Ephesians 5:18-21 ESV And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, (19) addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, (20) giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, (21) submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.
The Holy Spirit dwells within every believer. Some may be immature, weak and imperfect, but if we have been “born again” of the Spirit (See Jn.3:3-7), the Holy Spirit dwells in us (See 1 Cor.6:19, Rom.8:9).
It is one thing for us to have the Holy Spirit dwelling in us, but does the Holy Spirit "have us" that He may fill us with abundant life? The abundant life is not found in environment or circumstances, or in the things we may possess. It is found in the infilling of the Holy Spirit. “Be filled with the Spirit" (See Eph.5:18) is a command.
We may be filled many, many times. To be filled with the Holy Spirit is to be Spirit- possessed, Spirit-empowered, Spirit-led and Spirit–controlled. It is a yielding up our lives daily as we die to self and living according to God's will and ways.
1. We are filled with the Spirit that we might have joy.
2. We are filled with the Spirit for service.
3. We are filled with the Spirit for power to be a bold witness.
4. We are filled with the Spirit for the hour of persecution.
5. We are filled with the Spirit that we may “walk in the Spirit” and not fulfill the desires of the flesh.
6. We are filled with the Spirit that we may be led by the Spirit.
7. We are filled with the Spirit that we might have a song in our hearts.
8. We are filled with the Spirit that we might submit to one another.
How can we be filled with the Holy Spirit?
First: We must desire Him to fill us.
Second: We must ask Him to fill us.
Third: We must believe that He does fill us.
Fourth: We must yield up control of our mind/thoughts, emotions/feeling, will/choices, and our physical body to the will and ways of the Holy Spirit. This is called "dying to self." Paul said, "I die daily."
Ephesians 5:18 ESV And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit,
What is the obstruction that prevents Christians from walking out a Spirit-filled life? Certainly God our Heavenly Father does not want to withhold any good thing from His children. If there is a problem then it is due to our unwillingness to let God have His way in our lives. It is called “The Carnal Nature.”
Galatians 5:16-17 ESV But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. (17) For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do.
We sing and speak a lot about the LOVE of God, as we should. But there are not many songs concerning the WILL of God. All resistance to the WILL of God must be emptied out before we can maintain a “Spirit controlled,” “Spirit-filled” life. This resistance is sometimes hard to identify but it is known in the Bible as carnality or the “mind of the flesh,” which by the way is enmity or strife against God. We can call this carnality by what it really is, self-centeredness and rebellion!
Romans 8:6-8 ESV For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. (7) For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot. (8) Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
I know confessing believers who speak about their being rebellious like it is a badge of honor. The Scriptures tell us that rebellion is liken unto witchcraft.
1 Samuel 15:23 ESV For rebellion is as the sin of divination, and presumption is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, he has also rejected you from being king.”
Everything that comes from the Father comes to us from a heart of faith and a submissive heart. We cry out for the love of God. Try crying out that God give you the wisdom and understanding to walk in His will. You can know His love without being in His will. But if you are in His will you will also be in His love.
Charles Morris. Founder and Senior Pastor of RSIM USA.