Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Beauty & Glory of the Holy Spirit

Last week I had the pleasure of attending the Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary Conference in Grand Rapids. The conference's theme this year was The Beauty & Glory of the Holy Spirit, and for the second straight year, I found the teaching excellent, the fellowship wonderful, and the facilities/physical arrangements splendid.  I am already looking forward to attending the conference again in the future, and my only concern is that it is such a great conference that it is no doubt bound to grow, which I fear might change its atmosphere some.

It is always difficult to "rank" such things, but I think my favorite message was the final one of the conference, delivered by Geoff Thomas.  You can click here to listen to the messages from the conference, and I especially recommend clicking here to listen to Thomas's message on The Love of the Spirit.  Here is a snippet of what he shared (minus his wonderful Welsh accent):
Think, think if you still aren’t captivated with the wonder of the Holy Spirit loving you. Think, think of him coming into your heart and mind and indwelling you. 
Imagine I lived in London now and not in my fair principality and my drains were all clogged, so I phoned Buckingham Palace and had a little chat with the queen and I said to her, “Your Majesty, I’m having a problem with my drains. Now can Phillip and Charles and William and Andrew…can you send the boys along to clear my sewage pipes?”

Well you’ve got to have such men, and it’s a noble work that they do. But they would not be members of the royal family, would they? Now you multiply by infinity and here is the Holy Spirit. And he’s coming into hearts that are desperately deceitful. And he’s coming, rolling up his sleeves to clean up the mess that we’ve made of our lives. The holiest being that ever has been or ever will be, coming into such intimate contact with our depravity.

He is the spirit of Jesus Christ, isn’t he? He came, he came and pitched his tent in the dark valley of this world. He came where men crucify other men. He came where the blasphemies are, where men gamble for the clothes of those they’re torturing to death. And he came there, he came into the closest contact with us. He was made in the likeness of sinful flesh. He came because he loved us.
And the Holy Spirit, he comes into sinful flesh, he comes to set up his abode in us, to visit such polluted hearts. And ceaselessly and patiently and constantly to woo us with many groanings and many trials. And slowly and tentatively turning us around, maturing us and making us do good. And never, never, never leaving us for a moment, until through his wonderful work within us we have been won entirely and the old man is no more and we are the new man, and we are creatures and when we see our Savior we shall be like him, for we will see him as he is! And it’s this work, with this goal in mind, he’s made up his mind to do it in every one of his elect!

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