Summary: Everyone responds to the gospel, and this message detail five different ways people will respond to the gospel.
“How People Respond to the Gospel”
By Pastor Donny Granberry
After spending a short time in Antioch, Paul begins his third missionary journey for the purpose of encouraging the disciples in the churches he previously founded.
On this missionary trip, we will discover different ways that people respond to the gospel.
I. Some Become Spirit Filled
Acts 19:1-7 NIV
While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2 and asked them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?" They answered, "No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit."
3 So Paul asked, "Then what baptism did you receive?" "John’s baptism," they replied.
4 Paul said, "John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus." 5 On hearing this, they were baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. 7 There were about twelve men in all.
When Paul arrives in Ephesus, he comes in contact with some disciples who “have not even heard if there is a Holy Spirit.”
They had only known of John’s baptism, which was a water baptism, so Paul explains the Gospel to them.
Paul then lays hands on them and they receive the Holy Spirit and began speaking in other tongues and prophesying.
There are many believers in churches today who have not received the infilling of the Holy Spirit because they are not being given the whole Gospel, or they are taught an incorrect gospel.
It is not the responsibility of the Pastor, Teacher, Prophet, Evangelists, or Apostles to reveal truth, it is our responsibility to preach the undiluted word of God and the Holy Spirit will reveal truth.
If you want a Pentecostal church, then there must be a presentation of the person of the Holy Spirit.
No Pentecostal Pulpit will always generate No Pentecostal Pew.
The people of Ephesus heard the gospel, they believed the gospel, and they received the gift of the gospel.
Too many today desire to discard the third person of the Godhead.
They will say, the day of tongues is over.
It is no longer needed or desired in the church.
Is the Father still a valid person in of the Godhead?
Is Jesus still a valid person of the Godhead?
That being so, we must also recognize that the Holy Spirit is also a valid person of the Godhead.
If you never put gas in your car, it will not run.
If no-one ever fishes, you will never enjoy fish.
If the person of the Holy Spirit is never welcomed in the church, the church will never be what God designed it to be.
One way people respond to the Gospel is by becoming Spirit Filled, a way people respond to the Gospel is …
II. Some Become Hardened
Acts 19:8-10 NIV
Paul entered the synagogue and spoke boldly there for three months, arguing persuasively about the kingdom of God. 9 But some of them became obstinate; they refused to believe and publicly maligned the Way. So Paul left them. He took the disciples with him and had discussions daily in the lecture hall of Tyrannus. 10 This went on for two years, so that all the Jews and Greeks who lived in the province of Asia heard the word of the Lord.
While in Ephesus, Paul continues what has become a way of life to him, preaching.
After 3 months of hearing Paul’s preaching, some on his listeners become obstinate (hardened).
Hebrews 4:7b NIV
"Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts."
There are far too many today who have heard the word of the Lord, but have hardened their hearts.
Every time the word of God is taught or preached and we fail to respond, our hearts become a little more hardened.
The messages become condescending, boring; it seems as though they are always aiming at me, I feel like the only rabbit in the shooting gallery.
To move from Religion to relationship we must have receptive hearts.
Some respond to the gospel by being “Spirit Filled,” some by becoming hardened, and …
III. Some Become Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing
During Paul’s ministry at Ephesus, extraordinary miracles occur.
God gave Paul such an anointing that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were used to bring forth miracles.
God used these miracles to authenticate Paul’s ministry, as He did with Moses, Christ, and the apostles.
The book of Acts covers about 30 years and it is a time of transition for the church.