Be Filled With The Spirit.....
Pentecost Message - 2003
Shavuot Begins Sundown Thursday, June 5, 2003 - Sundown Saturday, June 7, 2003.
Being baptized in the Holy Ghost is not a suggestion, but a COMMAND. People in the modern church get bogged down in theological debate over whether speaking in tongues is part of the evidence of a Spirit-filled life. The issue is not tongues even though we believe and teach that every recipient of the Holy Spirit, irrespective of who he/she is, will speak in tongues as the INITIAL physical evidence the Holy Spirit has come in baptismal power. Speaking in tongues is a door to a deeper walk in the Holy Ghost. It is by no means a means to an end. We must be "being filled," constantly as Paul encourages us in his epistle to the Ephesians.
By Chris McDonald
TEXT: Eph. 5:18 - And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled (Gr. continually being filled) with the Spirit;
We teach according to the Word of God that the INITIAL (UNDERLINE THAT WORD INITIAL) sign one has been filled with the Holy Spirit is the evidence of speaking in tongues as the Spirit of God gives the utterance. There are a many number of ADDITIONAL signs one is WALKING in the Spirit-filled life, but the initial evidence is speaking in tongues as God supernaturally touches our lives. We will look at some of the evidences of a Spirit-filled walk in this lesson and deal with why tongues are very important to our walk as believers. We're not trying to make you Pentecostal, but we are trying to encourage you to pursue MORE OF GOD and get FULL of the HOLY GHOST in this hour! You need the baptism in the Holy Spirit!
We are not just going to talk about tongues in this lesson. THERE ARE A NUMBER OF SIGNS A PERSON IS SPIRIT-FILLED and tongues are not the only one. I think we, as Pentecostals, tend to major on tongues because they are an outward and tangible sign we can embrace. But many tongue-talking Christians do NOT walk in the Spirit-filled life while many God-fearing people who have never spoken in tongues exhibit a great deal MORE of Yeshua’s nature in their lives than even those who claim to be "full of the Spirit." The Holy Spirit has come to keep us on the path of life and that is HIS MINISTRY to the believer in these last days. We are fully aware that speaking in tongues is but ONE of the evidences of the infilling of the Holy Spirit- but we believe it is the INITIAL evidence!
There are five separate incidents in the book of Acts that describe individuals being baptized in the Holy Ghost. These incidents cover a time period of over 20 years. Then, there is a lengthy dissertation in the 14th chapter in 1 Corinthians concerning the use of tongues. That is covered in the next lesson of this study.
This particular verse states that "And they were ALL FILLED WITH THE HOLY GHOST, and began to SPEAK with other tongues as the SPIRIT OF GOD gave them utterance." This is as clear and concise and to the point as you can get when it comes to being filled with the Spirit.
In the 8th chapter of Acts, Peter and John came from Jerusalem and prayed for the Samaritans to receive the Holy Spirit. It doesn't say anything about them speaking in tongues as such BUT it does state (in v. 18 and 19) that Simon the Sorcerer saw that through the laying on the apostles' hands the Holy Ghost was given. He then offered the apostles money that he might also have this power - THAT HE MIGHT LAY HANDS so that they would RECEIVE the HOLY SPIRIT. It seems obvious that this greedy individual would not offer money if there weren't SOME TANGIBLE manifestation of results. If the laying on of hands had no visible evidence following it, why would he offer to pay the apostles for their "secret?"
The logical conclusion to this is that the Samaritans "spoke with other tongues as the Spirit of God gave them utterance," as those did in Acts 2:4.
When Ananias laid hands on Paul (who was later to become of the greatest apostles who ever lived), he was filled with the Holy Spirit. And, to be sure, it doesn't say anything about speaking in tongues. However, in 1 Corinthians 14:18 - Paul says, "I thank my God, I speak in tongues MORE THAN YE ALL." So the evidence is there that the Apostle Paul DID spoke with other tongues as he was baptized in the Holy Spirit.
The Bible describes, in the 10th chapter of Acts, the circumstances as the Holy Spirit fell upon the household of Cornelius. The Bible says that the Jewish brethren were astonished because "on the GENTILES also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost." HOW did they know that? They answered that question in v. 46 - "for they heard them SPEAK WITH TONGUES and magnify GOD."
This passage states, "they spoke with tongues and prophesied." Now, in these five passages given - where experiences are related to being "FILLED WITH THE HOLY GHOST," it says that they SPOKE with other tongues. And the Word tells us "at the mouth of two or three witnesses shall the matter be established." (Deut. 19:15). Joining this with the implied evidence discussed above, in relation to the other two incidents in Acts 8 and Acts 9, we can properly conclude THEY spoke with other tongues also. Any honest seeker after more of God and the TRUTH, upon studying this, would could to the conclusion that SOMETHING tangible (AUDIBLE, FELT) happened when these individuals were FILLED with the Holy Spirit. That "something" obviously had to be speaking in tongues as the Spirit of God gave them the utterance.
· Acts 2:4 - "they....began to speak."
· Acts 10:46 - "they heard them speak."
· Acts 19:6 - "they spake."
And Ephesians 5:18-19, our text for these two journals says, "SPEAKING TO YOURSELVES!" That is not that hard to understand that being FILLED with the HOLY GHOST involves utterances of the Spirit to others and to us.
The question is asked many times by people who don't understand this experience "why tongues?." "Why did God choose 'tongues' to use as the sign for the initial infilling of His Spirit?" Some have spoken disparagingly of this great gift by saying it is nothing more than babble, chatter or incoherent jabbering. Of course people who say such things again are usually people who are just seeking to argue about this great experience instead of receiving it. It's sad that God has been relegated down to an argument in the American church today. That's very sobering and sad.
Tongues are generally a language somewhere in the world and known by some people in the world OR in heaven. We are given insight in the 2nd chapter of Acts that there were devout men from every nation under heaven (and, of course, this referred to the world known in those days). It says they had come together and were confounded because "how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?" It then goes on to list the people who were there. This included Parthian, Medes, Elamites, and at least 13 different nationalities. Yet this entire disparate people said, "WE DO HEAR THEM SPEAK IN OUR OWN TONGUES THE WONDERFUL WORKS OF GOD." (v. 11)
Now, to state it again - the apostles were not preaching to these individuals to GET SAVED! They were merely praising the Lord in other tongues. They were speaking a language they had not learned. Some skeptics have tried to explain this away as some language the 120 had just learned. In other words, they had suddenly become linguists and were praising God in languages other than Aramaic, Hebrew or Greek - the common local languages. That is not true. These were uneducated Galileans who were NOT students of languages.
This is how it is when people speak in tongues today. There are hundreds, perhaps THOUSANDS, of languages and dialects in this world, and many of them sound very strange to our ears. They are not strange of course, to the people who routinely converse in them. So it is not just jabber or chatter or babble - it is always a language that is spoken or understood SOMEWHERE in the world, but NOT spoken or understood by the individual who has been filled with the Holy Spirit. If you notice in this story when the time came for Peter to preach to these people about the Lord Jesus and give an invitation to be saved, Simon Peter (Acts 2:14) did not continue speaking in tongues but then preached in the common language of the day, which was either Aramaic or Hebrew. Of course, all those present understood. It is easy to see how so many people could know that Hebrew language (being Jews themselves) and also the language of the country in which they resided. This is common among many people today. And it is also possible that SOME of the 120 had learned more than one language - but the language spoken as they were baptized in the HOLY GHOST was NOT a language that was known to them. It was a SUPERNATURAL UTTERANCE, given by the Holy Spirit, which always accompanies this baptism. So tongues refer to languages known either on this earth or in heaven.
Tongues Of Angels
In 1 Corinthians 13:1 the Apostle Paul said, "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not love." He is talking about speaking in OTHER tongues - on which he gives an extensive dissertation later in the 14th chapter. And he uses the term "of angels" implying the possibility that sometimes a language that is spoken could be an ANGELIC language. So without sounding contentious let's just say that there are NUMEROUS utterances that we as humans may not understand. Many utterances may sound so strange you just wince at the sound - BUT YOU HAD BETTER BE CAREFUL HOW YOU LABEL SUCH UTTERANCES AS BEING FROM THE DEVIL! If you don't have knowledge of a matter, it's best to keep your mouth shut about it than to open it and stick your foot inside. I have had more than a hundred apples out of that bag believe me. It was prophesied by Isaiah (and quoted in 1 Corinthians 14:21) that men WOULD speak with "stammering lips and unknown tongues." Notice the word AND, not “or.” These are two different things. Isaiah went on to say that even though the Lord would arrange this mighty sign, men would not listen to HIM.
Isaiah 28:11-12 - For
with stammering lips and another tongue will
he speak to this people.  To whom he said, This is the rest
wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they
would not hear.
1 Cor. 14:21 - In the law it is written, With men of other tongues and other lips will I speak unto this people; and yet for all that will they not hear me, saith the Lord.
That is a terrible indictment but one that is true today. So much controversy, so much division, so much anger over the precious Holy Spirit is a sign that the words of Isaiah have been fulfilled in THIS generation. We need to repent!
The following are some reasons why we believe God chose tongues as the INITIAL sign someone has been baptized in the HOLY SPIRIT.
1. Supernatural - First of all, speaking in tongues is ALWAYS a SUPERNATURAL utterance. It must be exercised by FAITH, but it is not of the individual's doing. It comes from the Lord Jesus Christ and was promised long ago by Isaiah. YOU CANNOT TEACH SOMEONE TO SPEAK IN TONGUES! If any of my Pentecostal friends are reading this - please read that last statement again. YOU CANNOT TEACH OR MAKE SOMEONE SPEAK IN TONGUES. This is a SUPERNATURAL utterance! It comes from heaven. There "came a SOUND from HEAVEN," as of a rushing, mighty wind. The outpouring of the Holy Ghost is something man cannot and will never take credit for here in the earth.
2. Given By God - Careful reading of 1 Cor. 14:21 and Isaiah 28:11-12 (above) would infer that when men speak with other tongues it is actually God speaking THROUGH them to the people. When we realize that when a person is speaking in tongues - it's not really "them" speaking but God, we will change our resistance to this great experience.
3. Universal - This is the single evidence the world over. It is not one evidence for one country and something else for another (as some erroneously teach in some circles) It is the same evidence everywhere. It was the same evidence in the first church and it's the same evidence TODAY. It is the same across the world and across the years - which makes EXCELLENT evidence - if one is willing to view it without prejudice.
Instantaneous - The MOMENT the baptism of the Holy Spirit (the second work of grace, not salvation), he/she starts to speak in other tongues. It happens that same way with everyone. It's not something that involves an interaction with other individuals. It is strictly a PERSONAL experience between the individual and God. It always happens instantaneously, the moment the infilling occurs. There are many other reasons why the Lord chose this precious gift. To be quite frank there is no answer to the question why God chose tongues. God doesn't have to get our permission to move in any certain way here on Earth like some believe. HE IS THE FATHER! WE are His Son's BODY - HIS SON IS THE HEAD! And the power of the Holy Ghost is real today!
What Good Does It Do?
Some may ask, "Well I believe in tongues but really, what good or help can it be or service to anyone?" Some preachers say this and laugh. Of course those who could ask such a question are really revealing their lack of knowledge and in some cases resistance to it. There is MUCH good that speaking in tongues will do for the believer.
It Ushers In The Holy Spirit
From reading Acts 2:4 it is very apparent that the moment individuals were filled with the Holy Ghost they began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit gave them the utterance. If tongues do serve to usher in the Holy Spirit, it becomes of extreme importance in this great work of grace in the hearts and lives of believers.
It is a Refreshing to the Believer
In Isaiah 28, as he gave prophecy concerning the Holy Spirit (in verses 11-13 – as quoted by Paul in 1 Corinthians 14), Isaiah mentions something of extreme importance. He said, “This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing. Once you have received the baptism in the Holy Spirit and begin to speak in tongues on a regular basis you will fully understand this verse. It is like a spiritual recharging of one’s spiritual batteries. It is what Jude referred to in the 20th verse of his book when he used the phrase, “building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost.” It lifts one up spiritually
It Helps One to Pray
When Paul wrote to the church at Rome, he spent an entire chapter (8) on the will of God, intercession and the important role the Holy Spirit plays in this.
Rom 8:26-28 - Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself makes intercession for us with groaning which cannot be uttered. And he that searches the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
The Greek says this of the “groanings that cannot be uttered” in verse 26 – “which cannot be articulated in a normal or natural voice.” This refers to speaking with other tongues. It helps us to pray. When we don’t know how to pray about a certain situation, it is often because we don’t recognize the complexities of the problem. God does. The Holy Spirit does.
Thus, when we go before God in the natural, we can ask for what WE see as the solutions – but which, in fact, aren’t. As we pray in the Spirit, or in other words in other tongues, it is not only a great refreshing, but a great assurance knowing that the Holy Spirit is praying through us and He is praying according to the will of God. He says things to the Heavenly Father that we would not know what or how to say in our human, natural ability. The Lord Jesus makes intercession for us in heaven. The Holy Spirit makes intercession for us here on earth. And that intercession is ALWAYS according to the will of God. Because of this, we know God hears us and will answer the request we ask since it’s being asked “IN HIS WILL.”
I Jn. 5:14-15 - And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.
It is a Sign to the Unbeliever
This term “a sign to the unbeliever” has a number of meanings. One of them is that it is a sign to the unbeliever that individual speaking has been baptized in the Holy Spirit. In other words, speaking in other tongues is just the sign we’ve been discussing. It is a manifestation of the power and presence of God. It is a sign that God is working mightily and that the unbeliever should get right with God.
It Edifies the Believer
1 Cor. 14:4 - He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifies himself; but he that prophesies edifies the church.
Paul said in 1 Corinthians 14:4 that a person speaking in tongues is edifying himself. He did not say this was wrong. Speaking in tongues strengthens the believer, builds his faith, and lifts him up – and not in selfishness. The Holy Spirit never does that. The Holy Ghost always does this in a healthy manner – and never makes a mistake by edifying the believer in a way that would corrupt the carnal ego.
It is a Divine Form of Communication
1 Cor 14:14-15 - For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful. What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also.
When our spirit unites with the Holy Spirit and the Spirit of God prays through us it is a direct line of communication to God and us. When we pray in the Holy Spirit, our understanding may be unfruitful, but there are times when we need to get a hold of God immediately. Paul said there would be needful times to pray both in the Spirit and with our own understanding. When we are praying in the Spirit, even Satan doesn’t understand what we are saying! Think about it. The only time when the enemy cannot interfere with the flow of prayer between you and God is when you’re praying in the Holy Ghost.
Doesn’t this make the arguments against the Holy Spirit seem so childish? We’re fighting the very one thing that can connect us to God and get an answer to our needs as the church. No wonder the enemy has blinded so many to this experience and deluded others into attacking it. You need the baptism in the Holy Spirit! You need to be filled with the Holy Ghost as they were on the day of Pentecost. You need this experience. It’s for today!
What About Other Signs That One Is Spirit-Filled?
Ephes. 5:17-21 -
Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.
 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled
with the Spirit;  Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and
spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;
Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name
of our Lord Jesus Christ;  Submitting yourselves one to another in the
fear of God.
As wonderful as speaking in tongues may be to the believer our walk with in the Spirit is JUST beginning. Sadly, so many abuses and neglectful practices among Charismatic type people have been a HUGE turnoff to those in the non-Pentecostal world who sincerely want more of God. It's not easy to discuss speaking in tongues with someone without the issue always being brought up of the extremes in the Charismatic movement and the huge number of people who fall into just as much sin who DO speak in tongues as those who DON'T speak in tongues.
Stephen Strang wrote an excellent article in Charisma magazine's April issue stating that many spirit-filled people are leaving Charismatic churches because of the craziness and foolishness going on exchanging an atmosphere of life for an atmosphere where NOTHING happens yet the pastor and leadership don't act like nuts. I can relate. But if we will obey the word of God in Ephesians we will see that walking in the Spirit-filled life is JUST as, if not MORE important as receiving the initial infilling of the Holy Spirit. So many have degenerated this experience into a one-time event in their lives without walking in the fullness of what the Lord wants for them.
Understanding What The Will Of The Lord Is
people are people who know the will of God for their lives. They don't go off on
tangents and whims but wait on the Lord and HEAR what the Spirit of God is
saying in a matter. When I was young I boasted a great deal about the fact I
spoke with other tongues but would then go out the next day and get myself in
more messes than there are fish in the Atlantic Ocean. A lot of that "zeal" I
thought was being led of the Spirit was Chris's own desires to be seen and
heard. When you allow the HOLY GHOST to pray through you to God you can be sure
you are ALWAYS praying the WILL OF GOD!
I Jn. 5:14-15 - And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.
Romans 8:26-27 -
Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should
pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself makes intercession for us with
groanings which cannot be uttered.  And he that searches the hearts knoweth
what is the mind of the Spirit, because he makes intercession for the saints
according to the will of God.
When the Spirit makes true intercession for us and we're walking in the FULLNESS of His power - we will always be praying "according to the will of God." When we pray according to the will of God our Father in Heaven will honor our prayer and grant us the petitions we ask. He will keep us in His will is we walk in the SPIRIT and not fulfill the desires and whims of our flesh.
Rom 12:1-3 - I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
The will of God for our lives is GOOD, ACCEPTABLE and PERFECT. There is a popular teaching out today that we can be in God's permissive will and not His perfect will. I don't believe that. I believe the Holy Spirit's drive and passion is to keep us in the PERFECT will of God at all times. If we're not there - then we are not walking in the fullness of the SPIRIT. That's not to condemn us - it's to encourage us to GET THERE! There is no such thing as a permissive will. When we're in union with our Father - no matter where we're at in our lives - we're in His will - if we are walking after the SPIRIT, not after the FLESH!
Our flesh seeks to promote us. The Spirit of God seeks to promote YESHUAH! Our flesh wants everyone to see how spiritual we are to others. The Spirit of God wants to KILL our flesh and allow the world to see how much YESHUAH is in us! Our flesh wants to be busy "doing" something for God. The Spirit of God crushes our fleshly desires and teaches us to WAIT on the Lord and be patient for the fullness of His purposes to come forth in our lives. Spirit-filled people UNDERSTAND and walk in the will of the Lord. Spirit-filled people don't go divorce their spouse and then say "God gave me a peace about this." Baloney! If God gave you a peace about divorcing your mate you may want to check the spirit you're listening to - it was not God's Spirit! The Spirit of God never contradicts the Word of God which states the Will of God for all of us. The Spirit's purpose is to reveal the will of God to us individually. His will for your life may not be the same design He has for mine. The Word tells us what His purposes are in the Earth, the Spirit makes those purposes REAL in US!
Be Not Drunk With Wine
Spirit-filled people are not drunk with the cares, desires and suffocating materialism from this world. Wine is a mocker and strong drink rages within us. Solomon said whoever is drunk and deceived by wine is not that wise. Solomon is speaking of a condition of many in the church today - DRUNK. Not drunk on the "new wine" of the Holy Ghost - but with a pursuit of everything else BUT Yeshuah.
Prov 20:1 - Wine is a
mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.
Prov 21:17 - He that loves pleasure shall be a poor man: he that loves wine and oil shall not be rich.
Isa 28:7 - But they also have erred through wine, and through strong drink are out of the way; the priest and the prophet have erred through strong drink, they are swallowed up of wine, they are out of the way through strong drink; they err in vision, they stumble in judgment.
Spirit-filled people are PASSIONATELY pursuing JESUS with all their hearts, souls and minds. Nothing else satisfies them. Nothing can quench their thirst but Him. He must INCREASE, We must decrease. We can brag to others that we speak in tongues all we want to but if we are hooked into this world's system and have one foot in the kingdom of God and one foot in the world - WE are NOT WALKING IN THE FULLNESS OF THE SPIRIT-FILLED LIFE!
1Thes 5:7-8 - For they that sleep, sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.
8 But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.
Rev 17:6 - And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.
John saw the apostate whore of religion "drunken" with the blood the saints. That is a perfect picture of the church of this hour. Religion kills true saints. Religion always seeks to stop the move of God in the Body of Christ. Religion always resists the Holy Ghost and the life that is sold out to God in fullness and submission. Religion and mediocrity are the greatest dangers to your walk with the Lord. We need to get DRUNK on JESUS! We need to get DRUNK on the Holy Ghost! We need to get DRUNK on the red wine of the Lord. We need to get SLOSHED with a dose of the mighty outpouring of the Holy Ghost. When we do that - we won't want what the world offers us in pitiful exchange for our efforts and resources. We won't want to go spend our blessings on worldly entertainment and the devil's industry. We won't want to spend our time seeking worldly recognition and praise. We will just want to BASK in the presence of our MASTER and allow His new wine to fill us to overflowing.
There is a little song we used to sing that is churning in me right now. It goes like this:
"He will fill your hearts today with overflowing
Bring your vessels not a few
As The Lord commanded you
He will fill your hearts today with overflowing
With the Holy Ghost And Wine (And Fire!)"
Speaking To Yourselves...Songs, Psalms And Spiritual Songs...Making Melody In Your Hearts
Paul said, "Speak to yourselves" in songs, psalms and "spiritual songs." Those "spiritual songs" are songs of the Holy Ghost. This could also be an encouragement to those who speak in other tongues to pray inwardly and daily to ourselves and allow the Holy Spirit the pray through us. When we do that there is GREAT strength to that. Another form of building our faith up in this way is done by singing in the Spirit. Spirit-filled people are people who daily speak to themselves and pray in the Holy Ghost! Spirit-filled people are not people who get an "experience" and then neglect it for years but keep bragging they’re spirit-filled. NO! Spirit-filled people are people who have a SONG in their heart! When the going gets tough- the SONG gets going! When the storms in the night rage - the SONG gets going. When all of hell is fighting to destroy them - a SONG IS BEING HEARD IN THE MELODY OF OUR HEARTS!
Paul said, "Speak to yourselves." Jude said "BUILD YOURSELVES UP!" Build yourselves "up" in the MOST HOLY FAITH.
Jude 1:20-25 - But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost
You do that by praying in the Holy Ghost (i.e. “tongues”) every day. You do that by speaking in tongues every day as the Spirit of God gives the utterance. Spirit-filled people are people who CULTIVATE the gift of the Holy Spirit within them and allow Him to mold them and make them into the workmanship of the Lord's hand.
Giving Thanks Always.....
Another key evidence of the Spirit-filled life is the fact we are THANKFUL and not resentful. Many so-called 'spirit-filled' Christians are as sour and bitter as a bad lemon. They will trumpet to the loudest mountain they speak in tongues but be just as bitter and resentful at life. THOSE PEOPLE ARE NOT SPIRIT-FILLED! They may have had an experience in their past but friend people who are WALKING after the SPIRIT OF GOD are THANKFUL people. They thank God for what they DO have instead of blaming God and others for what they DON'T HAVE! They thank God for their health, their spouses, their families, their children, their home, their job, their car, their possessions, their soul. Spirit-filled people thank God every day for just being GOD and sending Yeshuah to earth to die for us and save us from our sin. Spirit-filled people thank GOD for the mountains and thank God for the valleys. They don't lose faith and get angry at God when things don't go their way. They are thankful that the Lord in Heaven is a GOOD God and gives GOOD GIFTS to His children. Spirit-filled people are people who are thankful that EVERYTHING is working out together for their good and not bad. Spirit-filled people are looking at the positive and not the negative. Spirit-filled people see that EVERYTHING they have - they really DON'T HAVE! It all belongs to God and they become thankful for the fact the Lord has made them a steward over His blessings to them.
Spirit-filled people are not selfish people. A person may have spoken in tongues but if they are selfish and self-seeking they are not walking in a Spirit-filled way! Spirit-filled people give up their lives for the sake of others. Spirit-filled people look to the GOOD of others and seek the betterment of those AROUND them, not just themselves. Spirit-filled people are thankful to God they have fellow brethren and sisters in the Lord. Spirit-filled people are not rude or obnoxious to others. They are lovers! They are lovers of God and lovers of their fellow man. They are THANKFUL!
Being thankful is a command of the NEW COVENANT.
Ps 100:4-5 - Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endures to all generations.
Rom 1:21 - Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
Col 3:15 - And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.
Paul said that a sign of the end times is that men would no longer be thankful. As a result their imaginations became VAIN and their foolish heart darkened. If you want peace in your home in these last days - BE THANKFUL. If you want to walk in the blessings of God in these last days - BE THANKFUL. If you want to be a servant of the Lord and embrace the favor of God - BE THANKFUL! If you want to know the fullness of the Spirit's power in your life - BE THANKFUL. If you want to see the Lord move in your circumstances - BE THANKFUL. STOP COMPLAINING about the things you don't have and you think you ought to have and rejoice in the fact you are alive today. Rejoice in the fact we have a Lord in heaven that is GRACIOUS and LONGSUFFERING towards us and LOVES US with a love beyond comprehension. REJOICE oh, saint of God in the fact that the LORD is able to do ABOVE that which we seek Him to do. But the key to all of this is walking in the Spirit-controlled attitude of thankfulness. A person who is always complaining about their life is a person whose life will probably never change!
When we are walking in the Spirit-filled life - we are thankful people.
Submitting Yourselves One To Another In The Fear Of God
Spirit-filled people are submissive people. We are to submit ourselves to God first, then to others the Lord puts in our lives second. That's why it is very important to be part of a local fellowship where we can be submissive and accountable to authority over us. We need to have someone who is able to speak life into our lives and help us overcome the attacks and traps of Satan. I know this is very hard to some of us to do at times. I know it's hard for me to do at times - to open up and become transparent before those I'm under.
Having said that let me say this. It is of UTMOST importance we find the RIGHT authority over us. Too many Christians have placed themselves under abusive pastors and churches to be scared for life because of church issues. That is not submission. God does not call us to submit ourselves to someone who does not have HIS heart and HIS vision for people. You need a pastor who you can call friend and someone who will truly share the burdens of the sheep.
Some of our churches have gotten so big and busy as long as there is a quota coming every Sunday the ministry to the ONE gets less and less. Jesus cares about the ONE. Religion cares we have ninety and nine. God ordains true submission. But He expects those we submit ourselves to that they have HIS heart and love for our lives just as HE has for our lives. They don’t have to perfect – but they do need to have Yeshua’s heart for people and others.
When we submit to God first, then we can be sure the enemy will FLEE from us. Spirit-filled people are people who walk in this type submission. They are humble people. They are broken people. They are God-fearing people. They are not arrogant people. They are not people who like to be "lone" rangers in the Body never having fellowship with anyone except himself or herself. (That could be really boring)
God has created in us a deep sense and need for family and interaction with others. That's why many modern-day churches have failed so miserably I believe in their mandate from the Lord. The church is not the building we worship in - the church is the PEOPLE inside! And those people need to be compassionate, loving, outreaching, understanding, resolved and caring to others - not just those on the inside of the church - but those on the outside. Instead many are inconsiderate, unloving, inward seeking, harsh, cruel, and judgmental and non-committal to the needs around them.
There is a place to be good stewards over what God has given us but being a good steward means we are doing the works of Jesus and GIVING of our resources to help those in need. Those outside our walls who have found themselves in need know they are in a mess. They don't need our sermons- they need our love and compassion. The Holy Spirit will correct them and deal with them. He can do a much better job of that than we can believe me. Our job is to be conduits of His grace and power to a lost and dying world. Spirit-filled people are submitting, giving people. They know what it means to lose "their" rights for the sake and rights of others. That's what living the Spirit-filled life is about.
Be Filled With The Spirit
Man was made for fellowship with God. Due to man's fall in the Garden, fellowship with God was severed. The presence of God is of extreme importance to His people. When the people of Israel were led out of Egypt and toward the Promised Land, they were instructed to build the tabernacle. It was a movable place of worship, and within it (in the Holy Of Holies) the Shekinah (or glorious presence of God) dwelt.
In the gospel of John we are told that Yeshuah (the WORD) became FLESH and DWELT (literally "tabernacled) among us. (John 1:14). God WILL communicate with us. Jesus promised the HOLY SPIRIT would come after He returned to the Father. And He did come - ON THE DAY OF PENTECOST in which this study is dedicated to. The Old Testament prophets had previously given the promise of the Spirit. Ezekiel said "And I will put my SPIRIT WITHIN you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and You shall KEEP my judgments and DO them." (Ezekiel 36:27).
When His Spirit indwells us, He will show us the way to walk. It is also stated in John 14:17 that the Spirit of Truth will be IN US. We are His dwelling place, His temple: (1 Cor. 3:16). The body of believers is to be a holy habitation of the Spirit. Not only are we called to collectively the temple of the Holy Spirit, but we can be a temple of the HOLY GHOST individually too!
1 Cor. 3:16 - Know ye
not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
John 14:17 - Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
The abiding presence of the Holy Ghost within one is wonderful and PRECIOUS. But the Holy Spirit comes ONLY WHEN HE IS WELCOMED! We are warned NOT TO GRIEVE the Holy Ghost. The Spirit never uses force or coercion, but is always meek and gentle. You can be "renewed in the spirit of your mind" by HIM! (Eph. 4:23). This is, in fact, a COMMAND; and many others, by way of exhortation to Spirit-filled believers. It is HIS PRESENCE that makes the difference if one's life is to develop in purity, holiness, and in the fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance. (Gal. 5:22-23; Eph. 4:23-32).
The Holy Spirit in the believer gives not only power for service and witnessing, but victory in one's life. The Holy Spirit's presence in one's life is transforming. Spirit-filled believers experience a greater love for God's Word than ever before. New insights and applications replace the former blindness. The REALITY of Jesus Christ is much greater as the Holy Spirit REVEALS him. There is a new joy, a new liberty, a new happiness - plus an enhanced response in praise and PRAYER! The key? Being baptized in the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking with tongues and WALKING in the Spirit-filled life as the Spirit of God leads us, fills us, and indwells us. As my dear dad says to me many times and he is very right - ONE Baptism into the Body but MANY fillings. We may not use the same words or theological terms on the "many fillings" but we are saying the same thing. Get saved today and be FILLED WITH THE HOLY GHOST AND FIRE! In Yeshua’s name! AMEN.
Father in the name of Yeshuah I thank you for the WORD of God that flows into these journals as we write. Sometimes our fingers are typing and we don't even know what we are typing at times. Take these words of Your Spirit and implant them on hearts today. FORGIVE YOUR CHURCH for it’s bickering and arguing over Your precious gift of the Holy Ghost. FORGIVE YOUR CHURCH for its anger and resentment over the very purpose Yeshuah came to die - that we as
In The Last Days, I will POUR OUT My Spirit Upon All Flesh!