We hear all around us of “Spirit filled” churches or being a “Spirit filled” believer. What does that even mean? I have come to the conclusion that many people don’t even know what that means. Throughout this post I will try to show you what the Bible says about being full of the Holy Spirit. As well as what it means to be full of the Holy Spirit.
First off, one has to understand that the Holy Spirit is a person. He is a He, not an it. Also one has to understand that the Holy Spirit is God. I will not spend time right now arguing these since this is widely accepted as truth in the Christian community.
To be full of the Holy Spirit, here is a list of things that cannot be apart of your life. Bitterness, wrath, anger, loud quarreling or clamor, and evil speaking with malice. (Ephesians 4:30-32) If someone is truly full of the Holy Spirit, he or she will be imitators or God as dear children. Walking in love just as Christ did. The Holy Spirit, Jesus Christ, and The Father are all One. Therefore to be full of the Holy Spirit is to be full of God, walking in His truth.
Not every believer is full of the Holy Spirit. The Bible makes a distinction between Christians full of the Holy Ghost and those not. Everyone that has been saved does have the Holy Spirit in him or her. You could not be saved without the Holy Spirit. It is the Spirit who draws us to salvation. Without Him we would be lost and without any hope. So every believer does have the Holy Ghost inside of him or her. The word “filling” could be explained as yielding to God completely. Being full of the Holy Spirit means you have faith, believing that He is working in your life, as well as, repenting from your sins. Sin grieves the Holy Spirit. To be full, one has to be at a place where they are actively repenting from their sins and turning to God. The Holy Ghost will not be in cohabitation with sin. They do not get along. Sin grieves Him. So to be full of the Holy Spirit, one has to be in repentance from sin.
It should also be stated, that the Holy Spirit does not fill you so that you can feel good. He hasn’t come to give you warm feelings or to make you cry with tears of joy. He hasn’t even come to make you speak in tongues or prophecy. He has come to glorify Jesus. The Apostle John, records Jesus saying this, “But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me.” (John 15:26) Jesus also says, “He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is mine and declare it to you.” (John 16:14) The Holy Spirit has come to glorify Jesus. Therefore every person full of the Holy Spirit will glorify Jesus. They won’t attempt to make a name for themselves, but will attempt to spread the name of Jesus all over the world so that people can believe upon Him.
To be full of the Holy Spirit is to be full of power. Luke recorded Jesus saying, “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” With the Holy Spirit power we are witnesses! He gives us the power so that we can proclaim the name of Jesus. Spirit filled believers will be a witness to everyone around them, for Jesus.
Throughout the Book of Acts, we see many different actions following Spirit filled believers. We see them speaking in tongues (Acts 2:4), testifying of Jesus boldly (Acts 4:8), “speaking the word of God with boldness” (Acts 4:31), forgiving people who have done them wrong (Acts 7:55-60), speaking out against people who pervert God’s words and commandments (Acts 13:9-10), and teaching and speaking accurately the things of God. (Acts 18:25) Contrary to what some movements and people might say, being full of the Holy Spirit doesn’t always mean you are speaking in different languages (aka tongues).
The Holy Spirit distributes His gifts to each person however He wills. Not everyone does speak in tongues. Paul addresses this in 1 Corinthians chapters 12-14. I encourage you to take a few minutes and read it. It only takes a few minutes. There are diversities in gifts. There is no need to glorify speaking in tongues, over another gift. Speaking in tongues is not even the most useful gift. The Apostle Paul lists speaking in tongues after apostles, prophets, teachers, miracles, gifts of healing, helps, and administrations. The gift of tongues is a wonderful gift but it has received, in my opinion, far too much attention over the other gifts of the Spirit.
Lastly, a Spirit filled life will produce fruit. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” (Galatians 5:22) If someone is truly Spirit filled, they will exhibit these fruit. These fruit on the Spirit filled believer will be as evident as an apple tree full of fruit. Wherever the believer goes they should be dropping fruit like an apple tree dropping apples. When you are dropping these fruit, everyone will know that you are a Spirit filled believer, just like everyone knows that a tree dropping apples is an apple tree. I will leave you with the words of Jesus in John 15:8.
“By this My father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will all be my disciples.”