Get to know Jesus, and keep close to Him.
He is your shepherd. He wants you to grow in Him, and to do this you need to abide in Him, through prayer, reading and studying the bible, and obedience.
I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:1-5
By abiding in Him as your source of your life, you will produce fruit.
The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. Gal 5:22-23
Jesus said to His disciples, before He went to Heaven
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Mat 28: 19-20
Jesus doesn’t expect us to do all this on our own, for he knows our weaknesses and limitations. He also knows that, without His help, we would all fail. This is a walk of faith: faith in Him, and faith in His strength within us.
Jesus promised us another helper.
If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. John 14:15-18
Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.
I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you. John 16:7-15
And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high. Luke 24:49
You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth. Acts 1:8
When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. Acts 2:1-4
The gift of the Holy Spirit is for all believers!
The Holy Spirit already dwells in you, as without Him you could not have committed your life to Christ. However, He wants to fill you to overflowing, to baptise you! This is a glorious experience, and following it you will find that your desire and love for God grows, the scriptures come to life, and you will experience greater understanding and wisdom. You will also grow a desire to share the good news of the Gospel with others.
And it happened that while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul passed through the inland country and came to Ephesus. There he found some disciples. And he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” And they said, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.” And he said, “Into what then were you baptized?” They said, “Into John’s baptism.” And Paul said, “John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus.” On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking in tongues and prophesying. Acts 19:1-6
While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. And the believers from among the circumcised who had come with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out even on the Gentiles. For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter declared, “Can anyone withhold water for baptising these people, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” And he commanded them to be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to remain for some days. Acts 10:44-48
Gifts of the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit will give gifts to you, gifts that are needed for the call God has on your life. It’s different for each person, and it often takes time to discover your particular gifts.
To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills. 1 Corin 12:7-11
Each person will experience the baptism of the Holy Spirit differently.
Speaking in Tongues
Not everyone will receive the gift of tongues. To many, it seems strange, and you may wonder what the point of this gift is.
Speaking in tongues is a way to pray when you don’t know how else to pray.
For one who speaks in a tongue speaks not to men but to God; for no one understands him, but he utters mysteries in the Spirit. 1 Corin 14:2
Speaking in tongues is our spirit praying to God:
For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prays” 1 Corin 14:14
Tongues are for Speaking, Praying and Singing to God
I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also 1 Corin 14:15-17
Speaking in tongues edifies your spirit.
He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself 1 Corin 14:4
Tongues can be interpreted by someone who has the gift of interpreting tongues.
To another many kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues. 1 Corin 12:10
My own experience of tongues is that I become aware of God’s presence and peace within me, I’m able to pray more easily, and by speaking in tongues I’m more likely to hear God’s small still voice speaking to me.
Paul, in the bible warns us, regarding the gifts of the Spirit:
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.
So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love. 1 Corin:13:1-13
Seek for the baptism of the Holy Spirit
I urge you to seek God concerning the baptism of the Holy Spirit. If you earnestly desire it, then pray, and keep praying. Ask trusted Christian friends to lay hands on you and pray for you to be filled with the Spirit.
And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him! Luke 11:9-13
Earnestly desire the gift of tongues, and every gift you need (God knows). You may have a desire for a certain gift – if so, ask for it.
There is nothing to fear – if you sense yourself wanting to speak strange words, let them come!
Whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life. John 4:14
Please let me know your thoughts, experiences, and any questions you have, in the comment section below.
Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen. Jude 1:24-25
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