June 06, 2021

The Spirit Continuously Fills Us

Acts 2:38-39

“Repent and be baptized, every one of you. . . . And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

—  Acts 2:38

Some Christians teach that there is a second blessing of the Holy Spirit beyond the indwelling of the Spirit. Other Christians insist that there is a third blessing that instills holiness in the believer. Well, the blessings of the Spirit are actually so many that we can barely count or keep track of them.

The Bible teaches that all of us are baptized in the Spirit when we receive Christ into our lives. Then we spend all the rest of our lives appropriating the blessings of the Spirit.

This can mean a gift of power from God to witness to others about Christ. It can mean a charismatic experience with the gift of tongues. It can mean a Romans 6 experience where we realize that our old life has been crucified with Christ and we have been raised to new life in him. For example, after struggling with a particular sin, I had a vision of a coffin, and when the lid opened, I was inside, dead. I needed to remember that my old, sinful self is dead. Now, when I am tempted, I confess that I have been crucified with Christ, who now lives in me (see Galatians 2:20).

There are many more blessings too. Someone receives discernment and begins to recognize the work of Satan in the world. Someone is taught by the Spirit and writes a book that stimulates thousands of people to spiritual growth.

We need to be careful, however, to avoid divisive and false ideas about different levels of spirituality. That is not from the Holy Spirit but only misleading human teaching.

Spirit of God, please fill us continuously and help us to give glory and honor to you alone. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

About the author — Dean Deppe

Dean Deppe has been a pastor in inner-city, suburban, and rural ­churches. Currently he teaches New Testament theology at Calvin Theological Seminary. His courses include one on the parables of Jesus. He and his wife have four grown children.

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