I’ve been thinking a lot this week about the power of the Pentecostal message. The Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 2:1-5 says:
“When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. 2 For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 3 I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. 4 My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, 5 so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.”
The real power of the Pentecostal message rests not in the messenger but in the Holy Spirit. When the Spirit shows up, and He displays the power of God through supernatural gifts, it is easy to see that something more is happening than good preaching. The power of the Holy Spirit needs to be seen in the midst of our services today.
Because we live in a society that is enthralled with the supernatural, just look at the shows on TV that have to do with ghost hunting, monster chasing, and aliens. Mankind is still obsessed with the supernatural (So much for the age of reason!). Look at the rise of Wicca, the New Age, and the 2012 Mayan calendar predictions. Because of these, the world needs to see the Spirit of Truth (Jn. 14:17, & 16:15) at work in our lives and services.
However, the supernatural manifestation of the gifts is only half of the power seen in the Pentecostal message, are they important…Absolutely the gifts of the Holy Spirit edify the church and show the unbeliever that God is in our midst! If the power of the Pentecostal message is not only seen in the gifts, then where else is it seen?
It is also seen in seeking the Holy Spirit to bring His conviction upon the hearts of fallen mankind. John 16:8 says,“And when he comes, he will convict the world of its sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment.” A Holy Spirit filled believer sharing his or her faith should rely more upon the Holy Spirit to bring conviction upon the person they are witnessing to than using all the right words.
The real power of the Pentecostal message is not in the words we use, but in the Holy Spirit. He loves to convict sinners! Why? Because it draws them to Jesus! The Holy Spirit longs to draw sinners to Jesus, and so should we!
We should learn how to defend our faith, and other witnessing techniques that give us confidence. We should never supplement them for a firm reliance upon the Holy Spirit and His ability to convict the sinner.
I also believe we should use the gifts of the Holy Spirit when witnessing. We should seek words of knowledge and the discerning of spirits. A firm reliance upon the Holy Spirit when sharing our faith should involve the use of the supernatural gifts as well as the Word of God.
Relying on the Holy Spirit to convict the person with whom we are sharing takes a huge burden off of us. So what if you can’t remember the exact chapter and verse. Share what you know and rely upon the Spirit of God to do the rest!
We should be bold when filled with the Holy Spirit. Because our faith rests not in the wisdom of men, but upon the power of God! It is His power we rely upon, not ours. Whatever we lack ,He will provide. The most important thing we need is to be obedient. The Spirit of God will provide the needed courage if we ask Him for it. Just like the people in the Bible, God longs for us to utilize the Spirit- filled (Pentecostal) message to reach the World for Him.
And so the power of the Pentecostal message is found not in our words, but in a firm reliance upon the Holy Spirit for the demonstration of that power through His gifts, and also convicting the world of its sin.