The Holy Spirit is at work. Frequently and in many ways. That is what I perceive. But which of his works is the greatest? Which is the most meaningful? Is there a work more prominent than any other? Yes, I do believe so.
Naturally we cannot compare the various works and effects of the Holy Spirit. Each work is unique. Yet I do believe there is one work that needs to be especially highlighted. It surmounts everything else in God’s plan: the work of salvation. God makes this very clear when he says through Jesus Christ: “The Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Lk 19:10). God wants to save and redeem by giving the new life to people which was obtained at the cross by Jesus Christ.
Salvation is a work of the Spirit
The Bible shows us very clearly that God works this process of salvation through the Holy Spirit: The Spirit of God is at work when the gospel is being preached,1 he reveals the content of sermons,2 he convicts of sin, righteousness and judgment,3 he kindles faith,4 he gives new life, turns the one who believes into a child of God and takes a home in him or her,5 he is the guarantee of the new and eternal life,5 etc..We see that the work of salvation is a work of the Spirit.
Take God’s priority seriously
If churches want to have significance today the work of salvation should be on their agenda. This might even be a proper indicator for true spirituality. Especially we as Pentecostal Christians often have overemphasized certain works of the Holy Spirit. We have put workings in focus that do not belong there. Therefore I deem it necessary to put the work of salvation over all other works. It is important to take God’s priority seriously and remain focused on them. This safeguards us from imbalances. I do not intend to downgrade other works of the Spirit, but they need to be subordinated to God’s primary goal: He wants to save people and give new life to them.
Implementation is the real challenge
The details of what happens during salvation could be described more thoroughly by analyzing terms like conversion, repentance, faith, justification, new birth, assurance of salvation, etc. Nevertheless, according to my experience the actual act of being saved can hardly be explained by mere logic. The supernatural is not bound to the rules of human logic. Moreover, people to not only want to comprehend, but to experience. I do not think the greatest challenge in our churches is to have sufficient knowledge, but implementation is the real challenge. Therefore we need to ask ourselves: What can we do to open the door for the greatest work of the Holy Spirit to happen among us? In which way can we advance the work of salvation? How can we create open doors for people of our time to experience God’s work of salvation.