Saturday, January 17, 2009

What are you filled with?

The theme of filling is important. When I was in Seminary one of my professors came up with the idea that the filling of the Holy Spirit was not for this age. the theory when like this, there is only one verse in the New Testament that commands us to be filled with the Spirit. "Be not drunk with wine...but be filled with the Spirit." Looking at the verse through academic lenses it was thought to teach that we are to have the characteristics of the Holy Spirit. It was explained to me that if a person is filled with baloney, he has the characteristics of baloney. Thus a person who is filled with the Holy Spirit would thus develop the characteristics of the Holy Spirit. This teaching began to catch on and spread like wild fire. During this time period, in the circles I was in, there seemed to be an over reaction to some of the Holy Spirit excesses in another movement, thus is seemed best to strip the Holy Spirit of all power in this age. These "brilliant academics" still allowed to Holy Spirit to save souls and to "help" when you read the Bible. When one of these enlightened professors ended up going to prison for attempted murder the "doctrine" was re-examined.In Colossians 2:9-10 we read "For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority. "The Father, and the Holy Spirit live in Christ, and Christ lives in the believer. God say we have been given fullness in Christ who is the head over "Every power and authority." For the believer it's never a power problem, it's a relational problem. How am I relating to the One who lives in me? Am I trusting Him fully with my life? Do I enjoy sweet fellowship with Him on a moment by moment basis. Do I view Christ as my Lord, Savior and Friend or do I see him as one judgemental legalist who is out to get me should I step out of line. We tend to see our Lord in the light of the "Santa Clause is coming to town" theology. The old song goes "You better watch out, you better not pout, Santa Clause is coming to town." This all knowing legalist is watching you all the time and if you step out of line he is going to only give you a lump of coal, no toys or warm soup for you. Our culture created Santa Clause because they couldn't handle Jesus. The truth is they can't handle Santa Clause. Do you spend your day looking over your shoulder? Do you live in constant fear that you might step out of line and God will zap you. Are you afraid when things are going well that the next shoe is going to drop. Do you assign your trials and hardships to God getting back at you because you did not buck up and do your very best. Maybe it's time to step back and look at God through the lens of the Scriptures. Here is the truth, He lives in us, loves us and has our back. He is very willing to work on our sin with us when we are ready to. He certainly wants us to live out what He has already done in our lives. We are righteous, whole, and forgiven because of His blood. We are accepted in Him. In Christ there is no condemnation for the believer. Jesus loves us and likes us. He is so crazy about us that He can't take His eyes off of us.This same God lives fully in our lives. He is not way out there, He lives right in the center of our lives. "Christ in me the hope of Glory." What are you filled with today?

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