“… by nature we are so dead, blind, and perverse that neither can we feel when we are pricked, see the light when it shines, nor assent to the will of God when it is revealed, unless the Spirit of the Lord Jesus quickens that which is dead, removes the darkness from our minds, and bows our stubborn hearts to the obedience of His blessed will.”
— John Knox (1510 – 1572)
DARK and sinister is the material of the unregenerate soul, but the regenerate soul awakens still minutes before dawn without the Holy Spirit’s constant revelation of truth.
We don’t see truth without the Holy Spirit’s help. We don’t perceive well. And we cannot do the will of God without surrendering what we would otherwise want — something that must be done by intention.
In other words, Christian or not, we are damned to behave as sinners behave. The only thing that separates the saved from the unsaved is the grace of God that has been accepted as won or rejected as lost. Our regeneration tendered to us the gifts of the Spirit, and some sure signs of our salvation, but regeneration depends for the long haul upon reliance. And that is faith — to surrender our strength for His strength. Without reliance on the Holy Spirit we, the regenerate, will behave as unregenerate.
Indeed, regeneration must teach us the principal task of giving up on a daily, moment by moment, basis. Not of giving up on life, but of giving up our will to power.
As we give up our sight for His, as we step by His light preferring not to run in our own darkness, and as we hope where there seems no hope, His Spirit lights our path. We have to choose what only God can provide.
We owe everything we have, all we are, and everything we can be, to the Lord, who sought us from birth, who bought us by His Son, and who now seeks that we are wrought for His purposes.
When the Spirit awakens us to our darkness, God enlightens us to live by truth, which is life by faith alone. This is the only ‘enlightenment’ with which we have access.
God’s alive in the redeemed through the redeemed person’s reliance on His Spirit.
Humility is the key to the Christian, for without humility there is no surrender, and where there is no surrender there remains only sin.
A Christian can only succeed when they rely solely on the Holy Spirit. Indeed, this is what salvation is designed to teach us.
© 2016 Steve Wickham.