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What You'll Discover in this Episode:


181: Being Filled With The Holy Spirit


The Person Seeking Counsel Needs To Know The Holy Spirit Is Available To Them!


In today's episode, we discuss the results of being filled with the Holy Spirit, such as:

  • change
  • boldness
  • empowerment
  • spiritual strength

These are often the things which those seeking biblical counsel are missing in their Christian life.

People are sensing there should be more fullness in the Christian life. It comes by the Holy Spirit. Our efforts as Biblical Counselors will be weak and ineffective unless empowered by the Holy Spirit ourselves through constant reading, studying and meditating on the Word of God, and calling on Him in prayer, as we are going to see in today’s study. 

  • I’m getting so much out of this series! It has been so helpful how Jeff has been breaking down things like:
    1) abusing the Holy Spirit and quenching the Holy Spirit
    2) One time baptism and many times filled
    3) speaking in tongues that proclaim the wonderful, mighty works of God that point to Jesus Christ and prayer language that only God understands
    Also, the words in, with, upon how they are synonymous, and we need to get an understanding of biblical terminology. (rightly dividing the word of truth)
    As I was listening, I was thinking, “It’s yielding, submitting to the Holy Spirit daily (even moment by moment at times) to be effective instruments.
    And the 2 illustrations are right on!
    1) the barrel of water and the cup.
    2) the sailboat.
    When you used the word inundated, I started looking up definitions. LOL

  • I like the analogy that Jeff gives of the sail boat, that we lift the sail and The Holy Spirit is the wind that moves us and guides us in the right direction and to the finish line of Gods will. He uses our actions as instruments to align and to complete His work when we are in the Spirit. The power of the Spirit is the only explanation for ordinary people doing extraordinary things. I love this series, it feels like it was tailor made just for me. Though I am sure it is having great impact on everyone listening and those we share it with.

  • Being filled with the Spirit, when we are and when we are not; when we are, we are washed away, and HE fills every area in us. When we are not, we can ruin someone’s walk and our own. Maybe ruin is too harsh but we definitely can steer in the wrong direction. This is why it is so important to seek Scripture, meditate on it, and apply it into our lives, asking God to move in us and fill us, leading us to where, and what HE shall have done, for HIS Glory, HIS purpose. Just as HE used others in our own very lives, HE will use us as weel, we need to have faith and power on HIGH from HIM.

  • 1. I really appreciate the fact that you said the power from the Holy Spirit is to be a witness to Jesus the Christ. That’s what the holy Spirit enables a person to be.
    2. Also agree that it’s only ever the holy Spirit who can enable that. Everything else is manufactured by the flesh. The Christian life is too difficult without the holy Spirit. It’s impossible.
    3. The application to biblical counselling is as you said that I don’t have it in me to counsel another, but in faith I trust the holy Spirit to work through me. Both humility and faith. Only God knows the heart and what an individual needs from him and his word.
    4. But also as mentioned we engage the mind . We have redeemed minds and we are to engage reason while ministering to others. As long as we are trusting God and using reason. Not trusting reason and using God. (Cf john Lennox mathematician and theologian. )
    And that’s where I believe we peruse two parallel paths God’s will. God’s word God’s holy Spirit. And the putting off of the flesh. And some guidelines or principles are ok as long as we are not placing our confidence in them. Our confidence is in a relationship with the risen Christ. In the power of the Holy Spirit. To the glory of the Father.

  • I love how you can feel the presence of the Holy Spirit from within us as we seek his direction. He will always fill us when we ask and earnestly seek his guidance. God desires our lives to be filled with His Holy Spirit in all areas as we learn the need to draw closer to him. He needs us to bear witness to His power as a daily testimony for Him. Staying connected through scripture is a lifeline for us to live and move by. The spirit will give us strength and knowledge as we remain connected to Him. When we feel alone and seek him, He will cover us in his love and fill us as he lifts us into more understanding. Being connected gives us the boldness to proclaim the truth of his word, the empowerment to stand firm, and the strength to endure.

    • Hi Kristen, I also love how the presence of the Holy Spirit feels. I also really enjoy encountering others who are filled with the Spirit. It can really stoke the flame in my heart for sharing the word. I too find that scripture and prayer is the lifeline to live and move by. Great thoughts thanks for sharing!

  • The controversy of the different forms of being filled with the Holy Spirit is a heated one, and I value Pastor Jeff’s position on it. There is one Holy Spirit, and though He is personal, and will work in individuals in different ways at different times, He does not change. Therefore, we can believe that the Scriptures accounts of how he fills, works, empowers, and equips believers can be applied to how He still is doing His ministry today.
    I have personally visited a church years ago where we were instructed to pray in tongues for a half hour every day, and the message included a severe warning for those who had not had an experience of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, leaving me confused as a newer believer. It led me to search the Scriptures on the topic of the filling of the Holy Spirit, and what it produces, and I think Pastor Jeff’s stance summarized what I found fairly well.
    As believers, we are privileged to be given the indwelling Holy Spirit to empower and equip us for godly living, but there are moments where we will walk with Him (be filled with the Holy Spirit), and where we will allow our flesh to lead us and quench His work in our hearts.
    I love Luke 11:32 “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!” The Holy Spirit will faithfully fill us and move in us according to God’s will, and the degree to which we willingly participate with Him in doing God’s work. Such a beautiful promise!

    • Erin, yes! I love that verse as well. Us as believers and followers of Christ, just need to ask and believe HE will provide. God’s Word says in James 4:2 “You have, because you ask not” We fully have the Spirit, alive and well and ready to be imparted to us, through us and with us.

    • Hi Erin. I love that you said HE does not change. So very important for us to remember as we seek His kingdom and righteousness. I also love Luke 11:32 as it has been instrumental in my walk. I also love Hebrews 4:12 (NKJV) because the Holy Spirit used that verse to turn me around in my walk years ago.

  • I gave my heart to Christ at a Pentecostal church that had a strong leaning towards the evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit was speaking in tongues. As I matured and grew in Christ I realized that this was a denominational doctrine. I had to be careful that I did not throw out the baby with the bath water. After reading the Bible and years of study I could not agree more with Pastor Jeff. As counselors we need to rely on the power of the Spirit in us if we are to have any significant impact with our counselee’s. I do not believe we can fulfill the command in Romans 12:2, to not be conformed to this world and to be transformed by the renewal of your mind if we are not filled on a continual daily basis with the Holy Spirit . His power gives us strength to renew our minds and to focus on Christ every day. His power in us will in turn help our counselee’s to rely on His power in them and not their own.

    • Don, I have found that to be true in many Penecostal churches that this is a doctrine they are firmly rooted in – that the only evidence of being saved is by the speaking in tongues. While I love my Penecostal brothers and sisters, on this issue we always have had to agree to disagree since I cannot see this written plainly in the Scriptures. I think what you have experienced is just one more reason why all of us must be responsible to be biblically literate. To know what the Word of God says because we have studied the Scriptures ourselves.

      • It is so difficult to navigate those doctrinal differences that can be quite offensive if we allow them. I have had fellow believers of different denominations tell me “How can you call yourself a Christian if…” and it was difficult to stay humble. I think of Paul’s exhortation to the Corinthians where he calls them out for saying “‘I am of Paul,’ or ‘I am of Apollos”, etc.” We are all one body, and the differences matter, but are the Lord’s to sort out in us. “Agreeing to disagree” is easy to say, but difficult to truly live out! I appreciate your response, and it just echos the call for us to all be about Christ, and searching out/knowing Him more all the time.

    • Thank you for you comments Don. I agree the holy Spirit is the only person who can help us to understand scripture and apply it to our lives. As he teaches us about the Father and who we are in his son. I love Romans 12. 1-2.

    • Don, I too grew up Pentecostal. I understand the strong leaning of tongues, to the point as a child it terrified me. I witnessed some weird things and weird rules. As I grew older, I knew that God was someone to trust but it was always heavily ingrained by my grandfather that I am only saved if I speak in tongues. As I did not ever do so as a child or even unto my young adolescent, I was constantly looked down upon, making me feel shame and so much more. The abuse of the Holy Spirit that took place saddens me. Later growing up into adulthood and finding Christ at 25 years old, (At my first Calvary Chapel) was something I had never experienced. I was free, I was new, and I was saved! The church I was saved in taught The Scripture in its entirety. Really showing and teaching the congregation just how God indented His Spirit to be used.

      • It’s interesting because I did not grow up in a Pentecostal church. But as of a few months ago we have gotten involved with a group that has Pentecostal roots, we were baptized in the Holy Spirit, pray in tongues now but we have noticed some emphasis on things that have caused questions. So, we have been studying and the Holy Spirit is answering our questions through this series. Praise God!

    • Don, I love the reference to Roman 12:2. You make a great point on the need to be filled continuously to live this out. This is one of my life versus that continually challenges me to lean in to Christ and the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Also I appreciate you sharing your early church experience.

  • We worship God in spirit and truth! It would be absurd for us to think we only need to read the word once and it would be enough. We read, study and meditate on the word of truth, throughout our lives, so too the spirit comes upon us, empowering us constantly throughout our lives. The work of the Spirit is so powerful, the enemy wants us to either abuse or deny it instead of surrender to it in truth and unfortunately many denominations have complied. Thank you for the encouragement of trusting God to fill and empower in the Spirit! So refreshing!!

    • I agree Doretha. It is absurd to think that throughout our lives we are not continually refilled and empowered. Like a vehicle we get power only as long as the tank has gas. Like a car we continually need to be filled if we are going to have any power to operate.

    • Praising God with you for the ongoing work of His Spirit in our lives. I am also encouraged to continue to trust God always, in all things, at all times.

    • It’s so true that the enemy is behind so many of the controversies surrounding these issues and pervading the church. It breaks my heart to see the way that whole denominations can be so heavily influenced by unbiblical notions, to the point of outright heresy in some cases. Finding that balance between accepting differences of doctrine and ringing the alarm bell for something not inherently laid out in the Scripture can be tricky! So thankful that the Spirit of the living God is waging war against the enemy and His schemes, and will give us the discernment necessary as we seek Him with sincerity.

  • Hey Everyone,

    I like when Pastor Jeff talked about the mission field and the things we hear from others who have gone about the work of the Holy Spirit. Reminded me of Ethiopia. Not knowing the language, it was a bit challenging to see the work of the Holy Spirit over their tribal ceremonial practices. There was definitely some cross-over. But, I also remember as a child reading Scripture whenever I found a Bible (we did not have one nor attend church), not understanding what I was reading, however, those words, Gods words were in my heart. I know that is the work of the Holy Spirit. I know that God worked in their lives too despite their environment and through the Holy Spirit, He penetrated their hearts.

    • Anita, yes, God works in all various ways. Children pick up on God’s word and the stories’ remembrance, and those spiritual seeds are planted. Just like Jesus said in Mathew 19:14, the kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children. The Holy Spirit is with us each day, and as we grow, we learn the discernment and skills to hear from him daily as we call upon him. The Holy Spirit can work in many different forms to fit each individual.

  • In interesting thought that came to mind while Jeff was mentioning that “We like formulas, God doesn’t use formulas.” I wonder if formulas give us too much of a sense of control: if I can do this and that then this will result and that’s what I want. Thoughts?

    I think I have been living under the mentality that I can do it myself, or that I am supposed to be able to walk in the Spirit – yet not with the power of the Spirit. This is something I have been learning to renew my mind on – to think more that the Spirit is the one where the fruit of the Spirit come from. I do not make those fruits grow myself, I am simply the branch – the branch bears nothing on its own. Thank you Jeff for speaking on this, that Christ promises to give us His Spirit to work in us His good and pleasing will. I pray that God will soften my heart, open my understanding, and dwell in me to do His good will by His power, and that I would acknowledge Him in all my ways.

    • Hi Kayla,

      I agree in some ways about the formulas. Science is a way to make sense of things. It might not be 100% control issues but maybe a way to make sense of our surroundings, like knowing how something works. That tangible, visual thing. The Holy Spirit isn’t tangible in the way everything else in our lives are. Things we see, taste, touch, smell..etc. God, who is more expansive than the universe He created, how do we use our senses to understand Him. Probably why we have so many theories on ‘the beginning’. What do you think?

      • Hi Anita! I would agree that science (“knowledge” often from study) does give us insights into discovering how things work – it’s a wonderful outcome of studying the world around us. My definition of formula (in my other comment) was meant more so as a set of steps to accomplish the goal desired – not necessarily a scientific formula of controlled testing for an outcome.
        I’ll hook onto what you said here, “The Holy Spirit isn’t tangible in the way everything else in our lives are.” I think that is a great statement. He is outside of all our control, yet has a personal dwelling in us as His chosen people. Creating formulas (or a set of goals, rules, patterns, or principles) for us to follow allow for us to create them ourselves based on what we want and what we think we need or should have – it may cater to a legalistic approach to “how to live life”; it allows for us to set goals that are attainable by our own efforts. God has a much higher mind and much higher ways than us, and can and will work outside of our efforts and accomplish His will. I think Jeff said this, we can’t fit God into a box.
        I think one of the main ways we can understand Him is by reading His Word and thinking about what He says, what He meant, and the purpose of His revelation.
        _I think we were talking from two different definitions of formula, so I hope this clarified at least where I was coming from; since I wasn’t sure. I only have one theory about “The Beginning” (I am defining that as the Creation of the universe and physical earth): God, in all His holy power and authority and wisdom, spoke/commanded these things to be and they were. In six days, God created the heavens and the earth and all that is in them, and the seventh day He rested and blessed it. Thank you for your reply and I look forward to another one!

    • I agree Kayla. If we have a formula we can check of the box that I have completed everything I need to do. This gives me complete control over what I need to do. Great insight.

    • I agree kayla. This is something that I think about often. I think our flesh does like formulas. The challenge is as Jesus spoke about outward regulations don’t change a person’s heart.
      How do you give a person a formula to forgive those who abuse them or love those who reject them? And yet this is what the lord commands. As you point out it’s only in an abiding relationship that we are able to live as he would have us live.

  • I like how it was pointed out that the bible specifically states things that are only possible with the power of the Holy Spirit like being a witness. Its encouraging and something great to note and point people to when someone thinks they dont have power in their lives. If we are Christs then the Spirit is free to be poured out in and through our lives, He is not just with or in us but comes upon us in a way that the world takes notice.

  • “now go out and do it”, Having recently been studying Romans 6,7,8 when anyone agrees with God’s word but tries to step out into it in their own desires and strength, Paul says its not victory we find but a war within our members. In reality Christ has freed us and given us the victory and that is led and empowered by the Holy Spirit. We cannot underestimate the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer and forget that without Christ -as John 15:5 says- we can do nothing.

    • I meant to post this on the previous episode but i am liking how these pod casts are building and connecting together, this comment almost works for this.

      • I hear ya, Nathan. It is so amazing to see how many times it is talked about that God has the power and gives us His power to save us, sanctify us, grow us, and give us what we need to be His instruments of righteousness. God gets all the glory because He alone is worthy of all glory, but He so desires to use us and share His glory in that way of being His witnesses.

      • Nathan, as I read your earlier post today (10/25) I am grateful for the reminder the victory has been won and the Holy Spirit provides the power to walk in that victory. It is a simple and powerful truth and one I need to cling to right now. Praising God for using your slightly delayed comment to quiet me with His love.

  • “Anybody that is being a Godly witness, that power comes from the Holy Spirit it’s not mind power or human courage … the spiritual power behind their work is coming from the Holy Spirit…. Yield your sail to the moving of the Holy Spirit.”

    I did a funeral this weekend and It seemed like everything was going wrong in my life to distract me from preparing for the presentation of the Gospel at this funeral but thank God for the empowering to enable us to be a witness of Him (acts1:8). I felt like I would not be able to share this message but through this podcast on the Holy Spirit it was so helpful to know what Gods word tells us about the Helper the Holy Spirit and yield to His Moving.

    • I feel you, learning to rely on the Lord comes with its terrifying moments, i think its not just when its meager fishes and bread we have to offer up, its even when we feel most prepared He still wants us to look to Him and know He has the victory.

      • Totally agree so Important to rely on the spirit when we feel prepared as well . Great point reminds me of 1 Corinthians 10:12 (NKJV)
        Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.

    • Hi Landon, yes, we can get stuck in our own head and miss the leading of the Holy Spirit. Glad you were able to get out of that.

  • The daily renewal of the Holy Spirit in our lives is such and important part of the Christian life. As Jesus said “… If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” We need the renewal of the Holy Spirit to be able to follow this command. If we are not empowered, filled, and listening to the Spirit then we cannot hope to live according to anything but our flesh. We will always default to the nature that we are most in tune with; whether Spirit or flesh. May we strive day in and day out to be more connected to the Holy Spirit, His voice and nature, that we may become all the more conformed to the image of Christ.

    • I agree, Timothy. God gives us His strength to submit and carry our crosses to follow after Jesus. If I am daily concerned about His glory, He is pleased to use me for His glory, if I do not concern myself with His glory, I fall into the flesh and reap my consequences (as God never lets me get away with any rebellion any more, haha). Pursuing His kingdom and His righteousness, God will transform us into His image of His wonderful Son.

    • Timothy, what an important promise is given to us through this knowing that we can be renewed again and again in the Spirit. There have been times in my life where I have found myself suddenly spiritually dry. And not because I had moved away from the Lord, but had allowed myself to become weary through spiritual service to others. What a refreshment it has been to go back into solitude with the Lord, underneath the reviving of worship music and prayer and receive a fresh portion of God’s Spirit once again!

  • Another excellent teaching, Pastor Jeff! I truly appreciate the explanation that the terms “the coming upon, being in you, and being filled with the Holy Spirit” is the same message but three different ways of conveying it. We MUST be filled with the Holy Spirit, with His power in order to honor God and serve people. It’s truly an amazing gift of God that we can be filled/baptized with the Holy Spirit again and again.

    • Yes I liked that too one message different terminologies.

      Clarification on what the scripture is teaching is so helpful.

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