Does your daily Christian life look more like the disciples BEFORE they were filled with the Holy Spirit or more like the disciples AFTER they were filled with the Holy Spirit? Often we don’t consider what happened on Pentecost, yes that event that happened 50 days after Jesus rose from the dead. The power released that day was incredible, it is still here today, if we tap into it and yes our daily life should reflect that power.
Pentecost is when we remember and celebrate the coming of the Third Person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit. Listen to the words of Acts 2:1-4 “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. Pentecost is when the Church was birthed as the Holy Spirit filled the first followers of Jesus with power and transformed them into dynamic disciples.”
Jesus promised this power right before His ascension recorded in Acts 1:8, Jesus said: “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.”
The word translated power the Greek word dunamis. Dunamis is used 120 times in the New Testament. It is a word that refers to “strength, power, or ability.” Dunamis is not just any power; the word refers to miraculous power or marvellous works. Dunamis can also refer to “moral power and excellence of soul,” Dunamis is the root word of our English words dynamite, dynamo and dynamic.
We do not live the Christian life in our own power, but in God’s. We are empowered by the Holy Spirit. On that day of Pentecost the disciples were filled with dunamis power, Holy Dynamite. Today we as believers in Christ, disciples of Jesus, are filled with that same power as those first disciples. We are empowered by the Holy Spirit to be dunamis disciples, dynamite disciples, dynamic disciples.
Pentecost was the birth of the church and celebrated the coming of the Holy Spirit, our Comforter, our Counsellor, our Helper, our Encourager, our Advocate, in Greek the word Paraclete. Paraclete, the one who consoles or comforts, the one who encourages, the one who uplifts; the one who refreshes, the one who intercedes on our behalf as our advocate with God the Father.
The Holy Spirit is the one Jesus promised to send to His disciples. John 14:15-17 Jesus said: “If you love me, obey my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive Him, because it isn’t looking for Him and doesn’t recognize Him. But you know Him, because He lives with you now and later will be in you.”
At Pentecost, the Advocate arrived in Power. The Holy Spirit was poured out on the 120 disciples gathered together in the Upper Room and they were changed, they were transformed.
No longer timid people, hiding away, they boldly went outside into the street filled with the Power of the Holy Spirit. Peter preached the Gospel and 3,000 people were saved that day.
Power, Boldness, to go out and speak truth and thousands were saved. Could that happen today?
Yes it can! God has not changed. His power has not diminished. The Holy Spirit still operates in power in our lives. The truth of the Gospel still changes and transforms lives today and He uses ordinary people like you and me to share the truth of who Jesus is with others.
God has a plan and a purpose for us, as disciples of Jesus, empowered by the Holy Spirit, we are commanded to go into the world, share the Good News that the Messiah has come, telling people about Jesus who lived a perfect, spotless life and willingly died on the cross to pay the penalty for sin and that He rose on the third day conquering the power of death. Jesus is alive today, and the promise of forgiveness and eternal life is available to all who trust in Him as their personal Lord and Savior.
God calls each of us to be witnesses to the truth that Jesus saves, and we are empowered by the Holy Spirit to speak in His power in boldness, that Jesus is the Only Way, the Only Truth, the Only Life, the Only way of salvation. Ok, here is the question: You knew there would be a question: Are you a BEFORE or AFTER Christian? Let me clarify the question. Be honest with yourself and with God for a moment, Does your daily Christian life look more like the disciples BEFORE they were filled with the Holy Spirit or more like the disciples AFTER they were filled with the Holy Spirit?
Do you live as a Christian in hiding, afraid of what others may say or do if they discover who you are and what you believe? Or do you boldly stand and proclaim, God is real, the Bible is true, Jesus is Lord and Saviour! The first disciples were in hiding. They were afraid. Then the Holy Spirit came. They were filled with power. Then they boldly went out where they were too afraid to be just minutes before. The Gospel was preached. Thousands were saved. The Church was born.
And for nearly 2000 years, true disciples of Jesus have shared the truth of the Gospel. The Gospel is being shared in every part of the world, by people face-to-face, through Radio and TV broadcasts, through the Internet the message that Jesus Christ is Lord is being shared throughout the world… BUT
But what about in your neighbourhood, in your street, in your own home, are you using every opportunity you are given to share the truth about Jesus? Are you allowing the Holy Spirit to work in you and through you in the same way He empowered those first disciples of Jesus?
Acts 2:47 tells us that each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.
As the Gospel was shared, people came to a saving knowledge of Jesus, they became His followers, His Disciples and the Church grew each day!
The church was strong, empowered by The Holy Spirit, the church grew not just in physical number, it also grew spiritually, disciples made other disciples who made other disciples. We have been commanded by Jesus to do the same. We need to be willing participants in the plans and purposes of God not just passengers. At times it feels like we are in some kind of bubble or cocoon, looking out at the world around us, hoping for change, praying for change, expecting someone else to do something.
There is already someone God has appointed who should be doing something, You and Me. We are the ones who have already received the Power of the Holy Spirit. We need to step up, we need to be the dynamic, spirit-filled, disciples God expects us to be. In this generation, in this community, in our families, in us, the Holy Spirit can bring revival. He can move in power, lives can be changed and transformed. The Holy Spirit has not changed and He lives within us to empower us.
Will you allow the Holy Spirit to work in you and through you? Are you willing to become a blessing to others? Are you willing to proclaim the truth of the Gospel? Then allow the Holy Spirit to work in you today. He may not fall on us as He did in Acts 2 with tongues of fire or with the sound of a mighty wind. But He will move within each of us.
Allow the Dunamis, dynamite, dynamic power of the Holy Spirit to bring spiritual growth and release spiritual gifts in your life. Then you will see, change, transformation, miracles, in your life and the lives of those around you.
Finally, let me remind you that the Holy Spirit gives all of us gifts. 1 Peter 4:10-11 says “God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another. Do you have the gift of speaking? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Do you have the gift of helping others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to Him forever and ever!”
Each of us is different and the gifts He gives to each of us are different. Each and every Spiritual gift He gives is of equal value and importance to God. Paul said in Romans 12:6-8: “In His grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.”
Different people, different gifts, whatever gifts we have been given by the Holy Spirit we are meant to use them for God’s honor and glory. Are you using your God given gifts? Finally, as well as giving gifts, the Holy Spirit helps us to develop the Fruit of the Spirit in our lives.
Galatians 5:22-23, the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. How evident is the Fruit of the Spirit in your life?
The Holy Spirit has come in Power. The Holy Spirit gives each of us gifts, skills and abilities that we must use for God’s glory. The Holy Spirit produces fruit in each of our lives. May each of us by the Power of the Holy Spirit be the disciples, the followers God has called us to be. May each of us know and experience the fullness that comes from being indwelt, guided, protected and empowered by the Holy Spirit.