"No one realizes how beautiful it is to travel until he comes home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow." ~Lin Yutang

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

are you full?

i started reading acts (the 5th book of the new testament) a week or so ago.  maybe i've skipped over it in the past.  i've heard stories out of it -here and there- i'm sure. 
anyway, it is an account of the happenings directly after the gospel books of jesus' life.  (fancy it was placed directly after the gospel books...)  anyway, luke wrote it and it talks a lot about being filled with the holy spirit.  it makes me question what we, as modern day non-pentecostal christians describe as being spirit-filled.  you can tell that when luke describes the filling that it is something observable and dramatic... much like the pentecostal christians ... act (?wrong word?) it. 
what are your thoughts on this???  if you don't know what i'm talking about, read some of acts.  i'm only on chapter 8-9, so you don't have to read much to figure out what i'm referring to. 

Try to remember, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."

9 comments:

troybee said...

I consider myself pentacostal. Because although I believe in gifts of the spirit and so on, I'm not at all about wailing or flailing or speaking out of one's mind. I think if we focus too much on what we get from the spirit we may forget that our life is not all about us. I didn't realize there was a non-pentacostal sort of Christian. But I guess it's like "evangelical". The words have come to mean different things.

To me, being filled with the holy spirit is being full of life in the sense of being able to say the right thing and do the right thing easily.

MamaT said...

hm. that's a good thought. thanks for sharing!

MamaT said...

ps. i'm not sure what "pentecostal" really means. and i could be mis-using it completely ignorantly. when i think of a pentecostal church though, i think of one that people are speaking in toungues, falling over from hands-on healing, and the like (holy rollers, if you will). and really that's kinda what i'm picturing as i read acts. luke seems to be describing "being filled with the holy spirit" as this dramatic change where those that are filled can heal others and perform other miracles that could only come from the Spirit.

troybee said...

I want to edit out my "because" to make my response make more sense.

MamaT said...

ok then, consider it edited.

Jonathan and Telcia said...

Being filled with the Spirit means that I trust in Jesus and He made and makes me new. The newness is visible, but the filling is not. The church was way different in Acts than it is now. Most of it is that the church today needs to start acting differently--loving each other and fellowshipping differently. But all that religious stuff can get very distracting. I think the Lord had a special time of speaking for that church. Now, He gives us rules for speaking in tongues so that everything we do and say must serve to be edifying to others and not only just ourselves. ~aT

MamaT said...

i kinda think that's what i've been taught. just READING acts makes me wonder about my teaching though.
any other thoughts, my dear faithful readers???

Unknown said...

some of my family roots are pentacostal and while I was exposed to that kind of church a lot as a child, I've not attended a pentacostal church regularly at anytime in my life. My aunt one time asked me what type of church we were in and I said "well, I guess to you it would be consider a more "traditional/fundamental" type of church". To which she replied, "Oh, I thought you were always more Spirit filled than that." I was struck by the description of being more or less filled with the Spirit. Don't all believers have the Spirit at the point of salvation. So many verses talk about the Spirit filling us and indwelling us. My outward expression of the Spirit living in me is not the determination of whether or not the Spirit lives in me. I will always be growing in my personal knowledge and love of Christ and that will "look" different (acted outwardly) as I morph more into the person He wants me to be....So the filling of the Spirit is not dependent on my own spiritual growth.
Jen

Anonymous said...

Well well well well well well! This is a great little discussion among my sweet offspring. The Acts church is a perfect example of the way people act when they are infused by the Holy Spirit and not discouraged by the world around them. They were living communally, putting all their earnings and possessions in a common "fund" to take care of all. They were praying and experiencing miracles, serving and being served by each other, and living out the gospel teachings. I think one can be distracted by some of the "outward" appearances that were described (tongues, etc.) because the "signs" were a manifestation of the Spirit-filled people, not evidence that they were filled with the Spirit. In other words, I believe there were many (maybe even MOST?) people who did not speak in tongues and experience miracles but the ones that did were documented since it was so amazing!