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not discern the wind that caused these motions. So we can see the power of the Holy Ghost in the lives of Christians, in conversions and revivals; in the acts of believers and in the triumphs of the church; but we cannot recognize him by himself, since he is invisible and immaterial. Why is it that the Acts of the Apostles gives us so much knowledge of the Holy Ghost? Because it is the life of the Spirit seen in the words and deeds of the body of believers: it is the Invisible made visible in working and conduct and testimony. Indeed the Acts of the Apostles might be rightly named the Acts of the Holy Spirit. As the gospels are a record "of all that Jesus began both to do and teach until the day in which he was taken up," so the Acts are the record of all that the Holy Spirit began both to do and teach after that he came down and inhabited the body of the faithful. And if we learn so much from these first beginnings of his working, is there not much to learn from his continuings in the subsequent history of the church?
We judge so; and hence we have called to our aid the lives of the saints of all the Christian
ages. Having drawn our scheme of the doctrinę
of the Spirit from the Scriptures, we have sought to fill up the outline from the records of religious biography. For Christian experience, if it be true and divinely inspired, is but the Bible translated and printed in illuminated text, scripture "writ large," for the benefit of dim eyes that cannot read the fine print of doctrine. Let our readers judge for themselves of the significance of the spiritual transactions herein recorded.
3. Finally, in all that we have written we have had chiefly in mind the help and quickening of Christian ministers and workers. No elaborate treatise has been attempted; no exhaustive discussion of the person and ministry of the Holy Spirit. Rather have we attempted an easy colloquy with our readers, blending scripture exposition with religious incident, letting the voice of God be heard now in his inspired word, and now in the echoes which that word has awakened in Christian consciousness. And upon all, we have sought and do now seek, the illuminating and sanctifying and consecrating influences of the Holy Paraclete — that what in our discourse is true and according to the mind of God may be blessed to his people; and that whatever is amiss may be graciously forgiven and overuled.
"By regeneration we understand the commencement of the life of God in the soul of man; the beginning of that which had not an existence before: by renewal, the invigoration of that which has been begun; the sustentation of a life already possessed. In the washing of regeneration the new life commences. Having begun it needs to be supported and preserved. This is effected by the renewing of the Holy Ghost, the flowing into the soul through the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ of the varied gifts of the Divine Agent by whom the life itself was imparted at first."-Thomas Binney.
REGENERATION AND RENEWAL.
EGENERATION and Renewal are related
to each other, as the planting of the tree is related to its growth. It is very necessary that at the outset we should have a clear conception of what regeneration is. In the manuals of theology we sometimes find it described as "a change of nature." But we must take respectful exception to this definition. For by nature must be meant, of course, human nature; and by the expression change of nature," it is implied that the natural/ heart can be so transformed and bettered, that it can bring forth the fruits of righteousness and true holiness. Against this presumption the Word of God enters its solemn and emphatic caveat "Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be."*
We hold that the true definition of regeneration
Rom. 8: 7.