God loves us! He demonstrates His incalculable love for us with his incredible mercy as well as with the bestowal of his quickening Spirit who consistently exhorts us with the truth of the Word.
We are told to “pursue love and desire spiritual gifts” (1 Corinthians 14:1a). Making sure we have this right, love is what we pursue and gifts are what we desire. Let’s talk for a moment about the most beautiful thing, the most sought after thing, the most fulfilling thing, and the thing we were divinely created most to pursue…God’s love. The world offers its own kind of love-substitute which leads us down all sorts of (usually sinful) rabbit trails in hopes of finding the thing we seek most ~ love. God’s love is the only kind of love that truly satisfies and fulfills. When we pursue this agape love (God’s love), we then desire spiritual gifts in order to serve Him and His children. Let’s look at some verses that point us towards receiving God’s fulfilling Spirit that the Lord says we require.
“God has resurrected this Jesus. We are all witnesses of this. Therefore, since He has been exalted to the right hand of God and has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit, He has poured out what you both see and hear. Therefore let all the house of Israel know with certainty that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah! When they heard this, they came under deep conviction and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles: Brothers, what must we do? Repent, Peter said to them, and be baptized, each of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children, and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call. And with many other words he testified and strongly urged them, saying, Be saved from this corrupt generation! So those who accepted his message were baptized, and that day about 3,000 people were added to them. And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to the prayers.” Acts 2:32-42
Did you know the Holy Spirit of Almighty God is a gift? In our meeting we are speaking about Spiritual gifts because we already have the Spirit. But let’s not forget that this astounding gift from God himself comes about before we can expect to fully function in a Spiritual gift. As we operate in our Spiritual gifting, we draw from and completely rely upon the Spirit of Almighty God in order to function full-throttle in our gifting.
~To receive the Holy Spirit, God’s word must first be heard and believed (Acts 11:17). Receiving the spoken word brings conviction and power. Once the word is received, we then open ourselves up to the Holy Spirit which the Lord uses to guide and empower us.
~We repent and are baptized in the name of Jesus Christ (as stated above) and pray to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit which baptizes (as overwhelming as water baptism) our souls and bodies with refreshing new life and renewing power. Being baptized in the Spirit (Acts 1:5, 11:16) implies an immersion in the life of the Spirit (as does being baptized in water also implies an immersion).
~The New Testament does not indicate a testimony when someone receives the Holy Spirit and it strictly is a doctrinal event. It does not suggest that a person may not even recognize the Spirit in them. It instead reveals an experience. In other words, receiving the Spirit is not an idea that sits in our head but instead is a power that transforms our heart and brings a confident boldness (Acts 1:5, 8). This boldness causes us to magnify God (Acts 10:46). The Spirit will help us to stop magnifying self, will give us a powerful desire to obey God daily, and will enable us to serve Him with the gifts He provides.
~In Acts, the apostles teach the baptism is a consequence of faith not a subconscious cause of faith.
Have you repented, had faith in Christ, been baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, opened yourself to the power of his Spirit, and received?
“But whoever drinks from the water that I will give him will never get thirsty again — ever! In fact, the water I will give him will become a well of water springing up within him for eternal life.” John 4:14
DIVAs, expect the depth of the internal supply of the Spirit to furnish you with the immediate result of eternal life (not just a future result to be realized later). This inward fountain that bubbles up causes enough internal satisfaction to last into eternity. Are you ‘drawing’ from this source continually? As our experiences have shown us, as we draw from other wells they will eventually run dry. They will either dry up on their own or their ability to quench our thirst will dissipate. When this occurs, all we are left with is to seek different wells to draw from. Jesus gives us the Spirit and the depth of the Spirit becomes a well within us. Draw from this fountain of the Spirit! If you do it continually, Jesus promises you will never thirst again for things that do not ultimately satisfy. Hallelujah!
In His grace,