"Don't you know that you yourselves are God's temple and that God's Spirit lives in you?" 1 Corinthians 3:16
The other day I got an e-mail from someone asking how to know that the Holy Spirit is present in their lives. I was touched by the question, and I've been carefully crafting an answer and consulting my Bible to give the right answer. I thought I'd share my answer here this morning, because maybe someone else has the same question.
"he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life." Titus 3:5-7
When we ask Jesus to become our Savior, the Spirit comes alive within us. We are born again when we ask Jesus to come into our hearts and save us. Anyone who has asked Jesus into their hearts and lives has the Holy Spirit dwelling within them!
Jesus answered, "I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. 6Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7You should not be surprised at my saying, 'You must be born again.' 8The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit." John 3:5-8
Jesus is the answer. Jesus was the ultimate sin offering for mankind, and it is only through Him that we can have eternal life. Being born again is only the beginning of walking with God. We have a God of love, who would never let us walk the walk of faith alone, and so He gave us the Holy Spirit to dwell within us. It says in 1 Corinthians 3:16 that we are temples of the Holy Spirit. So we can know that the Holy Spirit is active in our lives IF we have been born again and received salvation through Jesus Christ. Every born again believer has the same Spirit dwelling inside of them- that's what makes us brothers and sisters in Christ. When we accept Jesus as our Savior, the Spirit enters into our being and changes our DNA- we become family, one with another. When a new baby is born in this world, there is much rejoicing for the family as a new being is welcomed into the family. So to is it with God! When a new being is birthed into the family of God, there is much rejoicing!
"In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents." Luke 15:10
The Spirit dwells in us to be an ever present help to us. He is there always- He will never leave us, or forsake us.
"because God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." Hebrews 13:5
When we are wondering if the Holy Spirit is present in our lives, we can be encouraged and know that if we have confessed our sins and asked Jesus into our hearts, the Spirit is there and can be called on anytime to help us make a decision, or to give us courage when the need is there. The Spirit Himself, bears witness that our spirit is born of God, and that we have accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior.
"The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children." Romans 8:16
So how do we really know that we have the Holy Spirit in our lives? If we have asked Jesus to be Lord of our life, it's a done deal. The Spirit is there- He's here, guiding me every step of the way. And if I keep my thoughts and my mind focused on God, the Spirit within will come even more alive to me with each passing day. I should note here that what I am talking about today is simply the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives- not the actual baptism of the Holy Spirit. That, I think, will be the subject for another day. Tomorrow, perhaps, if the Spirit leads me in that direction. For now though, I want my precious reader to know that they are so, so special to God, and He loves them so much that He sent His son to die for them, and He sent His Spirit to comfort them and dwell within them always. Each and every one of you is special to God. Say that to yourself today- I promise it will put a smile on your face. Go ahead! Say it out loud-
"I am special to God."
Now say "I am God's temple and God's Spirit lives within me."
Isn't God wonderful?