Today Pastor Choi continues his sermon series on dunamis (God’s power). Based on Derek Prince’s Book “The Holy Spirit in You,” he lays out seven steps to receive the Holy Spirit: 1. Repent 2. Be baptized. 3. Ask God. 4. Be thirsty. 5. Come to Jesus. 6. Drink—receive within yourself. 7. Yield your body and members to God. He concludes his message with an invitation prayer to receive the Holy Spirit.
Following is a summary of the sermon:
Dunamis—the Power of God, Part 2 of 2
Acts 2:37-38 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
37 Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?” 38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
The night before He was crucified, Jesus promised His disciples that He would send them the Holy Spirit—the Spirit of God, the Spirit of truth, the Helper, the Comforter, and the Advocate (John 16:7). After He was risen from the dead, He stayed with His disciples for 40 days. As the risen Christ was ascending into heaven, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem and wait for the Holy Spirit. Indeed, 10 days later, the Holy Spirit like a tongue of fire descended upon the 120 praying disciples and filled them with dunamis (the power of God). That event is called Pentecost.
On Pentecost the Church was born. Since then, for the next two thousand years, the Holy Spirit has stayed with the believers and still dwells in every child of God providing timely help. He also fills them with dunamis—the power of God.
Two Sundays ago, I spoke to you what dunamis is all about. Dunamis is God’s power and it came down on the believers through the Holy Spirit two thousand years ago. It is God’s will for us to experience that same dunamis. He makes it available to us through the Holy Spirit today.
As I promised two weeks ago, this morning I am going to talk about how we can receive the Holy Spirit and dunamis.
Now, there are a couple of things we must prepare ourselves with before we talk about how to receive the Holy Spirit. First and foremost, we must acknowledge the presence of the Holy Spirit within us and among us. How do we know He is within us and among us? By trusting and believing God’s Word that says so. 1 Corinthians 6:19: 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you?
We also must bring in the right attitude; that is to acknowledge the authority of the Holy Spirit over us. The Holy Spirit is not our servant. We are His servants. He is not a genie in a bottle. He is the Spirit of God. If you are only interested in dunamis, and not in the Holy Spirit, forget about receiving it. You cannot separate dunamis the gift from the Holy Spirit the Giver. No Holy Spirit, no dunamis. The Holy Spirit won’t give you dunamis unless your heart is right with Him. Dunamis is only given to those who obey the Holy Spirit no matter what.
When we meet these conditions, then we are ready to receive the Holy Spirit and dunamis. In order to receive the Holy Spirit and receive all the blessings promised including dunamis, we need to be open up to the Holy Spirit. I am going to share with you seven practical steps to receive the Holy Spirit from Derek Prince’s book The Holy Spirit in You.
1. Repent and Be Baptized (Acts 2:37-38): On the day of Pentecost Apostle Peter preached to the crowd and they responded to his message as follows: “37 Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?” 38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Here are the first two conditions for us to meet. Repent and be baptized. Repent means a complete turn-around from our sins and rebellion and submit ourselves to God without reservation. E.g. Switching the train. Be baptized means to openly acknowledge that we are dead to sin and to old self-centered life styles (that is, we have been crucified with Christ—Galatians 2:20) and alive to God (Romans 6:11—Christ was risen. So were we in Christ) and giving ourselves to God as instruments of righteousness (Romans 6:13).
2. Ask God (Luke 11:9-13): You never receive the Holy Spirit if you don’t ask for Him. Whoever wants to receive the Holy Spirit must ask for Him. 9 “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it will be opened. 11 Now suppose one of you fathers is asked by his son for a fish; he will not give him a snake instead of a fish, will he? 12 Or if he is asked for an egg, he will not give him a scorpion, will he? 13 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?” Here, Jesus promises us that those who ask God for the Holy Spirit will receive Him. So we should ask God to give us the Holy Spirit.
3. Be Thirsty, Go to Jesus, and Drink (John 7:37-39). Three more simple conditions are stated here. 37 Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. 38 He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” 39 But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
This passage is clearly about who will receive the Holy Spirit—those who are thirsty, who come to Jesus and drink. God never forces anyone who doesn’t feel thirsty for His blessings including the Holy Spirit. E.g. Perhaps the reason why we don’t receive the Holy Spirit and dunamis is because we don’t feel the need of them let alone thirsty for them. Are you thirsty for the Holy Spirit and His dunamis? Then, you go to Jesus who baptizes you with the Holy Spirit. No human being but Jesus can baptize you with the Holy Spirit. Go to Him. Then, you must drink too—the decision is totally up to you. “Just being totally passive and saying, ‘Well, if God wants to do it, let Him do it!’ is not drinking. Drinking is actively receiving within you” (Ibid., p. 100). Make up your mind to drink and receive the Holy Spirit.
4. Yield: your body and members to God. Here are two more relevant facts. 1 Corinthians 6:19: 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? Our bodies are the places where the Holy Spirit dwells—the temple of God. Romans 6:13: 13 and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. We are commanded to offer our bodies as instruments for His service.
Recap: seven conditions for receiving the fullness of the Holy Spirit and dunamis:
1. Repent. 2. Be baptized. 3. Ask God. 4. Be thirsty. 5. Come to Jesus; He is the baptizer. 6. Drink—receive within yourself. 7. Yield your body as a temple for the Holy Spirit and your members as instruments of righteousness.
Perhaps you may wonder how you can do all this at once. You can begin with a simple prayer. I am going to lead you in prayer that is taken from the book of Derek Prince. Say after me if you would like to receive the Holy Spirit and dunamis in your life: “Lord Jesus, I am thirsty / for the fullness of Your Holy Spirit. I present my body to You / as a temple / and my members / as instruments of righteousness, especially my tongue, the member I cannot tame. Fill me, I pray, and let Your Holy Spirit / flow through my lips / in rivers of praise and worship. Amen” (Ibid., p. 103).
Receive the Holy Spirit—it is God’s will and God’s promise for you and me. When we receive the Holy Spirit, we can also experience dunamis. Start walking in the Holy Spirit, and you will lead a victorious life day in day out. Also, when you do, the church too will grow in dunamis every day: In this way the word of the Lord spread widely and grew in power (Acts 19:20). Amen.