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Baptized with the Holy Spirit Yet Lacking Power

Updated: Apr 26

Introduction


Does the baptism of the Holy Spirit correlate with the power manifested in our lives? The question we explore is profound and may seem paradoxical at first: Despite being baptized with the Holy Spirit, can an individual still lack the associated spiritual empowerment? Can a person receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit and yet not exhibit the expected spiritual power? Is it feasible for someone to be baptized with the Holy Spirit but still experience a lack of spiritual power?


The Possibility of Losing the Spirit's Power


Scripture is clear and provides us with a cautionary insight. In 1 Thessalonians 5:19, we are admonished, "Do not quench the Spirit." This metaphor of quenching can be understood as extinguishing a fire. Imagine a campfire representing the Holy Spirit's presence within us. Just as water douses a fire, our actions and attitudes can quench the Spirit's fiery presence. We dampen the Spirit's power through neglect, sin, or disregard for His divine will.


Further, Ephesians 4:30 tells us not to "grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption." To grieve the Spirit is to cause deep sorrow through actions that are contrary to God's nature—like bitterness, anger, or malice. This grieving can diminish His influence and power in our lives.


Isaiah 63:10 also speaks to us about vexing the Holy Spirit: "But they rebelled, and vexed his holy Spirit: therefore, he was turned to be their enemy, and he fought against them." Here, the analogy of vexation is similar to frustrating someone we love through persistent disobedience or lack of trust. In a nutshell to vex is to annoy, irritate, infuriate or anger. You cannot expect to be friend to a person that you infuriate, anger or irritate. Moreover, this scripture above indicates that rebellion similar to vexation of the Holy Spirit; can instigate His (spiritual) anger, causing Him to become our active adversary contending and fighting against our lives.


From these scriptures, it is evident that while we may be baptized with the Holy Spirit, our behavior can significantly affect the manifestation of His power in our lives.


The Example of the Corinthian Church


Turning to the Corinthians, we find a church that, though baptized by the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:13), exhibited behaviors that were markedly carnal, as detailed in 1 Corinthians 3:1-3. Paul explicitly describes them as "mere infants in Christ" who fed on "milk" and not "solid food" due to their envy, strife, and divisions—clear indicators of spiritual immaturity.


1 Corinthians 6:19 reminds them, "Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?" Despite this incredible truth, their actions contradicted the sanctity expected of God's temple. Here lies a powerful analogy: even the most magnificent mansions can fall into disrepair if not tended with care and respect. The expensive mansion must be carefully climate-controlled, cleaned, and secured to protect its treasures, furniture and artifacts from damage. Similarly, our bodies are like expensive mansions that house the invaluable Holy Spirit. Without proper moral and spiritual upkeep, the 'exhibits' within our personal 'mansion' can suffer, diminishing the beauty and value of our inner temple.


Envision your body as a high-performance computer designed for complex and powerful tasks. This computer, to function at peak efficiency, needs regular software updates, removal of viruses, and hardware check-ups. In a similar manner, our spiritual lives require continual updates through prayer, fasting, bible-study, attending church, and Scripture, removal of sinful behaviors, and check-ups through self-reflection and accountability to function as effective temples of the Holy Spirit.


Imagine owning a classic car (Ferrari), a cherished and valuable possession. This car, much like our bodies being temples of the Holy Spirit, requires regular maintenance, clean up, oil changes, cleaning, and protection from rust—to preserve its value and functionality. Neglecting its care can lead to much depreciation (loss of value), just as neglecting spiritual disciplines can degrade the sanctity of our spiritual temple.


The Necessity of Being Filled with the Spirit


Finally, we must recognize that baptism with the Holy Spirit is just the beginning. Acts 1:5 and 2:4 show us that the disciples were not only baptized but also filled with the Spirit at Pentecost. This filling of the Spirit is not a one-time event but a continuous necessity for living a powerful Christian life.


Ephesians 5:18 commands us, "Be filled with the Spirit," suggesting a continual refilling. A lamp is designed to give light, but without paraffin, it remains dark and functionless. Similarly, a believer can be equipped (baptized with the Spirit), yet without the continuous filling of the Spirit (the fuel), the light within dims and eventually extinguishes.


Think of a garden that is initially well-planted and watered (baptized with the Holy Spirit). However, without regular watering and care (being filled with the Holy Spirit), the garden cannot thrive. The plants may sprout up initially, but without continual nourishment, they will wither and fail to bear fruit. Just as a garden requires consistent attention to flourish, our spiritual lives need ongoing replenishment by the Holy Spirit to remain vibrant and productive.


Consider a smartphone that has been fully charged (baptized with the Holy Spirit). Over time, with use, the battery drains and needs to be recharged (refilled with the Holy Spirit) to keep functioning effectively. If neglected, the phone eventually powers down and becomes unresponsive. Similarly, without regular 'recharges' from the Holy Spirit, our spiritual effectiveness diminishes, and we risk becoming spiritually inactive.


Just as we are born when we take our first breath (akin to baptism with the Holy Spirit), we must continue breathing (being filled with the Holy Spirit) to sustain life. Each breath (prayer, reading the bible, fasting and etc) revitalizes our body with oxygen, just as each filling of the Holy Spirit revitalizes our spiritual life. Ceasing to breathe leads to death, just as neglecting spiritual refilling can lead to spiritual stagnation and death.


Conclusion


In conclusion, being baptized with the Holy Spirit is an undeniable blessing and a foundational aspect of our faith. However, maintaining the power that comes from the Holy Spirit requires our ongoing commitment to be filled, led, and renewed by Him daily. Let us not be passive recipients but active participants in stoking the spiritual fire within, ensuring our sails are always ready to catch the wind of the Spirit.


Let us pray for the grace to never quench, grieve, or vex the Holy Spirit, but to live lives that are fully powered by His divine presence.


May the peace of God dwell within you throughout this week. If you've been touched by today's message and wish to explore deeper faith, join us for Sunday services at AFM in Canada. Together, we can grow in love, strengthen our community, and uplift each other in our spiritual journeys. We look forward to welcoming you into our family. Blessings and grace be upon you.

Senior Pastor

Leo T Mukumba

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Uuummmmm topona!!!!! I receive the Grace to maintain the power that comes from the Holy Spirit by committing to be filled, led and renewed by him daily 🙌

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