Bethel Baptist Church
Worship Service @ Home
27 June 2021
Service available on Youtube, or as text (below), or for audio see the Podcasts page.
Let’s keep praying for our Special Celebration on July 31st 2021 – “Bethel Baptist Church Community Fun-Day”.
The aim: To celebrate opening up after Covid and to show love and kindness to our community.
Suggestions: to have Stalls; Clothes; Food; Beat the Goalie; Face Painting; Smash the Crockery; Children’s Corner.
There will be an “Ideas and planning” Zoom meeting on 28 June at 7pm. If you would like to join and do not have details, please get in touch.
The rescheduled church weekend away has been confirmed for 3rd – 5th June 2022. If you didn’t sign up back in 2019/20 but would like to go please contact Andrea for an information letter and sign up form.
“Nigel’s life, regarded as very successful by many – photographic editor of the Sunday Telegraph, a beautiful wife, 2 great sons, a lovely home, a Porsche 911 – yet deep down he was unhappy, hated his neighbour but also hated himself – his nickname at work was “The Beast.” He was drawn to the Alpha course upon hearing about the Weekend Away and the possibility of receiving the Holy Spirit with the love of God being poured out into his heart (Romans 5:5). Prior to receiving the Holy Spirit he testifies to being in an agony, a deep longing was consuming him, so much so that he felt depressed but then he states: “Then the Holy Spirit came, and oh the relief! Do you know, for the first time in my life I feel normal …. I also feel loved …. I feel accepted for who I am, and I feel free” and by the way in another testimony he likened the filling of the Holy Spirit to 10,000 volts pulsating through his whole being!”
(of one Nigel Skelsey attending an Alpha Course @ HTB)
Reading: Luke 11:11-13
How much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!Luke 11:13
Everything of spiritual significance leading up to and following the birth of Jesus Christ was initiated by the Holy Spirit who manifests the presence of God in the world. Each and everyone, including Jesus Himself, the Son of God, needed the power, the anointing, the ongoing filling of the Holy Spirit, so we also, ourselves, need the power, the anointing, the ongoing filling of the Holy Spirit!
(1) John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit
John was filled with the Spirit even before he was born:
Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him [Zechariah], standing at the right side of the altar of incense. When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. But the angel said to him: ‘Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John. He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born. He will bring back many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God. And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the parents to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous – to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.’Luke 1:11-17
(2) The birth of Jesus came about through the Holy Spirit
The angel said … “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favour with God. You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call Him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David, and He will reign over Jacob’s descendants for ever; His kingdom will never end.”Luke 1:30-35
“How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”
The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God.”
(3) The ministry of Jesus was empowered by the Spirit
When all the people were being baptised, Jesus was baptised too. And as He was praying, heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended on Him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: ‘You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.’ Now Jesus Himself was about thirty years old when He began His ministry.Luke 3:21-23
Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness.Luke 4:1
Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about Him spread through the whole countryside.Luke 4:14
The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because He has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.Luke 4:18-19
But if it is by the Spirit of God that I drive out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.Matt. 12:28
(4) The ministry of the apostles and the early church was empowered by the Holy Spirit
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.Acts 1:8
When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.Acts 2:1-4
See also Acts 2:33; 6:5, 8.
(5) It is the Spirit who gives new life in Christ Jesus
The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you – they are full of the Spirit and life.John 6:63
Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of … the Spirit … You must be born again”John 3:5, 7
While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message”; “But when the kindness and love of God our Saviour appeared, He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Saviour, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.Acts 10:44
(6) The Spirit renews our bodies at the resurrection
And if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of His Spirit who lives in you.Romans 8:11
The apostles, the disciples, the early church, even the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, were completely and utterly dependent on the Holy Spirit to do the works that the Father had called them to do. If this was true for them, then it most surely is true for today’s church. The greatest need we have in the church today is for the same Holy Spirit to be poured out upon us in much greater measure than we are presently experiencing, Amen.
Questions for Discussion
- Can we live as Christians without the Holy Spirit? Why? / Why not?
- Why has and does the church neglect the third Person of the Trinity?
- Have you read about Revivals in the church in bygone years? If so share some of the stories!
- Why don’t we see Revival in the church today?
Quote for Week
“The Spirit-filled life is not a special, deluxe edition of Christianity. It is part and parcel of the total plan of God for His people.”
A. W. Tozer
Verse of the week
Exalted to the right hand of God, He has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear.Acts 2:33
Heavenly Father, we worship You and thank You for Your faithfulness to Your promise, these last 2,000 years or so, that You will build Your church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it. We praise and thank You for the outpouring of Your Holy Spirit following Your Son Jesus, dying, rising, ascending, and now seated at Your right-hand He has received and poured out the Holy Spirit.
But Father we are struggling in this work of building Your church, and so we ask You to graciously and lovingly pour out more of Your Holy Spirit upon us, for Your glory, in and through our Lord Jesus Christ, Amen!