The Essential Seal and Constitution of the Christian Life (continued)
D. New Consciousness and Capacities
Paul goes on to say much about the new consciousness of the new creation man and woman. An entirely new consciousness is given to the believer who receives the Holy Spirit. All that of which such a one was entirely unconscious, now breaks forth into consciousness and becomes the most living reality in the believer's life - such as the consciousness of God as Father, the consciousness of Christ as Saviour, and many other sides and aspects. Every believer who has received the Holy Spirit knows how true this is. There is a new awareness in every realm; there are new capacities for doing and for being what was entirely impossible before. All this relates to the spiritual counterpart of the creation - the new creation that is in Christ Jesus; and it is all accomplished by the indwelling Holy Spirit, just as the material creation was effected by the pervading and brooding Spirit of God.
E. The Teaching of Jesus
Let us remember, furthermore, that Paul was an inheritor of what Jesus had said regarding the Holy Spirit. Now Jesus said very much about this matter. At the end of His life here on this earth, the Lord Jesus had taken many hours, apart from the world, apart from the multitudes, to be alone with His disciples. And through those many hours there was one thing about which He was speaking, in one way or another, almost continuously. There was one phrase that was constantly on His lips. "In that day ..." He said, "in that day ..."; and when you look to see what "that day" was, you find that He was saying: "When He, the Spirit ... is come" (John 16:13) - He shall do this and that. It was the coming day of the Spirit. All that Jesus had said about that day, and about what the Spirit would do when He came, Paul had come into, had inherited. Paul had come to know - what the apostles had dreaded, until they knew it - the truth of Jesus' words: "It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you" (John 16:7). Yes, the disciples dreaded His going, but they lived to prove that it was, as He had said, a far, far greater thing for the Spirit to come than for Jesus to remain in the body. Paul had come into the reality of that- into the superior greatness of the Spirit's presence even to the physical presence of the Lord Jesus.
(continued with # 14)