder that is all you can produce on your own, but Verse 22, The fruit of Spirit, it is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, faithfulness, goodness, gentleness, and self-control. That is what the Holy Spirit will produce in our life. And, I love that he uses the word fruit. It is the fruit of the Spirit. Imagine if I came to you and said, hey, I am going to produce an orange. I am going to produce an orange, you are my friend, I am going to produce an orange, you said how are you going to do that. I say, what, here is what I am going to do. I put a seed in my hand, put some dirt on there, a little bit of Miracle Grow, get some water, and I am just going to be really still for a long time.

And, I might walk outside and get it some sun, and I am going to hold my arm, just wrapped, and I am going to concentrate and meditate, I think about it all the time, I am going to pray for it, and I am going to believe that this orange is going to come in my hand, wait, concentrate. If I try just a little bit harder, it is going to come. Give me another minute. What would you say. You say, you are crazy, right. Do not matter how long you hold your hands still, you are never going to grow an orange in your head. It is absolutely absurd, it is ridiculous. What do you need to grow an orange. An orange tree, wow. My illustrations are not going to work, if you do not think you need an orange tree to grow an orange. You need an orange tree, to grow an orange, right. No matter what else you do, you will not get an orange without an orange tree. He says it is the fruit of the Spirit. Only the Spirit can produce that fruit.

Only the Spirit can have the power to bring the love in your life to love your spouse. Only the Spirit has the power to give you the patience to parent your kids. Only the Spirit has the gentleness for that person you cannot stand in life. Only the Spirit has the joy you need in the midst of that circumstance. You do not want to be in. Only the Spirit can do that. And, if we trusted the Holy Spirit for salvation, why do not we trust the Holy Spirit for sanctification. If we trust the Holy Spirit to save us, bring us into the kingdom of God, why do not we trust them for the practical outworking of our lives, to live righteously in the abundant life. Why do not we trust him to give us the power we need to live the way we want to live. You cannot do it without the Holy Spirit. And, some of you, you are looking at me and you are like, yeah, but John how, it is the mystery of God. I do not know, I do not know. All I know is this, is if you partner with the Holy Spirit, that is what is going to come out of your life.

Because it is the Spirit who gives you the desire, the revelation, and the power to follow God, it is a mystery. And, some of you are like, yeah, but how do I unpack that mystery. You got to seek Him. We have been talking about in this whole series, be His friend. Be His friend, the Holy Spirit wants to be your friend, seek Him then submit to Him. James 4:7, says Submit yourselves to God, therefore, resist the devil and he will flee, we reverse it. We submit ourselves to the accuser, the father of lies, and we resist the Holy Spirit because we do not understand Him, or we think He is there to make us feel bad about ourselves, we got to get it back in the right order. You see, Jesus says the Spirit is there to be your counselor, a counselor is only good if you are willing to receive the counsel that they give you. You got to submit to it, and then surrender. See, man, Holy Spirit I have tried really hard. And, I cannot love my wife. I have tried really hard and I cannot be joyful.

I have tried really hard and I cannot break out of this sin pattern that is destroying my life. Can you help me, surrender. Same power that conquered the grave is the power that now lives in you, through the Holy Spirit. Let me close with this story, a while back my kids were playing, 3-year-old and the 5-year-old, and my 3-year-old girl she built this big princess tower with Legos, she was all excited, she was having a great girly-day and Princess and crowns and Lego all the stuff. She builds this big, big princess thing and like 3-year-old and 5-year-old will do they start wrestling around with each other and somehow Trey destroys, my son, he destroys the entire tower. And, so was the princess tower shatters, Emma starts, she is just crying, she is just losing, she cannot believe her princess tower is gone and in the midst of crying and what happened, she just reaches over and she just lays one on Trey, okay. I mean she just takes care of big brother, she just she just goes for it and so not Trey is crying.

So, both of them are screaming and crying, and I hear them in the room and so, I come running into the room to see what is happening, and I am running in full speed and I step right on the Lego and now I am crying, so everybody is crying. I do not know if you ever stepped on a Lego full speed with bare feet, that is painful deals, everybody is crying. So, Emma goes running up to her, slams the door. I will take care of Trey and clean up the Legos and then I go up to a room and I knock on the door, say Emma open the door baby, no answer. I knocked again, say hey Emma, open the door baby and she says no daddy. I said Emma opened the door and she says, no, daddy. She said Trey broke tower, it will never be fixed and now I am in trouble because I hit him. So, no, I am not opening the door. Here is what I want you to see, 3-year-old little girl. Something bad happened in her life, she responded poorly. She knew, she responded poorly.

She knew, she was wrong and she runs and hides from dad, because she does not want to be reminded of her failure. She does not want to be reminded of her mistake, she does not want to have her face rubbed into it, she does not want to be shamed, a 3-year-old just natural, she does not want to be shamed or maybe made to feel guilt. She knows, she was wrong and here is dad knocking on the door, and all I wanted to do is invite me in, because I want to come in and comfort her. Tell her it is okay. I want to tell her I love her and all I want to do is go downstairs and rebuild the Lego tower. I was not there to shame her or make her feel bad or forget that, I knew she knew what she did was wrong. And, she would not let me in, do you realize that is how a lot of us treat the Holy Spirit. We walk through life, something bad happens and we respond poorly, Spirit says turn right, we turn left, we do something bad and what do we do, we run and we hide. We slam the door and the Holy Spirit comes in, he knocks and says let me and we say, no, actually I do not want you around at all because I already feel bad about myself.

I already feel a lot of shame for what I did, I know what I did was wrong and I am embarrassed about it, I do not want anybody to find out about it. I cannot believe I fell into that sin again for the 1,000th time, so, no, I do not want you to come in, I already feel bad. I do not need to be made feel guilty or be ashamed or have my face rubbed in it, so, no, you cannot come in and the Spirits like, Man, that is not what I am here for. All I wanted to is let me in, because I want to come and be your comforter and your counselor. I want to remind you of your identity. And, I want to convince you that you are righteous. And, I want to convince you that you still have right standing with God. So, let us run to him together. But, we would not open the door. We invite the Holy Spirit in, changes everything. He is not there to shame you or guilt you or make you feel bad. He is there to draw you to Jesus and empower you to live the life you want to live, he wants to be your best friend.

That is the goodness of the Spirit. So, you close your eyes and bow your heads with me. Let me just ask you, what is the Holy Spirit whispering to you. What is he whispering into your heart right now. Some of you he is just trying to tell you that you do not have to hide anymore. My sense is there some of you here today you have been in church in years, today was the first day you showed up because you have been hiding and running from God. Spirit says, Man, you do not have to hide anymore. In Jesus Christ, you are righteous, so, let us run to him. My senses that some of you, you are here and your marriage has blowing up, your kids are walking down paths you do not want them to. You are stuck in an addiction, you got a habitual sin that you cannot break free of, you got some kind of bondage in your life, the spirit is here today to fill you up.

So, you can be empowered to break through and live the life that the Bible says you can have but you cannot do it on your own, you got to invite him in and say Spirit give me the power to love my wife. Give me the forgiveness to forgive my husband. Give me the grace to parent my kids. Partnering with him and watch the fruit he will produce. And, then my sense is that, there are some of you, you are here and you have never met Jesus Christ. And, as we talk about this today, it goes back to the first one in Verse 9, The Spirit is there trying to convince you that you have rejected Jesus, and that you need him. Today is your day to be drawn to Jesus, that debt, that burden, that guilt you feel on your shoulders it is the Holy Spirit trying to say, if you would just submit to Jesus, he takes care of all of that. That is the beauty of the cross.

And, if that is you and you have never met Jesus Christ just in your own way, say Jesus I want to start a relationship with you right now. I accept your forgiveness, I give you my sins. I now understand and believe that I am the righteousness of God that you have forgiven me and restored me and made me new and clean and the whole and you will forgive my sins, and remember than no more. And, so, Lord come into my life, bring your spirit of truth and I will follow you, the rest of my days. The Holy Spirit is here to be the great convincer and the great empower of your life. So, Lord Jesus, would you transform us by the renewing of our minds and help us view the Spirit in a new way. Holy Spirit give us that revelation settle into our hearts and may we follow you and listen to your voice. And, in the name of Jesus we rebuke the voice of the accuser. We rebuke the father of lies and we say that you are the one Holy Spirit that will tell us what our true identity is, that we are righteous in Jesus Christ.

If you are here today and you need prayer for anything we are going to have people up here to pray for you. Maybe you need prayer to meet Jesus, prayer to let go that guilt and shame, prayer for anything in your life, let them pray for you. If you are new to Valley Creek church I would love to invite you over here to get central, some of our leaders will be in there, I will be in there, we just want to tell you that we are glad that you are here, but I pray you go this week, listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit knowing that you are righteous in Jesus, no matter what happens. I love you and may have a great week, blessings.

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