Then he answered and spoke to me, saying, This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power…
Our subject is, the Spirit's influence on the human mind.
I. THE NECESSITY OF SPIRITUAL INFLUENCE. Considering the varied moral effects of the fall, we may ask, can any less powerful agent than the Spirit of God reorganise our faculties, and adduce harmony, loveliness, and order, out of the confusion that prevails within us? No one can savingly know the truth and be really holy, but as taught of God and sanctified by the Holy Spirit.
II. THE NATURE OF SPIRITUAL INFLUENCE. We are not called upon to explain the mode or manner of the Spirit's operation on the human mind. The fact is sufficient for our purpose. The value of the agency will correspond with the nature of the agent. Agreeable to His high and essential excellence will be the Holy Spirit's work. The Spirit's work should not be thought of as miraculous, Influence only of an ordinary and necessary kind do we contend for, and that only in an ordinary way, and the use of ordinary means. It is —
1. Quickening in its nature, "The Spirit that quickeneth."
2. It is enlightening.
3. It is renewing.
4. It is sanctifying.
5. It is consoling.
6. It is assuring.
III. THE EVIDENCE OF SPIRITUAL INFLUENCE. The tree is known by its fruits, so also is the Holy Ghost. His fruits are "love, joy, peace," etc. An immediate effect of supernatural agency will be, a deep and humbling conviction of sin. Another will be, — a ceaseless restlessness till mercy and forgiveness be obtained. A third will be, — a supreme valuation of Jesus Christ. A fourth will be, — a prevailing desire to be holy.
Parallel VersesKJV: Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.