Page 143 - Church of God Publications

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THE INCREDIBLE HUMAN POTENTIAL
133
selfishness, greed, hostility to authority, envy, jealousy and uncon–
cern for the good and welfare of others to the God-centered
w
AY
of obedience, submission to authority, !ove toward God
more
than
!ove of self and of !ove and concern for other humans equal to
self-concern.
Lo
vE
is the fulfilling of God's Law (Rom. 13:
10)-
but God's
Law is a
spiritual
law (Rom. 7: 14) and can be fulfilled only by
"the !ove of God, shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy [Spirit]"
(Rom. 5:5).
The Holy Spirit will open one's mind to
UNDERSTAND
God's
instruction on how to live, but it will not force one to live God's
way - it will not pull or push one. Each Christian must take his
own initiative, though God's Spirit will give him help, faith and
power. But it is "as many as are
led by
the Spirit of God, they are
the sons of God" (Rom. 8: 14).
Real Christian Conversion
The two above-mentioned conditions to becoming a Christian -
REPENTANCE
and
FAITH-
we ourselves must perform.
But these do not make us Christians - do not convert us.
lt
is
what Goo does - giving His Holy Spirit by His grace as His free
gift - that converts us.
Our repentance and faith do not
earn
the receiving of God's
Spirit. God does not give us His Spirit
because
we repent and be–
lieve. He gives His Spirit
because
He
wants
to give it. He
wants
us
to have His Spirit as His gift
before
we repent. He merely
requires
repentance and faith as
conditions.
Yet no one can, of himself, say: "Oh now, 1 see - 1 must re–
pent. All right, 1 hereby repent." One does not just decide cas–
ually, as a matter ofroutine, to repent.
WHY?
Jesus Christ said that none can come to Him, except the
Spirit of the Father draw him (John 6:44, 65). God
grants
repen–
tance (Rom. 2:4). God calls one, and convicts the mind and con–
science by His Spirit, working on the mind externally. Usually a
real struggle goes on within. The person has been shaken to
know
he has done wrong - that he
is
wrong - he has sinned - he
is
a
sinner! He is brought to real
REPENTANCE,
not only for what he
has done. but for what he now sees that he
is.
It
is not easy. The