Summary: Learning how exciting life can be when we experience the Holy Spirit.
EXPERIENCE THE HOLY SPIRIT
Allow me to begin this series of teachings about the Holy Spirit by saying right up front – this is a teaching for the heart much more than for the head. Now I am not asking you or saying to you that you won’t need to think or to leave your intelligence at home – but this series on the Holy Spirit is to get you to travel beyond the cognitive (i.e. “thinking”) level and enter into the journey on a deep personal, intimate level.
Listen, the Spirit of God, was not sent simply to be studied. He was sent to be experienced, and the church by-and-large, have stopped short of God’s intended purpose when we merely discuss and debate the presence of the Holy Spirit – rather than exulting Him and entering into a close intimate relationship with Him.
Look in your Bible at Matthew 3:16 (quickview) Mark 1:10 (quickview) Luke 3:22 (quickview) Luke 4:18 (quickview) John 1:32-33 (quickview) Acts 2:33 (quickview) Acts 10:36-38 (quickview)
Listen, no one would argue or deny that Jesus always had the Holy Spirit within Him. The Bible teaches us that He was conceived of or by the Holy Spirit…yet we just read from all four gospels and the Book of Acts that Jesus received an anointing of power, an equipping with power. And I say to you tonight, that if Jesus received such a blessing, who are we to resist the need in our own lives today?
Let me get right to the core of this matter. The church today is suffering from ADD, “Anointing Deficit Disorder.” Most Christian sensethat something is missing, we lack joy, confidence, and the power of the early church. Today, we see and hear about “burnout” and being “empty.” And the reason I suggest to you that you maybe burnout or empty is because like the so many Christians in churches all over the world today – you are afraid to fully experience the Spirit of God in your life!
As we shall see,in the Scriptures,the Holy Spirit is always mysteriously (not spooky) but mysteriously on the move…setting hearts on fire with power and passion for God. Spooky is of the devil, mysterious is of God because He will reveal His mysteries to us – through the Holy Spirit. And in the past, many Christians, including myself, have been satisfied to explain, intellectually the Holy Spirit. Now, I am no longer afraid of “going off the deep end” – and I hope that your heart will resist playing it save and take this journey with me as we experience the Holy Spirit in a fresh and powerful way.
God has sent His Spirit to lead us into all truth. And if your innermost being is hungry for more and you are eager to experience all the blessings God has in store for you, then its time for you to fully embrace the Spirit of God.
I. THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
Let me quickly say – this is the key to you growing deeper and experiencing the person of the Holy Spirit. There are many names for this experience and people often debate and argue over terminology until they literally render the Holy Spirit as a by-stander to their debates, when He desires to be the leader of their lives.
The Baptism, the filling, the sealing, the anointing, or whatever you want to call it…the fact is that without the fullness of His power you cannot accomplish what God wants you to do and you cannot consistently live the abundant life that belongs to you. Listen, we need to stop getting hung up on words. Maybe you feel uncomfortable – but let me put your mind at ease, whether you call it “soda” or “pop” or “soft drink” you still want the same thing that can quench your thirst. It makes no difference whether you say “a hot dog” or “a Coney” or “a wiener” or “a weenie” – it still tastes the same when you put the mustard on it.