“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about Me everywhere-in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)
In our previous devotions, we’ve shared how alcohol can motivate people to do things they typically would not do. People who live in the New Orleans area are used to hearing stories of those who come to the French Quarter on vacation, consume way too much alcohol, and end up doing something dreadful that is completely out of character for that person. In a similar but completely opposite way, when we are filled with the Holy Spirit, He can motivate and enable us to do things we typically would not do, yet in a good way.
On the Day of Pentecost, “Everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in other languages, as the Holy Spirit gave them this ability.” (Acts 2:4) There were roughly 120 Christians praying in the Upper Room that day and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit’s presence and power. While some focus on this power being evident because of the speaking of other languages, it is primarily seen in the way the early Christians boldly and supernaturally shared the gospel with people of different backgrounds. (Acts 2:4-40) This was the fulfillment of what Jesus had shared before His ascension when He said, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about Me everywhere.” (Acts 1:8)
Here is what Jesus was saying and what the 1st century Christians were demonstrating - When a person is filled with the Holy Spirit, he can’t help but become a vibrant witness for the Lord. He is charged and catalyzed by the Holy Spirit and simply can’t help but tell others about who the Lord is and what the Lord has done. In Acts 4, Luke records about Apostles Peter and John meeting with the early church in prayer. He writes, “After this prayer, the meeting place shook, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. Then they preached the word of God with boldness.” (Acts 4:31) As we can see from this scripture, from Acts 2, and from Jesus’ words in Acts 1:8, one of the main evidences of a person being Spirit filled is that they are constantly sharing their faith with others.
Followup Activity - When you pray today, ask the Lord to fill you with His Holy Spirit so you can boldly share your faith in Him wherever you go. Then, ask Him to guide you to those who need to hear about Him today. If, while praying, certain names of people pop into your mind, write out a prayer list of those names and pray for them daily, asking God to give you opportunities to share with them about the Lord. If you’re leading your family through this devotion, discuss what it means to be filled with the Holy Spirit and the empowering to witness that comes with the filling. Then, lead each family member to complete the individual followup activity above.
Prayer for Today - Lord, please fill me with Your Holy Spirit today and help me to boldly share my faith with others wherever I go. In Jesus’ name, Amen.