HS part 7 Power to be Witnesses Acts 1:4-8


Intro In our study last week we talked about the Terminology Concerning the Baptism of the HS

A)We talked about why it is important / what it means / what it is for & who it is for


B) Tonight we want to talk a little bit more about what it is for / and then look at some examples of what Happens to those who receive it

     1) Turn to Acts 1:4-8


Now Jesus was saying here that before they could go out to reach the world for Christ that they needed power to be His witnesses

A)They needed a power that they didn’t possess in themselves


B) So God wait in Jerusalem until You are endued w/ Power from on High


C) Now I find this to be so true that I need Power from God to be the husband that He wants me to be / I need Power from God to be the Father

1)   I need power from God to be the Christian Driver that the Lord wants me to be in traffic


D) I definitely need power from God to be a witness in a world where I am constantly going against the tide / making a stand for Jesus / truth / Rightness

1)   So I find that what was true of the disciples is equally or even more so true of my own life


So Jesus is asking them to wait for the HS to come upon them – so that He came empower them to be His witnesses in Jerusalem……. Earth

A)The whole purpose of the Baptism of the Spirit was to give them POWER to be witnesses to Jesus in the entire world.


B)As you read through the Book of Acts you find that FIRST of all they did give witness to Jesus in Jerusalem. So much so that we are told:

 Acts 5:28  Saying, Did not we straightly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine,


B) They were so effective in their witness they were persecuted in Jerusalem until they were SCATTERED into Judea and into Samaria

 Acts 8:1-4  And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles.....   Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word.


C) Then we read that the Gospel went into the uttermost parts of the earth

 Acts 13:2  As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work that I have called them to


D)For the most part, from that point on the rest of the Book of Acts deals with Paul’s missionary trips that brought the Gospel into the whole world.

 Acts 17:6 They turned the  world upside down for Christ


E)This was all accomplished through the power of the Holy Spirit

1) Started w/ Jesus saying wait in Jerusalem until the HS comes upon you empowering you to be my witnesses


Lets consider this word Witness for a few minutes

A)Word MARTYUS in the grk from which we get our English word Martyr


B)Now too often we think that you become a Martyr if you are put to death for Christ

1)   But the word doesn’t really mean that at all. What it is saying is that your Martyrdom only proves what you have been all along


D) Idea is this – To be a Witness for Christ – which happens only thru the Power of the HS working in your life

1)   Means that your life is so committed to Christ that if necessary you would be willing to even die for Christ

Easier for die for  Jesus than to live for him – it is the daily living for him that will kill you”


E) Truth to that – Those who are really living for him – totally committed to Him – If came about that they were to die – He would give them the grace

1)   Many testimonies – Foxes book of Martyrs



So this word Witness is speaking Primarily of our Lifestyle in how we represent Christ – Includes actions & words

A)Not just witnessing of past history w/ them – But wherever they would go their lives would be a testimony of his living Presence in their lives


B) Look at some examples – LK 24:46-48

1)   They were to be witnesses of the death Rez of JC and the remission of sins that is available because of it


C) SO what He was saying in Acts 1 – that in order to be those kind of witnesses they needed to be empowered from on high


Acts 2:32 – Peter preaching – same word – we are witnesses

A)Peter is such a contrast – Pre & post Pentecost


B) Acts 3:14,15

1)   Acts 5:32


C) Acts 6:3 Good reputation – form of the same word Men who have a good witness / Men who lives are a good testimony – among others

1)   Well thought of Who Actions spoke louder than their words –Life that doesn’t match testimony – Makes words – of no affect


A feeble, nominal Christianity is the great obstacle to the conversion of the world.


Acts 10:39 – Again seen in the context of testifying of the life death & Rez of Jesus

A)Acts 13:29-31 –


B) Acts 22:12 Paul is giving testimony of Ananias – prayed for him when blinded – Good testimony – Good witness

     1) Life that matched his profession


C) 1 Tim 5:9,10 Talking about widows who were over 60 considered to be supported by the Church – have a good testimony – Well reported of


D) 3rd John v.12 John dealing w/ the Problems in the Church of a guys by the name of Diotrephes – who wanted Preeminence Position & power

1)   Contrast Diotrephes w/. Demetrius – Good testimony


Rev. 1:1,2 John bore witness


Rev.1:5 Jesus the faithful Witness – Proper representation of God

A)That is his purpose for us –


B) All know Christians who are poor witnesses / they talk all they want But their talk doesn’t match their walk

1)   Too often two reasons #1 Compromise not really committed

2)   #2 Walking in the Power of the Flesh


C) The most FRUSTRATING thing that we could ever do is to try to imitate Jesus in our own strength and abilities.

   1) In your own power, just try to be like Jesus who

&  1 Pet 2:23  Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judges  righteously:



D) In your own power try to be like Jesus, who after they nailed Him to the cross declared

&  Luke 23:34  Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.


E) Or In your own power, try to do what Jesus commanded

&  Mat 5:44 Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;


You will find that it is an IMPOSSIBLE task to be like Jesus in your own efforts.

A)Paul the apostle tried it and found it to be impossible  Rom 7


 B)Paul recognized that There is a NON-STOP war going on with your flesh.

    1) I need the power of God’s spirit working in my life to over come it


C) SO that is what it is for Power to BE WITNESSES to live & to testify for Christ 

  1) Now lets consider the Criteria for how it happens - & what happens


1st Need to Understand the purpose – Not so  speak in tongues / not so you can – feel goose bumps

A) It is Power to live for Christ & bear testimony of Christ


B)2nd recognize the Need – I can’t do that in my own strength Consistently


3rd Method – Ask / laying on of hands – Power gifting examples




I. THE EXPERIENCE OF THE BAPTISM OF THE SPIRIT IN THE BOOK OF ACTS   Acts 2 Pentecost /  read Wind / fire / tongues

Acts 8:14-18  Samaria

A)We see that the Holy Spirit was imparted to the Samaritans by the laying on of hands.

          NOTE: There is NO mention of them speaking in tongues.


Acts 9:17-18  Saul Of Tarsus

A)(There is no doubt that Saul is already converted).


B)NOTE: Again, there is the laying on of hands. BUT - there is NO mention of speaking in tongues.


Acts 10:44-46  The House Of Cornelius  a gentile who lived at the sea port of Caesarea.

A) No laying on of hands (It happened while Peter was speaking). They began to speak in tongues.


Acts 19:1-6  The Ephesian Disciples

A)Laid hands /spoke w/ tongues & prophesied           



The Diversity Of These Experiences

A)The one outstanding characteristic of each of these accounts is the DIVERSITY of the experiences.


B)Concerning the work of the Holy Spirit, Paul tells us:

     1 Cor 12:4-6  Now there are diversities of gifts....  And there are differences of administrations..... And there are diversities of operations.


C)I believe that God has PURPOSELY chosen to work in this way so that we won’t try to COPY or FORMULATE the sovereign work of God.


D)In speaking of the Spirit, Jesus said:

John 3:8  The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes.


The Spirit is SOVEREIGN in the dispersing of gifts.

A)Let’s review them to note the diversity of experience from event to event.


B)Acts 2   There is no laying on of hands. It is a SOVEREIGN work of the Lord.

1)   There was a sound of a mighty rushing wind, there are cloven tongues of fire.


C)Acts 8 Laying on of hands by the apostles.

     No mention of tongues. BUT - Something visible was happening.


Acts 9 -Laying on of hands by a disciple.

No mention of tongues. But it was accompanied by the healing of Paul’s vision.


NOTE:  In 1 Corinthians. Paul says that he did speak in tongues{ received later ?


Acts 10 No laying of hands.

A)In this instance conversion and the baptism of the Spirit are simultaneous.

     They spoke in tongues.


Acts 19

     Laying on of hands by Paul accompanied by tongues AND prophecy.


B) Key thing I want to hit on is that something Happened !!!!



How do YOU and I  receive the spirit?

The Key

A)I believe that the key for us is found in the Gospel of Luke. Luke 11:9-13 


B)V 11 gives to us two key insights concerning receiving the Spirit.

          1st) God can NOT be your heavenly Father unless you are born again.

              This is the believer asking the Father for the Spirit.


C) So it can NOT be the regenerating work of the Spirit. It must be the baptism of the Spirit.


2nd ) This should dispel forever the concept that a sincere child of God can ask for an experience of the Holy Spirit and that somehow they might receive a COUNTERFEIT experience.


NOTE: We are encouraged to ASK for the baptism of the Spirit.

     1.)  ASK IN FAITH.



D) Prayer is coming into harmony with the will of God.

          James says that we can ask outside of the will of God.

              James 4: You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.



It is the WILL of God... it is a COMMAND of God that we be filled with the Spirit.

A)POINT: We are to RECEIVE the baptism of the Spirit in the same way that we RECEIVE salvation.


B)We RECEIVE salvation as a GIFT. You do NOT beg, week in & week out, to be saved. By faith you receive the gift of God & thank God for Jesus.


CONCLUSION  Critical Questions

A)Do we NEED it? Do we DESIRE it?   Just RECEIVE it.

Will you speak in tongues?    I don’t know.


1 Cor 12:31  But earnestly Desire the best gifts:


B)What is the BEST GIFT ?   Well, what is it that you need?


EXAMPLE: The best tool is the one that best gets the job done.


C)If you want to communicate the Gospel effectively, then tongues is NOT the best gift... the gift of evangelism is the best gift.

  1) BUT - IF you want to have the best means of communicating with God and praising God, then tongues is the best gift.


By faith, receive it!