THE FILLING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

Pastor Floyd Koenig

Eph. 5:18

INTRODUCTION

Every child of God is under orders to be "filled with the Spirit" (Eph. 5:18). Let us therefore not be content to only learn about this doctrine, but to go on in obedience and actually experience this "filling."

I. WHAT BEING FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT IS NOT

A. It is not receiving more of the Spirit.

1. Every child of God is indwelt by the Holy Spirit.

2. Because the Spirit of God is a person, it is folly to speak as though He could be received in differing amounts.

B. It is not spiritual growth. 1. Christians may be Spirit-filled at every stage of maturity.

2. A babe in Christ may be Spirit-filled while a mature Christian may enter into a time of failing in this area.

3. The living of a "Spirit-filled" life should be viewed rather as a position of good spiritual health.

4. While health may be experienced at any age, yet the lack of good health is a deterrent to proper growth in both the spiritual and physical realm.

C. It is not to be confused with other workings of the Spirit. 1. The experiences of being "Spirit-filled" and "baptized with the Spirit" have often been confused.

2. As would be expected the filling accompanied the baptism in Acts 2, but to therefore confuse them is a serious error that ends up perverting both truths.

3. The baptism with the Spirit was given at Pentecost while people were Spirit-filled even before Christís birth.

4. There are only four accounts of Spirit baptism mentioned in the Bible, and these were not of individuals, but of groups.

(1) Acts 2:1-11;

(2) Acts 10:44-46; 11:15-17;

(3) Acts 8:14-17;

(4) Acts 19:1-7.

5. We are commanded to be Spirit-filled while no one has ever been commanded to be baptized with the Spirit.

6. They are clearly different experiences.

II. WHAT BEING FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT IS

A. To be filled with the Spirit is simply to be yielded to Him in every area of our lives.

1. This experience is often directly or indirectly compared to drunkenness (Eph. 5:18; Lk. 1:15; Acts 2:13).

2. Just as wine controls the drunkard and makes him bold and vocal, so the Spirit-filled individual is under the sway of the Holy Spirit.

3. He becomes spiritually bold and able to testify for His Lord.

B. The experience of those who have been Spirit-filled seem to vary greatly. 1. In normal Christian living the saint is daily filled as he confesses his sin and yields to God.

2. The filling in this instance is not so much an emotional experience as a continuance of fellowship with God.

3. There are times when the filling has come upon an individual unsought or with special signs (Lk. 1:15, 41, 67; Acts 2:4).

C. The experience of being Spirit-filled follows no certain pattern as to the surrounding circumstances. 1. The experience came before and after Pentecost, with and without visible signs, and upon many different types of individuals from our Savior to an unborn baby (Mt. 4:1; Lk. 1:13-15).

2. Being filled with the Spirit is associated with praise, soul-winning, and judgment.

a. When Elizabeth heard the news of the coming Messiah, she was filled with the Spirit and began to speak forth praises (Lk. 1:41).

b. When John the Baptist was born, his father Zacharias was filled with the Spirit and began to bless the Lord (Lk. 1:67-69).

c. When Peter was filled with the Spirit, he began to exalt the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 4:8-12, 31).

d. As Stephen was afflicted at the hands of his persecutors, being filled with the Holy Ghost, he looked up into heaven and saw Jesus standing on the right hand of God (Acts 7:54-60).

e. After his conversion, Saul was filled with the Holy Ghost (Acts 9:17).

D. The filling is simply when the Spirit of God takes control of oneís life. 1. In our own life we may have times of being Spirit-filled that seem like mountain-top experiences while at other times the yielding to God produces only the quiet joy and peace of everyday Christian living.

2. Regardless of the presence or absence of certain experiences, let us be assured that each Christian may be Spirit-filled everyday.

3. God alone knows the particular work that needs to be done, and, therefore; He alone can determine the circumstances that are to surround our daily fillings.

III. THE CONDITIONS UPON WHICH ONE IS "SPIRIT-FILLED"

Because we are commanded to be "filled with the Spirit"(Eph. 5:18), It is obvious that there are conditions to be met under normal circumstances.

The following are some conditions to being Spirit-filled.

A. In order to be filled, we must not quench the Spirit (I Thess. 5:19).

1. This is done by refusing to follow His gracious leadings, and doing what we know to be contrary to His will.

2. When we indulge in some sin, keep bad company, or neglect prayer, preaching and the study of Godís Word, we quench the Spirit.

B. In order to be filled, we must not grieve the Spirit (Eph. 4:30). 1. This is done by being inconsistent in our Christian lives.

2. When we use unkind words and commit ungodly deeds, we grieve the Spirit (Eph. 4:25-26, 29).

C. In order to be filled, we must walk in the Spirit (Gal. 5:16). 1. This is a yielding to the Spirit rather than to the power of the flesh.

2. We are to live under His influence and to follow His directions.

3. The Holy Spirit will lead us according to the dictates of Godís Word.

D. In order to be filled, we must seek the Lord in prayer (Acts 4:31). 1. Every Christian should pray daily for a closer walk with God, and for a greater anointing of the Spirit in his life (Lk. 11:13).

2. How sad for any child of God to dishonor his Lord by allowing the flesh to mar his testimony (I Cor. 3:3).

3. God uses those who are "Spirit-filled" (Acts 6:3; 11:24).

IV. THE RESULTS OF BEING SPIRIT-FILLED

A. When a person is Spirit-filled, he will be bold in his witness for Christ (Acts 4:8-14, 31; 9:17-20).

B. When a person is Spirit-filled, he will have joy in his heart (Acts 13:52; Eph. 5:18-19).

C. Those who are filled with the Spirit will walk together in unity (I Cor. 3:1-3; Eph. 4:1-3).

D. Those who are filled with the Spirit will be motivated to praise the Lord (Eph. 5:19-20).

E. Those who are filled with the Spirit will evidence spiritual growth.

- When God is at the helm of our lives, we may expect to grow daily in the grace and knowledge of our Lord (II Pet. 3:18). F. Those who are filled with the Spirit will behave properly in their relations to others. 1. Paul deals with the various duties of the husband, wife, child, parent, employee and employer in Ephesians 5:21-6:9).

2. The context in these relationships is the filling of the Spirit (Eph. 5:18).

3. It is only through the power of Godís Spirit that we can properly fill our various roles.

CONCLUSION

May each of us count it as a sacred duty to daily be "filled with the Spirit."

Being filled with the Spirit should be viewed as the normal Christian experience rather than the privilege of some select few.
 
 

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