What kind of gas person are you? Me- half tank, time to get gas. Matt is more like Kramer.
Some people treat their spiritual walk like Kramer- let’s see how far I can drive on empty.
Acts 2:1-13 – At Pentecost, the disciples now became ministers of the Spirit. They not only preached Christ crucified and resurrected, leading others to repentance and faith in Christ, but they also influenced converts to be filled with the Holy Spirit.
This baptism or “being filled” with the Holy Spirit is the key to the apostolic work in the NT
Three observable manifestations of the Spirit-
- Audible manifestation- sound of a rushing mighty wind
A prophetic sign that the Spirit was coming in power Acts 1:8 “You shall receive power after the Holy Spirit has come upon you”
John 3:8 “the wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone born of the Spirit”
- Visual manifestation- there appeared “cloven tongues like as of fire”
prophetic sign that the Spirit would empower them to be fiery, contagious witnesses
Acts 1:8 “you shall be witnesses unto me”
Pastor Steve preached on this- you shall BE a witness- your life will be a witness to the power of God to forgive sins and live a new, changed, redeemed life in Christ
Mark 16:17 “And these signs shall follow those who believe: In my name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover”
Everyone of these signs occurred in the recorded history of the early church: (I don’t need the following scriptures put up)
speaking in new tongues- Acts 2:4, 10:46, 19:6; 1 Cor 12:30
driving out demons- Acts 5:15-16; 16:18; 19:11-12
escaping death from snake bites- Acts 28:3-5
healing the sick- Acts 3:1-7; 8:7; 9:33-34; 14:8-10; 28:8-9
although drinking deadly poison is not mentioned in the NT, Eusebius, a historian of Christianity and scholar if the Biblical canon does record a written report from Papias (early second century) that “Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus” drank a deadly poison and was not harmed by it.
- Speech manifestation- “they began to speak with other tongues”
The other tongues were a variety of native languages understood by the different nations represented in the crowd
A prophetic sign that the witness of the church was to be universal
Acts 1:8 “unto the uttermost parts of the earth”
Be “filled”- from the Greek “pleo” the idea of plunging through water, to pass in a vessel;
to influence, supply, to fulfill, accomplish, full, furnish, verify- coincide with a prediction
(Please put up the following scriptures): Acts 4:8, 29, 31-33; 6:5; 7:55, 60; 8:17-19; 9:17-18, 27-29; 10:44-46; 11:22-24; 13:9-10; 13:52; 14:3; 19:6
SO we see everywhere someone was “filled” or “full of” the Holy Spirit, POWER was given and they spoke in tongues, or prophesied, spoke boldly and were fearless “preached freely, boldly and confidently” in Jesus name.
Scripture clearly teaches that we are to expect miraculous deeds and the power of the Spirit to be manifested as we preach the gospel of the kingdom of God.
These signs: tongues, prophecies, healing, casting out of demons, bold and fearless speech confirm:
-the gospel is genuine
-God’s kingdom has come to earth in power
-the living and risen Jesus is present with His people and working through them
This “being filled” with the power of the Holy Spirit is intended to continue with Christ’s churches until Jesus returns. This supernatural power was not restricted to this time period only
We are not only to preach the gospel of the kingdom and bring salvation to those who believe, but we are to demonstrate the power of the kingdom.
This is not for a special few- but ALL who believe.
The failure of this power and filling to not occur in the church today is NOT Christ’s failure to fill His followers, but our failure to preach the entire Word of God, to BELIEVE that God will do what He said He would do and to operate in FAITH and not in fear.
- Preach the whole council of the Word of God.
Amos 8:11 “Behold the days are coming,” says the Lord God, “That I will send a famine on the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, But of hearing the words of the Lord.”
Ps and I have been a lot of places in the US and there is a severe famine of the Word of God.
We are preaching that here- but YOU also have a personal responsibility to read, meditate on, devour, put in your heart, be changed by the Word of God.
EX: this weekend I stayed with some lovely people from a Assembly of God church in Lomita Ca. Maria and Robert. Robert was ministering at a man’s breakfast Saturday morning and asked a room of about 45 men how many read their Bibles. About 15 raised their hands. Then he asked how many read daily, only 5.
The Lord said “My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge” Hosea 4:6
Knowledge of the Word of God.
- A FULL belief that God’s Word is the absolute truth.
God will do what He said He would do.
People read the Word and say, “well that was for them, that’s not for me”
“It has never happened to me, so I don’t believe it”
Jesus could not do many miracles in His hometown because of their unbelief.
One of the biggest problems with the children of Israel was not that they didn’t believe IN God- they didn’t believe God.
4 Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it. 2 For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them,[a] not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.3 For we who have believed do enter that rest, as He has said:“So I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest,’”[b] although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. 4 For He has spoken in a certain place of the seventh day in this way: “And God rested on the seventh day from all His works”; [c] 5 and again in this place: “They shall not enter My rest.”[d] 6 Since therefore it remains that some must enter it, and those to whom it was first preached did not enter because of disbelief (disobedience)
- Some are full of fear.
I believe we don’t experience the fullness of the Spirit because people are afraid of the supernatural, spiritual things of God.
Their are some who might actually believe, but they are afraid to step out in faith to operate in the power of the Spirit.
Here’s a tip- it’s not on you to heal, it’s on God. The healing is on HIM, your job is to step out in faith and be the willing vessel to be used.
Don’t ask, “what if they don’t get healed”, but ask, “what if they do get healed”
I know it’s uncomfortable-
Ex: guy in Rite Aid
A gift never used does not do anyone any good.
A prophecy not shared does not edify
hands not laid on the sick brings no healing
The crowd is a courage killer
Discernment is needed-
Ex: a person I knew struggling with a “mental disorder”, the Lord told me it was demonic
1 in 5 adults in the US experience mental illness
I’m not saying that ALL mental illness is demonic, but there is a lot that is. We want to just put people on pills as opposed to seeking the Lord’s discernment.
Some people just don’t care. They don’t want to go deeper. They think their good just how they are. They have no concern for their own spiritual development, nor the spiritual development of others.
We are so comfortable in America, we don’t need His power.
There are many third world countries experiencing the tangible manifestation of the healing power of the Lord. It is because they have no where else to go.
We run to the doctor for everything. We rely on physicians, health care, counselors, therapists and we are incredibly self-reliant.
We will only run to the Lord as a last resort.
Instead of laying hands on people for healing, to drive out demons, or for any other thing; we tell people to go see a dr or counselor and we will “pray” for you to get better.
WHERE is the power of the Spirit?
Why isn’t He manifested like He was in the book of Acts?
It is not God’s fault- the fault lies with us.
We need to stay FULL of the Spirit if we are going to push back the darkness.