THE HOLY SPIRIT AND SEXUAL IMMORALITY
(HOLINESS – Part 2)
1 Thessalonians 4:1–8
 Finally, then, brothers, we ask and urge you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us how you ought to walk and to please God, just as you are doing, that you do so more and more.  For you know what instructions we gave you through the Lord Jesus.  For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality;  that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor,  not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God;  that no one transgress and wrong his brother in this matter, because the Lord is an avenger in all these things, as we told you beforehand and solemnly warned you.  For God has not called us for impurity, but in holiness.  Therefore whoever disregards this, disregards not man but God, who gives his Holy Spirit to you. (ESV)
“The particular aspect of the divine activity singled out is his giving of the Holy Spirit, a continuing and present activity. It is not that the offenders despise a God who gave the Spirit a long time ago, but one who keeps on giving him. Their sin is a sin against the continuing presence of the Spirit.” (Leon Morris)
Our sin is all the greater because we sin not only against his greatness, but also against his goodness, which he has shown supremely by giving us his Son and his Spirit.
A. THE HOLY SPIRIT DOES EVERYTHING FOR US.
1. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO CAUSES US TO BE BORN AGAIN.
 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. (ESV)
2. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO UNITES US TO CHRIST AND ONE ANOTHER.
1 Corinthians 12:13
 For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit. (ESV)
 You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. (ESV)
3. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO HELPS US FIGHT AGAINST TEMPTATION.
 For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. (ESV)
 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.  For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. (ESV)
4. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO PRODUCES HOLINESS IN US.
 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. (ESV)
 And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. (ESV)
5. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO EMPOWERS US FOR SERVICE.
1 Corinthians 12:4–11
 Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit;  and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord;  and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.  To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.  For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit,  to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit,  to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.  All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills. (ESV)
6. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO ENLIGHTENS OUR MINDS TO UNDERSTAND THE GOSPEL.
1 Corinthians 2:12
 Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. (ESV)
7. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO ASSURES US THAT WE ARE GOD’S CHILDREN.
 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.  For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”  The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, (ESV)
8. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO HELPS US TO PRAY.
 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. (ESV)
9. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO WILL RESURRECT US.
 If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you. (ESV)
10. IT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT WHO SEALS US.
 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. (ESV)
In the same way that we owe everything to Jesus Christ, we owe everything to the Holy Spirit. Salvation is the work of the Triune God: The Father planned salvation, the Son implemented and accomplished that plan, but it is the Holy Spirit who applies the benefits of salvation to his people.
B. THE HOLY SPIRIT DWELLS WITHIN US.
1 Corinthians 6:18–20
 Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.  Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own,  for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. (ESV)
We will now connect the role of the Spirit (God’s continuing gift to us) to the command that we abstain from sexual immorality.
To commit sexual immorality is to usurp God’s right of ownership over our bodies, a right that belongs to him not only by virtue of creation, but also by virtue of redemption.
Moreover, to commit sexual immorality is to injure, to hurt, and to grieve the Holy Spirit who dwells in us: our body is his temple. He is the One who performs the good work of holiness in us and who is committed to completing the good work which he has begun in us. Surely, it would be the height of ingratitude for us to repay his goodness with evil!
There are some who say, “This is my body. I can do with it whatever I please.” That would be correct, if it were true that you own your body. But the truth is you don’t own your body. God is the true owner of your body. He owns it either by right of creation or by right of redemption. And someday we will have to answer to him for how we have used or abused our bodies.
2 Corinthians 5:10
 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil. (ESV)
I would not like to end on a negative note. If ever we emphasize the seriousness of the sin of sexual immorality, it is because:
(1) we live in a world that no longer considers sinful much of what the Bible considers sinful. It is therefore necessary to enlighten and warn people regarding this because the Bible says, “The wages of sin is death.” (Rom. 6:23)
 There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death. (ESV)
(2) Also, we do this in order to encourage you to repent and find forgiveness in God, so that you can find true joy in the path of holiness.
2 Corinthians 6:16–18
 What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said, “I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.  Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing, then I will welcome you,  and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.” (ESV)
2 Corinthians 7:1
 Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God. (ESV)