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Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution - 2 Timothy 3:12That is, of course, unless you aren't particularly interested in living godly in Christ. Then you may be pretty safe, right up until the time you take the mark on your hand or forehead. But that's another issue for another time.
How to be Filled with the Holy SpiritThe key to living a life of assurance and confidence in Him is learning how to remain filled with the Holy Spirit. And before you can remain filled, you have to be filled in the first place. This is what this message talks about. We talk about some steps you can take to prepare yourself for His filling. They are as follows:
First, you must desire to live a life that will please the Lord.
Second, be willing to surrender your life totally and irrevocably to our Lord Jesus Christ.
Third, confess every known sin that the Holy Spirit calls to your remembrance and experience the cleansing and forgiveness that God promises in 1 John 1:9.
Fourth, ask Him, by faith, to fill you with the Holy Spirit. You can pray something like this:
Dear Father, I need You. I hunger and thirst for a more vital relationship with You. I admit that I have been in control of my life. And, as a result, I have sinned against You. Thank You for forgiving my sins through Christ’s death on the cross for me. I now confess and turn from my sins and surrender the control of my life to the Lord Jesus. By faith, I invite You to fill me with the Holy Spirit as You commanded me to be filled. You promised to fill me if I ask according to Your will. I pray this in the authority of the name of Jesus Christ.
To demonstrate my faith, I now thank You for filling me with Your Holy Spirit and for taking control of my life. Amen.But that's not the end of it.
There is so much more to learn.You will need to understand the basis of God's filling, and it has nothing to do with the amount of time you spend praying or the people who lay hands on you. The basis is on the command (Eph. 5:18) and promise (1 John 5:14-15) of God. And the filling of the Holy Spirit is given to you the same way you received salvation, by faith.
He is the Creator.
He is the Final Arbitrator.
He is All in All.
There is nowhere to go beyond God.
He is Sovereign!
He is Sovereign!So how can I communicate the greatness of His sovereignty? Let's start with just a few verses that speak of that. We'll begin with my life verse:
But our God is in heaven; He does whatever He pleases" - Psalm 115:3. Why? Because He is sovereign.
"Remember this, and show yourselves men; recall to mind, O you transgressors. Remember the former things of old, for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure'" - Isaiah 46:8-10. How can this be true? Because He is sovereign.
For I know that the LORD is great, and our Lord is above all gods. Whatever the LORD pleases He does, in heaven and in earth, in the seas and in all deep places - Psalm 135:5-6. How is this possible? Because He is sovereign.And everything belongs to our Sovereign God.
The earth is the LORD’s, and all its fullness, the world and those who dwell therein. For He has founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the waters - Psalm 24:1-2. How can everything belong to Him? Because He is sovereign.What does that really mean? He is Omnipotent (all powerful).
His power is unfathomable to us.
It is infinite and has no limit or end.
And God is not limited to what He has already done.
God can do infinitely more than He already has.
What Does that Mean For Me Today?Understanding God's sovereignty and His unconditional love for you should forever remove any worry, doubt, fear, apathy, or depression from your life. After all, the very one who slung the universe into existence has the hairs of your head numbered (Matthew 10:30). And it can't get any better than that. And how can He do that? Simple. He is sovereign.
How are we being deceived today?
And, if we are being deceived, how would we know?
Are there other places in the Scriptures that warn us against deception?
What kind of deception can we expect?
And what was the specific focus of the deception Jesus spoke about?
How Important is the Coming (and Present) DeceptionTo see how rampant deception is in our society, and as a sign of the end, look at how many times Jesus spoke about it in Matthew 24:
And Jesus answered and said to them: "Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many." - Matthew 24:5.
"Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many" - Matthew 24:11.And how powerful will that deception be?
"For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect" - Matthew 24:24.Did you catch that? If it were possible (and we know that it's not), even the elect, those chosen and sealed by Christ, would be deceived. It's gonna be bad.