Roles of the Spirit 4: Regeneration

Roles of the Spirit 4:

Regeneration

A brown and beige butterfly has just emerged from one of a row of cocoons on a tree branch.
A butterfly emerging from a cocoon

And I will put my Spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it, declares the Lord.  –Ezekiel 37:14 ESVUK

It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.  –John 6:63

He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit. – Titus 3:5

We are spiritually dead. Dead people do not regenerate themselves. All who do not know Jesus do not have the Holy Spirit. That is not to say that these people cannot experience the things of the Holy Spirit because the Holy Spirit can work from outside them. If that were not so no one could come to faith in Jesus at all.

It is the Holy Spirit alone who regenerates us, gives us new life and makes us new. If our faith becomes jaded and dull then it is the Holy Spirit that renews us from within. It is the Holy Spirit alone who regenerates us, but…

…but having said that, is there a human part that plays its part in regeneration, and the answer would be a big yes. We can respond in repentance and faith to the prompts of the Holy Spirit, whether that is for the first time or the thousandth time. If it is for the first time and you feel the urge to say yes to  Jesus then please respond to his call. If you are hearing the Holy Spirit urging you to return for the thousandth time because your faith has waned again, welcome to the club. We can all get like that. That is OK, just keep turning back to Jesus Christ.

The human part is that the Holy Spirit allows us to repent and turn. The downside is that we can, to use a Biblical term, quench the Holy Spirit, a term that carries on from the symbol of the Holy Spirit as fire. Please don’t put the Holy Spirit out. Listen to her prompting, let her have her way. Allow the Holy Spirit to direct you, all it needs is one simple prayer, say, “Come Holy Spirit.”


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