Receive the Holy Spirit! (4)


Ask, Thirst, Desire

Jesus, in John 7:37, makes an invitation to anyone who is thirsty, to come to Him and drink. He was speaking about the Holy Spirit Who would come after He went back to the Father. The invitation was not just for anyone, but those that are thirsty. We all know that you cannot force people to drink if they are not thirsty, and to be eligible for the rivers of living water that Jesus spoke about, you must thirst for it.

Why is it that so many Christians are satisfied with so little if so much is available to them? It is sad to see how some even try to justify their spiritual drought using Scripture, examples of great people that they knew, or God’s will for them. It is, of course, not easy for the rationally-minded to open up to spiritual things. The natural mind simply cannot understand the things of the Spirit; the only way you can perceive it, is by faith, and faith begins where the will of God is known.

If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!” (Luke 11:13)

This seems like an open invitation, and that the initiative rests with the asker, not the Giver. Are you thirsty enough to ask?

The apostle Paul, when he writes about the manifestation of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, encourages believers to “desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.” (See 1 Corinthians 14:1) There are nine gifts that we must desire, especially the gift of prophecy. The desire for the gifts sounds like being thirsty for them! In 1 Corinthians chapter 14 Paul teaches on the vocal gifts – tongues, interpretation of tongues, and prophecy because they edify, exhort and comfort the church (Verse 3). Tongues has the further ability to edify the speaker. Would it not be God’s will for the church as a body and individual believers to be edified? It certainly cannot be that this wonderful gift is meant only for a chosen few!

For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful. (1 Cor. 14:14)

It takes a lot of surrender and faith to speak words that make no sense to your mind. Yet it is a wonderful thought that we can surpass the limitations of our minds in our prayers, speak mysteries to God, and edify ourselves by speaking in tongues. It is hard to imagine that a loving and gracious God would not give this gift to all His children.

“For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.” (Acts 2:39)

But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all… (1 Corinthians 12:7)

Each one of us is a potential instrument in the hands of the Holy Spirit – for the profit of all. The gifts belong to the Holy Spirit, and He distributes them according to His will.

Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him. (1 John 5:14-15)

Would you like to speak mysteries to God–-things that only you and God know about? Is it your desire to see the church edified, exhorted and comforted? Do you need personal edification?

There is absolutely nothing wrong with asking, desiring good things, and being thirsty for more of what God has to offer. Go ahead, your heavenly Father is a great giver!

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