What does it mean to be filled with the Holy Spirit? To be filled with the Holy Spirit is to be under his control. When someone is under the influence of alcohol he/she loses control of the motor skills and subsequently does things he later regrets. Such a person is under the control of alcohol. This is an excellent illustration for us to better understand the filling of the Spirit.
Being filled with the Spirit takes on certain characteristics. Some may wonder whether being filled with the Spirit consists of a lifetime mountaintop experience. Maybe it means we more or less float above every situation and never feel pain, ever. Maybe it means we’re never happy but always dutifully doing what we are supposed to do. Eph. 5:19-21 tell us that the Spirit filled believer is one who is full of praise and thanksgiving. He speaks about the Lord to the brothers and sisters, he speaks to the Lord with thanksgiving and praise. It is as if he has a river of living water flowing out of his inner man. This river consists of praise and thanksgiving.
There are obstacles to being filled with the Spirit. Someone might believe it is only for the superstars, the ones with the magnetic personality. Some might believe it is too intense for the average Christian. Others might not want the discomfort of being controlled by the Spirit. These reasons all fall short of God’s best. Surely we do not want to be controlled by fear and our own appetites. We must repent of all false imaginations that keep us from communion with God.
How do I get filled with the Spirit? It is actually quite simple. Give up control! It is what you did at salvation. However, living in the age of the Spirit means we give up control all the time. Being filled with the Spirit is not for the professionals, it is for the Christian. And, it isn’t complicated, it is very simple. Give up control! Then live in the contentment of yielding to the Holy Spirit and letting him run your life.
Want to listen? Here’s the online sermon archive.