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Who comes to mind when you think about great teachers that you’ve had in your life? What made them great? When I think about great teachers in my life, one of the first people that comes to mind is my 11th grade English teacher. There were two things that made her one of the best teachers I’ve ever had: she cared about me personally and she cared as much about my spiritual growth as my mental growth. I treated her horribly at the beginning of the school year. I thought I was being funny, but the reality is that I was being just plain disrespectful, and by the end of the year she had become one of my favorite teachers because she cared more about me becoming more Christ-like than she did about her own pride and respect.
Last week we saw that the Holy Spirit makes us holy, and this week we’re looking at the Holy Spirit as our teacher. Although we’re looking at these two aspects of the Spirit’s work separately, there is not always a clear line between the two. The primary goal of the Holy Spirit’s teaching is our holiness. We often think of teaching as being primarily mental because we spend twelve years in school, where teaching revolves around our brains. This is definitely an important part of teaching, for the Holy Spirit teaches us many things about God’s nature, Christ’s death on the cross, etc. However, the purpose of teaching us these things is not to puff up our brains. The purpose of teaching us these things is to change the way we think, feel, and do.
Is the Holy Spirit teaching you something right now? Great! Don’t just listen for the head knowledge that the Spirit wants you to understand. Listen for the Spirit to show you how He wants you to change, and pursue that change, always remembering that it is the Spirit’s power, as well as His teaching, that makes that growth possible.
Scripture: John 16:7-15
Sermon: Listen and Learn: The Holy Spirit Our Teacher