The difference between those who have the Helper and those who do not have!
In the teaching on the promise of the Holy Spirit, the title given to the Holy Spirit is Advocate in Jn 14:15 and in verse 26. The word ‘Advocate’ here can also be translated as ‘Helper’. It is clear that on our own we cannot live the Christian life and so with humble hearts we must turn to the Holy Spirit.
Who is the Holy Spirit? CCC 691 – “Holy Spirit” is the proper name of one whom we adore and glorify with the Father and the Son. The Holy Spirit can be grieved (Eph 4:30, Is 63:10a) and opposed (Acts 7:51). Only a person can be grieved or opposed. Which means the Holy Spirit is a person and is the third person of the most blessed Trinity.
How does The Holy Spirit help us?
The Holy Spirit reveals Jesus to us – We know that Jesus is the way, the ‘truth’, and the life (Jn. 14:6) and the Holy Spirit will guide us into all the ‘truth’ (Jn. 16:13a). Which means the Holy Spirit will lead and guide us to Jesus.
Lordship of Jesus – There are many people who have read about Jesus Christ and comment that He was a good man or a great teacher but will not accept Him as their Lord. Why? It is because they do not have the Holy Spirit. No one can say ‘Jesus is Lord’ except by the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 12:3 and Jn 15:26). CCC 683 states … This knowledge of faith is possible only in the Holy Spirit: to be in touch with Christ, we must first have been touched by the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit convicts us of sin (Jn 16:8) – As an example, for many people taking or giving a bribe is fine and there is nothing wrong about it. For many there is nothing wrong in aborting helpless children in the mother’s womb. But for those of us who are in union with Christ, we know that it is not only wrong but a sin. How do we know that it’s a sin, because the Holy Spirit has convicted us deep within our being. The Holy Spirit is given as a gift at the beginning of our Christian life to help us overcome sin in our life.
The Love of God – We know that God is love (1 Jn 4:8) and God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us (Rom 5:5). Unless our hearts are filled with the love of God through the Holy Spirit, we shall not be able to love our neighbour as ourselves, we shall not be able to pray for those who persecute us and we shall not be able to reconcile with those who have hurt us.
Strengthens our inner being – For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth takes its name. I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit (Eph 3:14-16).
Helps us to pray – Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words (Romans 8:26). CCC 741 – The Holy Spirit, the artisan of God’s works, is the master of prayer. It is good to ask the Holy Spirit for help every time we begin our personal prayer.
Receive Power – You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you (Acts 1:8a). This is a promise for you and me too. The apostles lived with Jesus for three years, day and night, and yet at the end of that time, something important was still missing. They hadn’t been baptized in the Holy Spirit. After the Pentecost experience which we read in Acts 2:1-13, we see the disciples filled with boldness to be witnesses. We see Peter who denied Christ three times now boldly witnessing.
This is the power to overcome sin in our life, this is the power to be a witness in our world of today by living out the gospel values in our families, work places and colleges. This is the power to overcome fear in our lives, this is the power to evangelize as the church teaches, and this is the power which will give us strength to do the right thing in the most trying situation of our life.
There are many more ways in which the Spirit helps us, the above mentioned are only a few points. In moments of loneliness and sadness, in moments where we face huge mountains but don’t know what to do or where to turn to, let us turn to the Holy Spirit. Jesus makes it clear that the Spirit is a gift for the asking (John 7:37-39).
Let us pray:
Come Holy Spirit, I need Thee,
Come Holy Spirit, I pray,
Come in your strength and your power
Come in your own gentle way
– – – written by Patrick Horne