I know I am saying the obvious, but none of us can be a “Man of the Spirit” without the Holy Spirit. The New Testament, of course, has much to say about the Holy Spirit, and his work in our lives. However, if we treat these Scripture passages as just a set of knowledge that we need to study and understand, we will miss the point. As you pray and reflect on the passages below, open your hearts to God’s great gift of the Holy Spirit and allow him to show you the magnitude of God’s love that has been revealed in us through the Holy Spirit. Ask the Lord for the faith to believe that the Holy Spirit’s great power in us is transforming us into his image and likeness into being men who walk in the Spirit and live life in the Spirit
Scriptures on the Holy Spirit
What Is God’s Desire Toward Giving Us the Holy Spirit?
“If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him” (Luke 11:13)!
“If you love me, you will obey what I command. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you” (John 14:15-17).
What Is the Role of the Holy Spirit?
“The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing” (John 6:63).
“All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you” (John 14:25-26).
“When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me” (John 15:26).
“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you” (John 16:12-15).
“The love of God has been poured out into our hearts by the Holy Spirit that has been given to us” (Romans 5:5).
“The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God” (Romans 8:16).
“However, as it is written: ‘no eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him’ but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit” (1 Corinthians 2:9-10).
“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith” (Ephesians 3:16-17).
What Is the Impact of the Holy Spirit on How We Live Our Lives?
“For those who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received a spirit of adoption, through which we cry, ‘Abba Father’” (Romans 8:15).
“In the same way, the Spirit comes to the aid of our weakness, for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit itself intercedes for us with inexpressible groanings. And the one who searches hearts knows what is the intention of the Spirit, because it intercedes for the holy ones according to God's will” (Romans 8:26-27).
“Therefore I tell you that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, ‘Jesus be cursed,’ and no one can say, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ except by the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:3).
“I say, then: live by the Spirit, and you will certainly not gratify the desires of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16).
“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such, there is no law” (Galatians 5:22-23).
“If we live in the Spirit, let us also follow the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25).
“His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires” (1 Peter 1:4).
What Are the Gifts of the Spirit?
“The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him:
a Spirit of wisdom and of understanding,
a Spirit of counsel and of strength,
a Spirit of knowledge and of fear of the LORD,
and his delight shall be the fear of the LORD (Isaiah 11:2-3).
“Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully” (Romans 12:4-8).
“Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines” (1 Corinthians 12:7-11).
“But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This is why it says: “When he ascended on high, he led captives in his train and gave gifts to men.” (What does “he ascended” mean except that he also descended to the lower, earthly regions? He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe.) It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” (Ephesians 4:7-13).
(Maurice Blumberg is Executive Director of the National Fellowship of Catholic Men. This article is part of NFCM's sponsorship of the Catholic Man channel. Contact NFCM at P.O. Box 86381, Gaithersburg, MD 20886 or e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to make a contribution to the NFCM, just click here.)
Reflection Questions on Page 2
Questions for Reflection/Discussion by Catholic Men
1. To what extent do you believe that God’s great desire is to give you the fullness of his Spirit, so that you have the power to live a life pleasing to him? We know that our own sins and weaknesses can be obstacles to believing this. How can allowing the Scriptural truths of the Holy Spirit to penetrate our hearts help us to overcome these obstacles?
2. Based on the Scriptures above, how would you summarize the role of the Holy Spirit? Share with the men in your group the role of the Holy Spirit in your own life.
3. What impact has the Holy Spirit had on the way you live your life? In light of the Scriptures above on the same topic, describe some steps you can take to allow the Holy Spirit to have an even greater impact.
4. According to the Scriptures above, what are the purposes of the gifts of the Spirit? In what ways are these in line with your own beliefs about the purposes of these gifts? In what ways are they not in line?
5. Which of the gifts of the Holy Spirit listed above do you believe are most needed in your life right now? Why? Take some time to pray for one another and to ask the Lord to strengthen these gifts in you.