Baptised in the Holy Spirit

Who Am I?

It is the Holy Spirit in us that makes us helpful to others. It is our imperfections (not sin) that make us relatable to others. Consider what the Apostle Paul wrote:

13 You know it was because of a bodily ailment that I preached the gospel to you at first, 14 and though my condition was a trial to you, you did not scorn or despise me, but received me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus.

Galatians 4:13-14

Moving on from the fourth chapter to the fifth chapter, Paul wrote:

If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.

Galatians 5:25

Who Am I?

It is God living in me that makes me valuable to others. Who am I that I would think for a moment that I can guard, encourage, deliver, bless, or in any way benefit someone else from my flesh? I can barely put my socks on in the morning. But when God lives in us, He not only will use us to affect change on the behalf of others, but He will make it clear that the glory that falls upon the ones to which we minister is from God alone.

It is clear that you and I do not possess gems of wisdom but only the sameness of others, things that all can relate to. We may need glasses to read the news or new tires for our car or to pass on a lunch get-to-gather because this month’s expenses are greater than expected. It is this comfort of commonality that people learn that we all put our pants on one leg at a time.

It is in our shared likeness with others that we avoid being off-putting and gain being relatable. And it is in the words of God that come from our lips that proclaim the Truth and Glory of God that feeds people, rescues people, and asks of them to change their direction.

38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 2:38

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Clouds In My Coffee

Clouds In My Coffee

I’ll bet you can’t remember who sang a song that has the phrase “clouds in my coffee.” – No fair Googling lyrics! I was listening to that song today, and the “clouds in my coffee” phrase, of course, caught my attention. I mean it says “coffee”; how could the song not be a hit.

I got to thinking about clouds in my coffee. I nearly always drink my coffee black. However, when I pour cream into my coffee, it does look like billowing clouds. That is until I stir it. Then the coffee and the cream are indistinguishable from each other. 

The Holy Spirit Does Disrupt Us

Just like cream clouds are disruptive to black coffee, so is the Holy Spirit when He comes into our lives. I think clouds in my coffee is a good analogy for receiving the Holy Spirit. When He first comes in, He does disrupt us. 

We all receive the Holy Spirit at the time we are saved. Suddenly, God is inside us and we are energized new Christians. We run around to all of our friends and tell them our good news and encourage them to accept Jesus. This usually severs those old friendships because we no longer have the same world-view or interests. 

People are often afraid to teach about the Holy Spirit, which is disappointing. There are some basics that we need to know. For example, when we talk about the Holy Spirit, we often use the Old English word “indwelt.” The definition of indwelt means to be permanently present. A Christian indwelt by the Spirit is indwelt by God. (1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19; Ephesians 2:22)

Hyper-Awareness

We become Christians because we become hyper-aware of the truth of the Gospel of Jesus and the wretched condition within us. That hyper-awareness is called “conviction,” and the Holy Spirit is the Person of God that does this for us so that we see the truth of the Gospel. (John 16:8–11)

The Holy Spirit unites believers with Jesus and places believers into the body of Christ; the body of Christ is the Church. The Holy Spirit also unites believers with Jesus in His death, enabling believers to live victoriously over sin. (1 Corinthians 12:13 15 Romans 6:1–10)

We receive the Holy Spirit at the moment of our rebirth. And the Holy Spirit sovereignly endows spiritual gifts or abilities for service to every believer. ( Romans 12; 1 Corinthians 12; Ephesians 4) However, there is more that God makes available to believers. If we become hungry for God, God will give more of Himself to us. The Bible says, “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you (James 4:8).

Recognize, the Holy Spirit of God, lives “in” every believer. However, it’s like that cream you pour into your coffee. You have a cloud of God in you, but God may not be in all of you. You may be holding on to things of the world or shutting God out because you want to be in control of your career, your lifestyle, your money.

God will give us more

However, when we ask for more of God, God will give us more of Himself through the Holy Spirit and stir us up. One of the things Jesus does is baptize with the Holy Spirit. We know this because John the Baptist testified that, “‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.'” (John 1:33)

With a greater fullness of God within a believer, the Holy Spirit guides and empowers the believer who yields to God and submits to God’s Word. (Romans 12: 1, 2; Ephesians 5:18; Colossians 3:16) When we meet these conditions, the believer lives in the power of the Holy Spirit and produces the fruit of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:16, 22, 23)

There are many aspects of salvation

See, that wasn’t so difficult. Of course, there are many aspects of salvation, sanctification, the works of the Holy Spirit, and so forth that often cause separation between believers. This is unfortunate.

It’s good to embrace the understanding that God has given us, but we should not shut out fellow believers that place a greater emphasis on other aspects of salvation. We should fellowship with all Christian believers. We are to be known by our love. But, we must not bring into the Church people that embrace heresies, doctrines not found as truth in the Bible.

Photo by Tyler Nix on Unsplash

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