8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses … to the ends of the earth.”Acts 1:8
You will receive power
As I’ve been meditating my way through Acts, the next verse I pitched a tent at was,
You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you;Acts 1:8
This verse doesn’t leave any room for debate. It’s pretty clear: you will receive power.
How is this possible?
When the Holy Spirit comes on you.
After spending time reflecting on what that power looks like and what it’s been used for (and after reflecting on Mary receiving a work of the Holy Spirit), I’m seeing this verse in a new light. We may not be tasked with birthing the Son of God, but we are challenged to reveal new life in the power of God.
You have received power
Since we’ve already established that we have been baptised with/in the Holy Spirit, it follows that we have already received His power. And I think it’s fair to say, Holy Spirit super-power is pretty significant.
A teen of the 80s I used to love watching “The Greatest American Hero”. Ralph Hinkley, an ordinary guy, received a superhero suit from friendly aliens to help him … help others. The only problem was, his handler, FBI agent Bill Maxwell, lost the instruction manual. The series followed the antics of the team as they came to terms with their new reality.
In a way, we’re kind of like Ralph Hinkley. Mostly, we’re ordinary people living ordinary lives, but we too have been gifted with super-natural power. The differences being, we have an instruction manual, a handler who knows what He’s doing, and our power comes from within.
Also, unlike T.V. superheros who only pull out their capes for emergencies, our job is to constantly make our invisible cape visible by our actions.
Power to do what?
You will be my witnesses … to the ends of the earth
When the disciples were first filled with the Holy Spirit, they couldn’t contain Him.
- Disciples – All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability. Acts 2:4
- Peter – People brought the sick into the street … so that at least Peter’s shadow might fall on some … as he passed. Acts 5:12-16
- Stephen – But [the opposition] could not stand up against the wisdom the Spirit gave him as he spoke. 6:10
- Philip – When the crowds heard Philip and saw the signs he performed, they all paid close attention to what he said Acts 8:6
- Paul – Yet Saul grew more powerful and baffled the Jews … proving Jesus is the Messiah Acts 9:22
Holy Spirit super-power rested on each of these witnesses providing opportunity to testify to the truth of Christ.
In a court of law, witnesses share what they have seen and heard providing evidence, testifying to the truth.
Christ’s actions drew crowds and His words planted seeds. The disciple’s actions created audiences and their testimony convicted hearts of the Truth.
The Holy Spirit does not have a “use by date”; He is still working, filling, overwhelming, bursting forth, inspiring and enabling us
To be witness to the end of the earth.
Each time I read the Bible it strikes me how different, broken, and yet useful each of God’s children were. No two were the same and no two did the same job the same way. It follows that since our Creator is a … creative, all His children are different, unique and gifted with Holy Spirit power.
However, there are expectations.
9In all their distress he too was distressed, and the angel of his presence saved them. In his love and mercy he redeemed them; he lifted them up and carried them all the days of old. 10 Yet they rebelled and grieved his Holy Spirit. So he turned and became their enemy and he himself fought against them.Isaiah 63:9-10
As I set the groundwork for the year ahead to determine what exactly requires my unique 4D fingerprints, I need to acknowledge that I have access to the power of God with … behind … before … and overflowing from within me. I have a Counsellor, instruction manual, and enabler.
I cannot receive this super-power and hide in the cupboard; to be a witness, I need an audience. But most importantly, I need to listen to the Counsellor, read the instructions, and trust the enabler knows what He’s doing.
- Do you believe the Holy Spirit’s anointing was for the early church only?
- How do you discern what your Holy Spirit super-power is?
- Where do you find your witness audience?