Summary: God never promised an absence of distress. But He does promise the assuring presence of His Holy Spirit. All we have to do is obey God’s command to be filled with the Holy Spirit, who reside in us.
The Filling of the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit Part 3
Currently we are going through the message series, “The Holy Spirit.”
During this series, we are examining things that are related to the work of the Holy Spirit.
First week, we talked about “the person of the Holy Spirit.”
Second week, we talked about “the baptism of the Holy Spirit.”
And today, we will talk about “the filling of the Holy Spirit.”
I used to think that there were two kinds of people: The saved and the unsaved.
However, the Bible describes a third kind of people: The saved but unspiritual.
The spiritual person is Spirit-dependent, Spirit-directed, Spirit-dominated, and Spirit-empowered.
However, the unspiritual Christians say that they believe in Jesus but act like people who do not know Jesus.
In their speech, language, lifestyles, priorities, and personalities, they sound and look just like people who do not know Jesus.
They let God in to save them, but not change them.
The saved but unspiritual see salvation the way a farmer sees a hundred acres of untilled soil—lots of work.
“Church attendance, Bible reading, prayer, sin resistance—It is hard work!”
No wonder they are tired.
No wonder they lack joy.
No wonder they have thirsty hearts.
Nothing repels non-Christians more than gloomy, unspiritual Christians.
People who do not know God do not see any compelling reasons to believe in God.
And God does not want any of His children to live this way.
God wants us to live Spirit-dependent, Spirit-directed, Spirit-dominated, and Spirit-empowered lives.
It is time to be filled with the Holy Spirit.
As we talked last week, when we believe in Jesus, we are baptized by the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit comes into us and dwells in us.
But why do so many Christians live powerless lives?
Why are we so spiritually dry?
Why are we so tired and burdened?
Why can’t we love our spouse, our children, our parents?
Why can’t we control our temper or forgive ourselves?
Why are we so powerless?
God never promised an absence of distress.
But He does promise the assuring presence of His Holy Spirit.
All we have to do is obey God’s command to be filled with the Holy Spirit, who reside in us.
I. We must obey it cooperatively (v. 18).
Verse 18 says this.
Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit,
What happens when someone gets drunk on wine?
That person is controlled by the alcohol in his or her body.
They cannot speak coherently or walk straight.
When a person gets drunk on wine, that person is controlled by alcohol.
Just like that, when someone is filled with the Holy Spirt, that person is controlled by the Holy Spirit who is in that person.
This is why the verb “be filled” is written in a passive verb.
This means, “Let the Holy Spirit control you.”
The word “filled” means “controlled by.”
When I am filled with anger, I am controlled by anger.
When I am filled with jealousy, I am controlled by jealousy.
Just like this, when we are filled with the Holy Spirit, we will be controlled by the Holy Spirit, who is in us.
In other words, there is no ritual that we must do.
There is no special place that we must go.
We do not have to attend, revival meetings or retreats.
We do not have to be prayed over by some individuals.
Rather we must permit the Holy Spirit who dwells in us to fill us by yielding to Him.
The verb “be filled” has nothing to do with content or quantity.
However, some people think that the filling of the Holy Spirit is like filling the gas in a car.
When the gasoline gets low, then we go to gas station to fill it up.
And as we drive around and the gasoline goes low again, then we have to go to a gas station to fill in again.
Some people think that the filling of the Holy Spirit is similar to this.
We go to church and fill ourselves with the Holy Spirit, and then we go out to the world throughout the week.
And when the Holy Spirit gets low, then we have to come back to church to fill up with the Holy Spirit.
However, the filling of the Holy Spirit is not putting what is outside of us into us.
Rather it is letting the Holy Spirit, who is already in us, control us completely.
We must cooperate with the Holy Spirit and we must permit Him to control all areas of our lives.
If this is true, then why do so many Christians not live Holy Spirit-filled lives?
It is because some Christians do not give full control of their lives to the Holy Spirit who lives in them.