Where do we Christians get the idea that the Holy Spirit brings conviction? I don’t mean in a general sense, but in a specific sense. As in, “The Holy Spirit convicted me today about wearing dresses!” Or, “The Holy Spirit convicted me to day that I have been sinning by not praying for my lost father!” Or, “The Holy Spirit convicted me today that I need to spend more time in the Word.” Where do we get the idea that the Holy Spirit brings conviction for specific sins?
I’ve been looking it up and I’ve learned the following things, so far, about the Holy Spirit:
- Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is Unforgivable! Luke 12:10
- The Holy Spirit is our Teacher. Luke 12:12, John 14:26, John 16:13,
- He convicts the world of sin, unrighteousness and judgement. John 16:8
- He brings power to believers! Acts 1:8
- He is a gift to believers and we are filled with the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:38, Acts 4:31, Acts 6:3, Acts 6:5
- He brings the Love of God into our hearts. Romans 5:5
- He brings righteousness and peace and joy. Romans 14:16-18,
- He sanctifies us! Romans 15:16, 1 Corinthians 6:19, Ephesians 1:13,
- He ministers to our spirit. Jude 1:20
I found no evidence that the Holy Spirit brings conviction for specific sins. I found the one reference where the Holy Spirit convicts the WORLD of sin – that is general sin that seperates man from God. And convicts about righteousness – that would be in a general sense, that you can have no righteousness apart from God. And the Holy Spirit convicts regarding judgement – but not judgementalism that Christians seem to soak up and spew out faster than they can breathe the air God has given them – but God’s judgement for sin. That is what that verse is talking about – it is not referencing sin in a believer’s life.
I’ve always heard Christians say, “The Holy Spirit convicted me of…” and I even used to say it. I believed the conviction was from the Holy Spirit. But that is a false teaching. The Holy Spirit does not bring conviction to the believer. It is not His job! His job is to teach us, illuminate us, bring us hope and peace and joy, bring us understanding and to minister to our spirits. And we are filled with the Holy Spirit the MOMENT we believe in Yeshua and put our trust in Him.
He also does not bring despair, sadness or depression. I once had a friend who would say that the despair she felt over the state of a family member’s soul was so strong and so overwhelming for her that it could only come from the Holy Spirit. It always left a weird feeling in my gut when she would speak in that manner. And now I know why – because it wasn’t from the Holy Spirit. He doesn’t bring despair, sadness or anxiety. It’s not in his character to do so.
I don’t fully understand his role entirely. But I think he is sort of like our own personal priest. He teaches us what God wants us to know. He illuminates our mind and heart so when we read the Word or speak with God, we are renewed…we are sanctified. This was just a quick study that I felt really compelled to do before tomorrow night. We are taking Communion at Bible Study tomorrow night. I wanted to get at least one thing checked off my, “Berean Adventures” checklist before I come home with another long list of things to research. 🙂