Jesus said, "I will send my helper the Holy Spirit who will guide you into all truth" (John 14:16-17). The Holy Spirit is also described as our Comforter, our source of wisdom, our Helper, and our Guide.
In the Old Testament (before God sent Jesus into the world to rescue us), God spoke to people through prophets. The prophets were a special group of people who would hear from God in dreams or visions and then were tasked to take those messages to the people. Sometimes hundreds of years would pass before the prophets had a new message to share.
In the New Testament we read about Jesus coming to rescue us. Because he left believers the Holy Spirit, we no longer only hear from God through prophets. We have access to him all day, every day. The Bible says the Holy Spirit lives inside us when we decide to follow Jesus. That means God is not only with us, but he is in us!
The Holy Spirit is a creative, life-giving force that empowers believers to accomplish what God has asked them to do. As we grow in our relationship with God and begin to understand our purpose, the Holy Spirit will lead and guide us on that journey.
There are gifts of the Holy Spirit that are available to every person who follows Jesus. The Bible says these gifts are given by God, and they don't expire (Romans 11:29). Have you ever tried to refuse food from a grandma? She won't listen. She'll give you the food anyway. There is nothing you can do to stop a determined grandma with cookies! It's kind of like that with the gifts of the Spirit. You can say no thanks or even believe that you aren't good enough to have the gifts, but you have them. They've been given to you by God, and he's not taking them back. It's just up to you if you want to use them.
Some of the gifts include giving wise advice, receiving special knowledge for a situation, having unusual faith for an assignment from God, praying for the healing of the sick, the power to perform miracles, the ability to prophesy, and speaking an unknown language. For more info on the gifts, check out this passage. The important thing to remember is that God is the Giver of gifts, and Scripture tells us that he is a good Father and the best gift giver. (Luke 11:11-13). So you can trust that if you ask, you'll receive.
So, what are you asking God for? Long ago, the prophet Joel prophesied God would pour out his Spirit on all people — all people! This promise was fulfilled soon after Jesus rose again and returned to heaven. One of the last things he did was ask his followers to go to Jerusalem and wait for this incredible promise to be fulfilled. The promise of the baptism in the Holy Spirit became a reality in Acts 2. This same promise stands today for you to receive and will give you a great deposit of God's love for you, confidence, and boldness to share the gospel message with others.
It's the Holy Spirit that changes us and helps us grow [link to From Old to New]. It's not about you working harder to be better. In fact, it's kind of the opposite. It's about recognizing your need for a Savior and letting the Holy Spirit change you from the inside out.
This baptism of the Holy Spirit is something you pray and ask Jesus for — he is the one who baptizes you in the Holy Spirit. And when this happens, he activates the many gifts of the Holy Spirit found in the Bible (1 Corinthians 12:4-11). Feel free to call Worship Center (717.656.4271) and ask for a pastor to share more with you concerning the wonderful gift of the Holy Spirit or get in touch with a pastor by filling out this form.