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Baptism of Holy Spirit | Amanda Beth

Monday’s Blog: Paul Series “Romans 15”

We continue our study of Paul’s letters today with Romans 15. Last week, in Romans 14, Paul warned the Gentiles not to judge their Jewish brothers who were weaker in faith. He starts chapter 15 instructing them to accept and build up those who are weak.

Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength and not just please ourselves. Each of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to his edification. For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “THE REPROACHES OF THOSE WHO REPROACHED YOU FELL ON ME.” For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus, so that with one accord you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

v. 1-6 (NASB)

I love how Paul says that God gives us perseverance and encouragement and that He will grant us to be of the same mind with one another. God doesn’t ask us to give anything that He hasn’t first given to us. He wouldn’t ask us to persevere without giving us perseverance. He wouldn’t ask to love and encourage others without loving and encouraging us. And He wouldn’t ask us to accept one another without first accepting us, as Paul writes in the next verse.

Therefore, accept one another, just as Christ also accepted us to the glory of God.

v. 7 (NASB)

We need to believe and receive what God’s given us so we can have the power to do all that He’s asked us to do.

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

v. 13 (NASB)

Paul knew the power that he had in him. He knew everything he had was from God, and not from himself.

And concerning you, my brethren, I myself also am convinced that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able also to admonish one another. But I have written very boldly to you on some points so as to remind you again, because of the grace that was given me from God, to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles, ministering as a priest the gospel of God, so that my offering of the Gentiles may become acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit. Therefore in Christ Jesus I have found reason for boasting in things pertaining to God. For I will not presume to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me, resulting in the obedience of the Gentiles by word and deed, in the power of signs and wonders, in the power of the Spirit; so that from Jerusalem and round about as far as Illyricum I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.

v. 14-19 (NASB)

Paul said he would not presume to speak anything except what Christ accomplished through him. By allowing God to fully work in him, he was able to turn the Gentiles in obedience to God. He didn’t just preach to them. They were able to see the power of God working through him (in signs and wonders) as proof that what he taught was true.  We can learn through his example that to fully preach the gospel as he did, we have to allow God full access to work in us. We must be full of the Holy Spirit and not full of ourselves to fully reach others.

And thus I aspired to preach the gospel, not where Christ was already named, so that I would not build on another man’s foundation; but as it is written,
“THEY WHO HAD NO NEWS OF HIM SHALL SEE,
AND THEY WHO HAVE NOT HEARD SHALL UNDERSTAND.”

For this reason I have often been prevented from coming to you; but now, with no further place for me in these regions, and since I have had for many years a longing to come to you whenever I go to Spain—for I hope to see you in passing, and to be helped on my way there by you, when I have first enjoyed your company for a while—but now, I am going to Jerusalem serving the saints. For Macedonia and Achaia have been pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem. Yes, they were pleased to do so, and they are indebted to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in their spiritual things, they are indebted to minister to them also in material things. Therefore, when I have finished this, and have put my seal on this fruit of theirs, I will go on by way of you to Spain. I know that when I come to you, I will come in the fullness of the blessing of Christ.

Now I urge you, brethren, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to strive together with me in your prayers to God for me, that I may be rescued from those who are disobedient in Judea, and that my service for Jerusalem may prove acceptable to the saints; so that I may come to you in joy by the will of God and find refreshing rest in your company. Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.

v. 20-33 (NASB)

Heavenly Father,

We praise You that You give us everything we need to do everything You call us to do. We humble ourselves before You, and ask You to completely immerse us in Your Holy Spirit. Let Your glory work and reign through us, so the power of Your Holy Spirit can be clearly seen in us as a testimony to others.

In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen!

*This series will continue next Monday as we study Romans 16.  Have a blessed week being filled with the Holy Spirit!


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Monday’s Blog: Sin Series “Slandering The Church”

Last week, I started this series on the bondage of sin that is weighing down the body of Christ today. I want to clarify that this series is not meant to criticize or condemn the body of Christ. The Lord is leading me to warn and inform of the dangers of sin, and open the door for His Holy Spirit to convict where necessary. Condemnation is from the devil to pull us deeper into sin. Conviction is from God to turn us to Him so He can lift us out of sin.

Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent.

Revelation 3:19

This week, I want to focus on slander. There is so much slander going on in the church today, particularly toward our own brothers and sisters in Christ.  Have you noticed whenever a well-known preacher messes us, we are the first ones in line to throw a stone at them?

Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?

James 4:11-12

God humbled me once when I joined in on an online discussion to criticize a famous preacher for saying something unbiblical on National television. God humbled me by directing me to King David when Saul was pursuing to kill him. Even though Saul was clearly not obedient to God, David wouldn’t lift his hand or mouth against him because he was God’s anointed.

He said to his men, “The LORD forbid that I should do such a thing to my master, the LORD’s anointed, or lift my hand against him; for he is the anointed of the LORD.” With these words David rebuked his men and did not allow them to attack Saul …

1 Samuel 24:6-7

God has the power to bring down the disobedient. Our criticism doesn’t humble them. God has to humble them.

But it is God who judges: He brings one down, he exalts another.

Psalm 75:7

I was once introduced to a woman who ran an online ministry. Shortly after following her ministry, it became apparent that her focus was to hatefully slander the body of Christ. During one of her hateful remarks toward the church, I felt led to humbly confront her. She responded harshly that she was called to rebuke the church and criticized me for not doing the same.

Criticism is not one of the gifts of the Spirit. In fact, 2 Timothy 2:16 warns us to “shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness” (KJV).

My husband and I once left our church that we had belonged to since we started following Christ twelve years ago. We left because of the slander we heard from others toward several in leadership positions. After years of hearing about the ungodliness and worldliness in our church, it started to embitter our hearts.

We were gone for almost two years and then God called us to humbly return. During our time away, God worked in our hearts and helped us focus on the sin in our lives. As God was purifying my heart, I began to feel sympathy and love for my church. Once God removed the plank in my eyes, I was able to see how much the Lord was working in my church, and that many were obedient to God and filled with the Spirit, especially our Pastor. As I allowed God to work in me, I was able to sincerely love and help my brothers and sisters who were in bondage to sin, instead of feeling bitter toward them and abandoning them.

Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart.

1 Peter 1:22

As we continue to allow God to purify our hearts, and remove the sin in our lives, we can see clearly to help our brothers and sisters who are caught in sin. Criticizing and abandoning our brothers and sisters only causes more division in the body of Christ and pushes the world further away from Christ. Change in the body of Christ starts with you and me. We are responsible to allow the Holy Spirit to work in us so that He can work through us to bring unity and restoration in the church.

Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.

Galatians 6:1

Heavenly Father,

We praise You that You do not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities (Psalm 103:10). Your compassions never fail. They are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23). Help us to have the same compassion for our brothers and sisters in Christ who are deceived and caught in Satan’s trap of sin. Cleanse our hearts and mouths so that we can speak Your truth in love to help set Satan’s captives free (2 Timothy 2:25-26). In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen!

Lord, who may dwell in your sanctuary? Who may live on your holy hill? He whose walk is blameless and who does what is righteous, who speaks the truth from his heart and has no slander on his tongue, who does his neighbor no wrong and casts no slur on his fellowman.

Proverbs 15:1-3

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Kerry Johnson is sharing on her blog today Chapter Seven: Love Is Not Self-Seeking from my book “The LOVE Walk.” Follow this link to read it.

*Come back next Monday as the “Sin Series” continues.

*All Bible verses are taken from the NIV, unless otherwise noted.

*If you’ve never accepted Christ as your Savior, please click on the “SALVATION” tab at the top of the website. Don’t wait another day!

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Easter – Be Baptized With The Holy Spirit

Tomorrow we celebrate the resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. By the power of the Holy Spirit, God raised Jesus back to life, and He wants to give you life as well (1 Corinthians 6:14).

And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.

Romans 8:11

Do you feel powerless? Are you struggling with sin? Do you long for the power of the Holy Spirit to permeate every part of your being?

Several years ago, I hit a point in my Christian walk where I longed for something more. I heard a preacher talking about the baptism of the Holy Spirit. I learned that the Greek word for baptism means a full immersion. I looked at my life and noticed I didn’t feel immersed in the Holy Spirit. I didn’t felt empowered. In fact, I felt completely powerless. I didn’t feel the presence of God in me. I felt a distance between us, like something was missing, but I didn’t know what it was.

So I proceeded to ask God to completely immerse me in His Holy Spirit, and to hold nothing back. I asked Him to fill me with the fullness of His Spirit and empower me to do His will. I didn’t feel anything happen right away, but I felt God assured me through His Word that He heard my prayer.

Not long after, I started seeing see doors open up as God led me into His Will for my life. I started seeing things in Scripture that I never saw before. I started seeing His power displayed in and through me in miraculous ways I never experienced before (read blog on healing). I started seeing supernatural godly wisdom coming out of my mouth, that I know didn’t come from me. I started seeing strongholds tearing down in my life that I didn’t have the power to tear down on my own. I started seeing there was so much more that God wanted to do in and through me. I felt a fire and passion in me for Christ that couldn’t be quenched.

Jesus said, “I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

Mark 1:8

Jesus didn’t die to give you only eternal life. He died to give you everything He had. You are now co-heirs with Him! I encourage you to ask God to immerse you with His Holy Spirit, the same Holy Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead! And as you celebrate Easter tomorrow, celebrate the powerful life that God wants to live through you!

Have a truly spirit-filled Easter!!:)

 


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