The Trinity: God the Holy Spirit

Following on from the previous messages on “God the Father” and “God the Son,” I concluded our vision series on The Trinity with an exploration of the third person of the Trinity, God the Holy Spirit.

I am a bit of an odd duck in terms of my church background. I had a transforming encounter in my life at the age of 16 that involved profound manifestations of the Holy Spirit while at a Presbyterian summer camp. I was not walking with God before that, but ever-after my life has been changed. I believe in the fullness of the Holy Spirit but emphasize preaching of the Word. I call for spiritual formation and character transformation by the Holy Spirit but am missional and believe the Holy Spirit is always calling the church beyond its walls. Because of this, my approach to preaching on the Holy Spirit is a bit unique.

Here is the video and sermon outline of this third message of the Trinity series, “God the Holy Spirit.”

You can follow the entire series at our web-site, through the Eastbrook app, or through our audio podcast.


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Spiritual Freedom (discussion questions)

As we continued our series, “Free: A Study on Galatians,” this past weekend at Eastbrook Church we looked at the power of spiritual freedom in Jesus Christ from Galatians 5. Here are the discussion questions that accompany my message, “Spiritual Freedom,” which is the fifth part of our series.

Discussion Questions:

  1. We continue our series on freedom in Christ this weekend as we make our way into Galatians, chapter 5. Before you begin, pray that God would speak to you through your study of the Scripture. Next, read Galatians 5 out loud.
  2. Galatians 5 is built around two major declarations by Paul related to our freedom, found in verses 1 and 13. Verses 1-12 carry forward themes Paul has discussed throughout the letter so far. What would you say is Paul’s main point or points in this first section of Galatians 5?
  3. Once again, Paul makes some fairly dramatic statements about those who rely on legalism or religious performance to make themselves right with God, particularly in verses 4 and 12. Why do you think Paul get so upset by this situation?
  4. With verse 13, Paul begins talking about the everyday way we relate to others as Christians, commonly called ethics. In verses 13-18, Paul contrasts the way of the flesh with the way of freedom. What characterizes the way of the flesh and what characterizes the way of freedom?
  5. Do you resonate with Paul’s description of the conflict between the desires of the flesh and the desires of the Spirit? How do you deal with that conflict in your own life?
  6. Paul outlines the ‘acts of the flesh’ in verses 19-21, saying “those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.” How do you think this relates to Paul’s strong words that “a person is not justified by the works of the law” (2:16)?
  7. Paul’s words on the fruit of the Spirit in verses 22-26 are well-known. Look over chapter 55 and see how Paul talks about the work of the Holy Spirit in the believer’s life. What does it mean to truly by led by, walk with, and live by the Spirit?
  8. What is one practical way you need to surrender more to the influence of the Holy Spirit and less to the acts of the flesh this week? If you are with a small group, take some time to discuss these things with one another. If you are alone, share that with someone this week. Close in prayer.

Who is the Holy Spirit? (discussion questions)

Here are the discussion questions that accompany my message at Eastbrook Church this past weekend entitled “The Character of the Holy Spirit” from our “Holy Spirit” series.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Who is someone you would describe as full of God? Why would you describe them in that way?
  2. This week, we continue exploring life in the Holy Spirit by looking at the Holy Spirit’s character, or fruits, in our lives. Whether on your own or with a group, begin your study by asking God to speak to you. Read the Galatians 5:13-26 out loud.
  3. There is a lot of talk about freedom these days. When you read Paul’s words in Galatians 5:13-15, how does Paul describe freedom in Jesus Christ and what does he say is the purpose of that freedom?Read More »

The Character of the Holy Spirit

holy spirit rotatorThis weekend at Eastbrook Church I continued our series on the Holy Spirit with a message from Galatians 5:13-26 on “The Character of the Holy Spirit.”

While this is the passage that addresses the fruit of the Holy Spirit, I organized the message around three images Paul provides for life in the Holy Spirit.

You can listen to my message at the Eastbrook web-site here. You can also follow the RSS feed for Eastbrook sermons or follow Eastbrook Church on Twitter or Facebook. A slightly revised message outline is included below:

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Holy Spirit

holy spirit rotator

This coming weekend at Eastbrook Church, we are beginning a series entitled “Holy Spirit.” We hear a lot about God in general, but the Christian understanding of God is that there is one God in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. But who is the Holy Spirit? What does the Holy Spirit do? Is the Spirit an ethereal force or a relational personality? How do Christians live in the fullness of the Holy Spirit?

Here is the outline of the sermon series:

May 18/19 – Who is the Holy Spirit?
Texts: John 14-16; Acts 1-2; 1 Corinthians 2:6-16; Ephesians 1:13-14

May 25/26 – The Character of the Holy Spirit
Texts: Galatians 5:16-26; Ephesians 5:15-20

June 1/2 – The Gifts of the Holy Spirit
Texts: Romans 12; 1 Corinthians 12; Ephesians 4:1-16 

June 8/9 – The Mission of the Holy Spirit
Texts: John 15:26-27, 20:21-23; Acts 1:8