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Acts 18:18-19:10 Walking in the Power of the Holy Spirit

Acts   •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Introduce Jesse
Clarify not feeling good
Proposition: My goal is to show you how you can walk in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Read Acts 18:18-23


Last week Mike talked about Paul being in Corinth
There was a more debased city in the Roman empire than Corinth
Paul stay there a while and then decided to go back home, to Antioch
He ends up in Ephesus, the most important city in Asia Minor.
tEphesus, with its 300,000 inhabitants, was the capital city of the Roman province of Asia and its most important commercial center. Thanks to a large harbor, Ephesus grew wealthy on trade
It also housed the temple of Diana, which attracted hosts of visitors who wanted to see this building that was one of the seven wonders of the world.
The temple was probably four centuries old in Paul’s day. It measured 418 feet by 239 feet, and boasted of 100 columns that stood over 50 feet high.
In the sacred enclosure of the temple stood the “sacred image” of Artemis (Diana) that was supposed to have fallen from heaven (Acts 19:35).
It was probably a meteorite. Since Artemis was a fertility goddess, cultic prostitution was an important part of her worship, and hundreds of “priestesses” were available in the temple.
It was here where he would establish the base of the church that would last past his time
Paul’s three years in Ephesus, the longest he stayed in any city, were certainly exciting and fruitful.

I. Following the Leading of the Spirit vs. 18-23

To walk in the power of the Holy Spirit you must follow the leading of the Holy Spirit
We see Paul do that in several ways

vs. 18 Devoted to the Work of the Lord

First, Paul was devoted to the work of the Lord
He had taken a Nazarite vow
Don’t confuse “Nazirite” with “Nazarene.”
Jesus was called a “Nazarene” because He came from Nazareth, a city despised by the people of Judea (John 1:43–46).
The word “Nazirite” comes from a Hebrew word that means “to set apart, to dedicate.”
Nazarite vow: a special pledge of separation and devotion to God. The vow was for a specific period (usually a month, although Samson [Judg. 16:17], Samuel [1 Sam. 1:11], and John the Baptist [Luke 1:15] were Nazirites for life). At the end of that time there was an elaborate ceremony
Num 6:2-5 Speak to the sons of Israel, and say to them, “When a man or woman makes a special vow, the vow of a Nazirite, to dedicate himself to the Lord, he shall abstain from wine and strong drink; he shall drink no vinegar, whether made from wine or strong drink, neither shall he drink any grape juice, nor eat fresh or dried grapes. All the days of his separation he shall not eat anything that is produced by the grape vine, from the seeds even to the skin. All the days of his vow of separation no razor shall pass over his head. He shall be holy until the days are fulfilled for which he separated himself to the Lord; he shall let the locks of hair on his head grow long.”
While Paul was traveling his vow was fulfilled and he cut his hair. The vow wouldn’t be fulfilled till he took the hair to the temple in Jerusalem
Having crossed the Aegean Sea as they sailed eastward, Paul and his party came to Ephesus, the most important city in Asia Minor.
Paul left Priscilla and Aquila there to become settled and establish their business.
They apparently remained in Ephesus for a few years, had a church meet in their home

1 Cor 16:19 The churches of Asia send you greetings. Aquila and Prisca, together with the church in their house, send you hearty greetings in the Lord.

Wherever Paul went He did the work God called him too
He went directly to the synagogue and reasoned

vs. 21 Submitted to the Will of God

The second way that we see Paul devoted to the work is that he submitted to the Will of God
After eighteen months of ministry, Paul decided that it was God’s will for him to leave Corinth and return to his home church in Antioch.
The church in Ephesus wanted him to stay there but he had a vow to fulfill and wanted to get back to his home church
He told them “If God wills I will come back
Here is an interesting note
He left Priscilla and Aquila there
Paul didn’t let friendships get in the way of doing what the Lord was leading

vs. 23 Strengthen the Disciples

The final way we see Paul devoted to work of the Lord was that he strengthened the disciples
Paul went to the temple, went back home, but after a time went back out on his final missionary journey
The purpose? To strengthen the disciples
Paul loved sharing the Gospel and leading people to the Lord but his heart was to strengthen the disciples
He traveled back to all the churches he planted in Asia Minor
Paul was able to walk in the power of the Holy Spirit because He was obedient in what God called him to do

II. Empowered by the Spirit vs. 24-28

To walk in the power you must be empowered by the Spirit
When Paul departed from Ephesus for Jerusalem, he left his friends Aquila and Priscilla behind to carry on the witness in the synagogue.
Imagine their surprise one Sabbath to hear a visiting Jewish teacher named Apollos preach many of the truths that they themselves believed and taught!
Apollos was certainly an exceptional man in many ways.
He came from Alexandria, the second most important city in the Roman Empire.
A center for education and philosophy, the city was founded by (and named after) Alexander the Great, and it boasted a university with a library of almost 700,000 volumes.
The population of Alexandria (about 600,000) was quite cosmopolitan, being made up of Egyptians, Romans, Greeks, and Jews.
At least a quarter of the population was Jewish, and the Jewish community was very influential.
Apollos was a charismatic speaker
The term in vs. 25 is fervent or boiling
This is probably part of the reason there was a church split in Corinth
Apollos and Paul were on the same team but polar opposites
Apollos was attractive and an eloquent speaker, Paul wasn’t
Apollos was an itinerant speaker, Paul was a missionary
They still accomplished the same purposes
Apollos was missing one thing, the Holy Spirit
He knew of the baptism of John, or repentance and was taught in the way of the Lord
Some try to say that Apollos wasn’t saved yet, but I disagree
The emphasis here is on the word baptism
He had been baptized in water, but not the Spirit
Priscilla & Acquila saw his heart and gifts and took him aside and instructed him further
Apollos left Ephesus empowered by the Spirit
Apollos isn’t the only preacher who has expereinced this
John Wesley was part of the Holy Club at Oxford and then went to serve as a missionary in Georgia and it was a complete failure
While he was there he met some Mororvians and was drawn to them
They were able to explain to him the baptism of the Spirit which Wesley referred to as his warming
Dwight Moody had a Sunday School of 10,000 in Chicago but felt like something was missing
It wasn’t till the fire of Chicago burnt down everything and he was in NY that the Spirit got a hold of him
He followed the leading of the Spirit right after and crossed to Achaia
There he helped strengthen the Disciples and refute the Jews

III. Baptized in the Spirit vs. 1-10

To walk in the power of the Spirit you must be baptized in the Spirit
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