Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Spirit's Presence and Attributes (Part VI)

Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:26-28)

Lastly, the Comforter is presented as the Spirit of security. His gracious work of intercession is seen in verses twenty-six through thirty. The word infirmities means weakness or sickness. It is comprised of two parts which, when put together, mean without strength. In the weakness of his flesh, the Christian is unable to fully grasp the seriousness of his warfare. Neither does he understand all the needs of his own heart and life. A person will often pray for things which will not benefit him or work toward his sanctification. The Spirit of God augments these incomplete, though perhaps sincere, prayers with sighs and groans which are inexpressible because they are so vital and personal. Perhaps this is what is meant when the Bible reads in Revelation 8:3, “And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.” The prayers of all the saints were mingled with the holy incense thus making one perfect prayer which is in complete harmony with God's will. The Spirit will always work in harmony with God's will. If a believer is praying against biblical principle, the Spirit will not side with the flesh; he will make intercession for truth according to the will of God. In this is great security. When the believer is discouraged or rebellious, the Spirit of God will continue to be faithful in leading His possession toward sanctification.

Verse twenty-eight is not authorization for a man to believe that God will always bless his path regardless. A Christian must be cautious of not heeding God's work of chastening. If a man simply “remains positive” through the consequences of bad choices while claiming this verse, he has failed to understand the heart behind it. The first qualification is to them that love God. This instantly qualifies none but the redeemed. This promise may not be given to the lost unless they are willing to turn to Christ. Not only does it qualify just the redeemed, its main thrust is toward the man who is not walking in rebellion. Regardless of failure, weakness and sin, the believer who will repent and humbly walk with God may rest assured that God is powerful enough to make all things work together for His ultimate glory and the sanctification of His children. To persist in a rebellious direction while quoting this verse is to mock God.

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