The Fourfold Mission of the Holy Spirit, Pt. 3: To Empower

Acts 1:8 says, “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.”
The third intricate part of the threefold mission of the Holy Spirit is to empower. John 14:15 (TPT) says, “Loving me empowers you to obey my commands.” John 14:23 (TPT) says, “Loving me empowers you to obey my Word.” The Holy Spirit is the one who empowers you not to create a platform or build a name for ourselves, but to walk in obedience to God’s will, Word and purpose for you! We are empowered to exalt the name of Jesus in what we say and how we live!

One who was empowered by the Holy Spirit was none other than Jesus Christ. Matthew 3:11, 16-17 says, “I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire…And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” The Holy Ghost came in the form of a dove and lightning upon Jesus. The dove represents the one and true lover and source of peace, and lightning demonstrates what is in heaven comes quickly to earth in power and authority! So, the Holy Spirit empowered Christ to not only be fully devoted to the commands and will of the Father, but also to accomplish it in peace. He walked with authority here on earth as it is in heaven!

According to Isaiah 61:1-3, Jesus was empowered “to preach good tidings unto the meek, to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn; To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.” If we are sons and daughters of God, we too have been anointed and empower by the Holy Spirit to accomplish the same things in our generation! Acts 2:33-35 says, “33Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear. 34For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, 35Until I make thy foes thy footstool.” Jesus was empowered by the Holy Spirit to be seated in heavenly places and see and watch every enemy be defeated! We too are seated in heavenly places with Christ, which is why we must not allow anything to disturb or distraught us to the place that we are removed from our seat, knowing that God fights our battles for us (Ephesians 2:6).

In Acts 1:8, according to the Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionary, the Greek word for power is “dunamis,” which means, “miraculous power, strength, mighty work, abundance, force, ability.” It is from this Greek word that we derive our English word “dynamite” from, and most of us are somewhat familiar with dynamite. It is a very powerful object that can blow up just about anything. However, despite its might and explosive force, it accomplishes nothing unless it has been ignited. All it takes is a match or a little fire in order for one to hear a loud “kaboom”!

In the same matter, we as children of God have dynamite power existing within us because we are temples of the Holy Spirit in which the Holy Spirit is working in and through us day by day. Ephesians 3:20 says, “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.” God can do such great things that it could even blow our minds away simply because He is God, but it is according to the dynamite power that works in us. Dynamite all by itself is pointless unless it has been ignited. If you are a King’s kid, then you do have power inside of you, but it is up to you to use that power and ignite it through prayer, evangelism and devotion to the Bible!

We in ourselves are nothing, but it is the Holy Spirit that is working within us that makes all of the difference. It is why 2 Corinthians 4:7 says, “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.” The treasure is not the vessel itself, which represents us, but the real treasure is what is inside of us, which is the power of an Almighty God. If you went metal detecting today and for some miraculous reason you were able to dig up a treasure chest, what is your first thought going to be? You are not going to want to go to your whole family and all of your neighbors and friends to share with them your treasure chest. Instead, you will do whatever it takes to break open that box first to see if there is anything valuable inside. Sure, the chest is worth something, but if gold, silver or precious jewels rest inside of it, you are going to care a lot more about what is inside rather than the box itself. Spiritually speaking, we are the same way. We are a peculiar treasure in the sight of God, a vessel that has been molded to fulfill His purpose in our lives, but He desires to break us open and utilize the power that He has deposited in us so we can help win souls and change lives for His glory!

The Holy Spirit empowers us to speak with boldness, knowing that God gives us the confidence we need to share the Word of God and minister to others. Mark 13:11 says, “But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.” This, of course, was referring to the disciples and early church when they suffered persecution because the LORD would open His word and defend them. You do not have to defend yourself, but the Holy Spirit will defend you with the truth! We may try to come up with our own plan in premeditation on what to say, but what God has in mind is so much greater! It may seem spontaneous, but God has greater plans that ours. They did not have to worry about receiving the applause and approval of men, but according to 2 Corinthians 6:4, 6, one of the reasons a ministers is approved is by the Holy Ghost! Let the Holy Ghost defend you so that you can go forward with the boldness you need to know that you have a backing and support that can only come from Him. He truly makes you courageous!

The mission of the Holy Spirit to empower us comes from His willingness to testify of Jesus Christ to us. He ministers to us, showing us the true character and identity of Jesus Christ, and He accomplishes this by paving the way for us to have a true encounter of His presence and teaching us His life as it is revealed in the scriptures. It is the only way we are capable of being Christians, which means “little Christians” or “Christlike.” We must not just be acquainted with Jesus, but really know Him if we want to be just like Him! The Holy Spirit gives us that very opportunity.

Again, according to the Strong’s Hebrew and Greek Dictionary, the word “testifies” in John 15:26 means, “to be a witness.” The Holy Spirit witnesses of Jesus so that we can bear witness of Him, testifying of His life and sharing what He has done in and through us. That is why Acts 1:8 teaches us that we are empowered by the Holy Ghost to be witnesses, which is literally defined as, “martyr.” Many of the disciples and early church were martyred for defending the gospel of Jesus Christ, risking or losing their own life as a mirror reflection of Jesus giving up His own life so we could find healing, salvation and deliverance. Every Christian may not receive martyrdom for standing for the faith and hope in which they believe in, but spiritually, we are all to be martyrs by crucifying our flesh so we can be exactly who God has called us to be. Galatians 2:20 says, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” Galatians 5:24 says, “And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.” We are to die to our flesh with its affections and lusts so that Christ can live within us, empowering us to be witnesses for His glory!

We are empowered by the Holy Spirit to be witnesses for Him so that we can testify of Him everywhere we go, and we do so by being as Jesus said, “the salt of the earth and the light of the world.” The salt of the earth reflects the words we speak, for Colossians 4:6 says, “Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” Just as salt enhances, protects and preserves, we too are to encourage, warn and edify people in the faith by speaking the goodness of God. When we are questioned about why we believe what we believe, our speech is to be like salt and have an answer for every question because we are witnesses who study the Word of God and maintain a relationship with God in prayer! Then, we are to be the light of the world, which reflects our deeds. Actions should always speak louder than words, and we are to be the light of the world, a city that is sitting on a hill that could not be hidden (Matthew 5:14). Our light shines the brightest in the thickest darkness, and we are to be the light to a darkened generation so people can see and know who Jesus really is!

One way that the power of the Holy Spirit was demonstrated in the New Testament was by signs, wonders and miracles because these supernatural works were to confirm the very message that the early apostles preached, and this same power should still be at work today. 1 Thessalonians 1:5-6 says, “5For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake. 6And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost.” The Holy Spirit will demonstrate His power through our obedience, showing His miraculous power and hand as we speak the truths of His Word. Acts 4:29-31 says, “29And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, 30By stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus. 31And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.” The Holy Ghost moved upon these men and women to be witnesses, giving them a boldness like they never had before to spread and confirm the gospel. Remember that it was Peter who denied Jesus three times, but when he repented, was restored and the Holy Ghost came upon him, he had a boldness like nobody had ever seen. If the Holy Spirit is working within us, then we will not be ashamed of God, but we will boldly declare His name in this generation, without compromise or fear. Hebrews 2:4 says, “God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will?” The gifts of the Holy Ghost bear witness of Jesus Christ. Many people believe that was just done in the book of Acts, but the church was founded in the book of Acts, and we are still the book of Acts. Peter was the one who said, “For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call” (Acts 2:39). When Cornelius, the Italian centurion, a Gentile, along with everyone who heard Peter’s preaching received the gift of speaking in tongues, it paved the way for the Gentile people to receive what the Jews had received because the racial line has been washed in the blood of Jesus Christ. Paul said in Romans 11 that we have been engrafted into this walk, which means everything that God did for them back then He can and will do for us. God has not changed, but we have changed. If we do what they did, we will get what they had!

Finally, many in the church are so focused on confirming their relationship with God and ministries by seeking for the phenomenal signs, wonders and miracles that we oftentimes miss the simple and basic ways of sharing the love of God, which is by bearing the fruits of the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-23 reveals what the fruits are, which says, “22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” These fruits are the character of God, and if we are rooted in God’s Word and prayer, we will bear the fruits of the Spirit. Before we ever seek for the gifts of the Spirit, we must bear the fruit, feeding hungry souls the love, joy and peace of an Almighty God. We should be witnesses by crucifying our flesh and sharing patience, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance. Our testimony does not make an impact if we always want healing to confirm how awesome we are, when such a mindset robs the glory of God when He is the one doing the work, yet we neglect being the good Samaritan and loving on people. It is not about us being praised or exalted, but it is all about loving God and lifting His name up, which is above every name!

If we have the true Spirit of God, we will be witnesses in every area of our lives! He will comfort, guide and empower us to walk in according to the divine will of our Heavenly Father. If you do not have the Spirit working through your life, I encourage you to call on the name of the LORD, repent of any evil in your life and seek the face of God for the best He has for you. He desires to use and bless you. Submit yourself as a vessel and an instrument for His glory, and He will do a mighty work in and through you.