Powered by His Spirit
When we think of being filled with the Spirit, we often relate it to an emotional experience or a feeling of euphoria. But in reality, the word filled could be translated “controlled by”. It is a word that speaks of what happens when the wind fills the sails of a boat and guides it along. So God is saying that we are to let His Spirit fill us and control our lives.
Another interesting thing about this word is that in the original language, it’s in a tense that speaks of something that should be done continually. So you could translate this sentence, “Be constantly filled with the Spirit.” This isn’t a one-time event. Instead, it is something that takes place again and again, just as we repeatedly fill the gas tanks in our cars to keep them running. God wants to refill us with His Spirit. It is a great thing to say each day, “Lord, fill me with Your Spirit... Lord, fill me once again.” You may have an emotional experience, or you may not. But that has very little to do with the reality of being filled with and controlled by the Spirit.
One other thing about this phrase from Ephesians 5:18 is that it’s a command, not a suggestion. The Scripture isn’t saying, “If it works with your schedule, if you don’t mind, would you please consider maybe letting the Holy Spirit fill and control you?” No, in Ephesians 5:18 God commands us — orders us — to be filled with the Holy Spirit.
He knows very well that an intimate relationship with Himself will bring us the greatest fulfillment and happiness in our lives that we could ever know.
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