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Devotional - week of April 13, 2008


PROPERLY CLOTHED FOR THE JOURNEY?

 

… stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.  Luke 24:49 (NIV)

  

Jesus told His disciples that they must be clothed with power from on high to be properly dressed to take the gospel to all nations.

 

Jesus clothed the 120 on the day of Pentecost. They were all filled with the Spirit. Then God used them to bring about 3000 more into the Kingdom on that one day. The Holy Spirit entered the lives of the 3000 (Acts 2:38). As in all conversions, they all experienced a period of sovereign grace. They were filled with the Spirit. Acts 2:44-47 records the activities and ministries of the 3120 Spirit-filled believers.

 

Now all who believed … had all things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need. So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.

 

The 3120, in addition to the new converts who also were filled with the Spirit, did all of this spontaneously. We evangelicals of today must often exhort and prod others to do them. Why the difference? We seem not to be interested in being filled with the Spirit by experiencing our oneness with Christ in crucifixion, burial and resurrection.

 

If Christian schools equip their students only to do things for God, they send them out for ministry inadequately clothed. In most cases, the students will equip their churches the way their schools prepared them. If they left school not properly clothed, they will teach their church members to serve in the same spiritual condition.

 

Ask a former student of a Christian school if he was taught the necessity of being filled with the Spirit. Ask him if he was taught how to experience his union with Christ. Listen for references to the believer's oneness with Christ and the Spirit-filled life in today’s evangelical sermons.