Listen to the message
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Series: Finished Works, Holy Spirit
Sun am 8 September 2013 – Kobus Swart
(Ps. 119:130); 1 John 1:1-4; (John 6:63); Acts 2:1-4; (John 16:7); (John 20:19-23);
Rom. 8:9; 1 Thess. 1:5-8; 1 Thess. 2:13; Gal. 3:2-3; (Rom. 14:17)
What do we experience sitting under the word Sunday after Sunday? Does the Holy Spirit feature or do we just collect principles and knowledge? Are we allowing the Holy Spirit entrance? The entrance of His word gives light (Ps. 119:130). It goes beyond receiving it only mentally.
Without the Holy Spirit, anything else you might present as evidence to the world, will be meaningless. The Holy Spirit was never meant to be locked into a movement, specific group or church meetings. The Holy Spirit is God’s spirit. When the Spirit of God was vibrating on the waters; that was the spirit of God, the God who is Spirit, the ‘ruach’ of God. Is He welcome in our corporate gatherings even to disrupt the service if necessary? Can He come and do what He wants to do, or do we just push ahead with our program? Would the Holy Spirit feel welcome in our lives and daily routine? Are the relationships in this household accommodating the Holy Spirit? Do we have genuine Holy Spirit relationships forming across the cultural divides or do we have exclusive groups and cliques?
What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the Word of Life— and the life was manifested, and we have seen and testify and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was manifested to us— what we have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ. These things we write, so that our joy may be made complete (1 John 1:1-4). John, who wrote this, was a man who had a true encounter with God. An encounter changes and impacts you and leaves you different. People who are truly impacted, experience an encounter with the Holy Spirit in the Word (John 6:63) and cannot go to the work place and be quiet. What we have seen and heard we proclaim. It is so easy for church-goers to come to church and let the Word be just a little therapy.
Jesus said it was to their advantage that He was going away (John 16:7). He said he would not leave them as orphans but would send another helper, “paracletos”, one who stands alongside, the Holy Spirit. When the Holy Spirit was poured out, He came as an extension of Jesus Christ. He is referred to the Spirit of Jesus and the Spirit of Christ. The Holy Spirit is a continuation of Christ’s ministry in the earth. We cannot treat the Holy Spirit as just another entity; Jesus continues to be present in us by His Spirit.
What happened with the great outpouring in Acts 2? It was an encounter like none other and the beginning of the church age. That was known at the baptism in the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4). Did the disciples not have the Holy Spirit before the outpouring in Acts 2? Jesus in His resurrection body breathed on them and He said “receive the Holy Spirit”. Then He said, If you forgive the sins of any, their sins have been forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they have been retained” (John 20:19-23). If you are truly a Holy Spirit Christian, and somebody has wronged you, and you carry unforgiveness, that sin is retained. If you have received the Holy Spirit, you can forgive that person. Many do not allow the forgiveness of Calvary to reach their neighbour. We need to know how to forgive and let the Holy Spirit be welcome.
Joel prophesied, “In the last days God will pour out His Spirit on all mankind, everyone!” Christians cannot take copyright. Peter in Acts 2 quotes Joel, but he says, I will pour forth of My Spirit on all mankind (Acts 2:17). We cannot say there will not be another outpouring and that it all happened in Acts 2. There have been further outpourings after that, again and again. Many past revivals were characterized by outpourings of the Spirit. Prepare yourself for the ultimate of outpourings. Do not let Christianity be just business as usual. Come with expectancy, open and prepared hearts. How many spend regular quiet times where the Holy Spirit can break you and melt you? What makes us true Christians? However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him. (Rom. 8:9-10).
For this reason we also constantly thank God that when you received the word of God which you heard from us,you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe(1 Thess. 2:13). Sometimes we can be fooled by the vessel God uses.
This is the only thing I want to find out from you: did you receive the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? (Gal. 3:2-3). What we need more than ever before is to hear the Word with faith and it will work in you. Most movements in their initial phases were pure and were of God but they soon tried to perfect it with other means.
It is one thing to speak in tongues but I would like to see the fruit (and the gifts where necessary) of the Spirit that will be the evidence in the world. The gifts are not to be limited to a Sunday morning service; they are to function outside. You do not receive the fruit of the Spirit by the laying on of hands; it is something that grows in you when the Word of God filled with Spirit and life brings the fruit forth in your life. Damage has been done by people who speak in tongues and yet their lives are out of order.
I want to bless you with a greater hunger for more of the Spirit of God. Make Him welcome in your life, give Him more personal time; sit at His feet. Let us go into the real kingdom demonstration. The sons of God are those who are led by the Spirit of God (Rom. 8:14). Create a new hunger in all of our hearts.
Walk in righteousness peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. That makes you a kingdom citizen! (Rom. 14:17).