Summary: A divine encounter is an event played out on the earth, but obviously it is planned in heaven.
A DIVINE ENCOUNTER
I want to talk to you about how it is possible for you to experience a divine encounter. A divine encounter is an event played out on the earth, but obviously it is planned in heaven. When it is all over you understand that, though it played out in an earthly experience, it was an event which was obviously planned by God in heaven. You were involved in it. You became a part of this divine encounter.
There are many of them recorded for us in the book of Acts. I guess the favorite of all of them is the one I’m going to share with you today. It’s the account of how Philip had a divine encounter with a man who was known as the Ethiopian eunuch. Through that divine
encounter a lost person was won to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now there are three imperatives needed in our life if we are going to experience a divine encounter.
I. BE INCLINED FOR THE CALL OF THE SPIRIT
Must be listening for the Holy Spirit. Philip had ears to hear the Lord. Acts 8:26 says, "And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert."
Acts 8:29 says, "Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot."
A man was walking down a busy New York sidewalk with a companion. Buses and trucks were roaring by on the street, taxis were honking, the roar of a jack-hammer could be heard in the distance. Suddenly he stopped and said, "Do you hear the cricket?" His companion gaped at him in astonishment. The man, however, walked over to a potted shrub and parted the leaves. Sure enough -- there among the branches was a little cricket. Continuing down the sidewalk, his companion asked him, "How could you possibly have heard the cricket in all this noise?" "Because I listened for it," said the man. "Here, let me demonstrate." Having said that, he reached into his pocket for a handful of coins and let them all to the sidewalk. At the sound of the dropping/rolling coins every head within a block swivelled around. "See," he said, "it depends on what you are listening for."
Are you sensitive to the call of the Spirit? Are you listening for His voice?
The story is told of Franklin Roosevelt, who often endured long receiving lines at the White House. He complained that no one really paid any attention to what was said. One day, during a reception, he decided to try an experiment. To each person who passed down the line and shook his hand, he murmured, "I murdered my grandmother this morning." The guests responded with phrases like, "Marvelous! Keep up the good work. We are proud of you. God bless you, sir." It was not till the end of the line, while greeting the ambassador from Bolivia, that his words were actually heard. Confound, the ambassador leaned over and whispered, "I’m sure she had it coming." I wonder how many never pay attention the voice of the Holy Spirit.
A. Personal call
B. Pointed call
C. Purposeful call
Philip was in the middle of a revival in Samaria, and God called him because his heart was tender enough to hear God. Now, Philip didn’t know anything about God’s plan, because God’s ways are often unknown. God just said, "Arise and go." And Philip got up and went.
Would you do that?
Christians do not need an explanation from God when He calls. Instead, we need to say, "God, I’ll do it. Wherever You want me to go. Whatever You want me to do. If You explain it, fine. If you don’t, that’s fine, too. But God I’m going to do it."
Now, I want to caution you about this call. You need to make sure what you hear isn’t an idea you have hatched. It is just as bad to run ahead of God as it is to run behind God, but when you are close enough to God to hear Him speak, you need to obey.
II. BE INSISTENT UPON THE CAUSE OF THE SPIRIT
Acts 8:35 says, "Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus."
Did you know that the Holy Spirit is very single-minded? He has but one cause. John 15:26 tells us what that is. Jesus said, "But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of Me.”
A. The supreme ministry of the Holy Spirit is to exalt the Son of God.