Summary: Discovering the Champion in You Part 3. God doesn’t want us to "vacation" in His power, but live in it everyday. This message focuses on the power of the Holy Spirit that empowers every born again believer.
For the past few weeks we have been looking at a short series entitled, “Discovering the Champion in You.” I believe that all of God’s children are destined to be champions of the faith. Often times we don’t feel like we are, but the reality is, God has declared us more than conquerors in Christ Jesus by His doing.
We started off our series with a message entitled, “Maintaining a Winning Attitude”. We discovered that what separates a chump from a champion is attitude. And in order to maintain that winning attitude we need practice the “praise principle”, right praying, right thinking and right living.
Last week we said that in order to become a champion we needed to get into shape. We needed to become F.A.T. Christians. Not lazy and overweight, but faithful, available and teachable.
This morning we will continue our series with a message entitled, “Living in the Power Zone”.
ILLUS: In 1965 the Florida Gators football team was mediocre at best. Struggling in the heat and humidity of the deep south, the players were fighting a tougher opponent within themselves than they had ever fought on the gridiron – they had great difficulty finishing the game in champion-like form because they were dehydrated. So a team of University doctors developed a carbohydrate-electrolyte beverage that kept the team properly nourished throughout the game. Before the eyes of thousands of fans, the team’s second half performance improved and in 1967 won the Orange Bowl. As you may know this beverage is on every sideline around the globe keeping athletes performing at their best. Of course, this beverage is known as Gatorade.
Now you might be asking yourself, what does Gatorade have to do with living out my faith in Christ? The answer is simple. You see, Gatorade gave the Florida Gators an edge over their opponents – they had the advantage.
Christians have an advantage to living out the faith in champion-like fashion. What is it? It’s more like Who is it? He’s the Holy Spirit.
Gatorade asks athletes – is it in you? I’m asking you today – is the Holy Spirit in you? Are you living in the Power Zone of the Holy Spirit?
When I talk about the Power Zone, I’m talking about living in the empowerment of the Holy Spirit resurrection power – being Spirit-filled and fire baptized.
But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” – Acts 1:8
GAINING A BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
But in order to live in the Power Zone we must first understand Who the Holy Spirit is and why God wants us to live and operate in the Power of His Might.
Many Christians today don’t acknowledge the Holy Spirit, much less live a life that is empowered by Him. The Holy Spirit has become a taboo topic within the church. We’d rather talk about a myriad of other things other than Spiritual Gifts, supernatural wonder working power and the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
The modern day Church has substituted the Holy Spirit for cappuccino machines and movie screens. In some churches, they have removed the alters where people would come and seek God’s forgiveness and empowerment in order to be less “churchy” and seeker sensitive. Why is this? It’s not that movie screens and things are bad, but I firmly believe that what the church is morphing into grieves the heart of God. The church is becoming a place where people can become entertained in Jesus name.
We need to realize that the Holy Spirit is the power behind the church today.
He was promised by God to empower all who would believe.
"And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams, Your young men shall see visions. And also on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days.” – Joel 2:28-29
This is also the passage that Peter preached at Pentecost. But the bottom line is that God’s promises are not broken. God promised us His Spirit to live and empower us. This empowerment, this infilling, this baptism and the gifts of the Spirit did not die out with the Apostles. If it had, then God’s promise would have been broken.
Jesus didn’t want just any old believer walking the streets of Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the uttermost ends of the earth spreading the Gospel. He specifically told the disciples to wait in Jerusalem for the empowerment of the Holy Spirit.
“Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high." – Luke 29:49