Walking In The Spirit Pt 3
Six Signs of Spirit Filled Living
This past two weeks we have been talking about Walking In The Spirit. Our Key Scriptures have been…
We’ve talked about Power with a Purpose – Jesus said “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.”
We’ve talked about Power for Living – “And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. 4And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit…”
This morning I want to continue in this series looking at the early church and the power that the Holy Spirit gives us for living.
Look at Acts 2:37-47 with me and find there Six Signs of Spirit Filled Living.
When we are walking in the Spirit …
1) There is a Sanctified Hunger in our lives - v42 – These early Christians were devoting themselves to the things of God. There was a hunger in them that fed on Spiritual things. Jesus said “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be filled.” They were continually devoting themselves to spiritual things – Teaching, Fellowship, breaking of bread (communion), and prayer. These were things that they were hungry for. Paul draws a distinct contrast between those who are in Christ and those who are not in Philippians 3:18. “18For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ, 19whose end is destruction, whose god is their appetite, and whose glory is in their shame, who set their minds on earthly things.” When we are not walking filled with the Spirit our appetite is not for spiritual things – our hunger is for the twisted things of the world. The more our lives are controlled by the indwelling Spirit of God the more hungry we become for the things of God.
2) Powerful Presence – v43 – I want to focus on this sense of awe. Signs and wonders are wonderful things and I believe when we are immersed in the Spirit those things will flow out from our lives but the reality of the power in this early church is the Awe they felt for God. There seems to have been a continual amazement at the power of God to transform the world around them. Do you remember what it felt like when you first became a Christian? For me there was a constant sense of awe that God was so big and so good. That the God of the universe could love me was an extraordinary thing.
3) Intimate Fellowship – v44 – The fellowship of this early Church is extraordinary. They didn’t just worship together they cared about each other. They truly came to love each other even in the midst of their differences. *they spent time together, *they shared, *they cared. These are the signs of healthy faithful fellowship. They were not content to share space – they shared in each others lives. I believe we are a friendly church – the friendliest I know of – but we need to get deep with each other not just shallow smiles on Sunday morning.
4:32 – and the congregation of those who believed were of one heart and one soul
4:34 – for there was not a needy person among them
4) Real Worship – v46 – Day by day continuing with one mind in the Temple. These folks loved to worship. They loved to spend time in the presence of God through worship. They were hungry for the fellowship of the word, and worship. Today church has become one responsibility among many. When our lives are filled with the Spirit – worship is not work it’s what we live for. Worship in the Spirit is about want to – it’s exciting because you never know what God’s going to do next. Isaiah29:13 says “Because this people draw near with their words And honor Me with their lip service, But they remove their hearts far from Me, And their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote, Therefore behold, I will once again deal marvelously with this people, wondrously marvelous; And the wisdom of their wise men will perish, And the discernment of their discerning men will be concealed.”
5) Impacting Testimony – v47 – Having favor with all the people. The testimony of this church was making an impact on their community. The people in the community were being impacted by the power of their testimony. We should be a people that touch our world in a positive way. We live among a people who do not believe in Christ. But God is not interested in taking us out of the world. He is interested in protecting the integrity of our witness within the world we live. Nothing has done so much harm to the cause of Christ as casual Christianity. Lives in which mouths proclaim a belief that is never transferred into living. Countless people still live in darkness because they have no idea what the light really looks like. Jesus said to us “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” That is what was happening in this early church.
6) True Expansion – v47b – “And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved.” That is the true focus of the Christian life. That we should bear fruit unto righteousness. We have come to believe that Church is about us – well it is but only in the sense that this is a fueling station for the rest of life. This is to be a place of spiritual growth that propels us into a community that lies in darkness. Over the last several months I have talked with you a lot about living for something that’s worth dying for. Well seeing eternity bloom in the heart of another person is worth dying for.
5:14 – and all the more believers in the Lord, multitudes of men and women, were constantly added to their number…