Chapter # 8 Paragraph # 4 Study # 1
January 15, 2008
Lincolnton, N.C.

<372> Thesis: Our indwelling "Helper" does what we cannot do. Introduction: In our last study we asked the question: Why did Paul state the obvious when he said that hope is a future thing that cannot be seen in the present? We attempted to answer that by saying that Paul was pressing his readers regarding the content of their expectations for the future because no one functions without "expectations" and, therefore, legitimate expectations are absolutely crucial. The battle over behavior (it is, after all, actual behavior that makes the world function, not its preliminaries) is rooted in doctrinal promoters and their ability to establish a vision of the future that is sufficiently appealing so as to sponsor the actual activities of behavior. Everywhere we turn, we are bombarded by "hope-claims" that are designed to get us to act in certain ways. What we buy into as "hope" is, therefore, absolutely crucial. So, Paul maintained his focus on "hope" so that his readers would give it some serious consideration and then act in harmony with it. This evening we come to a new paragraph, but not a new issue. The issue is, and always will be, what we are going to do. There are only two options: we will either act out of the flesh (and die), or we will act out of the Spirit (and live) -- 8:13. But those options are rooted in two critical realities. The first is what we have come to expect from our actions; and the second is where we go for the ability to accomplish our actions. We have been told by Paul that we ought to expect incomparable glory from actions springing out of the Spirit and incomparable death from actions springing out of the flesh. And we have been told by Paul that actions that spring out of the Spirit do so when we engage His willingness and power by turning in trust to Him. So, this evening we find Paul turning to the issue of this "Helper's" help.