A Powerful Promise for Today by Pastor Ken Damstrom

We are living in times where promises are not kept.  Countries break treaties,
couples disregard wedding vows, and individuals forget that they made a promise!

As Christians we must be very aware of any promises which have evil intent.
Satan promises the best, but pays with the worst. He promises honor and pays
with disgrace; he promises pleasure and pays with pain; he promises profit 
and pays with loss. He promises life and pays with death. (Lou Nicholes-Missionary)
 All of his promises are broken empty lies, intended to deceive and destroy our lives. 
Beware of the promises this world has to offer.  Charles Haddon Spurgeon once
said, “God never gives us a promise he does not intend for us to use.”

Have we all not made promises that have gone unkept?  Perhaps we have made
numerous promises to friends, co-workers, loved ones, children, that have 
never been fulfilled. 2 Peter 1:3-4; “According as His divine power hath given
 unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge 
of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us
exceeding GREAT and PRECIOUS PROMISES; that by these you may be
partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the 
world through lust.”

Calculations have been made indicating that there are 8810 promises in the Bible
and around 7500 apply to mankind.  Because of the worthiness of our God 
believers can claim these promises for their lives!

Let’s focus on one particular, special promise given by God in the Book of Joel
2:28-29, “And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and
daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men
will see visions. Even on my servants. both men and women, I will pour out
my Spirit in those days.”

Joel was endeavouring to unite the people together in a sacred assembly (their
land was being ravished by plagues and military invasions).  Joel was exhorting
his people to repent and humbly return to the Lord God with fasting, weeping,
mourning and intercession for God’s mercy. Joel’s purpose was to record
God’s prophetic word to His people on the occasion of their sincere
repentance. He addressed the eventual  pouring out of the Holy Spirit upon
the people then and at the coming of Pentecost as well as at the end of the
age.

At Pentecost, Peter in Acts 2:16-21 actually quotes Joel 2:28-32 and
the Pentecostal promise of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on all
people in the days to come.

In reading the Bible we recognize that the Holy Spirit was present  throughout the Old Testament and connecting right up throughout the New Testament.

Someone has said, “The Holy Spirit may well be the most neglected Person
of the Trinity!”  This makes us wonder if we really understand the Person of The
Holy Spirit, and that He is not just a ghostly apparition in our faith today.

The secret of the early church was the Pentecostal experience, as the 120 in the
Upper Room received the “Promise of the Father”, and they were completely
immersed into the power of the Holy Spirit, enabling them to follow through
with the purposes and plans of God.  Have we not moved away from these
plans and purposes offered in the PROMISE OF THE FATHER?

As we read the Bible we find assurance in the fact that God has kept, is keeping, and
shall keep His promises/covenants to us.  Nothing can be more sure than that!
Our human frailty has proven that we have problems keeping our promises, yet
God does not have the weakness.  He has promised to baptize us in the Holy
Spirit, as noted in Joel and Acts and throughout the New Testament.  Not the
baptism of John unto repentance, but the outpouring, drenching, soaking rain
of the powerful Spirit of the Living God!

Do we want a personal Pentecost? Have we limited His power and promises?
Revive us again, O Lord? Revive us again!  God is not limited by race, sex,
nationality, education, social status.  Let us open the “windows of heaven”
and with no restrictions allow the Holy Spirit to saturate our lives with His 
power.

Back in the 60’s and 70’s during a period known as “the Charismatic Movement”,
numbers of people from all walks of life were being “Baptized in the Holy Spirit”,
speaking in unknown languages and experiencing healings of all sorts.  Churches
of all denominations were holding powerful prayer meetings, homes were being
used for study and prayer, and the spiritual atmosphere all over the country was
electrified with the presence of God’s Spirit.  It was really revival for so many.
Travels, to various parts of the world, took many of us to spread the good news
and to share the powerful life-changing testimonies of what the Holy Spirit was
doing.  So many lives were dynamically changed, and homes were rearranged, it
was nothing short of miracle working power.

Here we are in the 2,000’s and in many cases we have relaxed into a comfort zone.
However, the PROMISE is still for all of us!  God wants to penetrate our 
comfort zone, pour out His Spirit upon our lives and cause us to take the fire,
the dynamite, the empowering of the Spirit everywhere.

If you have been  baptized in water as a profession of your faith in Christ, I want 
you to know that THE HOLY SPIRIT IS A BETTER BAPTIZER!  All of us need 
power, energy, spiritual strength to work in the time of harvest, to see souls
saved and lives changed. It takes that spiritual power to accomplish this, not only
in Birdsboro, and Reading, and Wyomissing, but everywhere we meet lost and
weary souls.

Acts 2:39: “For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that
are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.”

God wants His people to fulfill the Promise made in Joel and Acts.  He gives us 
His Promise along with His Outpouring of the Spirit to get the job done.  Being an
active witness for Jesus Christ includes each of the above.  

We know that cars run on a principle of storage- fuel is stored in the vehicle and 
then it runs out as the vehicle is driven.  
Electric trains run on a contact principle-they maintain contact with the source
of power. Having the Holy Spirit is that contact principle. Being under the 
Holy Spirit’s power and control is a lot like a new business putting out a sign,
UNDER NEW MANAGEMENT. (When the Spirit of God is in control all things 
become new and we just see things differently, the way God wants us too.

Allow the Holy Spirit to challenge your life, and remember He has promised, and
God always keeps His promises, all 8810 of them!

Blessings as you follow Him,  Pastor Ken

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