4 Weeks Of Foundation • Day 21
Published on 23 August 2020
Author Page >
Yesterday we looked at being led by the Holy Spirit, but today we are going to take that to another level and focus on the baptism of the Holy Spirit. When we are saved, Holy Spirit comes and lives inside us to lead us, but the Bible tells us about an even greater experience we can have of being filled with the Holy Spirit. His power is poured out on our lives, and He gives us all kinds of gifts and abilities that are not our own...gifts of faith and miracles, gifts to serve Him and lead others, and a boldness & strength to use these gifts and so many more. When the Holy Spirit was poured out and filled the first disciples, we read that they began to speak in other languages or 'tongues,' and this was one of the gifts the Holy Spirit gave them and a sign that He had filled them. This moment changed the disciples' lives forever. Let’s take Peter for example. Peter was an ordinary fisherman who had denied Christ three times a few weeks earlier because he was so scared. But after he experienced this empowering of the Holy Spirit, he’s a changed man! Filled with the Holy Spirit’s power. His fear is replaced with boldness, and he goes out and preaches a sermon that very day and sees 3000 saved. The Holy Spirit wants to fill you with this same power. It didn't end with the early church at all. The Holy Spirit is still active and wanting to fill you each day. His power will help you in every single area of your life. He will give you boldness to speak to your friends about your faith, give you the ability to see people healed, to prophesy over people and more! If you haven't yet experienced this, you can ask God today, but also reach out to your leaders. He will use ordinary people who are available and willing to do extraordinary things!
Once when he was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, as I told you before. John baptized with water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, has the time come for you to free Israel and restore our kingdom?” He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
On the day of Pentecost all the believers were meeting together in one place. Suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm, and it filled the house where they were sitting. Then, what looked like flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on each of them. And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in other languages, as the Holy Spirit gave them this ability. At that time there were devout Jews from every nation living in Jerusalem. When they heard the loud noise, everyone came running, and they were bewildered to hear their own languages being spoken by the believers. They were completely amazed. “How can this be?” they exclaimed. “These people are all from Galilee, and yet we hear them speaking in our own native languages! Here we are—Parthians, Medes, Elamites, people from Mesopotamia, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus, the province of Asia, Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt, and the areas of Libya around Cyrene, visitors from Rome (both Jews and converts to Judaism), Cretans, and Arabs. And we all hear these people speaking in our own languages about the wonderful things God has done!” They stood there amazed and perplexed. “What can this mean?” they asked each other. But others in the crowd ridiculed them, saying, “They’re just drunk, that’s all!” Then Peter stepped forward with the eleven other apostles and shouted to the crowd, “Listen carefully, all of you, fellow Jews and residents of Jerusalem! Make no mistake about this. These people are not drunk, as some of you are assuming. Nine o’clock in the morning is much too early for that. No, what you see was predicted long ago by the prophet Joel: ‘In the last days,’ God says, ‘I will pour out my Spirit upon all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions, and your old men will dream dreams. In those days I will pour out my Spirit even on my servants—men and women alike— and they will prophesy. And I will cause wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below— blood and fire and clouds of smoke. The sun will become dark, and the moon will turn blood red before that great and glorious day of the LORD arrives. But everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved.’
There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all. There are different kinds of service, but we serve the same Lord. God works in different ways, but it is the same God who does the work in all of us. A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other. To one person the Spirit gives the ability to give wise advice; to another the same Spirit gives a message of special knowledge. The same Spirit gives great faith to another, and to someone else the one Spirit gives the gift of healing. He gives one person the power to perform miracles, and another the ability to prophesy. He gives someone else the ability to discern whether a message is from the Spirit of God or from another spirit. Still another person is given the ability to speak in unknown languages, while another is given the ability to interpret what is being said. It is the one and only Spirit who distributes all these gifts. He alone decides which gift each person should have.
So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.”
More from this Devotional Series