1 Corinthians Series #32

"Spiritual Gifts” - Part 4 1 Cor. 12:4-11

 

I.          INTRODUCTION

A.        Something More

1.         Have been looking at the person and work of the Holy Spirit

2.         Continue that today; in fact, wrapping up our background study

3.         Next week, we'll be returning to our study of 1 Cor. 12 & the gifts of the Spirit

4.         But today our study takes us into what have been dangerous waters

a.         we enter the controversy of the baptism of the Holy Spirit

b.         but I think that as we carefully look at several passages we'll see much light shed on this subject

 

B.        A Fresh Mind

1.         I will ask you to set aside for a few moments the fact of the controversy

2.         Set aside all the debate about speaking in tongues and prophetic utterances, and the like

3.         Let's just come to the study of God's Word with a hungry and seeking heart and let His Spirit teach us this morning

 

II.          BODY

A.        The Power of the Holy Spirit

1.         Two weeks ago we took a look at Jesus' promise of the Holy Spirit

a.         that He would come to live within the disciples

b.         last week, we saw how the Holy Spirit  brings a person to faith in Christ > by bringing them to conviction about their sin and faith in Jesus as Lord and Savior

2.         Today, we want to take a look at the fulfillment of that promise of the Holy Spirit

3.         And see that Jesus promised another filling of the Holy Spirit that would come after that

 

4.         Turn to John 20 . . .

 

19  Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, "Peace be with you."

 

5.         This was after His crucifixion; first time He had appeared to them

6.         They were in great fear that the Jewish leaders would find them and put them to death too, as they had done with Jesus

7.         So, they were in hiding

8.         When Jesus appeared, it shocked them; so He gave them a greeting of peace.

a.         the other gospels tell us that they thought he was a ghost

b.         they were shakin' in their sandals

 

20 When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord.

21 So Jesus said to them again, "Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you."

22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit."

 

9.         The word for breath is the same word for spirit in Greek

a.         when Jesus breathed on them, He was both using an object lesson and also imparting to them The Person of the Holy Spirit

b.         the promise that He had made before, He is now fulfilling -

c.         the Holy Spirit  who had been with them, He is now sending to dwell within them

d.         while we might miss it in our English translations, the Greek text is very clear

- Jesus said, "Receive the Holy Spirit "

- the word receive is in the present imperative

- in other words, it is a command to be obeyed right now

- a literal translation would read something like . . .

- "Right now, without delay, receive in to your inner being the Holy Spirit ."

10.       It was at this point that they were born again

11.       Here's the proof for that . . .

a.         Luke 24:36-45

 

36 Now as they said these things, Jesus Himself stood in the midst of them, and said to them, "Peace to you."

 37 But they were terrified and frightened, and supposed they had seen a spirit.

38 And He said to them, "Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts?

39 "Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have."

40 When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet.

41 But while they still did not believe for joy, and marveled, He said to them, "Have you any food here?"

42 So they gave Him a piece of a broiled fish and some honeycomb.

43 And He took it and ate in their presence.

44 Then He said to them, "These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me."

45 And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures.

 

b.         He took them on an extended Bible study through the OT

c.         Luke tells us that they finally understood what He taught them

c.         it is one of the notable things in the gospels that so much of the words and teaching of Jesus went right over the heads of the disciples

d.         they were just without a clue most of the time

e.         the reason why is because Jesus spook the very word of God, and apart from the enlightening of the Holy Spirit, a person cannot understand the word of God as it says in 1 Cor. 2

f.          that they were able to understand after He breathed on them and told them to receive the Holy Spirit  is proof that they were now born again

 

12.       But even after they were born again and had received the Holy Spirit , Jesus told them to wait for another dimension of the Spirit's work . . .

 

49 "Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high."

 

13.       Luke repeats this promise of the Lord in Acts 1 . . .

 

4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, "which," He said, "you have heard from Me;

 5 "for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now."

6 Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, "Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?"

7 And He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority.

 8 "But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth."

 

14.       They had already received the Holy Spirit, but here Jesus says that the Holy Spirit would come upon them and they would receive power to be His witnesses

 

15.       There are three little words that help us to understand what Jesus is talking about here . . .

a.         those words are, "with, in, and upon"

16.       Remember two weeks ago?

a.         John 14:17 = "He is with you but will be in you."

b.         [show pitcher - pour pitcher to fill glass]

c.         the result of the Spirit's indwelling would be their further growth in Christ

17.       Here in Acts 2 we read that now that they have been filled with the Holy Spirit, Jesus tells them that the Spirit will come upon them

a.         [pour pitcher onto full glass]

b.         the result of this "upon" experience of the Spirit  that Jesus calls the baptism of the Holy Spirit is that they would be witnesses to others of Him

c.         just as the water overflows the glass and spills out

d.         so the baptism is not so much to lead the one baptized as to make him or her a testimony to others of the power and love of God

 

18.       This promise of the Father was fulfilled on the day of Pentecost 50 days later

19.       The result was that 3000 people were saved

 

20.       Notice that Jesus commanded the disciples to wait until they were endued with power through the Baptism of the Holy Spirit.

a.         He didn't make it an option

b.         He didn't say it was only for those who wanted to be super-Christians

c.         God intends the baptism of the Holy Spirit to be normal to the Christian life

d.         in fact, a bit later in Acts, Paul went to the City of Ephesus and discovered some believers there who seemed to be lacking something

e.         so Paul asked them if they had been baptized in the Holy Spirit  -  they told him that they didn't know what he was talking about

f.          so he told them about what they were lacking, prayed with them, and they were baptized

 

21.       The baptism of the Holy Spirit  is treated today as an option

a.         it is not!

b.         it is something every believer is to experience

22.       Let me give one more example of this . . .

a.         Acts 8:4-8, 12

 

4  Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word.

5 Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them.

6 And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did.

7 For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed.

8 And there was great joy in that city.

 

12  But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized.

 

b.         they heard the gospel & they responded

c.         they were baptized

d.         but Acts 8:14-17 we see that there was more for them in terms of their relationship with God

 

14  Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them,

15 who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit.

16 For as yet He had fallen upon none of them. They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

17 Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.

 

e.         clearly in this passage, after they were born again, the Holy Spirit came upon them in

 

B.        Receiving the Holy Spirit

1.         "So," you say, "How do I receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit?"

2.         I'm glad you asked

3.         Step One:  You don't have to wait - as they did for the first filling.

a.         they had to wait for the prophetic fulfillment of the Day of Pentecost

b.         but now that the Holy Spirit  has come, we do not have to wait

c.         we have simply to ask

4.         Step Two:  Ask God to baptize you in the Holy Spirit!

Luke 11:9-13  "So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.  If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish?  Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?  If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!"

5.         Step Three:  Receive it by faith

a.         many people think that when the Holy Spirit comes on them they will be zapped, fried, or in some way jolted with a zillion gigawatts of spiritual juice

b.         they've seen programs of people falling over backwards

c.         they've been told that they will start uttering some strange foreign language

d.         they've gotten the impression from some zealous brothers and sisters in the Lord that they will see visions and have all kinds of bizarre but fun things happen to them

e.         listen: these things may or may not happen

f.          that's not the point or what's important.

g.         what is this . . .

h.         the power of the Holy Spirit is not to be confused with the world's power

i.          the baptism of the Holy Spirit  isn't given so we can get zapped

j.          it's given so that we can be a powerful witness of Jesus Christ to others

k.         and that means it is the power to live a changed life

l.          like any gift God gives, the baptism of the Holy Spirit is received by faith

m.        so pray, and then believe that you have received.

n.         my experience

 

6.         Someone might jump in at this point and ask, "What about the gifts of the Holy Spirit?  Where do they come in to the picture?  After all, didn't the disciples speak in tongues when they were baptized in the Holy Spirit?"

 

24.       My answer to that question is this:

a.         wait till next week

b.         and, notice that Jesus says nothing about tongues or gifts when He commands them to wait and be baptized

c.         all He gave was the result of the baptism = witnesses of Him

 

III.         CONCLUSION

A.        Christian!

1.         Are you a witness of Christ?

2.         Actually, every Christian is already a witness of Christ

3.         The question is; What kind of a witness are you?

a.         either a weak one

b.         or a powerful one

4.         If you are a weak one, you need to be baptized with the Holy Spirit!

5.         Today!

 

6.         Maybe you have been baptized with the Holy Spirit

7.         But the power of your witness has weakened with time

a.         many Spirit-baptized believers I've met have the idea that the baptism of the Holy Spirit is a one time event

b.         they think it's like getting a spiritual shot in the arm that sets them for life

8.         In Ephesians 5:18, Paul tells us to be constantly filled with the Holy Spirit.

a.         the baptism of the Holy Spirit is not some initiation rite into super-spirituality

b.         it is an on-going experience in which the Christian abides in the place of the Spirit's overflowing

9.         Be renewed in the filling of the Holy Spirit