Recently David and I had the privilege of attending the 25th world Pentecostal conference held in Calgary. The conference theme was “Spirit Now” and saw thousands attending from seventy-four nations. I was struck by one of the speakers questions: “ What spirit are you filled with?“
We understand man is not just a body, but also soul and spirit. We know we have a human Spirit. We understand there is a spirit that works in this world and then there is the Spirit of God, called the Holy Spirit. We know that we are born again of the spirit, which is the work of the Holy Spirit who regenerates our dead spiritual condition, making our human spirit alive unto God.
Second Corinthians 4:4 tells us that the God of this world works to hold man in darkness and influences us, according to First John, through the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. First John goes on to tell us these three things are not from the Father but are from the world itself.
The Father’s answer, to help us live on this earth and not be deceived and controlled by these three lusts, was the gift of His Holy Spirit. The Father poured out the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost for the empowerment of all disciples. His command to his disciples before his ascension was to stay In Jerusalem until they were filled with the Holy Spirit. We see from the book of Acts, that the experience found in chapter 2:4 was not a one time encounter for them.
Galatians, chapter 5 delineates exactly what it is to be filled with the spirit of the world versus the Holy Spirit. The fruit that the Holy Spirit brings forth in our life is there contrasted with the fruit of our flesh when filled with the spirit of the world.
The Amplified Bible in Galatians 5:16 begins an exhortation for us Spirit filled believers to “….walk and live habitually in the Holy Spirit (responsive to and controlled and guided by the Spirit) then you will certainly not gratify the cravings and desires of the flesh (of human nature without God). 17. For the desires of the flesh are opposed to the [Holy] Spirit and the [desires of] the Spirit are opposed to the flesh…”. Verses 19-20 tell us the practices of the flesh are obvious as is the fruit seen in a Spirit filled believer. The Fruit of the recreated human spirit, as filled with the Holy Spirit, are listed in verses twenty-two and twenty-three.
Ephesians 5:18 teaches us from the Greek, to constantly be being filled with the Holy Spirit. It is a present imperative in the Greek and this construction commands what must happen again-and-again (repeatedly) throughout the scenes of life. The present imperative commands ongoing action; a regular, long-term way of doing something as an ongoing lifestyle. The process-action must happen again-and-again over life’s multiple situations.
Thus ~ continuously be filled with the Spirit – a continuous (non-stop) privilege, not merely a one-time experience.
“ If we live by the Holy Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. [If by the Holy Spirit, we have our life in God let us go forward waking in line, our conduct controlled by the Spirit]. “ Gal. 5:25 Amplified.
Our dynamic and vital need today is to live a Christian life that is more than doctrinal belief systems. Pentecostals are spirit filled believers. That is a reality that displays a life filled, consumed, led, and directed by the person of Holy Spirit. Then, and only then, can we say we are truly believers filled with the Holy Spirit.