“And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit.”
What a wonderful command and promise this is! We can be “filled with the Spirit.” At the moment of regeneration, the Holy Spirit indwells us and seals us until the day of redemption. These are positional and doctrinal truths that assure our hearts. However, the Spirit of God, more simply put, wants to possess us; He desires to fill our lives. He seeks to control us, influence our thoughts and decisions, empower and enable us for service, and lead us by His wisdom and grace.
It is probable that many true Christians are not consistently filled with the Holy Spirit. In this subject is found one of the reasons why there is frustration and failure among many who have placed their faith in Christ. They are not allowing the Spirit of God to fill their lives.
None of us could ever produce through our lives what the Spirit of God is able to accomplish through us. When Jesus was preparing His disciples for His death and return to Heaven, He taught them about the coming of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit would guide them into all truth and help them remember the things Jesus had taught them. He would convict people of sin. The Holy Spirit produces the fruit of Christ-like character in our lives. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law” (Galatians 5:22, 23). Only the presence of God filling our lives can consistently produce this kind of godly fruit.
We can identify with the struggle that goes on in the lives of believers as described in Galatians 5:16, 17: “This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.” The flesh wants to control our lives and resists the control of the Holy Spirit. We cannot live as God wants us to in the energy of the flesh.
To be consistently filled with the Holy Spirit, we must confess and forsake known sin. Sin grieves the Holy Spirit. By faith, we can ask Him to fill us; knowing that according to His Word, He wants us to be filled. As we yield to His leadership and obey His will, we can claim His promise to fill our lives.