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Question

How can I be filled with the Holy Spirit?

Answer

Thank you for your question about being filled with the Holy Spirit. This is one of the most important questions anyone can ask. This answer will go through how we can be filled with the Spirit and what it means for us according to what the bible tells us.

The first thing that a person needs in order to be filled with the Holy Spirit is a real relationship with God through Jesus Christ. The unfortunate truth is that like me, and everyone else in the world, you are a sinner. You and I have broken many of God's laws by sometimes not telling the truth, by being angry and unforgiving towards people who hurt us, and by our dishonesty and unkindness. We deserve to be punished by God for our deliberate disobedience.

All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)
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The wages of sin is death, says the first part of Romans 6:23.

God gave His Son Jesus Christ to take our punishment and die for us, so that we can go to Heaven when we die. So we can be glad that the Bible also says,

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23)

We need to repent of our sins, confess them to God and ask for forgiveness. Then we must put our trust in Jesus Christ as our Saviour and Lord, our only hope of Heaven.

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life." (John 3:16)

When we receive Jesus Christ as our Saviour, He gives us a guarantee that we will go to Heaven. This guarantee is the Holy Spirit, who comes to live within us and stays with us.

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? (1 Corinthians 6:19)

In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:13-14)

So every true Christian already has the Holy Spirit living within him or her. However, the Bible makes it clear that we can live a Spirit-filled life or we can try to live and serve God in our own strength. God commands us to be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Ephesians 5:18-20)

The desire to be filled with the Holy Spirit's power is a wonderful one. It means that we desire to live for God and to do His will, in His strength. We want to be more than just religious and to live a life of joy and freedom from fear and sin by God's power. We long, too, to be able to tell other people about Jesus and all He has done for us.

There is a simple secret to being filled with the Holy Spirit. It is the same simple truth which enabled you to become a Christian. When we were converted to Christ, we simply confessed our failure, believed and invited Christ into our lives. The same is true of being filled with the Spirit - confess, believe and invite. Jesus taught this important principle when He healed two blind men. He told them,

"According to your faith be it done to you." (Matthew 9:29)

Confess to God that you cannot live the Christian life in your own strength, believe that the Holy Spirit lives within you and is willing to fill you and invite Him to do so. Don't look for an exciting experience, just trust that He heard you. The Lord Jesus gave a very important promise about this.

"If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!" (Luke 11:13)

You already have the Holy Spirit if you are a believer; what you and I need is to give the Holy Spirit access to our whole being, to take control of our lives and empower us to follow the Lord Jesus.

Some people look for exciting experiences and evidence of God's power at work. These experiences may well come, but the Christian life is one of faith, not emotion. We do not look for excitement, but for a life that honours Jesus Christ and power to serve Him faithfully. Feelings can mislead us, but a life of faith in Jesus will always be rewarded.

But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. (Galatians 5:16)

In Galatians, Paul has a lot to say about life in the Spirit; He says that being filled with the Spirit produces fruits in our lives.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. (Galatians 5:22)

These qualities are evidence that we are full of the Holy Spirit and they will begin to appear in your life as you trust the Holy Spirit to produce them.

In 1 Corinthians 12, Paul says that there are also gifts of the Spirit. He gives a list of nine of them and there are other lists elsewhere in the Bible that speak of spiritual gifts. For example, He may give you the gift of supernatural wisdom, of a kind you could not produce by yourself. This life of faith can be difficult, but it is also wonderful.

In summary, it is good to desire to be filled with the Spirit and you and I can enter into this Spirit-filled life by faith. In fact, it is good to start every day by renewing our prayer to be filled with the Spirit and live for God.& Being filled with the Spirit can be a wonderful experience, but it is not a once-for-all happening but needs daily renewal.

Here are some more Bible Verses for your further consideration:

  • For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. (Galatians 5:17)
  • For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world. (1 John 2:16)
  • "And I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with ability and intelligence, with knowledge and all craftsmanship". (Exodus 31:3)
  • We have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding. (Colossians 1:9)

I hope this answer helps you to find peace with God through Jesus Christ. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: Watch the video

I encourage you to attend a local Bible believing church and speak to the leader about your question. If you want to find a local church, our Church Finder may help you: Find a Church

Please feel free to submit a question to us or to read our answer database: Ask a Question

*All Scripture references are taken From The English Standard Version of the Holy Bible unless stated otherwise

*If anything in this answer& affects you directly, then please feel free to call our confidential prayer line in the UK on 0845 4567729, where trained Christian volunteers will take your call and pray both for you and with you. If you are outside of the UK then you may submit your request for prayer on line at www.ucb.co.uk/prayerline


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