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Partner with the Holy Spirit

Updated: Mar 23, 2019

by Dave Miller

Previous Chapter 5.3 | Next Chapter 5.5

We, the church, are not left alone in the Commission. Notice who partners with us to empower the salvation that Christ has accomplished.

“I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will bein you” (John 14:16-17).

The Holy Spirit empowers the believer to follow Jesus in obedience. Jesus said that we will do “even greater works” because he is returning to heaven and sending the Holy Spirit. Honestly, this truth troubles me on occasion. Jesus said:

“Whoever believes in me will also do the works I do.”

He sent the Holy Spirit to empower his followers to obey his commands. If we, as followers, are not living obediently to Christ’s commands, we are not about the business of seeking and saving the lost, and we are not continually being conformed to the image of Christ, then it isn’t Jesus we are following and the Holy Spirit is not leading us. You determine whom you follow. You decide whom you will worship.

Let’s go back for a moment to John 14:15-26. Jesus teaches a pattern that we have completely reversed in the American church:

If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.

I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Yet a little while and the world will see me no more, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.

Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, “Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?

Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father's who sent me.

These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

Look for these four elements in Jesus teaching from this passage in John 14-15-26:

  1. Love

  2. Commands/Word

  3. Obedience,

  4. Holy Spirit.

On a sheet of paper write Love, Commands/Word, Obedience, Holy Spirit in the order Jesus teaches them in each passage listed.

Verses 15-17

______ ______ ______ _______

Verses 18-21

______ ______ ______ _______

Verse 23

______ ______ ______ _______

Verse 24

______ ______ ______ _______

What is the role of the Holy Spirit/Sprit of truth?


Now think with me for a moment about our traditional way of learning the scripture verses the way Jesus taught we learn the truth.


Traditional Model

Hear -> Learn -> Understand -> Obey

Jesus Model

Hear -> Obey (Empowered by Holy Spirit) -> Learn -> Understand


Traditional Model: I am the Authority

Jesus Model: Jesus is the Authority


If I must wait until I understand the command of Jesus before I am willing to obey them, I have set myself as the authority over the commands of Christ. If I obey as soon as I hear Christ’s commands, regardless of my understanding, I prove that I love him and trust him implicitly. This is the difference between faith and doubt.

I was trained, through I believe unintentionally, to operate like the garden of Eden instead of the like the Wilderness of Jesus. I chose to obey when I understood. Incredibly, Jesus teaches that understanding and learning is a product of love in obedience to the Word through the Holy Spirit rather than diligent study of the text as information to be learned.

Jesus told the Pharisees, “You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me” (John 5:39). They treated the scriptures as something to be learned instead of a witness to the One who is to be followed and obeyed.

I can feel the objections rising…

Up Next: It's Legalism!

Until there's #NoPlaceLeft...


Sentergy: When Jesus, People, Practice and Theology Collide



Chapter 1: The Glory of God

Chapter 2: The Glory of God in Jesus

Chapter 3: The Glory of God in the Gospel

Chapter 4: The Glory of God in Disciple Making

Chapter 5: If You Love Me You Will Obey What I Command

Chapter 6: Monday Morning Disciple Making

Chapter 7: Monday Morning Disciple Making Part 2

Interlude: The Father's Heart

Chapter 8: All Scripture All People All Places by Carter Cox

Conclusion: The Lump In Your Throat

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