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Spirit-filled living

18 October 2023 ‘Do not be drunk with wine…but be filled with the Spirit.’ Ephesians 5:18 NKJV

The Christian life isn’t only a changed life but an exchanged life. At the moment of conversion, we give our old life to God and He gives us a new life in its place. But He does more; He comes to live within us by the power of the Holy Spirit. Paul made the contrast between being drunk with wine and being filled with the Spirit. One causes you to be out of control, while the other enables you to be in control. One is counterproductive, while the other is productive. One makes you powerless, while the other empowers you. One brings you sorrow, while the other brings you joy. This Scripture is not a promise or even an option, it’s a command: ‘Be filled with the Spirit.’ And Paul gives us three evidences of a Spirit-filled life: 1) ‘Singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord’ (v. 19 NKJV). This song isn’t induced by circumstances but despite them. ‘At midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God…and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed’ (Acts 16:25-26 NKJV). Praising God can open doors and break chains. 2) ‘Giving thanks always for all things to God’ (Ephesians 5:20 NKJV). Spirit-filled people have troubles like everyone else. But they don’t focus on their troubles; they count their blessings and stay positive, upbeat, and grateful. 3) ‘Submitting to one another in the fear of God’ (v. 21 NKJV). Spirit-filled people are ‘others focused’. They know that what you make happen for someone else, God will make happen for you (see Ephesians 6:8).

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