The Work and Witness of the Holy Spirit

The Witness of Our Own Spirit - Reflections for Personal Devotion and Conversation with Others

Sermon 12 in the Standard Sermons of John Wesley
By: Michael Roberts

1. What is the relationship between conscience and the witness of the Holy Spirit?

Wesley defines conscience as the ability to reflect upon our experiences, beliefs, and behaviors, and then to discern right and wrong. This ability is implanted in every soul, but is distorted by sin. Through the Holy Spirit, we are called to a higher vision of conscience and are able to grow in the heights, depths, and breadth of God’s love. How do we participate in this growth? What does it look like?

2. How do we share this witness and how does Wesley use the words, simplicity and sincerity?

Simplicity has to do with singleness of focus. When we are focused in this way then our witness is “full of light, love, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit?” Simplicity has to do with intention, sincerity points to how we implement that intent. We are called to integrity, where our beliefs and actions are aligned and we are able to speak in truth, without guile, and to bear the fruits of holiness.

3. How can our witness reveal joy to the world?

If aligned to the will of God, our witness will always be one of rejoicing. This type of joy is different from happiness. Happiness comes and goes, based on the circumstances of our lives. We cannot always be happy, but we can always have joy because joy is a gift of the Holy Spirit. How can our witness reveal joy to the world?