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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Where Conviction Is Needed

"In regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned." (John 16:9-11)

The sin of which the Holy Spirit convicts men and women is the sin of unbelief in Jesus Christ, not in the endless list of others sins. This was the sin of which the Holy Spirit convicted the three thousand on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:36-37). When they realized they had rejected the Lord and Christ, they were cut to their hearts. This awful sin is the very sin of which it is most difficult to convince proud and arrogant men. But when the Spirit of God comes to a man, he does not look upon unbelief in Jesus Christ as a mark of intellectual superiority or excuse it behind an inherent inability to believe. While he may bitterly regret his dishonesty or his impurity or whatever other sins he may be guilty, he sees and feels that the most awful of this sins is the sin of rejecting the glorious Son of God.

The Holy Spirit also convicts the world of righteousness; not ot our righteousness, for we have none, but of Jesus Christ's righteousness, attested by His resurrection from the dead and by His ascension to the Father. The convicted sinner needs to see the righteousness that God has provided for him in Christ, and only the Holy Spirit can bring this to him.

The third thing that the Holy Spirit convicts men about is judgment, attested by the judgment of the prince of this world, the devil. There has perhaps never been a day in the whole history of the church when the world needed more to be convinced of judgment than today. The average man has almost no knowledge of a future judgment, and the church has largely lost all realization of future judgment and of a future awful hell. Only the Holy Spirit can bring this revelation of the infinite majesty and glory of Jesus Christ, and such a revelation of the awfulness of sin and to the future eternal destiny of those who would not accept Jesus Christ.

Lord Jesus, without an outpouring of Your Spirit this world will remain blinded to sin and righteousness and judgment. In most places these are never considered, or if they are, they are disdained. Shine on Your church in power and truth. Amen

~R. A. Torrey~

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