“But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).
God designed man for productivity and power in helping his fellow man. This was Jesus’ mission and the Father endorsed His ministry with spiritual strength for doing it. Acts 10:38 teaches, “How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.” As God sent Jesus, so He sends the believers (John 20:21). And just as God empowered Christ for His work, He will empower His followers for ministry.
So, how do we receive the Holy Spirit? Before the Holy Spirit was initially poured out upon Christ’s followers, the Bible says, “These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication,” (Acts 1:14). A prerequisite to receiving the Holy Spirit is by being in one accord with our Christian brothers and sisters. This includes righting any known wrongs we have committed against others and having a spirit of Christian love for all other people. This also includes offering prayer to God, repenting of all known sins and humbly presenting our request for His Spirit, not for selfish gain but for the blessing of others.
Jesus says that the Father desires to give us the Holy Spirit, “how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” (Luke 11:13). We often don’t have have the Holy Spirit because we don’t ask, or we ask with the wrong motives (James 4:2, 3). We must humble ourselves before God that He will.
“But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” (John 14:26).
“Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.” (John 16:13).
“And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” (Acts 2:4).
“Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:13-14).
The promise for supernatural strength is directly connected with active ministry. “And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease. … And as ye go, preach, saying, the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give” (Matthew 10:1, 7, 8).
And in Matthew 28:18, 19, we learn, “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, all power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” This is the great commission given to the believers.
This Spirit-given witness is a distinguishing mark of the Christian church. This power is for witnessing for it gives: (1) strength within, (2) strength to proclaim the gospel, (3) strength to lead others to God. Through the disciples, thus empowered, Jesus would continue the work He began on earth, and even “greater works” than those would be accomplished (John 14:12).
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In His service,
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