10 August 2012

Being filled with the Spirit and being filled with God’s Word

    And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, 
to the breaking of bread and the prayers.
(Acts 2:42 ESV)

Are we hungry for God's Word? Are we eager to get to Sunday services or are we eager for Sunday services to be over. Are we struggling to understand the Word being taught or are we thinking about the Sunday afternoon football game? Is the Spirit reigning in our hearts or is it the world? Kent Hughes sheds some light on what was happening with the newborn Christians in Acts chapter 2:

“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching . . .” Note carefully that this verse literally says, “They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching.” It is very important that we note this term “continually devoting” because it governs the other characteristics of the church where the Spirit reigns. It denotes a steadfast and single-minded devotion to a certain course of action.

...These new Christians, under the reign of the Holy Spirit, were hungry for God’s Word. They could not get enough of it. Being filled with the Spirit and being filled with God’s Word go together.

The backbone of a healthy Christian life is teaching. Peter says, “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation” (1 Peter 2:2). Teaching was the milk of the early church under the direction of the Holy Spirit. The example of an energetic nursing baby is a fitting example for us to pursue, even if we have already moved on to steak. Young believers must make sure they are feeding on the teaching of God’s Word. There is much confusion today about the essential matters of our faith. In a non-reading, experience-oriented culture, solid Bible teaching is sometimes hard to find. Believers should beware of churches or Christian fellowships where the people do not carry their Bibles. Read your Bible. Mark it up. Each of us must make sure that sometime, somewhere in our week we are being taught. 
When the Spirit reigns, God’s people continually devote themselves to the study of his Word.

Hughes, R. Kent (2010-03-10). Acts: The Church Afire (Preaching the Word) (Kindle Locations 779-786). Good News Publishers/Crossway Books. Kindle Edition.

As the Sabbath  approaches this week we must ask ourselves, is the Spirit reigning in my heart or the world? Am I anxious for Sunday worship or am I just going through the motions as I'm expected to? Let us seriously consider what is at stake every time we miss the opportunity to be fed God's Word.

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