The Holy Spirit, God's Power In Your Life

Search the Word | Vol. 25 No. 6 | Oct-Nov 2015

“And suddenly there came a sound… as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting…. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit.” Acts 2:2, 4.

In the late 15th and early 16th centuries, mariners began attempting to sail around the world. Without fuel or even steam to power their engines, they put up their sails and waited for the wind.

Near the Equator, they feared the Doldrums, a literal place where the wind can be so calm that a ship and its crew might be stuck for days, consuming essential stores of fresh water and provisions. Their only hope was for a wind that could fill their sails and speed them onward. Eventually, the “doldrums” was used to describe a figurative state of inactivity or gloom.

In His famous sermon to Nicodemus, Jesus compared the Holy Spirit to the wind: “The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.” John 3:8.

He also promised His disciples that after He returned to heaven, He would send the Holy Spirit to empower their witness, “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto…the uttermost part of the earth.” Acts 1:8. The book of Acts records the fulfillment of this promise. As a mighty wind, the Spirit filled their spiritual sails, empowering them to circle the earth with the message of a crucified, risen, and some coming Savior. Gone was their fear and inactivity. In fact they were accused of turning the world upside down with their zeal. Acts 17:6.

We need our spiritual sails filled just as surely as those early Christians did. Let’s examine what the Bible says about receiving the Holy Spirit and the power He brings.

When you invite the Holy Spirit into your life, He fills you like a spiritual wind in your sails.

I. HE IS PART OF THE GODHEAD

1. Who are the three members of the Godhead and what is their relationship to one another? 1 John 5:7
2. Is the Holy Spirit a vague, ethereal force? Acts 5:3, 4

God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit (or Holy Ghost) all make up the Godhead. They are one in purpose and character, yet each is a distinct individual and each plays a distinct role in our salvation. “The Holy Spirit is Christ’s representative, but divested of the personality of humanity, and independent thereof!”1

II. HE CONSOLES AND INSTRUCTS

1. What is another description and role of the Holy Spirit? John 16:7; 14:26

“His work is to define and maintain the truth. He first dwells in the heart as the Spirit of truth, and thus He becomes the Comforter, There is comfort and peace in the truth, but no real peace or comfort can be found in falsehood”2

2. Into what does the Holy Spirit guide you? John 16:13
3. Who is truth? John 14:6
4. Who does the Holy Spirit glorify? John 16:14

The Holy Spirit reveals Jesus to our minds. “No man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.” 1 Corinthians 12:3. The Spirit leads us into a personal knowledge of Jesus Christ who is truth. Without the Holy Spirit we could not know Christ.

6. What is another one of His roles? Luke 12:12

III. HE SETS YOU FREE

1. What must take place in order to enter God’s kingdom? John 3:3, 5
2. Wherever the Holy Spirit is present, what does He bring? 2 Corinthians 3:17

The American Heritage Dictionary defines liberty as “the condition of being free from restriction.” But true freedom is being “made free from sin.” Romans 6:18

4. What character traits will be shown in a Spirit-filled life? Galatians 5:22, 23
5. How can you receive the great gift and power of the Holy Spirit? Luke 11:13
6. What other requirement must you meet to have the Holy Spirit? Acts 5:32

You must ask God for the Holy Spirit and be willing to obey whatever He shows you through God’s Word.

V. HE PREPARES YOU FOR HEAVEN

1. What invitation does the Holy Spirit give? Revelation 22:14, 17
2. How does He change our characters into the image of Jesus Christ? 2 Corinthians 3:18
3. What steps does He perform in developing Christian character? 1 Corinthians 6:11
4. What role does the Holy Spirit play in our prayers? Romans 8:26, 27
5. How are the deep things of the Word of God made plain? 1 Corinthians 2:10, 11

VI. HE HELPS YOU WITNESS FOR CHRIST

1. What is the main reason God fills people with His Spirit? Acts 4:31

God gives us the Holy Spirit to empower and embolden us to witness for Him!

2. What did the Holy Spirit do in cities during Paul’s day? Acts 20:23
3. How did the Holy Spirit minister after Jesus’ resurrection? Acts 1:2, 8

The Holy Spirit ministers and witnesses through people who have dedicated themselves fully to the Lord. By uniting our wills with His divine power, we become co-workers with God.

VII. HE GIVES SPIRITUAL GIFTS

1. How does the Holy Spirit use consecrated people in service for God? I Corinthians 12:8–11

His gifts are to be used for edifying church members.

3. For what purpose was Jesus Christ born? Matthew 1:21
4. Of what three things does the Spirit reprove or convict people? John 16:8–11
Freedom from sin comes through knowing Jesus Christ, the way, the truth and the life. “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32. What are the sins in your life that bind you? Drugs? Cigarettes? Liquor? Pornography? Anger? Sexual immorality? Pride? Selfishness? No matter what they are, the Holy Spirit can free you from every problem.

IV. HOW TO GET HIS POWER

1. Where does the Holy Spirit dwell? 1 Corinthians 6:19
2. What gives us the hope of glory? Colossians 1:27
What a wonderful thought—that Christ can dwell in us through His Spirit!
3. How do you know if you have the Holy Spirit’s power in your life? Matthew 7:20

VII. HE CAN BE REJECTED

1. What was the response of Christian leaders in Paul’s day to the Holy Spirit? Acts 7:51
2. Can you cause the Holy Spirit pain? Ephesians 4:30
3. What is the sin that Jesus will not forgive? Matthew 12:31, 32

Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is progressive resistance to truth, not one offence. By repeatedly resisting the impressions of the Holy Spirit, people eventually become hardened and unresponsive. But, if they have a nagging fear that they have blasphemed the Spirit, they probably have not, because fear shows the Spirit is still working on their hearts. As long as there is hope, the Holy Spirit never rejects any who desire His presence and power.

 

SUMMARY

The Holy Spirit is heaven’s greatest gift. Through Him we begin, maintain, and grow in our Christian experience. He convicts us of wrong, forgives us, and imparts power to do what is right and to witness. Communication with Him, through prayer and the Word, can receive this power.

COMMITMENT

Will you invite the Holy Spirit into your life right now?

 

REFERENCES

1. Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 669.

2. Ibid., p. 671.

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