“You shall receive power after the Holy Spirit comes upon you” (Acts 1:8).
What do you imagine Jesus meant when He said, “You shall receive power after the Holy Spirit comes upon you” – what does that look like to you? Your answer tells a lot about yourself.
Some imagine that they shall receive supernatural power to heal the sick, cast out demons, raise the dead, and do mighty miracles. Others believe that they shall be empowered with great virtue and moral excellence. And some answer that it means they will be given strength to stand against evil and overcome the powers of darkness in our world.
All these views are right; and none more so than any other. The problem arises when we isolate our particular views and separate ourselves unto our own preferred interpretations. This inevitably makes it about us, and not about Jesus; what we can do for God, rather than what He does for us.
This is why Pentecostals and Presbyterians don’t do potluck dinners with one another. Its why Evangelicals and Charismatics hold serious misgivings about each other. Its why Baptists are standing on the promises; Methodists are leaning on the everlasting arms; Lutherans are steadfast within the mighty fortress of God; and why Church of Christ folk are the only ones going to heaven anyway.
Seriously? Is this the best we can do?
Jesus went on to specifically say that the purpose of this empowerment by the Holy Spirit is that we would be witnesses unto Him in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the uttermost parts of the earth. We are to bear witness to Jesus and the love He brought us from God. This is an important fact to keep foremost in our thoughts as we explore this wondrous thing called power.
Whatever your personal view may be about the power of the Holy Spirit, you cannot escape the irrefutable fact that LOVE is the singular evidence of that power at work in you and through you toward others. Paul wrote, “The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who is given unto us” (Romans 5:5). Its all about Jesus; and He is all about LOVE.
Jesus Himself said, “They will know you are My disciples “if you have love for one another”(John 15:35). So, this power that comes when the Holy Spirit fills our lives finds it greatest expression in – LOVE. Love for God; and love for others.
Read once again Paul’s words on this matter.
“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not love, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not love, it profiteth me nothing.” (1 Corinthians 13:1-3)
Its all about LOVE. This is what glorifies Jesus, and this therefore is this is the path we will take when we are being led by the Spirit.
We will talk a bit more about this as we conclude this series on Being Led by the Spirit tomorrow…..