Owen, Of Communion With God, File 20
    (... continued from File 19)

    Chapter 2. Of the acting of the Holy Ghost in us, being 
               bestowed on us - He worketh effectually, 
               distributeth, giveth. 
        Having thus declared from whence and how the Holy Ghost is
    given unto us as a Spirit of consolation, I come, in the next
    place, -  
        5thly. To declare what are his acting in us and towards
    us, being so bestowed on us and received by us. Now, here are
    two general heads to be considered: - (1st.) The manner and
    kind of his acting in us, which are variously expressed; and,
    (2dly.) The particular products of his acting in our souls,
    wherein we have communion with him. The first is variously
    expressed; I shall pass through them briefly: -  
        (1st.) He is said ("energein") "to work effectually," 1
    Cor. 12: 11, "All these worketh" (or effecteth) "that one and
    the self-same Spirit." It is spoken there, indeed, in respect
    of his distribution of gifts; but the way is the same for the
    communication of graces and privileges. He does it by working:
    which, as it evinces his personality, especially as considered
    with the words following, "Dividing to every man according to
    his will" (for to work according to will is the inseparable
    property of a person, and is spoken expressly of God, Eph. 1:
    11); so in relation to verse 6, foregoing, it makes no less
    evident his Deity. What he is here said to do as the Spirit
    bestowed on us and given unto us, there is he said as God
    himself to do: "There are diversities of operations, but it is
    the same God which worketh all in all;" which here, in other
    words, is, "All these worketh that one and the self same
    Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will." What we
    have, then, from him, we have by the way of his energetical
    working. It is not by proposing this or that argument to us,
    persuading us by these or those moral motives or inducements
    alone, leaving us to make use of them as we can; but he works
    effectually himself, what he communicates of grace or
    consolation to us.  
        [2dly.] In the same verse, as to the manner of his
    operation, he is said "diairein", - he divideth or
    distributeth to every one as he will. This of distribution
    adds to that of operation, choice, judgement, and freedom. He
    that distributes variously, does it with choice, and
    judgement, and freedom of will. Such are the proceedings of
    the Spirit in his dispensations: to one, he giveth one thing
    eminently; to another, another; - to one, in one degree; to
    another, in another. Thus are the saints, in his sovereignty,
    kept in a constant dependence on him. He distributes as he
    will; - who should not be content with his portion? what claim
    can any lay to that which he distributeth as he will? which is
    farther manifested, -  
        [3dly.] By his being said to give when and what he
    bestows. They "spake with other tongues, as the Spirit gave
    them utterance," Acts 2: 4. He gave them to them; that is,
    freely: whatever he bestows upon us, is of his gift. And hence
    it is to be observed, that in the economy of our salvation,
    the acting of no one person does prejudice the freedom and
    liberty of any other: so the love of the Father in sending the
    Son is free, and his sending does no ways prejudice the
    liberty and love of the Son, but that he lays down his life
    freely also; so the satisfaction and purchase made by the Son
    does no way prejudice the freedom of the Father's grace in
    pardoning and accepting us thereupon; so the Father's and
    Son's sending of the Spirit does not derogate from his freedom
    in his workings, but he gives freely what he gives. And the
    reason of this is, because the will of the Father, Son, and
    Holy Ghost, is essentially the same; so that in the acting of
    one there is the counsel of all and each freely therein.  
        Thus, in general, is the manner and kind of his working in
    us and towards us, being bestowed upon us, described. Power,
    choice, freedom, are evidently denoted in the expressions
    insisted on. It is not any peculiar work of his towards us
    that is hereby declared, but the manner how he does produce
    the effects that shall be insisted on.  
        (2dly.) That which remains, in the last place, for the
    explanation of the things proposed to be explained as the
    foundation of the communion which we have with the Holy Ghost,
    is, -  
        The effects that, being thus sent and thus working, he
    does produce; which I shall do, not casting them into any
    artificial method, but taking them up as I find them lying
    scattered up and down in the Scripture, only descending from
    those which are more general to those which are more
    particular, neither aiming nor desiring to gather all the
    several, but insisting on those which do most obviously occur.

        Only as formerly, so now you must observe, that I speak of
    the Spirit principally (if not only) as a comforter, and not
    as a sanctifier; and therefore the great work of the Spirit
    towards us all our days, in the constant and continual
    supplies of new light, power, vigour, as to our receiving of
    grace from him, belonging to that head of sanctification, must
    be omitted.  
        Nor shall I insist on those things which the Comforter
    does in believers effect towards others, in his testifying to
    them and convincing of the world, which are promised, John 15:
    26, 16: 8, wherein he is properly their advocate; but only on
    those which as a comforter he works in and towards them on
    whom he is bestowed.

    Owen, Of Communion With God
    (continued in File 21...)

    file: /pub/resources/text/ipb-e/epl-09: owcom-20.txt