No one can say, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ except by the Holy Spirit. – 1 Corinthians 12:3
Working Behind the Scenes
Although certain individuals may get more public attention, those who work “behind the scenes” are essential in almost every joint endeavor. It’s true with our God too.
The Third Article of the Apostles’ Creed begins: “I believe in the Holy Spirit.” Christians confess that the Holy Spirit is the eternal, co-equal, third Person of the Triune God. Present at creation, the Holy Spirit worked saving faith in the hearts of Adam and Eve after their fall into sin. The Spirit has created repentance and faith in human hearts ever since. The Holy Spirit inspired the prophets and apostles in every word of the Holy Scriptures. The Holy Spirit’s “behind the scenes” work truly is essential to the saving work of our gracious God.
The Holy Spirit had moments of public display. At Jesus’ baptism (Matthew 3), at Pentecost (Acts 2) and in special gifts to the early Christian Church (1 Corinthians 12; Romans 12), his work was clearly recognized. But for 21st century Christians, his work remains essentially “behind the scenes.”
The Holy Spirit is our “faith-starter.” By the gospel in Baptism and the Word, the Holy Spirit sparked the fire of saving faith in our hearts. We could not confess a living faith in Jesus as our Lord were it not for this gift.
The Holy Spirit is our “faith-builder.” By the Holy Scriptures he opens our understanding, increases our knowledge of God’s truth, and strengthens our trust in Jesus, which leads to our daily life of faith.
The Holy Spirit is our “faith-preserver.” Some have feared, “What if I lose my faith?” As we continue in the gospel of Christ, holding to his teachings, the Holy Spirit works “behind the scenes,” keeping us in the faith.
Finally, the Holy Spirit is the “Church-builder,” as you and I and our fellow believers share the gospel of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection worldwide. The Spirit will ignite, strengthen and preserve faith in the hearts of repentant sinners, that they may have eternal life.