What’s Your Power Source, Part 2

Photo by Ian Stauffer on Unsplash

This morning we were in Acts Chapter Four asking the question, “What’s Your Power Source?” We will shortly be in Acts Chapter Five as we continue this subject.

I believe the weakness of the Church in America today can be attributed to many programs and many human solutions, but we pay little attention to God the Holy Spirit. We fill ourselves with our own talents and abilities. I was reading an article the other day where the Author said something like this:

God was invented by man when we lived in simpler times. But now that we have become technologically advanced, now that we have medical science, now that we make our own miracles, we no longer need God. God is obsolete. We are our own God.”

I think this is foolishness – and delusion. As Solomon said, “What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9, ESV). Solomon was caught up in the accomplishments and abilities of his advanced age. Solomon in his wisdom did much good in Israel. And yet, without God, Solomon said “vanity of vanities; all is vanity. What profit hath a man of all his labor which he taketh under the sun?” (Ecclesiastes 1:2-3, KJV). If God is not in it, if you live a life with no greater purpose than to satisfy yourself, in time life itself seems meaningless! Solomon for all of his riches and all of his knowledge, ended Ecclesiastes with:

Ecclesiastes 12:13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.

This is why Jesus gave the Church, and every Christian, the Holy Spirit. God wants you to be filled not with fear, nor with pride, but with His Holy Spirit. Please turn with me to John chapter 14. I feel led to talk about the Holy Spirit prior to going to Acts chapter 5. First, let’s examine …

Who Or What Is The Holy Spirit?

Some people think the Holy Spirit is a power, much like electricity or nuclear energy. But the Bible makes it very clear that the Holy Spirit is a PERSON. The Holy Spirit is the THIRD Person of the Trinity of God. In the commonly named Great Commission Jesus told us His Church:

Matthew 28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

When a believer is baptized in water, we are baptized in the name or by the authority of God.

Note that “In The NAME” is SINGULAR, not PLURAL.

Jesus noted that the authority by which we are baptized is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost {Pneuma, Spirit}. All three Persons of the Godhead are given equal authority and deference. As we study the Holy Spirit in the life of Christ, we see that Jesus did the miracles He did through the power of the Holy Spirit. Pastor Mark Jones for Desiring God Ministries notes:

Christ’s inseparable companion during his earthly ministry as a true man was the Holy Spirit. Therefore, at all of the major events in the life of Christ, the Holy Spirit took a prominent role. The Holy Spirit was the immediate, divine, efficient cause of the incarnation (Matthew 1:18, 20; Luke 1:35). This was a fitting “beginning” for Christ since Isaiah spoke of the Messiah as one endowed with the Spirit (Isaiah 42:1; 61:1). … ”

The Bible tells us that, though Jesus is God in Human Flesh, the miracles He did were through the power of God the Holy Spirit. We read:

Acts 10:38 …. God {the Father} anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy {Spirit} and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.

The Holy Spirit is God. God the Father anointed God the Son with God the Holy Spirit. Jesus Himself said:

Matthew 12:28 if it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

Jesus did not use His own divine power to heal or to cast out demons. Jesus used the power of the Holy Spirit. That is, the Holy Spirit, Who is God, indwelt the frame of Christ, and operated through the Messiah.

As Jesus allowed the Spirit to empower Him, He wants us to allow the Spirit to empower us!

When Jesus prepared to go to the Cross of Calvary, He began to introduce the Holy Spirit to His disciples. Jesus told them:

John 14:15-18 If ye love me, keep my commandments. 16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him: but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. 18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.

Word Study: Jesus said that if we loved Him and kept His commandments (He is LORD), then He would, in turn, pray to the Father, and the Father would send “another Comforter. The Holy Spirit is called the “παράκλητος paraklētos, One Who Comes Alongside To Assist You. Our Lord Jesus often came alongside the suffering and the sinner to assist them, to lift them up, to encourage them, to teach them, and if needed, to rebuke them. The Holy Spirit is another Comforter like Jesus was a comforter while on this earth. Just as the Father sent Jesus to this earth to give His life for our sins, the Father sends the Holy Spirit to those who obey Jesus’ commandments. The Comforter, when He comes, will not leave.

Jesus said, that HE may abide with you for ever.

As Jesus is a Comforter, the Holy Spirit is a Comforter.
As Jesus is a Person sent by the Father,
the Holy Spirit is a Person sent by the Father.

The Spirit is not an IT but a HE. The Holy Spirit is not just called Comforter, but also the Spirit of truth. It is the Holy Spirit of God Who moved the Prophets to speak and write the Scripture. Peter tells us:

2 Peter 1:21 … the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy {SPIRIT}.

Word Study: The King James translators alternated the translation of pneuma {Spirit} with the word “Ghost”. David Crowder has a song out called “I Know A Ghost”. I like David Crowder, but he’s no theologian. The better translation of pneuma is SPIRIT. That’s what I will use throughout the rest of this sermon.

The Holy Spirit is the ultimate Writer of the Scripture.

Jeremiah 31:31-32 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: 32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord:

But when this text is quoted in the New Testament, we read:

Hebrews 10:15 Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before, 16 This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them;

And in Isaiah 6:8-9 I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. 9 And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.

But when quoted by Paul in Acts 28:25-26 … Well spake the Holy Ghost by {Isaiah} the prophet unto our fathers, 26 Saying, Go unto this people, and say, Hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and not perceive:

When our Lord Jesus quoted Psalm 110:1, He said David himself said by the Holy Ghost, The Lord said to my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool” (Mark 12:36). When Peter quoted the Psalms that Prophesied the betrayal of Jesus by Judas (Psalm 41:9; Psalm 55:12-15), Peter said the Holy {Spirit} by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas” (Acts 1:16).

I could go on and on, for there are numerous references like those I just quoted. But we have seen enough to know it is the Holy Spirit that communicated the Scripture to us through the Prophets. Jesus told His disciples, ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be IN you. The Holy Spirit would come to take Jesus’ place. He would walk with the Apostles and all who believe on Jesus. The Spirit would INDWELL the believer, lifting us up, and empowering us just as Jesus did.

The Lord said, I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. When the Holy Spirit comes to us, He represents Christ Jesus so exactly that it is as if Jesus Himself is inside us. The Spirit represents Jesus, just as Jesus represented the Father.

John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy {Spirit}, whom the Father will send in my name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

The Holy Spirit comes to the believer to teach us the things that Jesus Christ said. Jesus said “He shall bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you”. Jesus reiterates this again in:

John 15:26-27 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of me: 27 And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.

The Holy Spirit will testify of Jesus, just as the Disciples were to testify of Jesus. The Spirit speaks to us, and we speak to the world. That is the arrangement. We share the Gospel, as the Spirit shares the Christ. While Jesus was on this earth ministering, the Holy Spirit came at times and left at times. But once Jesus left this earth, the Holy Spirit came to indwell God’s people. Jesus said:

John 16:5-8 But now I go my way to him that sent me; and none of you asketh me, Whither goest thou? 6 But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart. 7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him unto you. 8 And when He is come, He will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:

Word Study: The Holy Spirit came to reprove(ἐλέγχω elénchō), that is, “to convict, convince, refute, or correct”. The Holy Spirit would work in conjunction with the disciples as they witnessed Christ. The Spirit would only speak truth. Jesus said:

John 16:13-14 Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will shew you things to come. 14 He shall glorify me: for He shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.

The Holy Spirit came to guide the Church into all truth. The Spirit is repeatedly referred to by Jesus as a He. Not a SHE or an IT, but a He.

Do Not Lie To The Spirit Of Truth

The Holy Spirit is a PERSON, not a POWER. The Spirit can be grieved (Ephesians 4:30). The Spirit can be sinned against (Isaiah 63:10). The Spirit can be quenched or suppressed (1 Thessalonians 5:19). You can also lie to the Spirit of God, a very dangerous thing to do. Turn with me to:

Acts 5:1-4 But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, 2 And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles’ feet. 3 But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land? 4 Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.

So what is happening in Acts chapter 5? Our Lord Jesus has ascended to Heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God the Father making intercession for His Church (Romans 8:34). The Holy Spirit was sent to the Church on the Day of Pentecost to indwell the believer in Christ. The Scripture says:

Romans 8:9 … if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

As the early Church is gathering, believers are together, and had all things common; (Acts 2:44) And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. No one is making the believers do these things. The Church is loving, and love demands doing good. As people sell things, and bring the sale of the items into the Church, two followers known as Ananias and Sapphira conspire against the Kingdom of God. They could have kept the money for the sale. Or they could have specified they were only donating a part of the land sold. They didn’t do this. Ananias and Sapphira decided to pretend they were giving all the money from the sale when they only gave a part.

And the Holy Spirit knew it. The Spirit alerts Peter to what is going on. Peter says,

Acts 5:3 … Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy {Spirit}, and to keep back part of the price of the land?

You cannot lie to an IT. You cannot lie to a door, a wall, a rock, or electrical energy. Peter said:

Acts 5:4 Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.

Ananias had free will, and could choose to have honestly withheld the money, withheld part of the money, or could give all of the money. No lie is needed!

But Ananias lied to the Spirit of Truth. Peter put it clearly. He said, thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God. The Holy Spirit is God, and Ananias lied to God. Beloved, you ought not ever lie to God. God sees the heart. We look on the OUTWARD, but “the LORD sees not as man sees. The LORD looks on the HEART” (1 Samuel 16:7). We read:

Acts 5:5-6 And Ananias hearing these words fell down, and gave up the ghost: and great fear came on all them that heard these things. 6 And the young men arose, wound him up, and carried him out, and buried him.

Nothing breaks up a camp meeting like people dropping dead! Beloved, sin can kill you. In fact, sin will kill you. “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). Ananias should have known better! When we partake of the Lord’s Table, I always warn you against “eating the bread or drinking the cup unworthily” (1 Corinthians 11:27). To do so can bring sickness and early death. The Corinthians did this, and the Apostle said “for this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep {die}” (1 Corinthians 11:30). It is a dangerous thing to blaspheme God. It can be a fatal thing to blaspheme God the Holy Spirit! We continue:

Acts 5:7-9 And it was about the space of three hours after, when his wife, not knowing what was done, came in. 8 And Peter answered unto her, Tell me whether ye sold the land for so much? And she said, Yea, for so much. 9 Then Peter said unto her, How is it that ye have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord? behold, the feet of them which have buried thy husband are at the door, and shall carry thee out.

When Sapphira comes in, she doesn’t know that her husband is dead. Peter asks her what the land sold for. When Sapphira parrots her husband, Peter tells her How is it that ye have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord? Sapphira along with her husband lied to the Holy Spirit of God, the Third Person of the Trinity. She died and was laid to rest alongside of her husband (verse 10). What effect did this have on the growing Church?

Acts 5:11-12 And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as heard these things. 12 And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people; (and they were all with one accord in Solomon’s porch.

The Church experienced the “fear of the Lord”. That is, they all had respect and reverence for the things of God. When the Holy Spirit is active in the lives of the members of the Church, God is respected and His Word upheld. The blessing of the Church is in every believer being yielded to the Word of God and the Spirit of God. We end with this:

Acts 5:14-16 And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women.) 15 Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them. 16 There came also a multitude out of the cities round about unto Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed every one.

Let us draw closer to God the Holy Spirit and the Word of truth this New Year. Let us do this for the glory of God our Savior. Amen and Amen.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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