Conviction that leads to repetence
July 22, 2009
John 16:8 And when he comes, he will convince (convict) the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment:
One of the true signs of the Holy Spirit at work is the conviction of sin. Gifts of the Holy Spirit were taught by Paul, but Holy Spirit conviction of sin is a teaching of Jesus. We need it in much the church! Could it be that we see so little conviction of sin in our ministries because we need this work of God applied to our self?
What is The Conviction of The Holy Spirit?
The conviction of the Holy Spirit is a work of God in the heart. It is not a mere ‘understanding” that we have sinned. It is the heart wrenching revelation of God concerning our true condition. What is it like?
- THE CONVICTION OF SIN, says deep inside " I am guilty of that sin!” It is personal, specific and inescapable. Unless the Spirit is grieved away, it will press on the mind and heart until something must be done. It will weary us with distress over our guilt.
- THE CONVICTION OF RIGHTEOUSNESS is knowing what righteousness is required in my situation and that I am not righteous! For instance, I may be convicted of speaking ill of another. I am absolutely certain of what I have done, I know the cruel words I spoke, and furthermore, I know the loving righteous words I should have said. I see clearly that God demands truth in my innermost being concerning what is righteousness, and my sin.
- THE CONVICTION OF JUDGMENT is the Holy Spirit establishing that I should be condemned and I have no means of escape. I see I am plainly guilty and worthy of condemnation. Jesus said the “prince of this world is judged”. Mankind will be as well.
CONVICTION + REPENTANCE= RESTORATION
The ultimate outcome is a great breaking down of the ‘fountains of sin” in the heart. As Charles Finney said "we must ‘break up the fallow ground” of our heart and agree with God against ourself!" The selfish life must be brought down for the life Christ to reign!
Conviction is not pleasant and the wicked heart of man has many escape plans! Sometimes we want to relieve the distress, but he wise pastor will not coddle those under conviction. He will force the work to go deeper. The only true remedy is repentance and a life of righteousness living by faith! Learn to recognize the signs of avoiding conviction of sin.
SIGNS OF AVOIDING CONVICTION
• Expressing sadness, regret, and
• Sorry for getting "caught".
• Excuses - "You don't understand"
• May involve crying and distress and willingness to pray,
• It is not repentance.
• At Self , the preacher, or with God.
• Go from church to church, accusing others, but never resolving the sin.
• "I'm sad so you're bad"
• View of Christianity is based on selfishness
• You will never have peace with God. Need to repent.
Avoiding the Subject
• Focus on another subject or distraction, to occupy the mind.
• Can Entrenched in it for years to avoid the issues with God.
• Need to focus on your heart condition before God.
• Arguing against the Holy Spirit with excuses,. "everyone does it",
• Denial of sin - it doesn't apply in your case "that doesn't fit me."
• Re-interpreting the bible to fit the sin.
• Whole churches and denominations are devoted to this today.
• You need to agree with God that you love sin more than Him.
Religious Self Righteousness
• Throw yourself into religious activity and attitudes.
• Says "look, I'm OK”, without dealing with the heart.
• Common saying "God knows my heart".
• Compare and accuse others, and use bible verses to do it.
• Admit your heart is unresponsive to the Holy Spirit.
• Try harder, to do it right.
• Overcoming sin by will power
• The hope is this will make the conviction go away.
• Heart is unchanged. The sin is in the heart.
WHEN MINISTERING TO SOMEONE UNDER CONVICTION…
• Realize - Conviction of itself, is no value.
• Recognize - they are fighting against the Holy Spirit.
• Conviction must produce Godly sorrow and repentance.
• Do not minimize the conviction so that they leave it behind.
• Don't say "Oh it will pass" or "You'll be alright" Don't let them off.
GODLY SORROW LEADS TO REPENTANCE
Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner, that you might suffer loss from us in nothing. 10 For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death. 2 Corinthians 7:9-10
Godly Sorrow Says:
• I have sinned.
• My sinful self life, is alive in my heart and resists God
• I am more concerned for what I want and feel than what God wants.
• I have no excuse and deserve condemnation.
True Repentance Says
• My HEART is completely broken down. Self is crucified.
• I agree with God, against myself (above)
• I now trust in Christ alone for my righteousness.
• I now turn and begin a life of obedience to the Holy Spirit from the heart
• I now trust in Christ alone for my righteousness.
Ask the convicted one what's going on inside, to identify the issue, the sin.
Press them to agree with God against themselves.
Urge them to repent.
Command them begin "works fitting repentance" Acts 26:40