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31 May is Pentecost Sunday.
God has promised "I will give water to the thirsty land, I will pour out My power on your children." Isaiah 44:3
"Here is My servant, whom I uphold, My chosen One in whom I delight; I will put My Spirit on Him and He will bring justice to the nations." Isaiah 42:1
Commands to Christians
The disciple of Christ must learn and experience what it means to:
Be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5: 18).
Be led by the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:14).
Walk in the Spirit (Galatians 5:26).
Pray in the Spirit (Jude 20; Romans 8:26).
The Holy Spirit was sent from God by Jesus (John 15:26) to:
The Ministry of the Holy Spirit
Convict the world of sin (John 16:8: "When He comes, He will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgement").
Regenerate God's chosen people into new life (John 3:8: "The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit").
Reassure us of our salvation (Romans 8:16: "The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children").
Teach us the truth (John 14:26 & 16:13: "But the Counsellor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My Name, will teach you all things and will remind you... But when He, the Spirit of Truth comes, He will guide you into all truth...").
Lead us (Romans 8:14: "...because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God").
Fill us with supernatural power (Luke 24:49: "...clothed with power from on high").
Direct our prayer life (Ephesians 6:18: "...pray in the Spirit...").
Produce the fruit of the Spirit in our lives (Galatians 5:22-23: "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control").
Give gifts to each part of the Body (1 Corinthians 12:11).
Empower us for worship (John 4:24: "God is Spirit and His worshippers must worship in spirit and in truth...").
Empower us for Evangelism (Acts 1:8: "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be My witnesses...").
Call and direct us into ministries (Acts 13:2: "...the Holy Spirit said, 'Set apart for Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them'").
Glorify Jesus (John 16:14: "He will bring glory to Me...")
Jesus came to set the world on fire (Luke 12:49). He wants people on-fire for Him, dedicated and fervent disciples conquering the world for Christ (1 John 5:4). To do this He requires fully committed, totally surrendered, Spirit-filled disciples who will walk in His bold footprints. It is not God's will that we have inconsistent big dipper experiences of being up today and down tomorrow. It is equally not God's will that His disciples follow and rely on their feelings and experiences, because feelings change, but Jesus Christ never changes - He is "The same yesterday, today and forever" Hebrews 13:8
God the Father sent the Holy Spirit to be a helper for His children. He comes to help us follow Jesus and glorify God.
The Holy Spirit comes to show us Jesus (John 15:26), to keep our eyes on Jesus (Hebrews. 12:2), to lead us to follow Jesus (1 Peter 2:21) and to glorify Jesus (John 16:14).
"...if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ." Romans 8:9
"Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out 'Abba, Father.'" Galatians 4:6
Preparing the Way for the Lord
"A Voice cries out, 'Prepare in the Wilderness a road for the Lord! Clear the way in the desert for our God! Fill every valley; level every mountain, the hills will become a plain and the rough country will be made smooth. Then the Glory of the Lord will be revealed. The Lord Himself has promised this.'" Isaiah 40:3-5
If we have a dry spiritual life, if we have many down times or valley experiences, if our walk seems rough and lacking in power and satisfaction then there is good news - God not only commands - He enables us to obey, by the power of the Holy Spirit, He enables us to live in the glory of the Lord. Prepare then the way for the Lord to control your life - prepare a way in your life.
Sins Against the Holy Spirit
"Yet they rebelled and grieved His Holy Spirit. So He turned and became their enemy and He Himself fought against them." Isaiah 63:10
The Word of God Warns Us:
Do not grieve the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30). "And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with Whom you were sealed for the day of redemption."
Do not quench the Holy Spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:19). "Do not put out the Spirit's fire."
Do not resist the Holy Spirit (Acts 7:51). "You stiff-necked people ...You always resist the Holy Spirit."
Do not lie to the Holy Spirit (Acts 5:3). "You have lied to the Holy Spirit ...You have not lied to men but to God."
Do Not Grieve the Holy Spirit
We can only grieve a person who loves us. To grieve means to cause sorrow to or to hurt a friend who loves us.
How can we grieve the Holy Spirit?
He is the Spirit of Life (Romans 8:2) - Spiritual lethargy, apathy and deadness grieve Him.
He is the Spirit of Truth (John 15:26) and anything false, hypocritical or deceitful grieves Him.
He is the Spirit of Faith (2 Corinthians. 4:13) and so unbelief, distrust and worry grieve Him.
He is the Spirit of Power, Love and Self-Control (2 Timothy 1:7) and spiritual barrenness, fruitlessness and disorder grieve Him.
He is the Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation (Ephesians 1:17). Ignorance of the Word of God and spiritual foolishness grieve Him.
He is the Spirit of Holiness (1 Corinthians. 6:19) and so anything unclean, indecent, or immoral defiles and degrades us and so grieves the Holy Spirit.
"...the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of Counsel and of power, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord." Isaiah 11:2
"Do not cast me from Your presence or take Your Holy Spirit from me." Psalm 51:11
Do Not Quench the Holy Spirit
To quench the Spirit is to suppress or stifle His leading and working. To quench the Spirit means that we hinder His will in the same way as one would quench a fire by pouring cold water over it.
The Holy Spirit's fire may be quenched by a mocking and frivolous attitude that prevents serious spiritual work being done (Luke 3:16).
Spiritual coldness and apathy quench spiritual fervour and dampen enthusiasm (Revelation 3:15,16).
By neglecting to provide fuel we can prevent the Holy Spirit from setting us and keeping us on fire. Our spiritual fuel of the Word of God and the power of prayer are essential if we are to be on fire for Jesus (Luke 12:49).
Divisions in our fellowship quench the Holy Spirit just as fire breaks halt forest fires (Matthew 3:11).
Do Not Resist the Holy Spirit
When He convicts us of sin and we do not repent - that is resisting the Spirit (John 16:8).
When He leads us to do something and we refuse to do it - that is resisting the Spirit (Ezekiel 36:27).
When He prepares us for something and we do not put it into action - that is resisting the Spirit (Ephesians 3:20).
When He guides and you do not follow - that is resisting the Spirit (John 16:13).
"Then the Lord said, 'My Spirit will not contend with man forever'" Genesis 6:3
Do Not Lie to the Holy Spirit
When we pray and pretend that everything is all right while we have unrepented sin in our lives, we lie to the Spirit (Proverbs 28:13).
When we commit ourselves to God's service or to His will, but don't really mean it, we lie to the Spirit (2 Corinthians 11:3).
When we give a word of testimony or prophecy in Jesus' Name or about some working of the Spirit and it isn't the truth, we lie to the Spirit (Jeremiah 23:25-28).
So then we should not quench, resist, grieve or lie to the Holy Spirit. Instead, we should be filled with the Spirit (Luke 11:9-13).
"I am going to send you what My Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on High." Luke 24:49
"But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the ends of the earth." Acts 1:8
Be Filled with the Holy Spirit
The Word of God commands us:
"Be filled with the Holy Spirit" Ephesians 5:18
The full meaning of the words be filled is brought out by studying the grammatical tense of the original Greek, which is in the:
Imperative tense - it is a command, not an option.
Plural - all of us must be filled -it is a general command.
Present tense - it is a command for the present - to be filled now.
Passive mood - that is to say it is something that we cannot do ourselves - but we must let God fill us.
Present continuous tense - be continuously filled, go on being filled.
In other words, we are all being clearly commanded to let ourselves be continuously filled with the Holy Spirit. The word filled indicates that we must be under the influence of, to the extent of being dominated, or controlled by, the Holy Spirit.
"The Spirit has given us life; He must also control our lives." Galatians 5:25
To be filled with the Spirit means nothing less than being controlled by the Holy Spirit.
How then are we to be controlled or filled with the Spirit?
What we surrender to God; God accepts (Romans 12:1-2).
What God accepts (John 6:37); He cleanses (John 15:3).
What God cleanses (2 Timothy 2:21); He fills (Matthew 5:6).
And what God fills (Ephesians 3:19-20); He uses (Acts 1:8).
Jesus proclaimed that "Whoever is thirsty should come to Me and drink ... whoever believes in Me, streams of life-giving water will pour out from his heart. Jesus said this about the Holy Spirit, which those who believed in Him were going to receive." John 7: 37-39
Abide in Christ
To be filled with the Holy Spirit we need to continuously come to Christ in faith. "If you remain in Me and My Words remain in you, ask whatever you wish and it will be given you. This is to My Fathers glory that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be My disciples." John 15:7-8
To be filled with the Spirit, we need to:
THIRST - "He who hungers and thirsts after righteousness shall be filled." Matthew 5:6
COME TO JESUS - Only Jesus can satisfy our thirst. It is Jesus alone who fills us with His Spirit (Matthew 3:11).
DRINK - Receive the Spirit - a step of faith is required.
BELIEVE - We are filled with the Holy Spirit when our hunger and thirst leads us to Jesus and we by faith receive the fullness of His Spirit through surrender to our Lord Jesus Christ.
"If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in Heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?" Luke 11:13
Dr. Peter Hammond
Cape Town South Africa
The Fire of Pentecost
Supernatural Power for World Missions