DIVINE POWER FOR A DIVINE PURPOSE
STUDY TEXT: ACTS 1:8
God promised a divine power which shall be solely for a divine purpose. This is because the power will come through the Holy Spirit, and the primary purpose shall be to win souls to the kingdom of God. Thus, the baptism in the Holy Spirit is power for a purpose and not just to make us feel good or to know how much God loves us. The Holy Spirit makes it possible for us to tell the whole world about Jesus. The Holy Spirit empowers us to fulfil the Great Commission. That power also involves courage, boldness, confidence, insight, ability and authority which are all needed in fulfilling the great commission.
Jesus promised the disciples that they would receive power to witness after they received the Holy Spirit. The right order must be followed:
1. they would receive the Holy Spirit,
2. the Holy Spirit would give them power, and
3. they would witness through that power with extra ordinary results.
When we reverse the order we will be witnessing by our own power and authority. God has given us a great work to do for Him, but the work must be done by the power of the Holy Spirit.
I. THE MINISTRY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THE SALVATION OF A SOUL
1. He directs and arranges the meeting between the sinner and the soul winner. Acts 8;29, 10: 19-21
- Philip’s obedience to the divine directive led to the conversion of the influential Ethiopian eunuch.
- Peter was also directed by the Spirit to go to Cornelius house and evangelise the gentile world.
- Most of the time, we are not sensitive to this kind of leading or prompting by the Holy Spirit. Probably due to fear, lack of initial zeal to win a soul and being discouraged by our personal challenges, but the truth is that the Holy Spirit is still making such arrangements today.
2. He reminds the soul winner of the scriptures appropriate to the particular sinner before him.
- In this instance, the Holy Spirit can also give a word that will meet the sinner at a definite need, and thereby drawing his attention towards God. For instance, the Holy Spirit led Jesus to ask the Samaritan woman about her husband, and this was an open door to her salvation.
3. The Holy Spirit quickens the scripture or the right word He had given proceeding from the soul winner’s lips and propels it like an arrow into the sinner’s heart. John 16:7
- Conviction for sin and confession of guilt invariably follow.
4. The Holy Spirit directs the penitent sinner to pray appropriately and thereafter witnesses forgiveness to his or her heart. Rom 8:14-16
5. The Holy Spirit comforts the new believer when problems and persecutions arise because of his/her faith. John 14: 16,17
6. The Holy Spirit guides the believer away from prevailing error into perfect truth. John 16: 13,14
- The experience of a believer who claims to be filled with the Holy Spirit and yet very easily and very often fall into sins and error is inconsistent with scripture truth.
1 John 2:27
7. The Holy Spirit seals the believer. Eph 4:30. The seal is a proof of ownership and authority of genuiness indicating that the soul is genuinely converted and belonging to God.
- The Holy Spirit gives assurance of sonship and security to the repentant sinner.
- Now converted, the new believer receives the seal of sonship by which he is able to draw near unto God freely and always.
The role of the Holy Spirit in the salvation of a soul is a great one. When He is not involved, either there would be no conversion at all or a counterfeit conversion would take place.
II. THE PURPOSE AND POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
The experience of being filled with the Holy Spirit spontaneously ties up with the possession of power and the responsibility of anointing for service. Holy Ghost anointing is for ministry.
- A truly anointed one cannot be dormant. Jesus after being anointed with the Holy Ghost and power went about doing good. Acts 10:38
- By the power of the Holy Ghost, you too can do a lot of good in your neighbourhood, office and local church.
- There are sinful souls to save and bleeding souls to heal, sorrowful souls to comfort and suffering souls to bless, lonely souls to cheer and needy souls to feed, perplexed souls to guide and distressed souls to relieve, redeemed souls to edify and oppressed souls to liberate. Anointing does not increase with inactivity. Don’t be idle with God’s power.
The Bible is filled with several examples of men and women who did great exploits for the kingdom of God through the power of the Holy Spirit. Right from the day of Pentecost, the apostles started preaching the gospel of the kingdom with great boldness and authority, and many souls are being won into the kingdom of God.
Have you received the power of the Holy Spirit? Then you must constantly look out for opportunities to preach the gospel, develop converts into disciples, meet the varied needs of people around you, and general fulfil a ministry of edification in your local church.
- With the baptism of the Holy Spirit comes power to:
1. Worship the Lord in a new tongue. Acts 2:1-4
2. Witness for Christ with great effect. Acts 4:33, 2:37
3. Wield the sword of the spirit with powerful results.
4. Work signs and wonders to confirm the gospel. Acts 6:8
5. Wax bold in the face of persecution. Acts 2:14, 22-24; 4:1-14
6. Wage and win spiritual warfare. Acts 16: 11-18
7. Win the most hardened sinners. Romans 15:18-20
8. Wait upon the Lord in prayer. Acts 4:23-31
9. Work efficiently in the various units available in God’s vineyard.
10. Weed out Satan’s tares that attempt to shoot up in your family and church. Acts 5:1-11; 8:18-20.
III. POSSESSING AND PRESERVING THE HOLY SPIRIT ANOINTING
Apostle Paul referred to the Holy Spirit’s anointing and power in the believer as “treasure in earthen vessels” 2 Cor 4:7. It means something highly valued, something to store up, not fritter away. If the power of the Holy Spirit is a treasure, then it can not be discovered on the street with ease nor in the valley of idleness, but must be diligently sought out.
Jesus tells us in His parable of the hidden treasure what to do when you discover a treasure: you sell all that you have, and buy it. Matt 13:44
-Do you value the power of the Holy Spirit enough to “sell off” your ease, your earthly pursuits, time, comfort and convenience in order to “buy it”? Isaiah 44:3
-Are you thirsty for God’s fullness? Thirsty enough to forsake all else in search of this divine anointing? Thirsty enough to pay the price of a pure heart, fervent faith, tarrying in prayer?
-Do you value the possession of Holy Spirit’s power above wealth, certificate, a rich wardrobe, church position, fleshly pleasures and such like things?
The conditions for receiving the power are very simple enough for you to fulfil.
- You must be born again. John 3:3-5. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit is upon “sons and daughters” of God, and not given to strangers to the covenant of grace.
- If you will be filled with the Holy Spirit, you must pray for pure heart first. A heart filled with selfishness and carnality, inward corruption and depravity, lustful passion and pride, cannot be a worthy place for the spirit of holiness.
- You must tarry in believing prayer. Luke 24:49. The Lord invites us to pray specifically for the Holy Spirit power. Luke 11: 9, 10, 13.
- Possessing the power must be followed up with plans for preserving it. You must turn away from the things that dissipate anointing if you would retain it. Carelessness in moral and words, fleshly indulgence, presumption, over-confidence, pride, prayerlessness, covetousness and love of money, must be avoided like plagues.
Remember once again that the power of the Holy Spirit is like a “treasure in earthen vessels.” A treasure should not be carelessly handled; you need to abide continually in God’s presence. Now that all is set, God is ready if you are. It is time to pray. Pray until you are endued with power from on high. When the power comes, be an effective witness for Christ. Start from where you are and remain with God as He leads you to other ground to cover.