9 You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ. 10 But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness. 11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.
In Paul's writings again today, we see several teachings about the nature of the Holy Spirit. As I have said before, most churches have a largely undeveloped education plan to teach about Holy Spirit. Who is He? What Does He Do? How Does the Holy Spirit Empower Our Lives? Because the work of the Holy Spirit is such a large part of Paul's teaching on how we actually live the Christian live as a disciple of Christ, it behooves us to keep learning more about Him. For instance today we learn that:
1. As a believer in Christ, you have to Holy Spirit in you, and you can live in the realm of the Spirit. Meaning as you live in relationship with the Holy Spirit, you can operate in the power of the Holy Spirit in your daily life.
2. The Spirit is the Spirit of Christ, and though the Spirit is a unique person of the Trinity, nothing the Spirit does is out of alignment with Jesus. Just as God the Father and God the Son are separate but One, so it is that God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.
3. Though we still live life with what Paul calls, "a body of death", where he is referring to our old sinful nature, we can live life guided and controlled by the Spirit.
4. Because the Holy Spirit raised Jesus from the dead, and since the Spirit lives inside us, though we will die, we too will be resurrected.
So what does this mean for us?
1. We have incredible power because of the Spirit of Christ, who literally lives within us. This is why Paul calls the body "a temple of the Holy Spirit".
2. If our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, it is important to take care and not abuse our bodies, because the Spirit dwells there.
3. If the Spirit lives in us, it is the only way we can live the Christian life, and be a disciple of Christ. Here is where many get confused thinking if they try harder or follow stricter rules, they can grow in their spiritual life. By allowing the Holy Spirit to guide and control our lives will be evidenced by the fruit of the Holy Spirit. Paul lists these fruits in Galatians 5:22-23 (NIV):
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
My hope is that you see this as very Good News. What God has called us to do, He has empowered us to do by the Holy Spirit, who lives in all who believe in Jesus. Amen.