For many, the Holy Spirit presents much confusion…and, many questions like; Just what does the Holy Spirit do? How do I know if the Holy Spirit is part in my life? Our text, even just four short verses, brings some insights into these questions.
The Holy Spirit points us to Christ...leads us as “sons of God” – the ESV distinguishes between “sons” (daughters too) over the much more common “children” of God I think for a reason – Paul has been talking about those who follow Christ as being heirs – an inheritance. Paul connects “sons”, “Abba” with followers of THE Son – Jesus. The Holy Spirit points us to Christ…the Holy Spirit works on us to strengthen our relationship of faith in Christ. The Holy Spirit has his hands full – just imagine how busy he must be amidst the distractions of our lives – our desire to be in control – you know…”I can do this – I know how to do this”. Left on my own I would wander aimlessly… Left to our own devices, we would wander like lost sheep. But the Spirit has other plans. God’s Spirit continually reaches out to embrace and encourage us.
The Holy Spirit is a gift…a gift with an agenda. The Holy Spirit is not one who can be managed or controlled by you and I. The Holy Spirit works in us, and through us, as God’s gift to bring us and others into relationship with Christ. The work of the Holy Spirit is to continually draw us to Christ, in spite of our desire want to travel the road of life on our own abilities.
The Holy Spirit is our comforter…our text is clear that we are going to experience difficulties (wait to the end of Ch. 8 for the climax of this thought). We are not promised a life of rose gardens – there are a great deal of thorns in our lives. We are co-heirs with Jesus – Paul emphasizes this point – and in this point I think he is telling us that sharing with Jesus means more than anticipating the glories of heaven. For Jesus Christ it involved suffering and abuse and crucifixion; therefore being co-heirs with Christ requires that believers share in His sufferings… Being in relationship with Christ – remember, “not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes” (Rom 1:16) will create tensions in this world but rest in knowing that the Holy Spirit brings us comfort…a peace that sustains us even amidst the trials and tribulations of life.