A Glorious Work
No, we have not been attempting to describe in these few pages different and distinct operations of the Holy Spirit. We have merely been endeavoring to tell you, on scriptural authority, of the one glorious consequence of the coming of the Holy Ghost to the life of man. The simple truth of the matter is that when the Holy Ghost has actually invaded the human personality in all His consuming fullness it becomes humanly impossible, even with the aid of inspired revelation, adequately to describe this wonderful work in one figure or term.
Suppose a friend should come some day and ask you to go with him to view a spacious and impressing work of architecture. He would guide you to a certain vantage point only to listen to your exclamation of delight at the beauty you beheld. But immediately he would say to you, “But you have not seen it yet.” Wonderingly you would follow to still another strategic view and again burst forth with appreciation for what you viewed. But once more your friend would insist, “You really haven’t seen it yet.” Once more you eagerly follow and again from a distinctly new approach gaze at the same magnificent structure. Thus it is with the marvelous moral structure of the fullness of divine grace. It cannot be comprehended in one view nor described with simple language. The coming of the Holy Ghost is a baptism. But it is more than that. It is a filling, it is a cleansing, it is an anointing, it is a sealing, But after all it is the same glorious unit of divine accomplishment within the human heart. For when He is come He does all of this and more. His coming transforms the personality, purifies the very source of being, equips and empowers, molds, instructs and guides. His is a divinely wonderful work.
But, someone asks, if His coming so utterly trains-fuses the very personality; if His indwelling actually cleanses the very heart and nature, how could one ever lose such a mighty Presence and experience? We do not wish to emphasize this particular aspect of truth for the fact is that no one ever needs to lose Him once He has come. And yet there is a measure of confusion at this point in many minds that’ provokes us to pause in the hope that the matter may be more fully understood. Were we to discuss the problem at length we would raise the question: How could Adam and Eve ever fall, for they were complete in holiness? The answer is found in the simple recognition of the fact of the humanity of Adam. It was true then, and now is, that the royal road of Satan to the heart of man is found through his natural appetites and desires. Temptation is ever based upon desire. It is upon this fact that Satan plays until he has produced an act of disobedience and again sown the seed of iniquity in the heart of man. But, the questioner persists, how can sin actually get back into the heart of man after once it has been removed?
The answer to this is found in a proper recognition of what sin as a principle actually is, It is here again that our human language breaks down in its effort to describe spiritual relations. We speak of sin as a substance be cause of the beggary of language. It is called the old man, the body of sin, But these terms are merely figures of speech. Sin, as a principle after all, is not a substance, it is a moral quality. It is the pollution of the blood stream of the moral nature. Were sin a substance or a thing, most assuredly it could never be placed back in the nature once it had been removed. But sin is not a substance, it is a moral condition. And just as the blood stream of an individual, once having been cleansed by purgatives, could again become carelessly polluted by contamination, so the heart of man can again become polluted by disobedience and spiritual indolence. For Satan ever watches for an hour of spiritual laxity or weakness in which to again continue his nefarious task of damning souls just as he did in the long ago. His interrogation, “Hath God said?” is yet often successfully employed.
A glorious fact, however, remains for us to consider in closing. The coming of the Holy Ghost into the heart and life in His exquisite fullness does so cleanse and empower, protect and guard that the liability of spiritual failure is brought to its earthly minimum. Here, if you please, is the true security of the believer. To every soul who will yield to the Holy Ghost, He will come with loving and holy dominion driving from the heart every antagonism to all the will of God. He will then secure the entrance to the soul with His own untiring presence. Whenever the enemy attempts to come in like a flood, He himself will lift up a standard against him, He will culture the soul with skill, He will guide the life with agility. He will build deep fixed principles of moral living deep within the being so that the slightest insinuation of Satan will be readily recognized and repulsed. He will train the weakened propensities and appetites of a broken race till spiritual culture becomes the instinct of the soul. Thus empowered and equipped the liability of failure is brought to a conspicuous minimum. And to him who will mind the checks of the Spirit, following His wise and tireless leadership, accepting His constant challenge to service, that one will become triumphantly serene in the peaceful consciousness of adequate resources. God is always present for every need. Spiritual development, then largely unhindered, becomes the delight and romance of life as one grows in grace and in the knowledge of his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and thus out into a larger sphere of consecrated usefulness and service, For the Holy Ghost has come.