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Meet Your Partner

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Meet Your Partner.doc                                                                                             SD21

April 27, 2008                                                                                                         File G2

The Believer’s Senior Partner  Part 1

From a message series by Pastor Jeff Brawner

Meet Your New Partner

First in a series on the Holy Spirit

 

Introduction

Before you were disciplined as a kid … did you ever get the — "This is going to hurt me more than it's going to hurt you" speech?

Were you ever tempted to say – "Yeah right! If you really feel that way … feel free to spank yourself!"

In John 16:7 Jesus says to his followers — "It is for your good that I am going away…"

I can hear the disciples saying,

"Yeah right, Jesus … did you ever hear the one about how the spank-er feels worse than the spank-ee?"

"Jesus … how in the world can you say we'll be better off with you gone … have you seen what we're like when you're not around … we're a mess!”

  • When you're not around we have relational problems! (ego/status)
  • When you're not around we have resource problems! (food/faith)
  • When you're not around we have resistance problems! — (your presence is the key to our convictions and courage!)

“Jesus … there's just no way it can be better for us for you to leave … are you sure about this????

The disciples were fearful and confused because they didn't hear — the rest of the story! Jesus was leaving … but He wasn't leaving them … alone!

John 16:7 — "But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you."

Earlier that evening Jesus made a similar pronouncement —

"…I will ask the Father, and he will give you another counselor to be with you forever, the Spirit of truth." (John 14:16,17)

The counselor Jesus was referring to was the Holy Spirit.

The disciples were soon to enter into a new partnership with the Holy Spirit that would radically revolutionize their lives, their relationships and their world!

Today we begin a new series simply titled —"Our Senior Partner." – this is from a series I read from Pastor Jeff Brawner

That's exactly what the Holy Spirit was for the disciples and the early church … and that's exactly who the Holy Spirit wants to be in your life and mine! – our senior partner--

For many, the Holy Spirit is the least known or understood person of the Trinity … He was that way for the disciples!

That's why Jesus wanted his followers to — meet and know the Holy Spirit in a personal and partnering way — the Lord wants the same for us!

 

Let's begin this series with 3 observations:

 

1. The Promise of a Senior Partner!

John 16:7 — "But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you."

The promise Jesus made about the Holy Spirit is revealing on two levels

 

 

A. The promise of Jesus reveals our need!

Let me ask you a few questions —

  • Have you ever made a dumb decision?
  • Have you ever stayed up late worrying about a situation you couldn't control?
  • Have you ever had people problems? (Do you ever feel like the cartoon of the lady with the frazzled hair, haggard expression, dark circles under her eyes ? her face is lined with care and the caption reads — "When I woke up this morning, I had one nerve left, and now you're getting on it!")
  • Do you ever mismanage your anger?
  • Have you ever had a hard time getting along with ? yourself?
  • Have you ever caved when it really counted?
  • Have you ever had a great chance to introduce someone to Jesus ? they were ready but you weren't and you blew it?

Jesus promised His disciples a counselor … a helper … a senior partner because He knew they couldn't handle life successfully without help … and neither can we!

 

B. The promise of Jesus reveals the Holy Spirit's — nature!

Jesus referred to the Holy Spirit as a — counselor (comforter)!

The Greek word is Parakletos! Parakletos is an incredibly rich word in the Greek language … in fact there isn't one English word that can capture all of its meanings and nuances! (It's literally a study all by itself)

What it means is one who comes alongside to help! To encourage! To equip! To compel!

Note carefully that the Holy Spirit wasn't something … not an “it” The Comforter (Parakletos) was someone … and so is the Holy Spirit! When Jesus spoke of the Holy Spirit he used personal pronouns like — "he and him!"

This personal nature of the Holy Spirit can be clearly seen in         2 Corinthians 14:14 — Paul writes: "May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all."

Key — The word translated 'fellowship' or 'communion' was used to describe a traveling companion or a close associate in a business venture … in other passages Paul refers to being — led or guided by the spirit!—a senior partner

It's important to understand that the Holy Spirit isn't an impersonal force … he wants to be as personal to us as Jesus was to the disciples!

That's why in John 14 Jesus refers to 'another counselor' … the Greek word 'another' means of the 'same kind' Jesus was!

Study the ways Jesus walked and worked with the disciples … that's the personal way the Holy Spirit wants to walk and work with us!

We not only need to understand the Promise of a Senior Partner, we also need to understand:

 

2. The Priorities of our Senior Partner!

The Holy Spirit has 3 great priorities for every one of us:

 

A. The Holy Spirit wants to help us — get right! (Salvation)

John 16:8 — "When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgement…"

It's the Holy Spirit who works in our hearts to convict or convince us of what's wrong … what's right … and what we need to do about it!

The Holy Spirit wants to help you get right with God!

      You cannot get it right without Him…

If you are feeling drawn to God it is the Work of the Holy Spirit in your mind…and you need to respond in faith!

 

B. The Holy Spirit wants to help us — grow right! (Sanctification) – Which means to stay right!

Healthy babies grow … if our child isn't growing we take them to the doctor to find out what's wrong!

Healthy believers grow … being born again or born from above speaks of a beginning not an end!

Physical and spiritual growth is a process … and the Holy Spirit is the power (or the enabler) of that process!

Romans 8:13 — "For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live…"

Growing up in God isn't a matter of me trying harder … it's a matter of me cooperating with a partner — the Holy Spirit who gives me sovereign strength!

A child doesn’t grow by trying to grow—a child grows because they eat and sleep and run and play and learn and they grow! Not by trying but by living!!!!

You too will grow up in Christ by the Power of the Spirit when you eat, sleep, run, play, learn—and you will grow in Christ because you live in Christ---you grow by living in faith!

      Not by working your way into some sort of state of mind!

C. The Holy Spirit wants to help us — go right! (Service)

Acts 1:8 — "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."

The Greek word translated 'Power' is 'dunimous' … we get our English word 'dynamic' and 'dynamite' from this word!

The real meaning of the word is more than explosiveness … it was a word that literally meant — ability! The most basic meaning is — The ability to do whatever needs to be done!

Don't miss it — Whatever the need or challenge we're faced with … the Holy Spirit is there to provide the ability to make it happen

  • Relationally -- with our spouse, kids, friends!
  • Physically -- when we need healing and help!
  • Emotionally -- when we're afraid, discouraged, struggling!
  • Spiritually -- when we're stuck in habits/patterns!

There's a third key —to getting to know our senior partner!

 

 

3. The Preparations for a Successful Partnership!

I see two key ways in which the disciples prepared themselves for the partnership Jesus promised … they're found in Acts 1

Jesus had given them a command —

"Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit." (Acts 1:4)

In Acts 1:12, 13 we read —

"Then they returned to Jerusalem from the hill called the Mount of Olives, a Sabbath day's walk from the city. When they arrived they went upstairs to the room where they were staying…"

 

 

A. The first key way they prepared themselves for the Promise of the Holy Spirit is simply this — They showed up! (Obedience!)

If God is going to work powerfully in our lives we've got put ourselves in the place where God can work in our lives!  Show up!  Be there!  Report for duty every day!

      Go to church—to worship, fellowship, learn

      Go to the Bible Classes--to learn, to fellowship, to worship

      Go to potlucks—to fellowship, to learn,

      Go to work with the Holy Spirit as your partner

            Go shopping with the Holy Spirit as your senior partner

Plan your future with the Holy Spirit as your guide and senior partner

      Show up and be present!

 

B. A second specific act of personal preparation can be seen in Acts 1:14 — "They all joined together constantly in prayer…"

They prayed up! (togetherness!)

There were two critical alignments needed if the disciples were to be empowered partners of the Holy Spirit —

1. They needed a one-ness with God … and prayer is vital to spiritual alignment! At the heart of prayer … is surrender … it's saying — "God I can't … but you can — I need you!"

"Our Father in heaven…" — gets our eyes and hearts going in the right direction — up … not in or out!  And gets our attention that we are in it together.  – OUR Father

2. They needed one-ness with each other … and prayer is vital to relational alignment!

Conclusion:

Commentator Lloyd Ogilvie writes:

"Note especially that they devoted themselves to prayer together. More than physical proximity, this means a spiritual unity. There were some deep tensions among them during and after Jesus' ministry among these strong-willed people. Until they were together on their knees, fully open to God and each other, the Holy Spirit could not be given. Notice that Jesus' mother and brothers were there. There had not always been appreciation and affirmation between them and the disciples or between them and Jesus. Now a healing was taking place as part of the prelude to power.

I have never known a contentious (fighting group of people) to receive the Holy Spirit. Nor have I ever seen a church in which division and disunity prevailed receive the blessing of the Holy Spirit. If we want power from the Holy Spirit as individuals, we need to do a relational inventory: Everyone forgiven? Any restitution to be done? Any need to communicate healing to anyone? The price seems high … but it's a bargain price for what can happen through Pentecost power."


The Believer’s Senior Partner

Part One

“Meet Your Partner!”

1. The promise of a Senior Partner!   John 16:7

The Promise of Jesus reveals —                                                   

The Promise of Jesus reveals the —                                       

 

 

2. The priorities of our Senior Partner!

The Holy Spirit wants to help us —                                      

The Holy Spirit wants to help us —                                      

The Holy Spirit wants us help us —                                      

 

 

3. The preparations For A Successful Partnership!

We must —                                                                            

We must —                                                                            

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