Acts 2:1-38 | Empowered by the Holy Spirit
Acts 2:1-38 | Empowered by the Holy Spirit
April 21, 2024 |
Sunday Morning
Acts 2:1-38 | Empowered by the Holy Spirit
Andrew Harrell |
Acts 2:1-38
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Well. Good morning, Valley View. Check check, check. Good morning, good morning, good morning. How many thunderites do we have here this morning out there yesterday at Thunder? Wave ’em, wave ’em proudly. I know we’re all sleepy. Well, Pastor John sends his love. He is with a group of guys that he gets with yearly, and they just spend time encouraging each other in mountain biking. And I think that is awesome. I love that our pastor does that. He has a group of guys that just, encourage each other. It really, speaks to me, encourages me to do the same. So I’m grateful for that. So he’ll be back next week. So, this morning, can you grab your Bibles and open them up to Acts chapter two. Acts chapter two. I was, flipping through some old pictures the other day, and, if y’all remember when I first came to Valley View, I had glasses and then, thank the Lord I got Lasik, and I can see my eyes weren’t real bad, but I needed glasses for anything that required precision. So if I was shooting rifles, driving a car, I need glasses. But when I rode my bike, I didn’t wear glasses and then when I ended up getting Lasik surgery, I begin to realize how many things that I avoided by the grace of God that I was like, I didn’t know that was there. I didn’t know there was a hole there. And you know, you get you’re like, this was the best investment to my cycling was being able to see where I was going. And it was. Yes, it was. It really surprised me, to be honest, but it’s amazing. And Acts chapter two, when the disciples had their lens change, when the Holy Spirit came upon them. So let’s lay some groundwork this morning, and I’m going to ask for a little participation here. So where’s God the Father? Heaven. Let’s try it again. Where’s God the Father? Yeah. Where’s Jesus? At his right. Yes, at his right hand. Interceding for us. And where’s the Holy Spirit? Yes. Okay, let’s try that again. Where’s God the Father? Yes. Jesus. Yes, by his right hand. And the Holy Spirit is here with us, helping us keep our eyes on Jesus. Amen. The Holy Spirit’s favorite topic is Jesus. So let’s jump into Acts two here. And this morning what I want to do is really just break down the four key things in Acts two that I really feel apply to us, where we’re at as a church. Acts chapter two. When the day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place, and suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind. And it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to be divided tongues as fire, and one sat upon each of them. And then they were filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak with other tongues, as the spirit gave them utterance. When we yield to the Holy Spirit, it produces unity with other believers. When we yield to the Holy Spirit, not when we yield to each other, but when we yield to the Holy Spirit, true unity comes from turning and tuning our hearts to his. If you’ve ever seen an orchestra tune before you go to a concert, maybe The Nutcracker, maybe something of that, they, they all tune to the first chair, whatever the tuning is chosen by the first chair. Everybody tunes to that. On Sunday mornings. We all tune to 440 C 440 frequency. One time I was involved in a recording project and one of the guys‚Äô tuners, we were playing with some alternate tunings and we were tuned at 432. Now that’s only a slight difference, but it messed us up so much by just hearing the subtle difference that to everyone else, it may appear like we were together, but we really were off. 440 is the frequency we choose. As believers, when we come into a place of worship, when we come together as the body of Christ, true unity comes when we engage our heart to his, not worried about what’s happening to the left and the right, not worried how our neighbor’s doing it, but how we’re doing it. That was what happened when the disciples came together. They were like, hey, look, it wasn’t uniformity. It was unity all focused on one thing. The last command. Jesus said, go and wait. So they were engaged. Their hearts were in that place of engaging. Like the early believers of Pentecost, yielding to God allows His Spirit to work through us, changing hearts and cities. And when that happens, a sound comes forth that draws other people around. When we’re in unity as believers, when we’re at one accord, it makes it attractive for others. It really creates a sound. Unity brings a sound. Then there appeared to be divided tongues as fire, and one sat upon each of them. This is so cool to me, because what this says is you can come together here on a Sunday morning, and the corporate body of believers worshiping and have an individual encounter. I love it says divided tongues. What that means is each of them had an experience that was happening. That means you can come in here and be like, hey, look, I’m in a place of need, I need hope, I need rest, I need peace, I need joy, and you can come in the corporate body and experience that. Fire symbolizes refining and purifying. I truly believe that when the fire began to set sit on each believer, they were having their own little spiritual surgery that was taking place. And that’ll make a little more sense in a minute. But each person was sitting there encountering the presence of God, encountering the Holy Spirit, and things were taking place inside. Yet they were there corporately together. That encourages me. Every Sunday morning we go into worship and we’re gathering, here’s the body, and we’re listening to the word. Each of us can have our own experience while being together as one body. The crowd’s response let’s jump down to verse five. And there were dwelling in Jerusalem, Jews. Devout men from every nation under heaven. And when the sound occurred, the multitude came together and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language. Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, look, are not all these who speak Galileans? And how is it that we hear our own language in which we were born? And then the next part list a ton of places they were from. And I’ll let Pastor John pronounce this properly, because he’s the guy that would study that really well. I’m not going to try. So let’s just say they were from everywhere, but not there, right? So they’re hearing their native language. They’re from Asia. They were from Egypt. They were from Italy, which I love. They were from, you know, all around. But yet they were hearing their native tongue. When hearing them speaking in their own tongue, the wonderful works of God. So they were all amazed, perplexed, saying to one another, whatever could this mean? When the Holy Spirit moves, you will see people amazed, marveled, mocking, perplexed. I personally have never seen a true move of the spirit where all those things did not take place. Another example is Jesus. How many times did Jesus do something and there wasn’t mocking, marveled, or perplexed? So those that choose to live under the influence of the Holy Spirit will have those traits follow. When the Spirit of God moves, it makes the religious mad and the sinners glad. And when I say religious, I mean like what Pastor John’s been teaching is the self righteous, one of my heroes in the faith. He shares the story that he was at a conference, he was a guest speaker and he was worshiping and worship was going on. And he’s he’s sitting there just worshiping, having a moment in the presence. And there was this woman that was a couple rows in front of him worshiping, and it was really distracting, like just over the top distracting. And he’s like, man, should I say something? It’s a little even borderline inappropriate. You know, he’s sitting there going, this is kind of awkward. I’m sitting here worshiping and this is distracting. Suddenly he’s like, okay, should I say something should or not? And someone nudged him beside him. And it was a lady who was a missionary. She says, isn’t that beautiful? He’s like beautiful? This is distracting. She said, that woman was a prostitute and a drug addict for 15 years and recently got saved. And when she worships, she worships with everything inside. His response was, she can have my spot at the conference. I don’t need to say a thing because I’ll learn more by her worship than what I have going on inside. We see this in Second Samuel Michal, David’s wife. David comes. He’s worshiping before the Lord. He’s laying it all out there and what does it say? That she mocked him? David’s response was, you think this is undignified? I’ve got more. I will worship more undignified than this, because worship at a distance looks weird. Worship at a distance looks weird. You need to be slow to judge when the Spirit of God is moving. And be sensitive to what’s happening and engage. You may worship differently, may look different than anything you’ve experienced before, but engage with what’s happening in the moment. I remember years ago I was a, worship pastor, youth pastor at the preview I did the youth for for a season, and we had done this large outreach. And during this large outreach I was helping work as a kind of, a prayer counseling guide at the end of service for people that came forth and hundreds of people got saved. And I remember I was in the back, we were receiving people coming in, and there was a large room similar to the size of our chapel. We had chairs lined around the the wall and we would take people, sit with them, pray with them, people that had gotten saved. And I remember standing there and this 14 year old girl starts walking in and as she came, I remember seeing the tears in her eyes. And as she got closer to me, she collapsed. And I just kind of held her like in a in a very healthy, safe, loving way, like a father would. And she began to weep. And when I say weep, I mean she begin to ugly cry. And not only ugly cry. She began to wail so loud that it became very distracting. In certain times and certain moments, when that happens, you know you would be like, okay, let’s go off to give me another couple counselors, go off into another room or whatever. But in that moment, the Lord said, don’t, don’t move. Just stay right there. And I just held her and she just cried and cried and cried. Here’s the thing. She was in a safe place. She was in a safe place to receive the love of Jesus. She was in a safe place and God was doing a cleansing work inside her heart. What no one else knew in the room– is I was with her six months before that, in the E.R. when she tried to commit suicide and she had slit both her wrists, and I got to pray with her and plant those seeds in that season and just love on her. And I knew she didn’t have a father in her home. I even had a few people come up afterwards, and say, man, that was a little distracting and I said, yeah, but wasn’t it freeing? Wasn’t it beautiful? Wasn‚Äôt it amazing what God was doing? And I’m sharing that to say we have to be sensitive to what God is doing in the room. We have to be sensitive to when the Holy Spirit is moving. Usually when I that instant thing inside me that wants to jump out and say, I don’t know if that’s God, I don’t know if this is that. I’m usually have to just take a breath and go, okay, Lord. Okay. What are you saying? What are you doing? And constantly be asking. John 16. Oh, some jumped ahead a little bit. Acts 2:14 – 38 I’m going to summarize this because this is the message that Peter preached. But Peter, standing up with the 11, raised his voice, explaining that what they were witnessing is not drunkenness, but the fulfillment of prophecy. He declares Jesus, as the promised Messiah, emphasized his resurrection, ascension. Peter’s words pierced the crowd, leading them to ask what they should do to be saved. He urges them in verse 38, repent each of you, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the Holy Spirit. And that day 3000 people were saved. The Holy Spirit transforms. The Holy Spirit transforms. I love that. That is, that is the… the Holy Spirit transforms. Think about this. Pastor John taught on this last week. 50 days earlier, Peter had denied who Jesus was. 50 days earlier, Pastor John taught on how Jesus restores him. But then waiting, he receives the boldness of the Holy Spirit, and then suddenly he is preaching to the multitude. And 3000 people get saved. What happened? The guy that was hiding is now standing in front of everyone declaring who Jesus was. When the Holy Spirit comes upon you. He brings restoration, healing. The Holy Spirit’s job is to help us look more like Jesus and remove anything that hinders love. So I went ahead and made a list of things that you find in Scripture. Just a, just through a bunch of adverbs, adjectives, descriptive words of who and what the Holy Spirit does. So let’s put those up on the screen. All right. The Holy Spirit is God, co-equal with God the Father and God the Son. Scripture tells us the Holy Spirit will guide, reveal, lead, empower, fill, teach, testify, produce, distribute, anoint, wash, renew, unify, free, comfort, seal, guarantee, quicken, speaks through, and transforms. He strengthens, he enables, grants, supplies, gives access, moves, confesses Jesus, casts out demons, knows all things, leads us into all truth, and brings all things to our remembrance. And these are just a few. John 16:7– Jesus says, nevertheless, I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage- this is Jesus speaking- that I go away. For if I do not go away, the helper will not come. But if I depart, I will send him to you. God’s best plan for you and I was that Jesus leave and the Holy Spirit come. Think about that. There’s been lots of times where I’m sitting there going, oh, well, if just Jesus was here, if Jesus was here, if, if, if I could just if I could just talk to Jesus. If he if he was just in the room with me, if he was here while I’m walking through these situations and circumstances. And yet he says it’s best that I go, because I’m going to leave you someone who is going to be your guide and help you keep your eyes on me. That’s powerful. So then I ask myself, am I really accessing the fullness of the Holy Spirit on a daily basis? Am I accessing all the things that the Holy Spirit has for me? Jesus came to bring us salvation. The Holy Spirit came to seal and empower. You and I were not designed to merely be rescued from sin. You were designed as a son and a daughter of the King of Kings, to bring his kingdom into every location and situation that you find yourself in. That’s your purpose. That’s my purpose. I think one of the biggest drawbacks to limiting the gospel to mere salvation is that what should be a kingdom building, people healing, and darkness crushing message is reduced to a self focused, get out of hell free prayer with little to no impact outside of mine and my circle. Yeah, I’m going to read that again. I want us to grab a hold of that, because you and I, we’re not just designed for a rescue mission. Waiting for the gospel, for Jesus just to return. You and I were meant to carry the gospel into every situation we face. We are the hope. We are the backup. We are the army of God. I’m going to read that one quote again. I think one of the biggest drawbacks to limiting the gospel to mere salvation is what should be a kingdom building people healing, and darkness crushing message is reduced to a self-focused get out of hell free prayer with little to no impact outside of just me. The Holy Spirit is in me for my sake, but upon me for yours. The Holy Spirit is in me to see me get purified, to see me get refined, to see me look more like Jesus. But it’s in me also, so that I can carry that anywhere I go, and that I can be a reflection of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. That I can walk into any situation and carry the hope that I can put on the news. And I know that we win, and I get to be a part of the winning team. There is no darkness that can stand up to what heaven’s kingdom is. I remember I had this teacher when I was a little kid. I used to say this and this is always stuck in my mind on the power of God’s kingdom versus the enemy’s. God’s kingdom versus enemies is this: if you’ve ever been to the ocean and you find sand and you gotten in sand, and you never can get all the sand off you, you know how it is. You get in your car, it –you always find it. But if you take that grain of sand and you compare it to the ocean, that is what you’re comparing God’s kingdom to Satan’s. It’s not this 50/50, Star Wars kind of comparison. We have the power and we have the opportunity to access it. This baptism of power, Jesus instructed them with his last words on earth that after the baptism of water, that they were to be baptized with the Holy Spirit. Some of you wonder, have you experienced? Do you have the Holy Spirit? If you’re a believer here in this room, and I want you to hear this really clear because this is easy. There’s different camps that think this, but let me tell you, if you are a born again believer and you proclaim Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you have the Holy Spirit. Okay? You could have not gotten saved without the Holy Spirit. It took the Holy Spirit wooing on your heart, longing and calling you to respond to his. Okay, so are we clear? And then there’s the baptism of water, which we’ve done the last few Sundays, that that’s another. But there’s also baptism of power and that’s what I’m talking about this morning. It’s another element that, as a believer, I’m asking for daily. As a believer, I’m praying daily. And First Corinthians chapter 14, Paul encourages us– Lord, clothe me with your power. Lord, fill me fresh and anew with your Holy Spirit. This is a very biblical prayer to pray daily. Every day that I get here at the office, I have my time in the word at home drinking my coffee. And that’s always wonderful. But every day I get here to the office, I sneak in the back and I, put my backpack down and all that. And then I come in here and I just walk in, pray and pray in the spirit every day. Not for a real, lengthy time, but every day I do that. Is it because I’m holy? Nope. It’s because I’m desperate. I got to deal with people and I need to carry hope. I need to carry love. I need to carry joy. I need to not react. I don’t know, maybe I’m the only one human here. I react sometimes to my wife, my kids, traffic, all the people at Thunder yesterday. Um… but if I’m carrying the hope and I’m bringing the Holy Spirit in and I’m letting that be my guide, and I’m tuning my ear and I’m keeping my frequency dialed into heaven. I’m in tune. I’m in step. This last analogy I want to use before we pray, because I want to do something a little different this morning. So, Craig, if you want to jump up here, you can. When you develop history with the Holy Spirit, you begin to dial your spiritual tuning fork into knowing the voice. When I grab my acoustic guitar and I grab it out of the case, and I was going to do this as an illustration, but I’ll just explain it. I can strum one chord and I can instantly tell what’s out of tune. Why? Because I’ve developed history there. I’ve tuned my ear to that. We have the Word of God, which is what keeps us on target. This is our roadmap, okay? But the Holy Spirit is the lens in which we view things. It’s kind of like you have your your phone, your map when you’re driving down the road. Well, if you just stare at your map and you don’t look out the windshield, disaster is going to happen. And the reason I say that is this. Because if I just take the the word without the spirit, I have a tendency to bend towards legalism. The Pharisees, Sadducees. If I just have the Spirit without the roadmap, I have a tendency to follow the lawlessness. It is the Spirit and the Word that come together, that not only empower us, but keep us on target to where the Lord has us going. So what I’d like to do now is this. I want to pray. Two responses. So I want to pray, If there’s anybody here this morning that doesn’t know Jesus, I want to pray for you. Second, I want to pray for a deeper, a greater experience of the knowing of Holy Spirit. So if you have if y’all can just close your eyes. And let’s start with the first thing that I said. No one looking around. If you’re here this morning. And you would say, Andrew, I do not know Jesus as my Lord and Savior. Could you raise your hand? I’m not going to embarrass you. I’m not going to make you come down front. But if you need Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior. Okay. And you’re more than welcome to come down. Okay. I’ve seen some people, people raising their hands. Okay. I’m going to pray for you first, and then we’re going to pray for the Holy Spirit to come. Let’s do this as one big family, because I saw at least one, maybe two hands. Let’s pray as one body. And, if y’all can repeat this after me, say, father, forgive me. Of my sins. I declare Jesus as my Lord and Savior. I invite you in to take residency inside my heart this morning. Wash me clean. I declare you Lord and Savior. I give you my life in Jesus name. Amen. Now here’s the next thing I want to pray. If you are a born again believer that loves Jesus and you want to say, Andrew, I want to walk in those things that the Holy Spirit has to offer me. No one looking around, just raise your hand, okay? Hands are going up everywhere. Okay, cool. So here’s what we’re going to do. I want you to put your hands in a receiving posture, just like the disciples did in the Upper Room. Not saying they had their hands like this, but they were in a receiving posture to receive what the Holy Spirit was bringing. And we’re just going to take a moment here and just wait. Holy Spirit, we receive your power. We receive your power this morning. Wind of Spirit, move in this room. Move in this room right now. Let us feel your presence. We love you, Holy Spirit. We love you, Holy Spirit. Say Holy Spirit, I want to know you. Holy Spirit, I want to hear your voice. Teach me, Holy Spirit. So, father, I just pray over our congregation this morning that we would be tuned to hearing the voice of the Holy Spirit. That we would stop each and every day and wait. We would wait. We love you, Holy Spirit. We thank you, Jesus. It’s in your name we pray. Amen. Amen, Amen. Well church family, I want to encourage you. Let that be part of your daily routine. Take time. I’ll. I’ll share a little inside of me. Holy Spirit and I sometimes dialogue a little different than I would advertise to everyone. But, I’ll walk in here some times and I’ll be like, Holy Spirit, I’m looking for you. Just let everybody know I’m. I’m looking for you. I’m I’m I’m trying to hear and see and know what you’re doing because I desire that daily in my life. So I encourage you do that daily. Ask for the Holy Spirit’s guidance. And I promise you this, he’ll show up and ask the Holy Spirit questions. Sometimes I’ll ask the Holy Spirit questions to tune my ear to hearing. The Holy Spirit will never violate the Word of God, but he will blow up the boxes that we put the word of God in. So sometimes I‚Äôll ask, Holy Spirit, how do you see my children? How do you see this situation? How do you see this? How do you see my wife? How do you see this perspective, this situation? And I just wait until the Holy Spirit shows me. But it’s encouraging. Amen. Amen.