Summary: Today's sermon is a part of our series on "The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit." In this message we look at the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and how, through the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, we can have a fresh flow of God in our lives

The Holy Spirit

Living in the Fullness

Acts 8:9-25

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Does the fire of God’s glory burn within you, or has that fire begun to wane?

For the majority of us the answer would be more toward the fire of God’s glory isn’t where it ought to be. Now, this is not a condemnation, because the Bible states there is no more condemnation for those who are believers in Jesus Christ (Romans 8:1).

We also need to understand what our maxim states, that we are mighty men or women of God, because we’re greater in the eyes of God than we are in our own eyes. And while our hearts may condemn us, God is greater than our hearts and knows what truly lies within. (See Judges 6:11-16; 1 John 3:20)

Here’s the point, when we come to church and hear a message that applies directly to our lives, we generally get all pumped up and excited; ready to put into practice the principles we’ve learned. But the truth is, by the time we get home and turn on the television the desire and fire are gone.

Does this describe any of us? We come to Sunday worship service and write the answers in the notes provided in the bulletin determined to put them into practice. But we soon find ourselves unable to. Maybe we’ve felt uncomfortable because we don’t want to stand out. Maybe we feel like we can’t, or maybe there’s just too much on our plate at the present time.

And in the end we find ourselves frustrated and disappointed in our Christian walk.

The reason may be because I haven’t done my job. You see, I may have given you all the right information, all the steps and principles you need to be successful in your Christian life. But I may have missed the mark by not getting you connected to the fullness of what it means to be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Without the fullness of the Holy Spirit operating in our lives all of these steps and principles won’t work. What’s happening is that we are trying to put into practice spiritual principles by using natural techniques.

I find this a lot in people who have or are still are going through counseling. They know all the terminology, they can describe themselves to the tee, and they know most if not all the techniques used.

But none of it is working for them, and that’s because they’re trying to change themselves from the outside in. Transformation, however, doesn’t work that way, it is an inside out work. It begins with a living loving relationship with Jesus Christ, and then it’s being filled with the fullness of the Holy Spirit.

Let me ask you a question: Are you open to the spirit of enthusiasm? Now, I’m not talking about some emotional display or outburst. The word, enthusiasm comes from two Greek words, “En,” or “in,” and “Theos,” which is the word for God. And so enthusiasm means, “In God.”

Literally it means to be inspired and possessed by God. Someone who is enthusiastic is a person that is so filled with God that their behavior is dominated by God. They become excited and eager to be a part of all that the Holy Spirit is and open to be filled by Him.

It is such enthusiasm Paul was trying to encourage Timothy to covet and exhibit.

“That is why I would remind you to stir up (rekindle the ember of, fan the flame of, and keep burning) the (gracious) gift of God, [the inner fire] that is in you by the means of the laying on of my hands.” (2 Timothy 1:6 Amplified)

From our text this morning in Acts chapter 8, we are given the key to living in the fullness, and what it means to be open to the spirit of enthusiasm.

The story surrounds Phillip, one of the deacons of the first church. After Stephen was martyred for his faith, Phillip went into the land of Samaria to share the good news. And from His witness many come into the faith, including one Simon the Sorcerer.

The story is a vivid contrast between what is a true filling of the Holy Spirit, and from what is a false filling. It is a contrast between the spirit of true enthusiasm and of false enthusiasm. More literally it is a contrast between being filled with or possessed by the spirit of this world, or being filled with and possessed by the Holy Spirit.

So, let’s take a moment and look at this.

Read Acts 8:9-11

Simon was a man of great prominence in Samaria, and received his notoriety through the practice of sorcery. Now it’s important to realize that Satan has verifiable powers, but nothing compared to the power of God.

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