This broadcaster has 268 podcast archives available on-demand.
Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.
April 16, 2018 12:20 pm
Thanks Taman musicians for leading us in this time of worship. If you would turn your Bibles to John XVI chapter and we will move to the Scripture reading and just a few minutes, as most of you know by now, I grew up in a small town in eastern North Carolina that survived that small town by farming, tobacco, cotton, poultry of all types and you probably say pigs, but we say hogs and everyone knew each other.
Everyone seemed to trust one another. It seems like a lost world nowadays, but that's the type of town that I grew up in. You could walk or ride your bike from one side to the other. I grew up attending a First Baptist Church in the center of town. Everyone there wore a suit or if you are a female you wore a dress to church morning in the evening. It never failed. Worship was a processional. The congregation came and sat and were in their seats.
Most of the time in a timely manner and then the pastors would enter in from one side the choir from both sides. They would file in and the the pastors would sit across the front of the platform like they were the elders of old worship consisted of an altar call and then there was a call to worship, prayer, there were a few traditional hymns and anthem by the choir. Of course everything was accompanied by the Oregon.
We always took up the offering and saying the doxology prayers were led by pastors and the sermon lasted a total of 20 minutes, maybe a little bit longer. If the pastor had something that he really wanted to get across, but by 10 till 12 service started at 11 x 10 till 12 if he was not moving to the invitation. There will be some in the congregation who might point to their watch.
One Sunday evening I guess I was about 10 years old I slipped away to another church with some other friends. This church was down the road just a little bit about the railroad tracks not never been before. I rendezvoused with my friend and found my way as we did back then to one of the back pews. The service began with a lively call to worship and then the pastor came to lead us all in prayer and that's where everything changed about my head close my eyes and waited for prayer and then all of a sudden everybody in the whole place started praying. None of all of you pray when the pastor prays, but they were praying aloud. Everybody praying loud and I gotta be honest with you I couldn't keep my disclosed I had to look up and look and see what was taking place and there were people with their hands raised. There were people. One lady had fallen out into the puke and was lying down, face down in the aisle, praying on the floor. I want you know that a part of me wanted to run in another part of me want to stay and see what was going to happen next and somehow I don't know how but when the pastor was ready to say in the name of Jesus.
Everything stopped. I mean it was like everybody knew there was supposed to happen at that time.
By the end of the service I had seen jumping stoping, shouting languages that I've never heard in my life and I really want to modernize, say, First Baptist Church will return home.
My folks asked how was church and they didn't know that I had gone to this other church and this was one of those times that I could.
I had to admit my mistakes and I said I went to the church with and told him one of my friends. They said which church got on the church down the railroad track and they said all my goodness that's the Pentecostal Holiness Church, and there the holy route roller church and they suggested that I never go again. And you know that was fine with me. I was comfortable while wall because I had had enough of that Holy Spirit stuff and the older I got and as I prepared for ministry. I didn't want any of that holy roller stuff that Holy Spirit stuff either because you know it was the Pentecostal church. They were the charismatic church. You know there's a mystery about the Holy Spirit even studying God's word. There still so much this side of heaven that we will never know about the Holy Spirit when it comes to the Holy Spirit.
It seems that those of us who call ourselves Christians.
Evangelicals fall into one of two extremes. The one extreme is are those that I mentioned in the Pentecostal church there obsessed with the Holy Spirit. They relate to him in some strange and mystical way that I just can't understand in the spirit in their their church is emotional and there's a Kristin crescendo in in worship and the spirit seems to visit when they pray when there's music and when the pastor gets on some type of a illiterate alliteration a role at the end of the service.
The other extreme, to which Christians seem to go with the Holy Spirit as they react to what they perceive what I perceived as excess, and I neglected the Holy Spirit altogether.
I felt like these people. They just give too much to the Holy Spirit.
I don't want any of that and we react by cutting it off altogether. I believe that the Holy Spirit I believed in them, but I believed that I needed to relate to him in a different way he was, like my appendix. I really don't need him don't really know what he does. But I can't tell that he does that much in my life and those are the extremes.
It seems like you go one way or the other and for me growing up in my nice, safe little First Baptist Church liturgical traditional. I don't know that it ever since the Holy Spirit as a moving, living, dynamic person in my life until later in my life. You know I was like that for many years.
I believe that the Trinity consisted of God the father, Jesus the son, and maybe the holy Bible, but the Holy Spirit was something that I didn't talk much about because I didn't want too much of him. Anybody else that way now.
There were times that I experienced the Holy Spirit when I was growing up in my adult life in a way that that is just almost unexplainable and it's like God through his spirit shows up in a certain event or a certain time and you know the presence of God is there and you want to hang onto it. It happens so often in mission experiences now. I know many of you have gone will go trips before and been engaged in missions. It is incredible. God will do something special and you know that the spirit of God is there in such a powerful way and it's over whelming. Yeah, I was thinking just last night of different mission trips that I have been on and let me give you an illustration because Harding is here tonight. I can remember several years ago when we began the Harding Bible school in your Chuck Ethiopia and here we are. There are 10,000 people gathered sitting on the ground across this this hillside and were sitting up on the platform and around the platform and it came Bill's time to speak the first time that he'd been back in years. Most of those people had come to know Christ as their Savior through the ministry of Bill Harding and the churches that he developed and Bill started coming up from the side up toward the platform and the people started clapping. Remember that Bill and a cloud and when he got to the pulpit.
Everybody was clapping and then it says the if it was a room. It would get silent. You couldn't hear anything and Bill hesitated just a moment and he said to nastily and when he did, the place exploded in the spirit of God was there in just such a powerful way.
In the language that the people spoke the bill thought he had forgotten it was as though the Holy Spirit infused him and gave him the power to remember the language of the Ethiopians and God communicated through him with those people in a powerful way. It was incredible. It's almost like being on the Mount of Transfiguration with Peter James and John and they said let us just build a tent and let us just stay there. There are times like that, occasions where we get a chance to taste the Holy Spirit and we wonder how can I harness that how can I make that my own each and every day and every moment of my life how to hold onto his presence. I want you to know that this is how God always intended it for B to be God desires to walk through life with us each and every moment of the day filled with his power. The God power Scripture indicates that God always desired a close personal relationship with his people. He walked with Adam and Eve in the cool of the garden. He dwelt among his people, and a pillar of cloud and fire. He dissented upon the temple of his presence. The Israelites gave him a name translated, said the God who is they are in Ezekiel 48 Jesus the God man walked with man and we beheld his glory, God has always desired to walk with each of us through every moment of every day now through his Holy Spirit. He is able to be closer with us than ever before.
God is with us is in the temple of our hearts, most Christians do not relate to God as if he is a dynamic personal presence in our lives we walk as though we have to seek God as we walk through life, but he is right there with us if we will just take him seriously. Leslie Gore-Tex for just a moment and see what Jesus said, John 16 verse let's begin at verse for the last half of verse four this verse five. I did not say these things to you from the beginning because I was with you but now I'm going with him who sent me, and not if you ask where you going for six but because of said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart, nevertheless I tell you the truth it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the helper will not come to you, but if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment concerning sin, because they do not believe in me concerning righteousness, because I go to the father and you will see me no longer concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.
Now I want you to hear that. I want you to go back and look if you would to verse seven nevertheless I tell you the truth it is to your advantage. Jesus said that I go away, for if I do not go away the helper will not come to you.
Jesus told his disciples that they understood what was being offered to them in the Holy Spirit, they would be glad that he was returning to heaven if it meant getting a better spirit having the Holy Spirit in them he said is better than having Jesus's bodily presence walking beside them is pretty incredible as I meet. I think the greatest thing in the world would be to have Jesus walking with me. I mean every where I go.
I'm walking with Jesus. Anytime a situation comes up I could say to second okay kids are bad. So you just second is as Jesus what he thinks we should do. I we got authority that walks right there with us.
Jesus walking person. A person with us but Jesus said it's better that I go away, because when the Holy Spirit comes, he will be better inside of you and me walking beside you, you the other neat thing about this is Jesus told his disciples in Luke 24 verse 49 that they needed to wait for the spirit to come upon them before they started the great commission now hears that the greatest commander Jesus gave to go to the nations and baptize them in the father son and the Holy Spirit, but yet Jesus said in the whole verse 49 I'm sending the promise of my Father upon you, but stay in the city until you are close with the power from on high and that's the power of the Holy Spirit. This Holy Spirit is so important that the great commission could wait and G that Jesus assured his disciples that it will be better to have the Holy Spirit for them for Jesus to remain living in the Holy Spirit is absolutely essential for the life of the Christian life today when I look back at my life trying to stay away from the Holy Spirit. All I can think about is how much I missed how much I missed being a victorious Christian is not found in knowing a lot of theology or manufacturing. The right kind of feelings being a victorious Christian is found in the binding. In the presence of a person and that person is the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is God's personal presence today in our life. Just as God walked with Adam and Eve in the coolness of the garden. He wants to walk with us today in his temple is not in Jerusalem but his temple is in our heart, and the Holy Spirit will only walk with us as much as we allow him to walk with us. So all those years that I push the spirit aside, he allowed it to happen because he's not going to force his way. We have to decide each and every day whether we want to walk with God through his spirit or not. How would you how would your relationship with God change if you saw his presence with you as real as a person.
Think about that just for moment.
How would your relationship with God change if you saw his presence with you as real as a person. What if you understood that feeling of conviction conviction in any dental, small voice was really the voice of God. What if you saw sin not so much as breaking a law. The grieving your father's heart. That's what walking in the presence of God in the presence of the Spirit is all about.
How would your Christianity change if you saw that when you walk through the valley of the shadow of death. He was the one bringing the promise of comfort to your heart as he used his word to minister to you now.
I told you that it's taken me a while to work through this Holy Spirit stuff this Holy Spirit doctrine in my own life and it was interesting as I was going through looking at our article of faith that I'm supposed to define tonight how God had revealed the different purposes of the Holy Spirit. I want to take you through a few of those. Let's look at Calvary's doctrine of faith that works good I'm gonna be sharing about tonight. It says that we believe in the Holy Spirit being the third person of the Godhead convicts man of sin regenerates and dwells baptizes seals and sets believers apart to do to to a holy life and he keeps and empowers believers. Day by day. We believe that he is the teacher of the word and our guide for daily living.
So if I break out each one of those and take 5 to 10 minutes to explain each will be here most of the night, but we are going to go quickly through those our article of faith begins by saying that the Holy Spirit is the third person of the Godhead in the Barna survey it says that 61% of those US residents surveyed agreed with the statement that the Holy Spirit is just a symbol of God's presence or power, but not a living entity. The majority or near majority of those in almost every Christian denomination saw it this way. So who is the Holy Spirit and what does he do. First off, we know the Holy Spirit is a person the Holy Spirit isn't just a mere symbol.
No spirit is no mere symbol is able to communicate and speak in the spirit did that and asked 12 to know symbol can intercede as the Holy Spirit did in Romans 826 know symbol can testify as the Holy Spirit did to Christ in John 1526. No symbol can guide us as the Holy Spirit is Jesus said the Holy Spirit would do in John 1613, no spirit, no symbol can command us, but only a person can command us a point lead reveal how someone is wrong. Foolish or sinful. The Holy Spirit does that a person does that not a symbol. No symbol can live with in a believing Christian, shaping their life to be more like Christ. But only a living person can do that no symbol can shape each of our lives so that we fit into a community of faith called the church and carry out the great commission that only takes place through a person in the Bible. The spirit has intellect passions and will and can even be grieved. In short, the Holy Spirit has a personality, the spirit reflects the will and the thoughts of the father and brings them to us in many ways, especially through the centrality of this holy Scriptures, the proper question is not what is the Holy Spirit, but who is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity. So what does the holy spirit do back to my pilgrimage for just a moment.
I can remember when I was nine years old I went to church about twice a month, probably, but this one. Sunday happen to be a children's revival and in our chapel. All the children were gathered together and as we were gathered together the pastor began to preach. I remember the sermon.
He first started talking about God's love any use John 316 for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. And then he moved to Romans 323 and told us that all of us that sin and fall short of the glory of God, and he taught about God's holiness and our sinfulness in a chasm that existed between the two of us and then he told us about Romans 623 that the wages of sin is death.
That's the part the group me as I'm sitting there as a nine-year-old on you that my life wasn't what it was supposed to be and I in you that the penalty for my sinfulness was going to be death. So, as a young child I came to the second purpose of the Holy Spirit. And that's to convict us of our sinfulness and I said there is a nine-year-old in the Holy Spirit, grit my heart and I realize that I was a center and I needed something in the pastor should Romans 58 but God demonstrates his own love toward us in that. Yet while we were still sinners, Christ died for us and he shared about how Jesus gave his life as a sacrifice for a debt that I couldn't pay and I was overwhelmed by my sinfulness and what Christ had done for me and I wanted Jesus as my Savior. You share with me. Revelation 320 behold, I stand at the door knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him.
My grandmother had an old cedar stump that they had cut and made a picture of one of the parts of the stop. In all it was a picture of Jesus knocking on the door and she had shared with us. One time that there's no doorknob on that door that Jesus has to open that you have to open it up Jesus from the inside and let a man and that was the day that I accepted Christ as my Savior. Now, the Holy Spirit started the journey for me because he began to convict me of my sinfulness of my lostness and convinced me that Jesus Christ was the only way now.
When I prayed and asked Christ to come into my heart. Something happened Jesus. Jesus gave me his promise, and that's his Holy Spirit who moved into my life, but I didn't know what to do with. I didn't have a clue what I was supposed to do with that spirit that was living inside of me.
I Sensing the Spirit's voice throughout my life as he continues to convict me of my sinfulness and move me in the direction that he would like for me to go and that's what the Spirit does for us.
But something else happened when the Holy Spirit came in my heart. And that's the next purpose of the Holy Spirit. This in our articles of faith and that's that the Holy Spirit regenerates us look at Titus three. If you would Titus three verses three through seven, and I'm gonna start reading quickly because of of talk too much for we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient lead astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. That's me, that's sinfulness. But when the goodness and lovingkindness of God our father appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy and look what happens by the washing of regeneration and renewal of his Holy Spirit, whom he poured out richly through Christ Jesus our Savior. So that being justified by his grace we become heirs according to the hope of eternal life, and here's what happened. Once accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior.
I was born again just like Jesus told Nicodemus in John three I was born again, born again means that your life is regenerated on the inside out. The Holy Spirit begins doing that work. It's like if you got a starfish and you cut one of the limbs off the starfish.
It regenerates new life and for me that's what the Holy Spirit did he came into my life and began to rebuild my life after conversion. And as we study the word of God, the Holy Spirit takes the word of God and begins to translate it into a language that communicates with our hearts and we recognize what other parts of our lives need to be put away and what the spirit needs to regenerate into our lives pretty incredible how God's presence in our life works that out anywhere. Jesus went sin was exposed because of his holiness, and when I study the word of God and the Holy Spirit ministers it to my heart.
He regenerates my life as I'm convicted of my sinfulness. What happens next or articles of faith says that the Holy Spirit indwells us. The moment I asked Jesus Christ to come into my life. The Holy Spirit came in and began to inch well in my life. He moved in and Ephesians 518.
Paul contrasts the spirit being filled with the spirit of being filled with alcohol. He says don't be filled with wine, but do be filled with the Holy Spirit will stick with me for second in some ways being filled with the Spirit is similar to being filled with alcohol everything in a person is affected how he thinks how he reacts when he feels his inhibitions are removed in the same way being filled with the Holy Spirit affects everything in a person's life. People filled with the Holy Spirit are given uncanny boldness, people filled with the Holy Spirit are able to do things that they never dreamed that they can do within their own power, but but let me make a stark contrast before you go out you say Castro said the being filled with the spirit is like drinking alcoholic. A alcohol change the person's perception by deadening it the spirit changes a person's perception by awakening him to reality when we are filled with the spirit we are not numbed to the pains of the world. But our eyes are opened to God's power and God's beauty to give you two quick examples when Elisha's servant's eyes were open.
He did not see the Syrian army, but instead he saw angels in chariots of fire that dwarfed the opposition forces. When Paul was filled with the spirit, his pains did not go away, but his eyes were open to comfort and a greater joy than the pain. When we accept Christ as our Savior, the Holy Spirit comes into us immediately and fills us. Now how does this filling take place. How are we field the more word of God that I have in my life. The more the spirit is able to feel my life. That's how the filling takes place, the word of God is like our our gas pump.
The more of it that I go in and pump it in the more the spirit begins to grow in my life and transform my life and make me into the person that God wants for me to be next. What else does the Holy Spirit do when articles of faith says that the Holy Spirit baptizes us that we just had a symbol of baptism up behind us tonight is Matt baptize to and being baptized in the Holy Spirit is not what I'm talking about here. Some of our Pentecostal friend to say that being baptized in the Holy Spirit is something that comes later. We would say their doctrine is is not right that we are filled with the Holy Spirit.
When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior that continuing filling takes the filling of the Holy Spirit takes place when we study the word of God. But we are baptized by the spirit that means is that we become a part of the body of Christ. When these young people several weeks ago accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. They were baptized in the Spirit and that they became a part of the body of Christ on Calvary church. Although they are member Calvary church but they became a part of the church that Christ will come back for one day and the Holy Spirit develops their giftedness. That's the baptism develops their giftedness so that they can be used in the church and according to the purposes that God has for them. And that's being baptized by the Holy Spirit next in our hearts of faith that says that the Holy Spirit seals and I know I'm running out of time here. We talk about seals for just a moment two different types was a seal on a document that identified who owns it and the other type of sale that was used at that time was a down payment in both of these could probably be used here. The Holy Spirit is the sill all my heart that I have accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior.
It means that he is the owner God is the owner and the other ceiling that takes place is G God spirit in my heart.
The Holy Spirit in my heart is just a small taste of heaven. It's it's a guarantee that one day heaven is going to be yours in the spirit in your life is just a small taste of what is to come. The Holy Spirit also empowers us each and every day. I can't believe how often miss that through the years by not seeking his empowerment. That word is dynamite that a great word for the spirit for power.
He's like dynamite in our lives and he can change us personally and allow the fruits of the spirit to change my life, his power can do that he can equip me in witnessing and he can lead me to do the work that he's called me to do. The Holy Spirit also is the teacher of God's word as I study the word of God. He speaks to my heart and and changes me regenerates me the Holy Spirit is our guide for daily living. All God's children, all of us on a journey and as we travel through life in route to our eternal home. Each one of us will face a multitude of choices. Forks in the road, unmarked pavement challenges and frustrations.
Jesus promised to give us an internal ever present guide starting at the moment of salvation. Everyone who trust in the Savior is indwelt with the Holy Spirit. He's like a building. Compass and he will direct us where we need to go as we study God's word.
You know, he never makes a mistake now know some of your thinking. But wait a minute.
Sometimes I get off the beaten path well uses our reception that is not great is not the Holy Spirit's fault.
It's we put another compass in our life. Another Northstar in our life and the direction has been skewed by something in our own lives instead of by the spirit. Sin does to our understanding of the Lord's clear direction.
What a magnet might do to a compass so as I walk through life. I will walk in the power the Holy Spirit. I don't want to ignore him in his presence and his power in my life.
What about you, we let more of the Holy Spirit into your life by pushing more of yourself out of the way and being filled with the power of the word of God is pray together, follow me. Thank you so much for your word and for the truth that it provides for us and father were so thankful that we can come together and admit our shortcomings in your word tells us that you forgive us that you redirect us and you shape us and you remold us and you push us forward in the life that you would have for us.
Father cross this room.
There are many of us who have not embraced the spirit your spirit in our lives.
The pray father that we might walk in that power each day for us in Jesus name we pray. Amen