William Henry Westcott

In the foregoing chapters the work of the Holy Spirit as indwelling individual believers has been chiefly considered. We may recall how that two outstanding facts characterize Christianity as set forth in Scripture.

  • The one is the 'ad interim' position of the risen Man Christ Jesus, the Son of God, at the right hand of God;
  • the other is the 'ad interim' sojourn of the Holy Ghost on earth during the period of Christ's rejection here and session yonder.

When Christ moves downward to fetch us who believe upon Him, the Holy Spirit whose present mission will have been accomplished, will move upwards with those whom He has led to Christ; and thenceforward His activities will take another form.

Recalling further the substance of what has been said in these chapters, we must surely be convinced of the immensity of the range of blessing, and the variety of its aspects into which the Holy Spirit is here to lead our hearts. Greater than all is the intimate knowledge of the Blesser, the communion with Divine Persons into which it is His mission to conduct us.

Closely related to this is His service within us, enabling us to enjoy practical deliverance from the world, and from the power of sin, both external and internal; and producing in the subject believer a definite conformity to every aspect of Christ's glory and character by the energy of a living affection for Him. It would help usall to trace out in the different epistles the way the Spirit first establishes the truth as it is set out for us, and is true of us, in Christ; and then indicates in detail the work in saints which puts us into true alignment with Him, and produces corresponding life and works in us down here.

We have then three things:

(1) God's delight in Man, the Man of the new and heavenly order, set forth in Christ now in His presence; Object of His love, Man of His pleasure.

(2) The Spirit's mission to earth at this present time to produce men after Christ's order and pattern, acting in His various offices and functions to produce both intelligence of God's will and affections that love to reproduce Christ here.

(3) The evident need that we should be under the Spirit's full guidance and control in order that we should be perpetually under the influence of Christ, and freed from every influence that would grieve the Spirit and distract us from the Lord.

With such possibilities before your mind, dear reader, will you not seek with the writer to take the glories of Christ and the presence of the Holy Ghost seriously? Divine Persons have laid themselves out to capture our hearts' affection, and to lavish upon us all that love could give. This is not mere mercy or philanthropy, but the sheer love of God that has wrought to produce a race of men in whom, with Christ as Head, He can hold fullest, sweetest, eternal communion. Let us see Christ in resurrection life and heavenly glory, Centre of the Father's counsels, Object of His Father's love, and remember it is God's purpose that we shall be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be Firstborn among many brethren. Will this not move our inmost being to seek conformity to His whole will and pleasure now.

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