Summary: Through the power of the Holy Spirit, you can accomplish great things for God
The Power inside You
Main Text: Acts 2:1-4
Introduction: God’s fullness and power is like pulling the trigger-which only the Holy Spirit can do. God is asking you to be expectant today! Prepare your spirit soul and body as He is ready to pour His spirit upon you and endue you with power from on high for His glory.
Functions of the Holy Spirit
In the Old Testament, there are two primary functions of the Holy Spirit: Power and Purification. Power is the ability to do or act; capability of doing or accomplishing something. However, in the OT, the exercise of this power was limited to select individuals and for a relatively brief period of time for a specific purpose (such as prophesy, deliverance, conquest, etc). See Judges 14:19, 15:14 and 2 Chronicles 20:14. The OT looked forward to a time when the Messiah would bring about a new age when all would receive be empowered to do God’s work. (Joel 2:28-32). Thank God we’re in that age today. The purpose of the Holy Spirit for purification could be illustrated by how, in Ezekiel 36:25-27, Prophet Ezekiel described a new age where God would transform the hearts of His people by His own Spirit living in each individual. This is the new age when we as individuals and as a body of Christ has become the temple of the Holy Spirit 1 Corinthians 6:19
The events of the day of Pentecost ushered in this new era (Acts 2: 1-4) as confirmed by different Bible teachings of the Holy Spirit. Paul’s teachings on the Holy Spirit largely emphasised the Spirit’s inner-transforming and purifying work, leading to salvation (1 Corinthians 12:13) while Luke emphasised the Spirit’s role in empowering the believer for service. (Luke 24:49). The book of Acts uses several expressions to describe the baptism in the Holy Spirit: Baptised in the Spirit, Spirit coming, or falling, upon, Spirit poured out, Promise of the Father, Gift of the Spirit, Receiving the Spirit, Filled with the Spirit. So whether it was Paul, Luke or Jesus talking about the Holy Spirit, the central theme that ran through all their teachings was the power of the third person of the Trinity.
So, why was the early church able to effectively harvest the power of the Holy Spirit?
1. Whole-hearted devotion
There can be no real power with half-heartedness. God does not bless half-hearted service, or partial obedience. Jesus says love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind. There is no room for half heatedness. If we limit God in our lives, His power will not be available to us in its fullness. In other words, when we tell God that He can only have so much of our lives, or he can only go into certain areas of our hearts, we will be unable to have all of him. Don’t limit God in your life, church, in your relationships. Whole-hearted devotion to God will result in His Work having priority and this in turn makes us command the fullness of His power.
2. Unity among Believers Acts 1:14, 2:1
The disciples were all in one accord. 100, not 99 per cent being aware that disunity takes the power of God away. Satan tries hard, and oftentimes succeeds in bringing disharmony in the church. In Mark 5: 9-10 where Jesus met the man with unclean spirit living in tombs, the man who could not be bound, who tore chains from his hands and legs, Jesus asked his name and he said his name was Legion, “for we are many.” Glory be to God! A legion is a division of the Roman army, usually comprising 3000 to 6000 soldiers. And soldiers are always disciplined, even unto death; they are united in purpose and action. This tells me that demons are always united, thinking alive, planning the same way, working in one accord and doing things the same way! Unfortunately, the Body of Christ today is so fragmented, Baptists are fighting against Protestants, Anglicans can’t see eye to eye with Presbyterians, Methodists are arguing with Evangelicals! How good and pleasant it is for the brethren to dwell together in unity (Psalm 133:1)
3. Prioritising the Word of God Ac 1:16, 2:15-36, 42
In Peter’s sermon on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2), he referred to different passages in the scriptures and it brought about the convicting power of the Holy Spirit and people got saved. Without the Word, there is no power. Eph 5:25 tells us that Christ gave Himself for the church to make it holy by the washing of the Word and the early church taught and preached the undiluted Word of God, with the clear message of salvation, unlike what is happening in many churches today where what comes from the pulpit is has more affinity with the word of Satan than the Word of God!