The Holy Spirit
"John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit."
A few weeks ago in the Middle/High School Chapel, I spoke about three ministries of the Holy Spirit. For believers to grow, I believe that they need to understand that God wants us to be open to all three areas of the Holy Spirit's ministry.
The first area of importance is that of the Holy Spirit being with us. This idea can be seen in John 14:17. Here we can see that as we experience and understand our need for God, the Holy Spirit is with us and convicts us of our need to accept Jesus as Lord and be born again.
At the moment we open our heart to the Lord, the Holy Spirit comes in us. The Holy Spirit coming in us expresses God's permanent claim on us as His child. We will spend eternity with Him. (John 20:22) This everlasting life begins for the believer on this side of eternity as we allow the Lord to control our lives and serve Him here on earth.
The last of the three ministries of the Holy Spirit occurs when He comes upon us. The purpose of the Holy Spirit coming upon us is that of empowerment for a specific reason: to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the world. This takes the form of allowing the believer to have a powerful personal direct ministry to others and live an overcoming life through the power of the Holy Spirit. This over-coming life is a strong testimony of the love of God for all people. (Acts 1:7)
This last area of the Holy Spirit is probably the single most divisive area within Christian church today. To ignore this work of the Holy Spirit limits a believer to ones own resources for serving as a witness to the world in word and deed. Quite frankly, life without the Holy Spirit upon us places back in the position of self-sufficiency. This is directly opposite of God's desire for us to be totally dependent on Him. Unfortunately, the other extreme sometimes occurs when the Holy Spirit is purportedly used for purposes other than proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the world through a powerful testimony in word and deed.