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What does “Being Filled with the Spirit” mean?

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Filling of the Spirit

Question:

Hi Obed,

I need some scriptural help with something. My sister and I are discussing “being filled with the spirit”.

I know that the filling of the Holy Spirit with regard to the disciples had to do with the Spirit being in complete control. At Pentecost I understand the need for this. How does one scripturally show that we in this age of grace are not “filled with the Spirit?

We have the Spirit within us but Paul says we must strive for filling which is never completely attainable. How can we show this?

Also, was everyone (those 3,000 added believers at Pentecost) “filled” and in total control?

Am I correct in thinking that even with these people…… this “complete filling” and “complete control” passed away after the kingdom was officially rejected by the Jewish religious leaders and how can I prove this scripturally. Thanks for any help you can send my way?

Answer:

First, I want you to go to Acts 1:8 and look at the words “ye shall receive POWER, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you.”

Not only were they filled with the Holy Ghost, but they received the Holy Ghost of power. The promise of Acts 1:8 was they would receive power to perform the miracles they needed to prove their discipleship. Why?

In Acts 1:6, what did the disciples ask? “Lord, wilt thou at this time RESTORE again the kingdom?”

Notice the words, “in one accord.”

Acts 1:14 – in prayer

Acts 2:1 – when Pentecost came

Acts 2:46 – continued daily

Acts 4:24 – lifted up their voices

Acts 5:12 – This is the last time they were in one accord, WHY?

Because Ananias and Sapphira had broken the unity, that is why.

The issue in early acts was not related to being filled, but having received the power. What was the power? Could it be the ability to NOT allow the flesh to overcome them? I think so, because when Ananias and Sapphira kept back the money, they gave in to the flesh.

As long as they had their minds staid on Christ, there was no problem.  When they took them off Christ and on themselves, they died. I used to think this was a drastic measure until I realized that the result of the action kept them from being restored. And that is why, in Acts 1:7, the Lord could neither answer yes nor no.

Now look at: Eph. 5:18: And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

Can you not see that Paul is saying, giving in to drink is a result of “flesh control”, not Spirit control?

The Spirit baptizes us into Christ Jesus and we become part of his Body, guaranteeing us eternity with him. But that does not guarantee us to live a sinless life.

My big issue with those who say there is a “filling” that will not permit us to sin is that if people do sin they think they must not be saved.

You can only put water in a glass to the top; it can’t be filled anymore than its capacity. You can keep on pouring water but it just runs off.

For those during the Pentecostal era, the “filling” is not what left, it was the power.