Summary: One of the most valuable lessons the child of God can learn is that of living in moment by moment submission and obedience to the indwelling Holy Spirit of God. To do otherwise is to live outside the will of God, and results in an aimless life for the Chr

Spirit-Filled Living

Text: Eph.5: 18-19; Gal.5: 16-17

Intro: Too often we Baptist tend to shy away from the term “Spirit-filled.” This is perhaps largely due to some of the wild and weird things perpetrated and practiced under the guise of being filled with the Holy Spirit, such as “taking up serpents,” “speaking in tongues” (glossolalia), the utterance of “prophesies,” or being “slain in the Spirit.” While some of these practices have their basis in Scripture, they are usually practiced outside their proper scriptural context. Other practices, such as being “slain in the Spirit” simply have no real scriptural basis at all that I can find. But if you think some of those things are strange, listen to some of the stuff that is being mentioned in some churches these days. Dr. J. Mike Minnix relates the following:

It seems that some churches are hearing testimonies from people who report that they have been visited by and had conversations with dead relatives. When other church members state that talking to the dead is evil, the testifiers state that Jesus was visited by the dead on the Mount of Transfiguration, so how can it be wrong? What the false testimonies avoid to mention is that Jesus was in Heaven with those people before He came here to be born of Mary and die for our sins!


Some church members are making wild claims about angels dropping gold dust on them or laying precious gems at their feet. Though all Christians know that angels exist and carry out ministries at God’s command, it is over the top to think that angels are visiting Christians to sprinkle gold dust on them. When Jesus was tempted by Satan after His 40-day fast, angels attended our Lord. We aren’t told exactly how the angels assisted Jesus after the temptation, but you can be sure that it wasn’t by sprinkling gold dust on Him or by dropping a few jewels at His feet!1

Folks, things like what I’ve just read to you, have nothing to do with the work of the Holy Spirit of God. They are the deceptive works of Satan, geared to get people sidetracked and into error. However, the Holy Spirit and His ministry within the child of God are legitimate, and we are commanded by God to “…be filled with the Spirit” (Eph.5: 18b). God further commands His children to “…Walk in the Spirit…” (Gal.5: 16a). In other words, we are to “…let the Holy Spirit guide…”2 our lives, by being ever in submission to Him. This series of messages will hopefully give some insight into this truth.

Theme: The Bible instructs us concerning…


A. The Command To Be Filled With The Spirit.

Eph.5: 18 “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;”

NOTE: [1] The word “excess” in verse 18, literally means, “unsavingness.”3 The idea here is that drunkenness “…has nothing of a saving quality about it, but rather a destructive one.”4

[2] Paul said that there are no redeeming qualities in being drunk and out of control. Alcohol has the potential for putting one “out of control.” On the other hand, being “filled with” (“controlled by”5) the Spirit brings one under control. By the way, the words “be filled” carry the idea of, “Be constantly, moment by moment, being controlled by the Spirit.”6

[3] One of two things is true of every person in this room today: You are either filled with the Spirit, or you are filled with self. Which is it with you?

D.L. Moody said, “I believe firmly that the moment our hearts are emptied of pride and selfishness and ambition and everything that is contrary to God’s law, the Holy Spirit will fill every corner of our hearts. But if we are full of pride and conceit and ambition and the world, there is no room for the Spirit of God. We must be emptied before we can be filled.”7

B. The Contrast Between Being Filled With The Spirit And Being Baptized By The Spirit.

1. Being filled with the Spirit is being under His control.

Acts 4: 31 “And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

32 And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.

33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.”

NOTE: The question is not, “Do you have the Holy Spirit?” but “Does the Holy Spirit have you?” Only by being under the Spirit’s control can the child of God hope to be effective for Christ.

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