The Holy Spirit and the Age to Come
What does the Holy Spirit do for the Christian? The short answer is “a lot!” In his work The Bible and The Future (one of my personal favorites) Anthony Hoekema highlights one of the things the Spirit does in the life of the believer: He brings God’s future into the present their present life experience.
Another way of putting this is to say that, for Paul, the Spirit means that breaking in of the future into the present, so that the powers, privileges, and blessings of the future age are already available to us through the Spirit…”… In other words, on the basis of the work of Christ, the power of the redeemed the future has been released to act in the present in the person of the Holy Spirit.”
For Paul, therefore the reception of the Spirit means that one has become a participant in the new mode of existence associated with the future age, and now partakes of the “powers of the age to come.” Yet Paul would insist that what the Spirit gives is only a foretaste a far greater blessings to come. It is for this reason that he calls of the Spirit the “firstfruits” and the “guarantee” of future blessings which shall far surpass those of the present life. (Anthony Hoekema, The Bible and the Future, 58)
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