The question of when we will be gathering together again has been the subject of much prayer and discussion by our church’s leadership. We are asking God for wisdom as we attempt to follow the guidelines of New York State and New York City regarding the timing for reopening our church campus. At the same time, we are making plans and putting protocols in place to ensure your safety and well-being when we are able to meet again. Stay tuned for updates as more information becomes available.  

In the meantime, we hope that you will continue to join us for Tuesday Prayer Onlinebeginning at 7pm; Sunday Worship Online, beginning at 9am; and weekday Devotions Onlinebeginning at 10am. We also invite you to check the Churchwide Announcements on our home page to learn about additional online events for each member of your family.

The Holy Spirit and Fire! – Part 2

Sunday, November 17, 2019

“The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, ‘Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!’” (John 1:29 NIV)

John the Baptist said that Jesus would baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire.  It would no longer be just a few chosen ones that would experience that power, as did the Old Testament prophets when God’s Spirit came upon them to bring forth God’s word.   It would be for everyone.  And Jesus did come and fulfill his mission as “the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world,” just as John the Baptist said.  Jesus died and rose again, and when he ascended back to the Father, he sent the promised Holy Spirit to live in every believer.

Religion is religion, but Christianity is an experience with Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit.  It changes you from the inside out.  Rules and regulations can’t change the heart; but the Holy Spirit can.  He gives us a new heart.  The self-destructive habits of smoking, drinking, drug addiction, and others, cannot be broken by telling people they shouldn’t do that.  God tells us the only way these habits can be broken.  He says of the struggling person,  “I’ll go inside them and I’ll give them a new heart.  I’ll give them new desires.  I’ll give them power from the inside.”  This comes only through faith in Jesus and the promise that he will baptize us with the Holy Spirit and with fire.

What do we know about fire?  It penetrates.  Water may be soothing, but it rolls off.  However, if you light a match, the fire will go to the very essence of whatever it touches.  Likewise, the Holy Spirit doesn’t deal just with the surface of our problems and who we are.  No, God has given us something that goes right inside where we live, to give us new thoughts and new desires.

To be continued

Read John 1:29-31.

The Prayer Center