Skip to main content

The Spirit-filled Church: Five Foundations

What does God tell us about the Holy Spirit and the Church, in Ephesians?

God's amazing plan is to establish Christ over all (1v10, 1v22). Everything God is doing is drawing attention to Christ. All the work of the Spirit points us that way. The Spirit implements this work of Christ-exaltation. The Spirit effects this work of Christ-exaltation. He is self-effacing in his work, not drawing attention to himself but pointing us always to Christ - the Spirit-filled Church must be a Christ-centred church... without the Spirit we wont look to Christ... with the Spirit we will be drawn to him.

Firstly, we're sealed with the Spirit. 1v13
The Holy Spirit is a marker of God's grace to us. The Spirit is God's guarentee of God's work in our lives. This is something objective in our lives. God says - "mine". God says "got you". When? When we heard and believed the good news of God's amazing plan. We heard and believed the word of truth - the good news of salvation. The Holy Spirit is God, marking us as God's loved elect people.
So? As believers of the word of truth, about Jesus, we should be assured of life and every blessing in God!

Secondly, we're given access to the Father 2v18
Once we were divided. Divided from one another. Divided from God. Separate. Hostile. Opposed. By the death of Jesus God's elect are united to one another and to God. And how do we have access to God? By the one Holy Spirit. Not strangers, but belonging in God's presence!
So? Know that we have acess to God! And come, pray!

Thirdly, the Spirit revealed the gospel to us! 3v5
God's amazing plan is described as a mystery. Biblical mystery is not mystic and unknowable. Biblical mystery refers to what God has kept concealed, and then revealed. By the Holy Spirit the good news of God's amazing plan is revealed.
So? Be glad that the gospel is revealed, and preach the unsearchable riches of Christ! Be spiritual - be gospel!

Fourthly, we're God's dwelling place 2v22, 3v16
4A - In The Church
God tells us that as church we are the place where God lives. We're like the temple. We're the home of God on earth. A holy temple in the Lord... where God presences himself by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is God, at home with his people.
So? Know that God is with us! Love Christ's church. Love being Christ's church. Seek God's presence in the community of God's people.

4B - In Our Hearts
Not only does God live with us, but also in us. Working in us, strengthening us wih power... revealing the love of Christ to us. We know the love of God - from the Word of God and by the Spirit in us. We don't muster up knowledge of God's love. Th e Holy Spirit is God, at home in his people.
So? Pray to be given power to know the love of Christ! And pray it for others. Let the Holy Spirit point you to Christ.

Fifthly, we're united in the Holy Spirit 4v4
We're told earlier in Ephesians that Jesus Christ, by his death, unites God's elect with one another and with God. A double-unity. In union with Christ, and in union with one another. Bonded together. God describes this bond of peace (where once there was hostility) and the Unity of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit is God marking us, God with us and God in us. The Holy Spirit is God, the glue between us.
So? Live humbly together, with gentleness and patience... worthy of this calling to be God's people. Unity works out in our relationships, so relate! Be Christ-like to one another rather than opposing the Spirit's gospel-uniting work.

  • Grieving the Spirit
  • Filled with the Spirit
  • Fight and pray with the Spirit


Popular posts from this blog

"Big eyes full of wonder"

Books. Fiction. Libraries. Second only to churches as are the best gateways in your community to ultimate reality and new possibilities.

Our local library has just re-opened after refurbishment, and I love that our boys have spent several mornings there during the summer holidays, discovering some wonderful new stories.

I realised a few months back that I wasn't reading enough fiction. My work necessitates reading a lot of non-fiction, a mix of historical and contemporary thinking, biblical studies and theology. But fiction is the cinderella. Easily overlooked, and yet able to awaken my imagination and show me the way things are meant to be.

So I've picked up a few more lately - bought and borrowed. Not every book attempted flies, and that's ok. These have been winners though.

Ink. This is Alice Broadway's debut novel. It's young adult fiction and tells the story of Leora who lives in a world where the events of your life are tattooed on your skin. Nothing gets hid…

Uniquely Matthew

Reading gospel accounts in parallel is sometimes used to blur the differences in perspective between the evangelists, seeking to harmonise the texts and find a definitive historical account of what happened. No such thing exists because every account is biased and limited. You simply can't record everything. You have to hold a vantage point. And that's not a problem.

Matthew, Mark and Luke take a very different vantage point to John who was of course an eyewitness himself of the events. Comparing the text of Matthew, Mark and Luke across the death and resurrection of Jesus yields two steps.

Firstly, the common ground. All three accounts tell of...
Simon of Cyrene carrying the cross…. · Jesus labelled as King of the Jews…. · Criminals crucified with Jesus… · Darkness in the daytime… · Jesus' loud final cry… The women who witnessed Jesus death, and Jesus' burial… · The tomb lent to Jesus by Joseph of Arimithea… · The women who went to the tomb on the morning of the…

Songs we're singing in Church

Christians are a singing people, it's part of what we do when we gather.

Our church meets morning an evening on a Sunday - normally using 5 songs in each service. So, over the year that's about 520 song-slots available. The report from the database system we use ( tells us that in the past year we've sung about 150 different songs.

Our current most used song has been sung 11 times in the last year, just under once a month. Our top 10 are used about every 6 weeks. By #30 we're talking about songs used every two months. The tail is long and includes loads of classic hymns from across the centuries, plus other songs from the past 40 years, that we have used around once a term or less.

1. Rejoice - Dustin Kensrue

2. Come Praise & Glorify - Bob Kauflin

3. Man of Sorrows - Hillsong

4. Cornerstone - Hillsong

Rejoice was a song I didn't previously know, along with a couple of others that have quickly become firm favourites for me: Chri…