Rev. E. Ahenkan Owusu
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Galatians 5:24-25; Acts 1:8


"What you'll get is the Holy Spirit. And when the Holy Spirit comes on you, you will be able to be my witnesses in Jerusalem, all over Judea and Samaria, even to the ends of the world." (Acts 1:8 Message) 

“The Holy Spirit illuminates the minds of people, makes us yearn for God, and takes spiritual truth and makes it understandable to us.” –Billy Graham

We need the Holy Spirit in our life as a conduit to become who God created us to be, and through His power, we are empowered in all situations. Without Him, we are powerless.

The New Man - the 'New Being'

Speaking of the "new man - the saved" is imperative that there is the "old man - unsaved". The Garden of Eden experience rendered humanity dead (Gen. 2:17) to God's glorious presence. We must understand that humanity is dead in sins and that there is no good thing in any man. The life of man is in utter bankruptcy or depravity.

We are all God's creation but not all of us are children of God. "For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God's glorious standard." (Rom 3:23-24). It is Biblically untrue to assume that there is a spark of divinity in all men. Such an idea implies that we are all children of God. Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:3 (ESV). The 'born again' state of man is the "New Man" - being "born of water and the Spirit" (John 3:5). John puts it, "For there are three that testify: the Spirit and the water and the blood; and these three agree... And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life." 1 John 5:6-8, 11-12 (ESV)

In this wisdom, we are of the fact that the "New Man" is one who has the Son of God, and for that matter, it is the one who has life.

Transitioning from the dead state to the living state is to accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and personal Saviour (cf. John 1:12-13, Rom. 10:9-10). A sinner's prayer of confession and invitation of the Spirit of God to take possession of the new man.

Our first encounter with the Holy Spirit is when He convicts us of our sin, shows us that none of us can live up to the righteousness of Christ unto salvation, and reveals to us the judgment that is coming to those who die without being saved (John 16:8-11). As we repent, confess our sins, and receive the gift of Salvation, the Holy Spirit regenerates our dead inner human spirit which now becomes sensitive to the spiritual things of God (John 3:1-16; Acts 2:38).

A Sinner's Prayer;

"Lord Jesus I am a sinner for which I have departed from Thy path. Today I accept You into my life and I ask you to forgive all my sins."

"Because my sins have caused great suffering and painful death of my Lord and Jesus, I should no longer delight in sin, but to denounce and abhor it, and dedicate my whole life to the servant of my Lord and Saviour, and seek to remain Hid forever, ready to suffer and die for His glory, that at the point of death, I will joy and satisfaction say: Lord Jesus, for You I live, for You I suffer, and for You I die. Whether I live or die, I am yours, O, Lord Jesus grant me eternal rest. Amen!" (Presbyterian Catechism)

There is another work of the Holy Spirit when He baptizes a believer; the infilling of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4).  This is available to all as Peter tells us in  Acts 2:39 and the gift of empowerment; helping the believer to live a holy life as a witness (Acts 1:8). Through the power of the Holy Spirit, our Helper, and Comforter, we become more like Christ Jesus and are directed to do the Father's will. Specifically, the gift of the Holy Spirit is primarily for the empowerment of the 'new man', "...if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new [man] has come." 2 Corinthians 5:17 (ESV).

Making Room for the Holy Spirit 

Making room is about yielding to the dictates of the Holy Spirit (Isa. 30:21). As children of God, we are to depend totally on God to sanctify us, to empower us to live God-honoring lives. 

How are we taught to live? Putting off the former way of life (Eph. 4:20-32). We are expected to live with a totally new attitude. The new being in Christ is the transformed self that is like God in true righteousness and holiness. 

Consider being in a new country and knowing nothing about the way of life of the people, why they do what they do, and what it means to them. The question of how do I get integrated into the new environment? In our new self in Christ, it is the Holy Spirit who shows, guides, and directs us to the acceptable path of righteousness.

God's acceptable way of life in worship is not as others do for their gods (Deut 12:4). God speaks to the new man of faith by His Holy Spirit. The Spirit must not be grieved so that the Christian shall not fall into temptations and drift from the faith (Eph. 4:30). 

Making room for the Holy Spirit is about obedience to the dictates of the Spirit of God. Making the Holy Spirit relevant in your life. Acceptance of Christ into your life brings the baptism of the Spirit and so He lives in us. Make the Spirit of God reign by obeying His voice as stupid as it may actually seem, He is God. 

Living the New Life in Christ

In Ephesians 4, the apostle teaches us how the old life should be put off like removing an old dirty cloth from the body and putting on a beautiful new one.

The new life in Christ grows, or builds up, as in developing. "Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love." Ephesians 4:15-16 (ESV)

Paul brings into focus the personal relationship that is developed by the new man in Christ which results in the growth of our spiritual gifts.

We must no longer live as the Gentiles do (Eph. 4:17-19) but be transformed into Christ's family in which growth takes place.

What is this Gentile life? Without sensitivity, futility in their minds (total lack of purpose or usefulness), indulging in sensuality (physical pleasures especially, sexual pleasures). This is a description of those who only see others as something to be used. They degrade others and places material things above human values and standard. Beloved, "I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do" Ephesians 4:17 (ESV). 

The new man is the transformed man. Having accepted Christ as your Lord and Saviour, everything becomes new, and old life dies giving place to the new (2 Cor. 5:17). Again, note that, yielding to the Holy Spirit is the intentional response to what Paul tells us, in Romans 12:2 "Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture [old way of life] that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you." God does these through the space we make available to the Holy Spirit.

How do we learn the new way of life from Christ?

i. By putting away falsehood and speaking truthfully (v25). This goes beyond not lying. People do not lie but do not give the truth by keeping falsehoods. It is about an open sharing of ourselves and those around us and rejecting deception.

ii. By staying away from sinful actions and reactions anger brings (v26). The Message Bible puts it, "Go ahead and be angry. You do well to be angry — but don't use your anger as fuel for revenge. And don't stay angry. Don't go to bed angry. Don't give the Devil that kind of foothold in your life." (v26-27). Dive into reconciliation immediately anger handcuffs you or else you give the devil authority in your life.

iii. By refraining from dubious means to get wealth and possessions (v28). You are not just required to stop stealing but do honest, ethically, and morally right jobs. God cares about the process or the means as He cares about the end.

iv. By refraining from gossip and unwholesome talk (v29). In our chit-chat and conversations, we seek to build each other up, not to tear others down (Col. 4:6). 

v. By overcoming bitterness, wrath, slander, clamor, anger, and every form of malice - behavior that is intended to harm people's reputations or cause embarrassment (v31). Every behavior that brings others down in humiliation must be taken out. In its place, we must express kindness and compassion, forgiving each other as God has forgiven us.

Paul tells us in Ephesians 4:1-3 saying, "I want you to get out there and walk — better yet, run! — on the road God called you to travel. I don't want any of you sitting around on your hands. I don't want anyone strolling off, down some path that goes nowhere. And mark that you do this with humility and discipline — not in fits and starts, but steadily, pouring yourselves out for each other in acts of love, alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences." (Message)


Salvation in Christ transforms us into a new creation, the old self passes on yielding place to the new self. For the 'new man' to understand and walk - better still, run on the course of the new life, it is only by the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. If I am able to forgive easily, it is not because I am able, but it is because of the enablement of the Holy Spirit. When we allow the Spirit to room to operate, the new man manifests the Christ kind of life we ought to demonstrate.

Being a Christian and living the Christ-kind of life is not really a difficult path as it may seem. It becomes easy for the 'new man' who makes room for the Holy Spirit to cuddy him on the course of the Christian life.

Shalom aleichem...

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