Dr. Tan Kok Beng
Our Lord tells us that we “will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you” (Acts 1:8). Paul tells us that He is the “Spirit of poser, love and sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7).
Without the Holy Spirit in our life, we cannot live victoriously. The weakness of our flesh and the human spirit makes us fall too easily into sin and evil habits.
The bondage of evil spirits is too strong for us, and unless the Holy Spirit enables us we will not be victorious. So, “walking in the Spirit” is the only way to overcome the flesh, the world and the devil.
To begin with, how can we “walk in the spirit”? I’d like to take up two major points in this short paper.
1. We need to be “baptized with the Holy Spirit.”
The word baptism means to be “immersed with” or to “go under” as a piece of cloth goes under the dye liquid to be fully colored. To receive the baptism of the Spirit, one needs to surrender totally to Him – to “go under” His complete control.
Paul illustrates this in Ephesians 5:18: “Be not drunk with wine wherein is excess, but be filled with the Spirit.”
Just as a drunkard is totally under the control of wine, so must we be so full of the Spirit that He will control our life. When that happens, the Holy Spirit will manifest His character and actively in our life.
The result: we will display the “fruit of the Spirit” in us (Galatians 5:22-23).
Many want to be “baptized or filled with the Spirit” but are not willing to yield their all to Him. That means we must surrender our life, career, ambition, wealth, relationships, etc., to Him-all that we are and have. Not so easy, is it?
2. We need to be disciplined in walking with the Spirit.
The command, “Walk in the Spirit and you will not fulfill the lusts of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16) is in the present tense. In other words, there should be no time at all that we are not “walking in the Spirit.”
The correct and literal rendering of Ephesians 5:18 is “be continuously being filled with the Spirit.” It takes discipline and sincerity to want to be continuously walking under the authority and submission to the Spirit. Then we will experience the “freedom” (from sin and evil habits) that Christ has given to us (Galatians 5:1).
The words, “sound mind” in the King James Version of 2 Timothy 1:7 also means: “discipline.” The Holy Spirit is also the Spirit of Discipline.
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Dr. Tan Kok Beng
Bethany International University