About this Study

Where should Christians look for the signs and wonders of the Holy Spirit? Are the gifts of tongues and healing still being practiced today as they were in the early church? How can a Christian discover his or her personal spiritual gifts? In what ways is the Spirit active in the church and the lives of individual believers today?

While the Holy Spirit is one of the three persons of the Trinity, at times it seems like he gets less attention than the Father and the Son. Perhaps it is because he normally points to Christ and not himself. The Holy Spirit not only bears witness to who Jesus is and what he has done, but he is also in the business of perfecting the work of the Godhead in creation.

While the Spirit takes center stage at Pentecost in the second chapter of the book of Acts, he has been active since the first chapter of Genesis:

All good gifts come to us from the Father, in the Son, by the Spirit. In every work of the Trinity, the Spirit is the one who brings the work to completion. He is especially associated with working within creation as the life-giving and fruit-producing agent of the Godhead. The Father speaks to us today through his Word. Christ, the Incarnate Word, is also the content of the Father’s saving speech. The Holy Spirit who inspired Scripture is at work within us to understand and embrace the gospel and to bear the fruit of the Spirit. Not only at work within us, the Holy Spirit actually indwells us as the down-payment on our final salvation. (Michael Horton, “What Does the Spirit Do Today?”)

It is tempting to look at the book of Acts and expect the Spirit to work in a similar manner today. Just as the resurrection is a historical event, so also are Pentecost and the signs and wonders in Acts. Ever since the foundation-laying era of the apostles, Christ continues to build his church by the power of the Holy Spirit. We still see signs and wonders of the Spirit today, but they are usually found in the ordinary meas of the preaching of the Word and the administration of the Sacraments.

Not only is the Spirit himself a gift to all believers, but he also distributes gifts according to his will to build up the church body. In this study, we will explore the Holy Spirit’s role in the redemption of creation and how his work plays out in the lives of believers today.

This study is divided into six lessons: Lesson 1 gives an overview of the Holy Spirit’s work since creation; In Lesson 2, the meaning and events of Pentecost are explained; Lesson 3 explores the fascinating parallels between the Holy Spirit’s work among Jews in Acts 2 and Gentiles in Acts 10: Lesson 4 focuses on how people receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit along with its significance; and Lessons 5 and 6 cover the abundant gifts and fruit of the Spirit given both to the early church and believers today.

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