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Understanding the Holy Spirit

By Ronnie Wendt

Jesus called us to love Him and keep His commands, and in return He said, “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—the Spirit of Truth” (John 14:15-17). That advocate is the Holy Spirit.

But when we pray to be filled with the Holy Spirit, what are we really asking God for? In the words of theologian, Wayne Grudem, we are asking God for “an event subsequent to conversion in which a believer experiences a fresh infilling with the Holy Spirit that may result in a variety of consequences, including greater love for God, greater victory over sin, greater power for ministry, and sometimes the receiving of new spiritual gifts.” 

We are asking for the life transformation that occurs when the Holy Spirit fills us. When the Holy Spirit sweeps over us and breathes into us new life, we are united with the living Christ and controlled by the Holy Spirit rather than by the other forces of this world. When the Holy Spirit dwells within us, we are brimming with an attitude of joy and thanksgiving, and take on a posture of humility toward God and submission toward others. We move from a “me, me, me” posture and attitude, to one where we seek to serve others.

To be filled with the Holy Spirit, however, we must live our lives in obedience to God’s will. We cannot have the Holy Spirit within us and in our lives, if we are content to live without Him. We need to say ‘Yes’ to the Word and ‘No’ to ourselves and earthly temptations, and we need to do so again and again. Paul warns “do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead be filled with the Spirit” (Eph. 5:17). He then tells us how in verses19-21, “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always give thanks to God the Father for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” And, “submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” 


Do you struggle to understand how the Holy Spirit fills and empowers you? Just Between Us wants to help you on your journey, so we have put together a group of articles talking about how the Holy Spirit operates in our lives to encourage you in your journey!


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