“And when he (The Spirit) comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.” John 16:8-11 (ESV)
In Conformed to His Image, Ken Boa lists twelve ministries of the Holy Spirit. The first is covered in today’s passage…convicting. This important ministry is what allows every follower of Jesus to transition from unbelief to saving trust in Christ.
We don’t make that transition alone…we are each drawn by the conviction of the Holy Spirit.
All of us were once enmeshed in the thinking and values of the world…until the Holy Spirit began working in our hearts to draw us to Jesus. This work of the Spirit continues today…convicting everyone around us of their sin and distance from God.
Some will respond…many will resist.
As followers of Jesus, we must not make the mistake of assuming it is our role to convict.
Only the Holy Spirit should convict of sin.
Only the Holy Spirit completely knows the person and can work within their conscience to open them to Jesus.
In our increasingly diverse world, we will encounter patients and colleagues that adopt a worldview that is not only different than the Biblical worldview…it might even contradict our Biblical worldview.
We will regularly encounter individuals who willingly and openly engage in activities that are forbidden by Scripture.
Our first reaction might be to judge them.
Instead our response should be to love them. They may be struggling in ways we don’t know and understand.
It is the Holy Spirit’s job to convict.
In our interactions with these patients, the Spirit may create an opening for us to speak into their pain and struggle.
We should never push through a closed door but rather seek open doors.
We find those open doors by being aware of the Spirit’s leading throughout the day. And that intimate awareness requires our own yielding to the ongoing conviction of the Holy Spirit regarding the sins in our own lives.
Begin today by seeking the leading and conviction of the Spirit in your own life.
Prayer: Holy Spirit, remind me of my own sinfulness so that I may better love others.