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IN TOUCH WITH GOD    by Edward Heppenstall

Power From God APRIL 27


In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, . . . out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. John 7:37, 38.

The Christian life is a full life, an abundant life, an overflowing life from God. We cannot help getting the message. Our life in Christ is to be like an overflowing, irresistible river. We have a lot more of life than we can keep to ourselves. The abundant measure in which His life and love have been shed abroad in our hearts we are bound to share with others.

Christ does not give His life to be contained within ourselves. We no longer live unto ourselves. We are constrained to witness. We are ambassadors of Christ.

The Christian who has no life to give away to bless and save others is open to question. Taking the name of Christian in itself does not make us living witnesses. Any self-engineered effort to witness usually feels awkward. It tends to repel or irritate those to whom we seek to witness. Well, is it worth trying? Let us go back to Christ's promise that once we have Christ's life within, "out of . . . [our] belly shall flow rivers of living water." This is spontaneous. It is not put on at all.

"But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive" (John 7:39). "Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts" (Zech. 4:6). Christ did not begin His ministry until He was baptized with the Holy Spirit. He was fitted for the overflowing life by the Spirit. The Scripture says that "God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him" (John 3:34). At His baptism the Holy Spirit descended upon Him like a dove and from then on abode in Him. This is similar to what happened to the apostles and disciples of Christ at Pentecost. Until they received the Holy Spirit they could not begin their work for others. When the Holy Spirit filled their lives, three thousand were converted in a day. Soul winning is the work of the Spirit. It is a very moving and rewarding experience.

To some extent, we all face a problem here: our timidity, fears, self-consciousness, the inhibitions we feel. The Holy Spirit changes everything in terms of Christian service and witness. He gives us new boldness for witnessing.

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