Receiving the anointing
How can we experience and retain the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives?
The Holy Spirit had poured the love of God into their hearts. [Rom 5:5] He had baptised them with fire. [Luke 3:16]
Power and lifeAnd Jesus has sent the Holy Spirit to be with us to the end of the age. [Matt 28:20] God wants to touch us with the power and life of His Holy Spirit.
"Receive the Spirit," said Jesus as He breathed on the disciples. [John 20:22] And we too can receive the power of the Holy Spirit today. It often helps if you ask someone who knows the power of the Spirit to pray with you. They may lay hands on you and ask God to pour out the Holy Spirit on you. [Acts 8:17]
But you can receive the Holy Spirit by yourself. Just ask God to cleanse you from all sin through Jesus, then ask Him to fill you with the Spirit. Then "breathe" Him in. Jesus talked about how ready the Father was to give the Spirit to those who ask Him. [Luke 11:13]
Gifts of the SpiritOnce filled with the Spirit, people usually burst out in praise in 'new tongues', one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. [Acts 19:6] Prophecy, healing, and miracles are among the other gifts that the Holy Spirit brings for the good of the Church. [1 Cor 12:7-11]
It's not just our souls or spirits that are to know the presence of the Holy Spirit. God made our bodies and they will experience His life too! The first disciples felt God's power on their bodies when they were reeling around like drunken men! [Acts 2:13]
Many people fall over as the Holy Spirit comes upon them. [2 Chron 5:14] [Acts 9:4] [Acts 26:14] Arms and hands shake, there's a feeling of warmth in the fingers. There can be a feeling of deep joy, or laughter. [Psalm 126:2] Sometimes a wind springs up from nowhere. Buildings have even been known to shake. [Acts 2:2] [Acts 4:31]
SupernaturalAll are supernatural manifestations of the Holy Spirit's presence. Don't be surprised! He's the Spirit that was involved in Creation -- He's pretty powerful. [Gen 1:2] Things like that happen today, just as in biblical times.
Many Christians through past centuries have known the power of the Holy Spirit's anointing. John and Charles Wesley, the founders of Methodism, were among those who fell to the floor under the power of the Holy Spirit. The early Salvation Army knew the same power. Every religious revival in the past appears to have been accompanied by these physical manifestations of the Spirit's presence.
HealingWhen the Spirit comes in these ways, much can happen under the power of His anointing. Deep healings from the past. A new experience of God. A sense of awe at His presence.
"A real joy hit my being," wrote one member of the Jesus Fellowship after such an anointing in the Holy Spirit. "All the strength went from my knees and I fell to the ground. I found amazing love and joy for my Lord.
"Laughter in great waves rolled over me. It was so healing. Hurts and discouragements melted away. I was also very aware of my lack of depth in my walk with God and how much deeper He wanted me to go."
Demons?The presence of the Holy Spirit can lead to evil manifestations as well as holy ones. Just as in Jesus' day, demonic powers are stirred up by the presence of the Holy Spirit. [Luke 9:42] People may scream, they may tremble, or feel a sense of fear or hatred as the evil power is confronted. [Acts 8:7] [Luke 4:41]
Involvement with occult practices, drugs, and physical or sexual abuse are among the many happenings that may have left a person affected by evil powers. It's unlikely that they've actually taken over, but they certainly can make themselves known!
When the power of God is active these dark powers are challenged. The powers of evil are conquered in Jesus' Name and, with a prayer of command they can be told to go! And the person is set free to follow Jesus in a new way.
Anointed for serviceWe have to be obedient to God if we are to keep His anointing. The Spirit baptises us into Christ's Body, the church. [1 Cor 12:13] He joins us to our Christian brothers and sisters to be a 'live' church, committed to Him and one another.
The anointing of the Holy Spirit is not sent for personal wealth or selfish purposes. [James 4:3-5] The life of God slips away if we continue to live in a self-centred way. God sends the Holy Spirit so that we can follow Jesus and help others find His life. [John 14:15-17] Just as with the disciples on the Day of Pentecost, the anointing brings us power to serve
Let's all receive the power of the Spirit and follow Jesus!