Incredibly — though divine, eternal, and one with the Father — Jesus initiated nothing on his own throughout his time on earth. Instead, he listened to the Father and carried out the Father’s will.
Isaiah foretold that the Spirit would reside in the Messiah. “And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD” (Isaiah 11:2). Jesus fulfilled that prophecy.
So, while on earth, the Eternal Son of God didn’t base his decisions on his human intelligence — though no human had greater understanding. He didn’t look at the facts or listen to the various sides of the argument to make a judgment (Isaiah 11:3). Rather, because Jesus knew his Father to be perfectly wise, perfectly just, and perfectly good, he trusted him completely and did what he wanted.
Thanks to his perfect obedience, the Holy Spirit now indwells all believers in Christ who have opened their heart to him. If Jesus could do nothing on his own, neither can we. We shouldn’t even try.
You see, the Spirit’s primary role isn’t simply to help us make decisions. Just as Jesus came to reveal God to us, now, the Holy Spirit reveals God to us. Therefore, through the Holy Spirit, we come to know God’s will by coming to know God.
The Spirit shows us God’s goodness, his glory, and his power. The Spirit reminds us of Jesus’ obedience, his sacrifice, and his love. By revealing God’s character and reminding us of God’s commands, the Spirit guides us to do nothing on our own, but only the will of the Father.
Holy God, I acknowledge that I can do nothing on my own. Thank you for sending your Spirit so that I can know you. Reveal yourself to me more and more so that I will know your will. Amen.
Go Deeper — Think about what you are trying to handle in your own strength. Would it be wiser to take Jesus’ example and seek the Holy Spirit’s guidance and empowerment?
Photo Credit: Benjamin Voros