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Interesting that there have been NO postings in this category. Maybe we have hit on something. IF we are not experiencing the power of the Holy Spirit then perhaps our poverty highlights a major area for discipleship development. 

If there is anything that comes through loud and clear in the Gospels and other books of the New Testament, it is that the Holy Spirit was living and active in the lives of the believers, apostles, teachers, evangelists that took the good news to the ends of the world. Many times, Paul appealed to how they had received the Holy Spirit when exhorting his hearers to live lives worthy of their calling as Christians.

The New Testament speaks of gifts of grace (free gifts/charis), gifts of the Spirit, and fruit of the Spirit, and gifts Christ gave to His body the Church - apostles, prophets, pastors/teachers, etc - .for the common good, for edification, for building up the body of Christ. 

How do we recover, reclaim, reconcile, and release the Holy Spirit as instruments in His hands?

What ARE you experiencing in/of/from the Holy Spirit?

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You have asked a large ship's worth of great questions!! Given my current state of mind and spirit, I have no answers that are not the standard Sunday School answers. (We all know that what ever the question the answer is Jesus).

Do I currently experience the power of God in the Holy Spirit in my walk? I confess not. My Pastor recently said to the church that it is simply getting back in step with Him. Stumble and fall, just get back up with His help and start walking again. Wander off in the FLESH, confess, repent, and start walking in step with Him.

It sounds great, but I find it so hard to do! I find myself, confessing, repenting (aka turn around and move away from the sin), and falling in the same stinking hole yet again! I do NOT want to make this hole my home!!! I want out, and walking with Him. BANG, I see I am in the same hole again.

That should give us something to talk about here that is Practical!!! How do you be Holy and not in the Hole?

Greg, thanks for engaging. For me, I think you hit the nail on the head. Practical Holiness! Not pie in the sky, mystic ascetecism. I think we begin with an "operational definition" of holiness. What does it mean Biblically? One definition I read was "separate-ness, dedication, and commitment." So, with that as a working definition, how do I separate myself TO GOD, dedicate myself TO GOD, and demonstrate commitment TO GOD? I do performance improvement work for a living and one of the questions I always ask is, "What is the EVIDENCE that you could show to 'convict' you of that performance, i.e. in this case of beingHOLY? Then, how would I need to employ my HEAD (think), HEART (feel/emotion), HANDS (do/work/practice), and FEET (where I go, who I go to, attitude I go in)?
The parallel is what do I NOT think, feel, do, go?

Then, the idea is HOW do I do this/not do that? What does it mean to be FILLED with the Holy Spirit, submissive to His will, and to live that will in practical, visible, demonstratable ways?

No answers yet either. But, would love to discuss with others.

JERRY

Greg Della-Croce said:
You have asked a large ship's worth of great questions!! Given my current state of mind and spirit, I have no answers that are not the standard Sunday School answers. (We all know that what ever the question the answer is Jesus).

Do I currently experience the power of God in the Holy Spirit in my walk? I confess not. My Pastor recently said to the church that it is simply getting back in step with Him. Stumble and fall, just get back up with His help and start walking again. Wander off in the FLESH, confess, repent, and start walking in step with Him.

It sounds great, but I find it so hard to do! I find myself, confessing, repenting (aka turn around and move away from the sin), and falling in the same stinking hole yet again! I do NOT want to make this hole my home!!! I want out, and walking with Him. BANG, I see I am in the same hole again.

That should give us something to talk about here that is Practical!!! How do you be Holy and not in the Hole?
Ah, I do agree with the concept of Practical Holiness. I am all to good at talking about things in the Theoretical, and then struggle with the shoe leather on the ground.

First - What evidence would convict me of Holiness. problem number one that puts a lot of weight on the external show of Holiness. Pharisees had that down pat, Jesus blew them away for it. So how do we take the first step while avoiding that error? How do we measure an inward seperation to God (AKA Holiness)??

Shall we start there?



Jerry Linnins said:

Greg, thanks for engaging. For me, I think you hit the nail on the head. Practical Holiness! Not pie in the sky, mystic ascetecism. I think we begin with an "operational definition" of holiness. What does it mean Biblically? One definition I read was "separate-ness, dedication, and commitment." So, with that as a working definition, how do I separate myself TO GOD, dedicate myself TO GOD, and demonstrate commitment TO GOD? I do performance improvement work for a living and one of the questions I always ask is, "What is the EVIDENCE that you could show to 'convict' you of that performance, i.e. in this case of beingHOLY? Then, how would I need to employ my HEAD (think), HEART (feel/emotion), HANDS (do/work/practice), and FEET (where I go, who I go to, attitude I go in)?
The parallel is what do I NOT think, feel, do, go?

Then, the idea is HOW do I do this/not do that? What does it mean to be FILLED with the Holy Spirit, submissive to His will, and to live that will in practical, visible, demonstratable ways?

No answers yet either. But, would love to discuss with others.

JERRY

Greg Della-Croce said:
You have asked a large ship's worth of great questions!! Given my current state of mind and spirit, I have no answers that are not the standard Sunday School answers. (We all know that what ever the question the answer is Jesus).

Do I currently experience the power of God in the Holy Spirit in my walk? I confess not. My Pastor recently said to the church that it is simply getting back in step with Him. Stumble and fall, just get back up with His help and start walking again. Wander off in the FLESH, confess, repent, and start walking in step with Him.

It sounds great, but I find it so hard to do! I find myself, confessing, repenting (aka turn around and move away from the sin), and falling in the same stinking hole yet again! I do NOT want to make this hole my home!!! I want out, and walking with Him. BANG, I see I am in the same hole again.

That should give us something to talk about here that is Practical!!! How do you be Holy and not in the Hole?

Greg, I am not sure I completely agree with your premise that seeking "evidence" equates perfectly with focusing on externals. The Scriptures speak of God, the Holy Spirit, our own conscience bearing witness. And, you are absolutely correct that Christ condemned self-righteousness and mere religious ritual. But, what I am speaking of are the kinds of internal (fruits of the Spirit) and externals (their demonstrations) and the good works we are called by Christ to do. When God called the Israelites out of Egypt, it was to WORSHIP and to SERVE HIM! We, I think are still called to do those (as represented in the two great commandments - Love God, Love your neighbor.
I have just finished reading the book of Acts, the four Gospels, and several of the other New Testament letters. It just seems to me that there is SO much more available to us in Christ through the Holy Spirit.

Greg Della-Croce said:
Ah, I do agree with the concept of Practical Holiness. I am all to good at talking about things in the Theoretical, and then struggle with the shoe leather on the ground.

First - What evidence would convict me of Holiness. problem number one that puts a lot of weight on the external show of Holiness. Pharisees had that down pat, Jesus blew them away for it. So how do we take the first step while avoiding that error? How do we measure an inward seperation to God (AKA Holiness)??

Shall we start there?



Jerry Linnins said:

Greg, thanks for engaging. For me, I think you hit the nail on the head. Practical Holiness! Not pie in the sky, mystic ascetecism. I think we begin with an "operational definition" of holiness. What does it mean Biblically? One definition I read was "separate-ness, dedication, and commitment." So, with that as a working definition, how do I separate myself TO GOD, dedicate myself TO GOD, and demonstrate commitment TO GOD? I do performance improvement work for a living and one of the questions I always ask is, "What is the EVIDENCE that you could show to 'convict' you of that performance, i.e. in this case of beingHOLY? Then, how would I need to employ my HEAD (think), HEART (feel/emotion), HANDS (do/work/practice), and FEET (where I go, who I go to, attitude I go in)?
The parallel is what do I NOT think, feel, do, go?

Then, the idea is HOW do I do this/not do that? What does it mean to be FILLED with the Holy Spirit, submissive to His will, and to live that will in practical, visible, demonstratable ways?

No answers yet either. But, would love to discuss with others.

JERRY

Greg Della-Croce said:
You have asked a large ship's worth of great questions!! Given my current state of mind and spirit, I have no answers that are not the standard Sunday School answers. (We all know that what ever the question the answer is Jesus).

Do I currently experience the power of God in the Holy Spirit in my walk? I confess not. My Pastor recently said to the church that it is simply getting back in step with Him. Stumble and fall, just get back up with His help and start walking again. Wander off in the FLESH, confess, repent, and start walking in step with Him.

It sounds great, but I find it so hard to do! I find myself, confessing, repenting (aka turn around and move away from the sin), and falling in the same stinking hole yet again! I do NOT want to make this hole my home!!! I want out, and walking with Him. BANG, I see I am in the same hole again.

That should give us something to talk about here that is Practical!!! How do you be Holy and not in the Hole?
I do agree with you that there are visible signs of the work of God in our lives!! The Holy Spirit is an active individual and thus will have active evidence of His work. Christ Himself said they will know you are my disciples by your love for one another.

I just don't want to get in the "I don't" or "I do" traps that are human actions not empowered by that work of the Holy Spirit. It is primary cause of my doing that I want to know that is of God and not of myself, least I be tempted to boost. (sorry my paraphrase of Paul).

I have been reading Ephesians and Galatians and find a lot of warning from and praise to God there.

Again, I am fuzzy on the how of the Holy Spirit's methods to grow us in Love of God, of Neighbor, and the Church.
"Measurement" is always a problem. Part of that is because, like the Pharasees, we want to measure each other. I am trying to get to the place where I do not measure others by the standards that God sets for me. I think this is more about "being" than "doing". The Bible says we should "be" Holy like God is Holy. We also have the "be" "attitudes". I am praying daily for a fresh infilling of the Holy Spirit to make me like Jesus from the inside out. If He changes my heart, my actions will naturally follow. Having said all of that, I am still struggling with seeing it happen in my life.

Ken Mitchell

Greg Della-Croce said:
Ah, I do agree with the concept of Practical Holiness. I am all to good at talking about things in the Theoretical, and then struggle with the shoe leather on the ground.

First - What evidence would convict me of Holiness. problem number one that puts a lot of weight on the external show of Holiness. Pharisees had that down pat, Jesus blew them away for it. So how do we take the first step while avoiding that error? How do we measure an inward seperation to God (AKA Holiness)??

Shall we start there?



Jerry Linnins said:

Greg, thanks for engaging. For me, I think you hit the nail on the head. Practical Holiness! Not pie in the sky, mystic ascetecism. I think we begin with an "operational definition" of holiness. What does it mean Biblically? One definition I read was "separate-ness, dedication, and commitment." So, with that as a working definition, how do I separate myself TO GOD, dedicate myself TO GOD, and demonstrate commitment TO GOD? I do performance improvement work for a living and one of the questions I always ask is, "What is the EVIDENCE that you could show to 'convict' you of that performance, i.e. in this case of beingHOLY? Then, how would I need to employ my HEAD (think), HEART (feel/emotion), HANDS (do/work/practice), and FEET (where I go, who I go to, attitude I go in)?
The parallel is what do I NOT think, feel, do, go?

Then, the idea is HOW do I do this/not do that? What does it mean to be FILLED with the Holy Spirit, submissive to His will, and to live that will in practical, visible, demonstratable ways?

No answers yet either. But, would love to discuss with others.

JERRY

Greg Della-Croce said:
You have asked a large ship's worth of great questions!! Given my current state of mind and spirit, I have no answers that are not the standard Sunday School answers. (We all know that what ever the question the answer is Jesus).

Do I currently experience the power of God in the Holy Spirit in my walk? I confess not. My Pastor recently said to the church that it is simply getting back in step with Him. Stumble and fall, just get back up with His help and start walking again. Wander off in the FLESH, confess, repent, and start walking in step with Him.

It sounds great, but I find it so hard to do! I find myself, confessing, repenting (aka turn around and move away from the sin), and falling in the same stinking hole yet again! I do NOT want to make this hole my home!!! I want out, and walking with Him. BANG, I see I am in the same hole again.

That should give us something to talk about here that is Practical!!! How do you be Holy and not in the Hole?
John Piper has some excellent resources on this set of issues at his DESIRING GOD website. I am nearly finished with FOR THE FAME OF GOD'S NAME (a collection of essays by noted pastors, theologians, and academics in honor of Piper's ministry over the last several decades). It is a great read and very inspiring and enlightening. I am doing one of Kay Arthur's inductive Bible studies right now on 2 Timothy. It is a great call to discipleship and outlines practical ways for each of us to minister to the Body of Christ, by the power of the Spirit, in the integrity of the Word.

Again...THANK YOU all for engaging and being my "iron sharpening iron!"
I like the reminder of BE Holy as God is Holy - We are BECOMING God already IS

Same with the be attitudes - these are the attitudes we're BECOMING.

I am not there on either yet. But the journey is important to be taken with others!!

Greg

I agree. Thanks for walking with me (or is it me with you?) for awhile. Maybe we will hit a "rest stop" together down the road. :-)
Greg Della-Croce said:
I like the reminder of BE Holy as God is Holy - We are BECOMING God already IS

Same with the be attitudes - these are the attitudes we're BECOMING.

I am not there on either yet. But the journey is important to be taken with others!!

Greg
How to regain living in the power of the Holy Spirit? R.A. Torrey says in his book The Baptism of the Holy Spirit that it is our sins that are shutting us out from walking in the mighty power of God. Also there are other things that are not sinful yet hinder spirituality. Ask ourselves:
Since we were called to come out from the world to be holy and set apart for God, have we let allurements of the world capture our attention and heart, so that we are no longer wholly consecrated to the Lord? Are we entangled in the world's ways and values? Are we leading lives of simplicity, free from indulgence and excesses? Are we letting greed for more hinder our walk with God? Are we giving in to temptations to indulge the flesh with luxurious living? (Gal 5:17 says the gratification of the flesh and the fullness of the Spirit are contrary to each other). Do we have pride because we see certain truths or are used by God in a special way? Are we neglecting daily prayer and regular thoughtful meditation upon God's Word, or are we letting too many other activities (even Christian duties!) crowd out time with God? Hmmm-- could these things be the answer to why many Christians don't see the power of God working in their lives?
I just finished reading through James and it appears that  what we do and are thinking do apply to our faith walk. I don't believe that the disciples were really any different than me with living the daily challenges of daily life. I find comfort in knowing that they were men just like me. The beauty is that Father knows we are but dust and takes this imperfect man, his weakness and uses them for His glory. I have found peace with that! He loves me just as I am and I like that; He did love me just like that before I decided to follow Him and His ways. I sense the experience of freedom from the obligation of religious perfomance and appreciate His mercy and grace in my life. Man I look in the mirror and know who I am and He still loves me.

Praise the Lord!!! Brother Jerry, I am truly sorry that no one has responded to this discussion since you posted it.  I have recently discovered this discussion and I am glad that I did because I know from my own experience that this is one of the topics that is causing much of the Body of Christ to have great difficulty in recieving all that the Father has for His Body which is the church of the living God.  I truly do believe in the Power of the Holy Spirit and I have been a true witness to this power in my own life.  I didn't realize at first that this power is much needed for the empowerment of the believer to fully get revelation of the scriptures.  I believe that we must be "born again" to receive the infilling of the Holy Spirit.  I believe that in order to  do the will of the Father, we must first be "born again" and secondly we must be filled with the Spirit of God.  Please help me out here, am I right on this or do I need a deeper study in and of the infilling of the Spirit of God.  I can't wait for your response, thank you for this discussion, amen... 

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