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Be Continually Filled

Any desire we have of putting our hand in the abundant harvest rests on understanding the need of the Holy Spirit in our lives. It’s simple, if we try to do it “our way” we will fail. Our strength, our energy, our intellect and our plans are nothing compared to the boldness, power and kingdom impact of the Holy Spirit’s presence and power. We need to recognize the continual filling of the Holy Spirit as the right way to touch people’s lives and do what God has clearly called us to do. That’s how we accomplish things that last and that are real.

Paul writes in Ephesians 5:18, “And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit.” Paul is telling us to follow the same path we see in Acts 4:29-31 as the Disciples were being filled again by the Spirit.

The continuous aspect of being filled (literally “be being kept filled”) involves day–by–day, moment–by–moment submission to the Spirit’s control. The Greek word Paul uses is pleroo. It means more than filling something up as you might pour coffee to the top of a mug. It has three other meanings that may help us understand what Paul was saying as well as what we must do.

First, the word was often used in the context of sailing. The visual is of sails being filled with wind and moving the boat along. When there is no wind, the boat stops. Check out 2 Peter 1:21.

Second, pleroo was used to describe how one element might sink into another object. In that day salt was commonly used as a preservative and to flavor and preserve meat. For salt to be effective, it needed to sink in or permeate the meat. To successfully have our hand in the harvest, the Holy Spirit continually fills us and sinks into us so we’re totally and absolutely leaning on Him.

Lastly, the word could also be used to mean total control. We need to seek the continual filling of the Holy Spirit so we can be totally under His control. As I said earlier, we cannot expect supernatural results when we are relying just on our own strength, talent or ways. We need the total control of the Spirit, just as Peter needed it when he preached and 3,000 came to Christ (Acts 2:37-38). He could not do this without receiving and allowing the Holy Spirit to totally and radically control him.

Neither could Paul. He’s writing in Ephesians 5:18 from experience, not theology.

The truth is, neither can we. Jesus wants our hand in the harvest. The only way we can do it is by being continually filled by the Spirit. Are you ready?


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