Google+ 05/18/13 We Can Only Lose It, If We Refuse It!

Luke 24:48-50

 

You are witnesses of all these things.

“And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised.

But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven." 

Then Jesus led them to Bethany, and lifting his hands to heaven, he blessed them. 

 

Tomorrow is Pentecost, the day of celebrating the coming of the Holy Spirit.  The physician Luke records the details of Christ's life like no other writer in the Bible.  Today, we find Jesus addressing the disciples and "changing the rules!"  Jesus proclaims to them that they are now His witnesses to all the world,  and because they are, He is sending the Holy Spirit to indwell them as God has promised.  Wow, stop and celebrate that statement for a moment!  Look at everything we learn from those two lines of Scripture.  We are God's people and hence His witnesses to the world.  We have just been appointed as the evangelists for the First Christian Church of the World!  Then, we discover that God continues to keep His promises to us.  No longer do we need to be in fear that we can lose the Holy Spirit, due in part to our sin.  God sends the Holy Spirit through Jesus and tells us that the only way we can lose it, is if we refuse it!  The next instruction is extremely important.  Jesus tells them to stay in Jerusalem and wait on the Holy Spirit.  We are no good at waiting.  We want everything right now.  We want instant gratification.  Sometimes we just need to wait.  Jesus says so!  Even if we were to go and teach about Jesus in our best voice, we would be completely ineffective without the power of the Holy Spirit.  So, here comes the major point from our Scripture that is hard to write and difficult to read.  Many of us, and our churches, are simply not effective tools for Jesus.  Why?  We try to operate without the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  We act on our will and ideas and not God's.  As a result, we can hurt people deeply.  As a minister, I need to share with you that I rarely encounter people that do not believe in God, at least on some level.  They are not regularly blaspheming God.  Rather, they are dodging the bullets that we Christians are firing at them, in human form.  As they enter our church building, what do they see?  Unfortunately, without the Holy Spirit, they will not see Jesus, yet we ministers continue to allow ungodly behavior to lead our churches.  Yes, I said lead.  When we elevate someone to a position of leadership in a church who is not filled with the Holy Spirit, we are in big trouble.  The excuse most often given for why this happens is that the person "was willing and available!"  Of course they were.  Satan is always on the job trying to influence all of us.  When Satan finds any of us that are vulnerable, because we have refused the Holy Spirit, he goes to work making our thoughts his thoughts.  So, sometimes we need to just wait.  Let's do what the disciples did.  Let's wait and while we do, let's praise God.  As we praise God, we will be indwelled by the Holy Spirit.  Others will see Jesus in us and realize the greatest message we can proclaim in our churches today relating to the Holy Spirit.  "We Can Only Lose It if We Refuse It!"