Friday, January 31, 2014

Tillich, 1948, Chapter 16, "The Witness of the Spirit to the Spirit"

Chapter 16, “The Witness of the Spirit to the Spirit” pp. 130-140

Romans 8:1-16, 26-27

Many of the words Paul chooses in Romans 8 seem remote from our modern experience. Yet in Paul’s day they were living concepts. God’s Spirit, Christ, speaks with our spirit. They understand one another. How does Paul’s spirit understand this ? Paul would take comfort, knowing that his own spirit could not give him confidence in Christ’s redemption. He would look to God’s Spirit for that, as he knows his own spirit and flesh are insufficient.

Modern psychology and sociology has begun to discover this phenomenon. If we are confronted by a law we cannot keep we become hostile to the lawgiver. We end up hating God yet we need his Spirit to work in us. By the Holy Spirit we become able to pray and see God as our faither.

To the unbeliever, then, God’s Spirit brings fear and enmity. To the believer, God’s Spirit brings comfort and assurance of God’s presence.

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