The work of the Holy Spirit in the progressive sanctification of the newborn soul is indirect: in opening the heart to receive the truth, the instrument of purification; in giving vigor to the spiritual life; in strengthening the will to resist temptation, and in diminishing the power of evil habits. It is repressive of depravity rather than totally destructive.
The entire eradication of the propensity to sin is by the direct and instantaneous act of the Holy Spirit responsive to a special act of faith in Christ claiming the full heritage of the believer.
[J. A. Beet remarks:]
When we learn that God claims us for His own, and when, after fruitless personal efforts to render Him the devotion He requires, we learn for the first time that God will work in us by the agency of His Spirit and by actual spiritual contact with Christ the devotion He requires, and when we venture to believe, . . . we find by happy experience that according to our faith it is done to us. The experience thus gained becomes an era in our spiritual life. We feel that we are then holy in a sense unknown to us before.
— The Gospel of the Comforter Chapter 14.