Luke 9:23 Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.
So here we are, destination take up your cross and follow Jesus. We have looked at desiring to go after Jesus. We have talked about denying self. We have discussed recognizing your cross. We have talked about it being a daily grind. Today, we take up our cross. You must understand that not only is your cross too heavy for you to bear, so is mine and every other surrendered soul's who reaches down and grabs what Jesus has prepared for them. However, if we have positioned ourselves correctly, if we have desired Jesus, went after Him, denied our self, said yes Lord to what He has placed before us, when we reach down to take up this cross, we will lift it and we will carry it! We will do more than is possible on our own merit. We will push further than we thought we could go, and we will never do it alone. The mighty hand of Jesus Christ will reach down and pick up your cross with you. The powerful legs of the Lord Jesus Christ will help you carry your cross. Yes, there will be moments that your faith is tested. Yes, there will be moments when you think you cannot go on. Yes, there will be moments when you think about quitting. But never forget that you are walking and talking with the Holy Spirit dwelling in your heart. You are not weak, you are strong. You are strong and able, powerful and true, there is nothing you cannot do through the power of this indwelled Spirit. Remember this Spirit was placed in you for a purpose with a purpose. The Holy Spirit convicts you. This conviction is to direct your path. You still have to drive the vehicle. You have to turn when the Spirit says turn, love when you don't want to. Help when you are exhausted. Adjust your schedule when you are against a deadline. Give when you have nothing to give. Speak when you have no words. Cry when your tears have gone dry. The Spirit of God convicts you of sin, righteousness and judgement, to push you through all these moments.
John 16:8-9 And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 9 of sin, because they do not believe in Me; 10 of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; 11 of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.
Lets us examine the purpose behind the conviction of the Holy Spirit. First the Holy Spirit convicts you of sin. John 16:9 says, sin because they did not believe in Jesus. You and I must understand this every sin you and I ever commit ultimately is grounded in a belief issue. If we sin against God, we are basically believing that the ways of sin are better, more fulfilling or more beneficial than the ways of Christ. In a nut shell, we don't believe Jesus when we sin. Secondly, the Holy Spirit convicts us of righteousness. Righteousness because He is now with the Father and they see Him no more. Jesus steps on the scene and showed His disciples what righteousness really looks like. It was certainly unlike anything they had seen in the past. Righteousness was tied to religion and religious practice before Jesus stepped on the scene. Jesus showed them that the road to righteousness is through relationship. Jesus healed the blind and the hurting. He went the see a Samaritan woman, He healed on the Sabbath, He invested in people and relationships. Jesus says to His disciples that He is leaving, but the Holy Spirit will continue to show them how to walk in righteousness. The Holy Spirit is showing you and I exactly how to walk in righteousness today. So walk strong and allow Him to show you the way. Thirdly, the Holy Spirit convicts you of judgement. He says judgement because the ruler of this world is judged. The deceiver of all men, the devil himself has been judged and because judgment awaits us all, the Holy Spirit touches us and convicts us of this fact. To the child of God judgment is real and should be a piercing and driving force in our life. Our Lord and Savior is examining what we do and what we say as well as our attitudes behind our words and actions. Judgment is real. The child of God does not and must not ignore this internal guidance. We must allow the Holy Spirit to direct our lives so that our judgment will be a pardon and the Book of Life will contain our name. Praise Jesus for His Spirit.
I have a few question for you to answer. How have you experienced the work of the Holy Spirit through conviction in these three areas, sin righteousness, and judgement? What did you do in response to this conviction? What is God calling you to do in the path of righteousness right now? Are you saying, yes Lord? Are you saying more like, maybe Lord? Are you flat out saying, no Lord? What is holding you back? YES LORD YES LORD YES YES LORD, is your only response! It is the only response the Lord wants. Give Him His desires and experience Him giving you your desires. It is amazing, but when you say yes to the Lord, His desires truly become your desires.