“And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment” John 16:8 KJV
The age we currently live in is drawing to a close as the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ draws nearer by the day. And as the age is winding up, the world will witness more and more darkness, abounding iniquity and sheer human wickedness (Matthew 24:12, 2 Timothy 3:1).
Matthew 24:12 KJV.
Because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
2 Timothy 3:1 KJV
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.”
However, as these dark times are getting darker and gloomier, the word of God stands sure as a beacon of hope to the dying world, as it is forever settled in heaven, and it is as sure, steadfast, and eternal as God Himself in this unstable world (Psalm 119:89, Hebrews 6:14).
Psalm 119:89 KJV
“For ever, O LORD, Thy word is settled in heaven.”
Hebrews 6:19 KJV
“which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil”
In the aforementioned scripture, John 16:18, the third person of the eternal Godhead, the Holy Spirit, who is the Spirit of truth, not only connotes His personality as the Spirit that only speaks the truth, but it is more of a connotation of the Spirit that furnishes reality (truth) in the heart of the believer (John 16:13). And one of the realities that He furnishes in the heart of the believer is to help the believer judge or discern the state of his heart through his conscience from time to time in order to help him discern or judge between right and wrong, justify or condemn (Romans 9:1, 1 John 3:20-22).
John 16:13 KJV
“Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.”
Romans 9:1 KJV
“I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost”
1 John 3:19-21 KJV
“And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things. Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.”
One of the greatest blessings a believer can have in this present evil age is to experience the conviction of the Spirit from time to time. This is one of the major indications of sound spirit health and wholeness in the life of the believer. The apostle Paul, in his epistle to Timothy, wrote by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit that one of the major signs of the perilous times or end times is that men’s consciences will become unresponsive to the gentle nudges and convictions of the Holy Spirit (1 Timothy 4:2). This is because as the believer presses on in sin or on a path that is not the will of God, the Spirit of God will convict his heart. But as he continually ignores and resists these gentle nudges, his heart becomes numb, calloused and cauterised until he’s no longer able to feel any more convictions from the Holy Spirit.
1 Timothy 4:2 AMPLIFIED
“[misled] by the hypocrisy of liars whose consciences are seared as with a branding iron [leaving them incapable of ethical functioning]”
This dire situation, or state of a believer’s heart, the apostle describes as a major red flag or indicator that the Spirit of the age has taken over the believer. And the danger of this is that his heart becomes hardened, calloused, and he’s already been deceived by sin. The aftermath of the deceitfulness of sin is that sin slays the believer (Hebrews 3:13, 1 Corinthians 10:5-11, Romans 7:11).
Hebrews 3:13 KJV
“But exhort one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.”
1 Corinthians 10:5-11 KJV
“But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness. Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.”
Romans 7:11 KJV
“For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.”
A crucial sign that a believer is living in sound spiritual health and that his heart isn’t sick or seared with a hot iron is that he will be convicted by the Holy Spirit from time to time and in different areas of his life. Oh, what a blessing it is that you can be convicted by the Holy Spirit and respond positively and appropriately each time he does that! (Psalm 51:17). Because to do otherwise is to be travelling on the road to apostasy (a deliberate turning away from revealed truth), where God delivers the believer over to delusion because he continually rejects the truth and does not love the truth that is being revealed to him by the Holy Spirit (2 Thessalonians 2:10-12).
Psalms 51:17 AMPLIFIED
“My [only] sacrifice [acceptable] to God is a broken spirit; A broken and contrite heart [broken with sorrow for sin, thoroughly penitent], such, O God, You will not despise.”
2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 KJV
“and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”
As a minister of the gospel, at different times I get calls or voice note messages from people weeping, crying, and wailing because of a sin or sins they have committed, and each time this happens, I tell them that I’m very happy for them, and they usually look at me with shock and astonishment, wondering why I would say such. And each time, I tell them that the reason I’m happy they’re crying is because it is a sign that they aren’t hypocrites, and that the Holy Spirit has not left them to their own self-will, but He still has a firm grip on their hearts.
I pray that as you live in this contemporary culture and evil age, you’ll guard your heart jealously in order that this blessed experience of the Holy Spirit’s conviction of the believer that God in His wisdom has factored into the new creation economy will not be lost in your life in Jesus name.