Being filled with the Holy Spirit

This Sunday at King's Church I preached about being filled by the Holy Spirit, a guaranteed part of the deal that God has made with every Christian.

I grew up going to church where you stood up and sat down when you were told to, and certainly no-one ever shook or fell over. When I first visited a church where those kind of weird things happen I was fairly freaked out and stayed away from there for about a year. Over time, thanks to the patience of God, I've come to understand and experience the work of the Spirit in my life.

I've been helped so much in this by the teaching of Terry Virgo, whose position is summarised in the videos below and in the talk "Baptism in the Holy Spirit" which you can download from here.

Terry talks about the teachings of Martyn Lloyd-Jones, whose amazing book on this subject, Joy unspeakable, is summarised here. I expect that Francis Chan's Forgotten God and Terry's own forthcoming The Spirit-filled church will be helpful too, and I hope to get round to reading them soon.

Julian Adams is another guy whose wisdom and relationship with God provoke and help me. In this post he talks about some of the tensions between people who love the Bible and don't expect the Spirit to show up as He did in the New Testament, and those of us who do. He includes this provocative quote from Bill Johnson: "We sometimes value a book the early church did not have over a Person (the Holy Spirit) they did have." A couple of Julian's own comments to finish this off:

I was once rebuked by a pastor, who said "Julian my problem with your ministry is that you place too much emphasis on the Holy Spirit," to which I replied, "That’s because He is God."

A casual reading of both Luke and Acts record the activity of the Spirit dramatically. He is all over it. In fact He is all over the Bible! He wrote it after all. Contrary to what many people think, the Holy Spirit is not in direct opposition to the Bible. He moved men to write the Bible. There really is no difference between Word and Spirit. They were always meant to be together.