Alton Garrison, former Assistant General Superintendent, shared this dynamic story in the iValues series based on the Four Cardinal Doctrines of the Assemblies of God (Salvation, Healing, Holy Spirit baptism, the Second Coming).
For (over) 50 years, coal has been used in our country to generate the lion’s share of electricity for our homes, businesses and industry. This electricity has provided us with power for lighting, heating, cooling, cooking, washing, communicating, entertaining… well, you get the idea. Electricity is essential.
At a typical power plant, a string of coal cars arrives every few days. The coal is sorted, ground into a fine powder, and burned at a high temperature. Water running through a network of pipes at the furnace becomes steam. The steam drives a turbine, turning an electrical generator.
Most people don’t realize this process is ongoing, creating power every day, 24/7, 365 days a year. And it all starts with a lump of coal.
When you think about it, the process of generating electrical power illustrates the process we must follow as Christians for having spiritual power.
When we receive Christ at the moment of salvation, each of us becomes a new creation. The Holy Spirit indwells our being and resides within us. At that moment we are given a great resource. But like any resource, to be of any good, it must be processed and put to use.
A lump of coal is of little value if I simply hold it. But if I process it and use it correctly, it becomes a great tool.
It’s the same of us as believers. If we have the Holy Spirit inside us and we never tap into His power, we too are missing a great opportunity to do more and reach the potential God offers us beyond our own talents and gifts.
Jesus said, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria and to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8). These final words of the Savior describe a powerful experience that we as Pentecostal believers hold dear. The Bible refers to this experience by many names. Jesus and others called it “the baptism in the Holy Spirit.” He also called it “the promise of the Father.”
One of the first things we need to realize is the baptism in the Holy Spirit is for every Christian. On the Day of Pentecost the Bible says, “All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:4). Peter told the crowd on that day, “The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off– for all whom the Lord our God will call” (Acts 2:39). Peter was talking about us – about all who are in Christ Jesus, including those then, those now, and those yet to come.
Second, we also must realize that the Bible teaches that the baptism in the Holy Spirit is a separate experience that follows salvation. It is not a requirement of salvation, but rather a benefit made available to us as members of God’s family. The baptism in the Holy Spirit is not a saving experience for the non-Christian; it is an empowering experience for the Christian in order that he or she may be supernaturally equipped to perform their ministry.
Friends, we need the power the Holy Spirit brings! I need that power; so do you. Would you come this Sunday expecting to either be filled or refilled by the Holy Spirit? Let’s receive all He has for us in Jesus’ name!
This Sunday, May 23, we will "Celebrate Pentecost!" in the 10:35am worship service. There will also be a special teaching on the Holy Spirit in the Adult Bible Class at 9:30am. Please invite someone to share it with you.
If you are not able to join us in-person in the building at 10:35am for the worship service, please join us Online for the Live broadcast on Facebook (Search: Honolulu AG). The recording will also be uploaded later that day to our website (honoluluag.org) and YouTube channel (Search: Honolulu Assembly of God).
Aloha and Aloha ke Akua!