“But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).
I mentioned in my first instalment in this series that the difference between an effective preacher and one who merely discharges what he knows about the Bible is the presence of anointing in the life of the speaker as well as in the Word that has been delivered. When the Word is anointed it hits its mark in the lives of the hearers and a change is effected by the Holy Spirit in those lives. Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
The disciples could not go forth in ministry until the Holy Spirit came upon them at Pentecost renewing their faith, courage and purpose and empowering them.
In John 14:16, before He went to the cross, Jesus, speaking to His disciples says, “And I will ask the Father, and He shall give you another comforter, that He may abide with you forever; even the Spirit of Truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him, nor know Him. But you know Him, for He dwells with you, and He shall be in you.” Then Jesus said, “I will not leave you comfortless.” In other words, “I will not leave you without a comforter.” “I will come to you.”
Who? The entire godhead – Father, Son and Spirit. Jesus was offering the New Testament saints something that the Old Testament saints did not have. He was saying, “Not only are you going to have the Spirit with you; not only are you going to have the Spirit upon you; but you are going to have something in you that has never been there before. Nobody has ever had that before.”
Nobody could have that before because Jesus had to pay the price for the sins of the world. Jesus had to make man suitable for God to come and live there. God could not live permanently in a sinful vessel. He could not. He could only come upon; He could only be with, while that person was walking with Him. But Jesus made a way for that vessel to be purged and to be made suitable; and to be made righteous; and to be made holy, so that the Holy Spirit of God; that the Father of glory Himself, and the Son could come and dwell in that redeemed vessel. Hallelujah!
Now there is something about the inward anointing that is different from the outward anointing. Because you see, the external anointing came upon a person at God’s sovereign will. It came upon a person when God chose. It came spontaneously and unexpectedly. It came with life-changing results, and it remained while God poured it out. But Jesus spoke about a new anointing that would come. The Holy Spirit of Truth that He said would remain with you forever.
He is never going to leave. He is going to remain with you forever. And there is going to be a power there that is going to be on tap that you can tap into and that you can pour forth and use at any time.
Peter and John were going up to the temple to pray and they come to the Beautiful Gate and there is a beggar begging them for money. The Scripture does not says “And as Peter stood there the anointing of the Spirit of God came upon him …” Peter looked at him and he said, “Sorry, I don’t have any money. But I do have something I can give you. I have something to give you, and such as I have I am choosing to give to you.” Then Peter opened his tap wide and he just reached out and took that man by the hand and he pulled him up and said, “In the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!” Pow! Peter opened his mouth and the anointing just gushed out and drenched him. And when the anointing hit his body the crippling disease just had to leave.
So you see there is power. In the New Testament there is something there that is available to the New Testament believer that is far greater than what the Old Testament saints had. And when Jesus spoke to His disciples concerning the works that He did, He said, “These works that I do (with the external anointing) you are going to do the same. But I want to tell you something, you’re going to have the capacity to do greater works than these, because I am going to My Father. And when I go to My Father I’m going to give you back something more.”
The disciples had moved in the external anointing even while Jesus was with them. He gave them power and He sent them out and said, “Go and heal the sick, raise the dead and cast out demons.” They had operated under that power already. They knew it. They understood it. They worked with Jesus and did the same miracles that He did by His side. But He said, “I am giving you something greater. Just wait.”
When He ascended up into Heaven He said, “Now you go and wait in Jerusalem until you receive the promise of the Father, and then power is going to come upon you when the Spirit of God comes upon you. You’re going to have something new. You are not just going to be soaked from without, but the underground stream from within your spirit is going to gush forth in mighty power; far more power than what you guys have known before.”
In the Old Testament God gave His anointing only to selected individuals. In the New Testament,“Whosoever will may come.” Peter said, “This promise is to you and to all that are far off, and to your children, even to as many as the Lord our God shall call.” This promise is to everyone who accepts Jesus. This promise is to everyone who believes. This promise is to every single person who is born again of the Spirit of God.
You have a right to this anointing! Jesus paid the price. He shed His blood to give you this anointing. It is your right, it is your inheritance, and He has given you His robe of righteousness. And He has given you the right to reach out and to take what He has bought for you at Calvary. It is yours, believer. Every single one who knows Jesus as their Savior has the right to that anointing.
In the Old Testament the Spirit came upon. In the New Testament the Spirit is within. In the Old Testament they jumped into the river to swim. In the New Testament, out of their bellies shalll flow rivers of living water.
In Ezekiel 47 Ezekiel had a vision where he saw the temple and he saw from the threshold, the door of the temple and there was water pouring out, water trickling out in a stream. . Everybody is talking about the river of God. “Get in the river.” And the angel came and measured up, and each time he measured up the water became deeper. It started up to the ankles, then up to the knees, then up to the thighs. Then it became a raging river that you had to swim in. It is the river of God, it is the anointing of God. It is the power of God. It is the external anointing, the outpouring of God’s Spirit. You have to get in it. The Old Testament saints had the river. They could get in the river. But as a New Testament saint you have a river in you! You can give out the river. You don’t have to go and get in the river, you can give out the river. “Out of his innermost being,” Jesus said, “shall flow rivers …” He said, “Rivers” , not “River (singular).” He said, “Rivers (plural).” You have the capacity to pour out!
You have a river in you. Are you feeling dry? Are you saying, “Oh, I wish we had revival in our church. Oh, I wish I didn’t have to fly a thousand miles to a revival church to go and get in the river.” What is wrong with your river? Did it dry up? Or did you not even know it was there. You have never learned how to let the river flow? You have never learned how to release what God has put within you?
When there is anointing on the man of God who is speaking forth the Word, there will be action on the people who are hearing it. There will be results. When the anointing is there, it will show. When the anointing is not there, it will not show.
So what are the different facets of the Anointing? There are many; however, one of the main purposes is to reveal our inheritance in Christ. “Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual” (I Corinthians 2:12-13). “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you. All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you” (John 16:13-15). It is absolutely amazing how the Holy Spirit shows the extent of our inheritance in Christ to those who will receive the anointing.
Another purpose is that the Holy Spirit may become our spiritual teacher and to bring to our memory also what He has taught us. “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you”(John 14:26). I can be counseling or witnessing to someone and the Holy Spirit can bring to mind a Scripture or truth from Scripture to me which I have not thought of in years.
The Holy Spirit also will give greater insights about Jesus to those who receive the anointing. “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:” (John 15:26).
One primary purpose of the anointing of the Holy Spirit is that one may be a witness unto Christ. One is not just to be a his witness, witness about Jesus, or witness for him, but to witness UNTO him. “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth“ (Acts 1:8). This means that when others see the person who is anointed with the Holy Spirit, they should be seeing Jesus.
The anointing will also bring conviction to the “world” through the Believer. “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me; Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more; Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged” (John 16:7-11). The word “reprove” is demonstrated when the prosecuting attorney brings proof into the court that the crime has been committed by the defendant.
Do you feel the Holy Spirit anointing as you serve the Lord?
Are you being empowered by the Holy Spirit?
Is there an overflowing reservoir of anointing in you, like Peter, from which you can tap for ministry?
Is the Holy Spirit your spiritual teacher?
Are you getting deeper insights about Jesus, the Life, the Truth and the Way?
Is the world seeing Jesus through you and are they being convicted of sins and reconciled with Him?
Is there a need of fresh anointing from the Lord? It is the anointing of the Holy Spirit that will keep you enduring to the end.
Perhaps you have lost sight of that anointing and are pushing the boundaries of yourself without power and in frustration.
Ask the Holy Spirit to refresh His anointing so once again you may be filled with His joy and power to be a witness unto Him.
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