From My Heart, June 2017

On June 4 we will celebrate Pentecost. After his resurrection and 10 days prior to Pentecost, Jesus told his disciples they would be baptized in the Holy Spirit (Acts 1.4). He defined the baptism of the Holy Spirit by saying, “you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you and you will be my witnesses…” (Acts 1.8).
These are Jesus’ last recorded words on earth. We have typically emphasized the Great Commission as Jesus’ last statement. But, if we spread the gospel without the power of the Holy Spirit, we have a proposition only faith (that is, a faith based upon stated beliefs). Proposition is critical but you must have proposition with power…the Word and the Spirit.
Without the power of the Holy Spirit, the gospel message and Christian life are only superior to other faiths by degrees, but with the power of the Holy Spirit they stand in a league all to themselves.
Christian spokesman, Lou Engle, writes: “A leader in the body of Christ was watching an Islamic TV program in the Middle East, in which the Muslim cleric was describing the worldwide missionary expansion of Islam. Suddenly the cleric despaired saying, ‘But we have lost Africa! The Christians are healing the sick, raising the dead, and multiplying bread. We can’t compete with this.’ ”
Make no mistake, at the moment of conversion we were sealed with Spirit (Eph.1.13-14) and baptized by Him (1 Cor.12.13). But, I do not believe the regenerating, uniting and sealing work of the Holy Spirit of 1 Cor.12 and Eph. 1 is the same as the empowering work of Acts 1.8! Yes, we received the Holy Spirit at conversion, but there is still more of Him available to the believer. Praise the Lord!
Let us this Pentecost season seek the fullness of the Holy Spirit for the sake of the gospel!
Pastor Scott