Adequate For Anything

Bible Book: Acts  6 : 13
Subject: Holy Spirit

A minister felt led of the Lord to become a chaplain. Just before he was sent overseas he wrote to his parents, “Please don’t pray simply that I shall be kept safe. Pray rather that I shall always be adequate.” They did, and the Lord answered their prayers. His ship was torpedoed, and he bravely gave his life for his men.

Wouldn’t you like to be adequate for anything? You can be. The secret is found in Acts 1:8, “But ye shall receive power, after the Holy Spirit is come upon you; and ye shall be witnesses unto Me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

I. Let’s Meet The Person.

A teacher asked his class, “Can you explain electricity?” “Yes,” answered a fifth-grader. “How?” he wondered. Jimmy replied, “Last night I knew it, but I’ve forgotten this morning.” “What a tragedy,” sighed the teacher. “You’re the only person in the world to understand electricity, and you’ve forgotten!”

You and I accept the fact that the Holy Spirit is the third Person of the Trinity, and that He is just as much God as God the Father and God the Son. But explain it, we can’t.

A. Think on His Name

Think on His name. He is called “the Holy Spirit” about one hundred times in the Bible. By “the” Holy Spirit is meant the third Person of the Godhead. Since holiness is part of His being and since He’s holy in character, He’s called “the Holy Spirit.” Now God is a spirit, angels are spirits, and Satan is a spirit. He carries this designation because He doesn’t have a visible body as the Lord Jesus possessed.

B. Think of His Nature

Think of His nature. The Holy Spirit isn’t an idea or an influence, but a Person. It’s hard for some to think of the Holy Spirit as a Person because He doesn’t have a body. But God doesn’t have a body and yet He’s a Person. Satan doesn’t have a body, but he’s a person. The Holy Spirit doesn’t have a body, and He’s a Person—which means He can think, feel and will.

C. Think of His Nearness

Think of His nearness. It’s written in Romans 8:9, “If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His.” And St. Paul added in 1 Corinthians 6:19, “Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom ye have a God, and ye are not your own?” “But,” you may ask, “can the Holy Spirit be in my heart if I, as a Christian, have not definitely prayed to receive the Holy Spirit?” Apparently, yes! God the Father loves us, and He gave His Son to die for us. God the Son laid down His life for us. God the Holy Spirit takes up His habitation with us when we are born again.

I invited a guest to come to our home last Saturday. We were working in our video taping gardens when a friend came to us and said, “You have a guest in your home.” We hurried to our home and found our guest. We received him, by that I mean we recognized him and asked him to make himself at home in our home. This is involved with a Christian who wants the fullness of the Holy Spirit. He must take the Holy Spirit at home in his heart. He’s not a visitor who comes and goes, but a Guest who remains and a Guide to rely on. But with some Christians He’s just a Resident in the heart. With others, He’s the President of the heart. What is He with you? But you may ask, “What’s the evidence of His being the President?” The evidence is moral, not miraculous. It consists of the fruit of the Holy Spirit, not the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

D. Think of This Notion

Think of this notation. In John 14:16 our Lord said, “I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever.” The word Comforter is sometimes translated “Advocate,” sometimes “Counselor,” and sometimes “Strengthener.” The reason why so many of us are fruitless and not fruitful, ineffectual and not effectual, powerless and not powerful, stumbling and not standing, victims and not victors, weak and not whole, is that we don’t yield ourselves to the Holy Spirit.

My father was clearing some land for a garden, and I was working with him. We are removing stones, and there was a big one in my way. I pushed and I pulled, but all in vain. In despair I cried, “Pa, will you please help me?” “Gladly son,” he answered as he came running toward me. “I was waiting and hoping you’d ask me.” Today, when I’ve tried and failed, and I call upon the Lord for His wisdom or wealth, His strength or skill, His help or holiness, it seems I can hear Him say, “I was waiting and hoping you’d ask Me.” It’s as we ask and appropriate that He makes us adequate for anything.

II. Let’s Mark The Power.

Acts 1:8 promises, “Ye shall receive power, after the Holy Spirit is come upon you.” This isn’t power for a miracle but a morality, not for a sensational but for the spiritual, not for a thrill but for a task.

In Matthew 10:7-8 our Lord commanded the twelve, “As ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons; freely ye have received, freely give.” That’s power for the sensational, and they had this power before Pentecost.

A group exercised that power according to the 10th chapter of Luke, and in verse 17 we read they “returned with joy, saying, Lord, even the demons are subject unto us!” But that was to be expected. And the Lord didn’t want them to be carried away with that, as though it were more important than anything else. So He said in verse 20, “Not withstanding, in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.”

From that day to this, it has been the tendency of some Christians to be more interested in power for conquest than in power for Christlikeness, in power for performance than in power for purity, in power for the spectacular than in power for supplication, in power for working signs than in power for winning souls.

A. The Power of the New Mind

As we consider the power, let’s think on the power of a new mind. When one is born again, God gives the person a new capacity of mind, of heart and of will. With the new mind he can know God, with a new heart he can love God, and with a new will he can obey God.

God doesn’t try to use the old mind. By the new creation, He imparts a new mind to man, with a capacity to receive divine truth and to enjoy fellowship with God. The new mind craves holy things and the old mind sinful things. So there’s a continuous warfare.

There was a fisherman who came to town every Saturday afternoon with a big white dog and a big black dog. He taught them to fight on command. On one Saturday the white dog would win and on another Saturday the black dog would win. “What makes one dog win over the other?” asked a friend. “I starve one and feed the other,” said the Eskimo. “The one I feed always wins because he’s stronger.” The old mind and the new mind are struggling for mastery. Which one will win? That depends on which one is fed. Set your mind on the Savior and sustain your soul with the Scriptures and the new mind will win!

Then you’ll have the power to go from fear to faith, from gloom to gladness, from being overcome to being an overcomer. No longer will you be defeated by disappointments, destroyed by disasters, or dismayed by discouragements. You’ll have power to turn your obstacles into opportunities, your problems into prizes, your setbacks into successes and your trials into triumphs!

B. The Power of the New Heart

Let’s think on the power of a new heart. A new heart is given to one who has been born again, and with that new heart a new capacity to love. St. John said, “We love because He first loved us”—1 John 4:19 NIV. “We love” not only Him, but all who are His. We don’t love because of some thing on the outside, but because of Someone on the inside. Romans 5:5 says, “The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us.”

Because of the presence of both the old and the new heart within the believer, there’s a constant conflict going on. That’s why the apostle warns us in 1 John 2:15, “Love not the world.” As you yield yourself to the Holy Spirit you’ll have the power to rise above the world to the word, above the sinful to the spiritual, above impurity to purity, above sham to sincerity.

The president of a corporation was stricken with cancer, and he was fired. His Christian friends knew he had just a little while to live, and they wanted to lead him to the Lord. With the love of God in their hearts, they went to him and said, “You r problem is where your family will live after you die. A realtor in our church has agreed to sell your house and give your wife his commission. Some men will make your house payments until it’s sold. The owner of an apartment house has offered your wife a three bedroom apartment and free utilities and an $850-a-month salary in return for her collecting rent and supervising repairs. The income from your house should pay for your daughter’s college. I want you to know you family will be cared for.” The unsaved man cried like a baby. He died shortly afterwards. But because he experienced the love of Christ through the Christians, he received the Lord Jesus as his Savior.

C. The Power of the New Will

Let’s think of the power of a new will. The unsaved are enslaved to evil, but by the new birth the believer in the Lord Jesus is brought to a glorious freedom. It’s written in Romans 6:18, “Being, then, made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.” It doesn’t say, “Being made free from any possibility of sinning.” No. It does say in effect, “You have been made free from the obligation to obey the dictates of your old will.” Now there’s a choice within the capacity of the will. A choice pleasing to the old will which results in sin or pleasing to the new will which results in holiness. So the Bible commands, “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body.” Who’s to deny the rule of the old will? The believer in the Lord Jesus.

1. The Negative

But you ask, “How is this done?” First, the negative. Romans 6:13 commands, “Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin.” This is what you’re not to do. These members are your head to plan, your eyes to see, your ears to hear, your tongue to speak, your hands to act, and your feet to walk. Since these have been redeemed, the shouldn’t be devoted to sin.

2. The Positive

Now, the positive. Romans 6:13 continues, “Yield yourselves unto God.” Man is made to be mastered. He was made to be mastered by the Savior, not sin. To be mastered by the Savior involves yielding. It must be done in one act that becomes continuous. It’s not done once and for all, but many times. As you now yield yourself to God, you’ll receive the power to be a victor over sin! Then your life won’t be dirty and dominated by sin.

A sign at a gas station intrigued me. It read, “A clean engine always delivers power.” That’s true of a Christian as well as a car. And to the one who yields himself heartily and happily, our Lord promises in Ezekiel 36:25 and 27, “Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean…And I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My stautes and ye shall keep Mine ordinances, and do them.”

III. Let’s Mark The Purpose.

Our Lord said in Acts 1:8, “Ye shall be witnesses unto Me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

A. The Medium

Did you get the medium? It’s “ye.” Not spirits, but saints; not only those in the pulpit, but also those in the pew; not only men, but also women; not only adults , but also young people.

B. The Mandate

Did you hear the mandate? It’s “shall be.” This isn’t a choice, but a command. It’s witness, or be wicked; testify, or transgress; speak, or sin. Admit it or not, like it or not; doubt it or deny it—there’s the mandate: “Ye shall be.”

C. The Method

Did you heed the method? It’s “witnesses.” You’re to tell not what you thing, but what you have tried; not what you have suspected, but what you have seen; not what you have esteemed, but what you have experienced. A witness tells what he knows. You’re not to be a judge, pronouncing a sentence upon others. Nor are you to be a lawyer, and argue with others. Nor are you to be a policeman, and order people to do what you think is right. You’re to be a witness and tell of your own “before and after” story/ Tell them what a difference the Lord Jesus has made in your life, not the difference between you and others. It soon turns into a godless game of “I’m holier-than-thou.” “No you’re not!” “Yes, I am.”

You’ll be interested to know that the Greek word for witness means “martyr,” and some places it’s so translated. Thus the mandate of witnessing involves a willingness to die for the testimony of the Lord Jesus. A witness then is one who’s willing to live or die for the Savior. Before the disciples were filled with the Holy Spirit they stayed behind locked doors for fear of the unsaved. There in safety they studied the Scriptures, sand and made supplication. But when they were filled with the Holy Spirit they were willing to dies for the Savior. And when they suffered for Him, they rejoiced, and counted it a supreme honor. The fullness of the Holy Spirit made them adequate for anything.

D. The Message

Did you grasp the message? It’s “unto Me.” You’re not to talk about yourself, but the Savior. Not about your church, but your Christ. You’re to talk about the One with whom no prayer is too hard for Him to answer; no need too great for Him to supply; no temptation too powerful for Him to deliver from; not passion too strong for Him to subdue; no misery too deep for Him to relieve; no soul too sinful for him to save.

E. The Map

Did you get a glimpse of the map? It’s “both in…and unto.” That is, commence at home and continue onward and outward. A lady was running for public office and she hurried home one day and said to her husband, “Dear, we’re going to sweep the State! “Fine,” he said. “Why don’t you start in the living room?”

There was a demon-possessed man who dwelt among dead men’s bones. No one could tame him or chain him. Night and day he’d cut himself with stones and cry. But the Lord Jesus cam and delivered him from the demons. When the people came, they found the convert calm, not quarrelsome; dressed, not denuded; in control of himself, not cutting himself. Mark reported that the convert begged to go with the Lord Jesus. He seemed to say, “Have testimony. Will travel!” But the Lord said, “Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how He had mercy on you”—Mark 5:19 NIV. Have you started at home?

F. The Might

Don’t fail to get the might. It’s “ye shall receive power.” There must be the good works, but there must also be the good words. You can’t, by being good, tell of the Lord’s atoning death and astounding resurrection, nor of your regeneration and His redemption. The emphasis is too much on you and too little on Him. And it takes more than a plan or a purpose to witness by lip and by life. It takes power, the almighty power of the Holy Spirit!


About two hundred years ago two Christian young men were fellowshipping together in Ireland. One said, “The world has yet to see what God can do with a man fully consecrated to Him. The other man thought on it for weeks. It so got hold of him one day that he exclaimed, “By the Holy Spirit I’ll be that man.” Guided and governed by the Holy Spirit, he witnessed by lip and by life and won thousands to our Lord and Savior. His name? D.L. Moody!

You, too, can be made adequate for anything, if only you’ll accept this Person, appropriate His power, and act on His purpose. You will, won’t you?