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Page 184


 

I am the true vine, and My Father is the husbandman.

Every branch in Me that beareth not fruit He taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, He purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

Now ye are clean through the Word which I have spoken unto you.

Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in Me.

I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in Me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without Me ye can do nothing.

- John 15:1-5

 


Why is the following expression from Psalter 381 (Psalm 138) very precious to God's children? "The work Thou hast for me begun, shall by Thy grace be fully done."



    The class remained silent, pondering this question.

    "Let me help you," he continued. "A saved person does repent, believe, and obey; but he only does so through the new spiritual life that the Holy Spirit implanted and empowers in his soul. His old nature is at enmity with these things. Therefore the 'reward of salvation' in his life is a gracious reward. God graciously 'rewards' the activity produced by the new nature which He has graciously implanted and maintained. God is actually graciously 'rewarding' that which He has graciously given."

    How does this instruction help explain the two truths, that in salvation the person repents, believes, and obeys; and yet, salvation is all of God's free grace?

God's children are totally dependent upon the Holy Spirit for their spiritual life and salvation - they need Him for their spiritual life's beginning, continuation, and completion. God the Holy Spirit is the Regenerator, Sustainer, Leader, Teacher, Comforter, Converter, Enlightener, Sanctifier, and Preserver of all true believers.

The Holy Spirit's saving work in the souls of His people includes:

    1. Internal calling
    2. Regenerating
    3. Converting

      a. Repentance (the conviction of sin - misery)
      b. Faith (the trusting in Christ - deliverance)
      c. Obedience (the desiring of God's will - thankfulness)

    4. Uniting with Christ
    5. Applying of justification
    6. Working of sanctification
    7. Assuring of salvation
    8. Preserving in grace
    9. Preparing for heaven

The Holy Spirit's saving work is a total work. We need the Holy Spirit to begin, continue, and complete His saving work within us.

Do you recognize your personal need of the Holy Spirit and His work? Are you actively using the means through which the Holy Spirit works, and earnestly praying for His blessing upon it?

    A young minister once approached Rev. Spurgeon to ask why people were not converted under his first year's preaching.

    "Well, you do not expect God to convert someone every time you preach, do you?" Spurgeon asked.


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