Levi Lusko - I Need Some Juice
Welcome to week one of Ghosted. We're glad you're with us, every location, church online, podcast, family. Thanks for being with us. It's an honor to have you. If you have a Bible, we're going to be in Luke chapter 10 today. And the title of my message is I need some juice. I need some juice. There are many different moments in the life of Jesus that He uses to intentionally illustrate that He is greater than Moses. And of course, in so doing, He's using Moses as a symbol and not just as an individual because truth be told, Jesus and Moses are like that. You see their friendship on the Mount of Transfiguration when Jesus invites Moses and Elijah to come hang out with Him during his earthly ministry. And they talk about the cross. They talk about what Jesus has planned, and they're high-fiving.
So we know Jesus and Moses are friends. In fact, Moses looked forward to Jesus and prophesied that Jesus was come. Moses had the self-awareness to know that he was a type of Christ, a type of Christ, a picture, a sneak peek of Christ. You see these scattered throughout the Old Testament because God has a sense of humor and apparently likes to amuse Himself. So He snuck little pictures of what He was doing, what He was planning. Sometimes you're reading the Old Testament. You're like, that just seems so much like Jesus. That's not an accident. It's like a magic eye puzzle. Remember at the ophthalmologist office? You're waiting for your appointment. You're like, what's that on the wall? And if you cross your eyes and step on one foot and back up a little bit, all of a sudden, it's like, there's a Stegosaurus.
Anybody with me? Who here never saw those pictures? They never came out? Anybody want to be honest enough? You never could get them? Yeah. That's OK. There's nothing wrong with that. The rest of these people are lying. They never saw anything either. But as soon as when you read in the Old Testament, you're just like, goodness gracious. That is just, and that's prophetic foreshadowing. And Moses literally said there is coming one who is greater than me, a prophet greater than me. So where Moses gave manna, Jesus is the living bread. So there's little pictures in the life of Moses and really, Abraham and David and Jonah and Noah and so many of the great Old Testament stories that give us a picture of the New Testament. The way I told the students at Movement Conference is that like Augustine put it, the Old Testament is a fully furnished house. It's just dimly lit.
So everything's there. You just can't see it all. But you need the book of Hebrews to be the key that helps us to understand what we were seeing when we looked at the Tabernacle, when we looked at the Wilderness Wanderings, when we looked at the Red Sea, when we looked at David v. Goliath, et cetera, et cetera. As such, Moses becomes more than Moses. In the New Testament vernacular, Moses becomes shorthand for basically the law, just like Elijah does the prophets. So in the Mount Rushmore of these individuals, we're able to, with our arms, sweep at the whole Old Testament narrative and say Moses and Elijah. And that's why it's so important, by the way, to see Moses and Elijah showing deference, showing honor to Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration. What's the moral of the story? Y'all, Jesus is better than Moses. Jesus is better than... not the Moses the individual.
Of course, He is better than Moses the individual because Moses had a temper. That boy could get himself into a rage. But He was also better than Moses the symbol. And what does Moses the symbol stand for? Well, just like Martin Luther King, Jr., the shorthand for the whole civil rights movement. And Captain Crunch is the symbol for what? Breakfast or hurting the roof of your mouth? One of the two. Just like George Washington is a symbol of the founding fathers and the revolution and all that, Moses becomes a symbol that stands for the whole Old Testament law. Or you could put it this way, a way of approaching God based on what you bring to the table. A way of approaching God based on what you did. Hey, hey, how many quiet times you have last week? You having lustful thoughts? You nasty little sinner. Right?
How good you are at keeping yourself clean, how good you are keeping yourself Holy, how many of the Ten Commandments you've been keeping lately, that's Moses. And Jesus is greater than Moses. Why? Because the law came through Moses, but grace and truth comes through Jesus Christ. Grace is a way of approaching God not based on what you do, but based on what He did. It's a very different thing because where the law is based on you, your ability to keep that righteousness up, grace is not based on you. It gets placed on you with Jesus's currency, literally blood money that He paid on your behalf because the wages of sin is death. And as you see, the New Testament, there a little just moments, like I mentioned, manna, where it's just like, hey, Jesus is better than Moses. And even Jesus would make fun of those who would harass Him who were super religious. You probably have a friend like that. Maybe you follow them on Facebook. And their righteousness was just so intense, it was going to give them a hemorrhoid.
And Jesus said, bro, you guys trusted Moses, but Moses is on my side. Moses accuses you because the law is a mirror to show us our need for Jesus. And like I said, a lot of little moments like the moment when Jesus's mom came to Jesus and said, son, we need some juice. We need some juice. Jesus hadn't performed any miracles yet, hadn't begun preaching yet. He was simply at a wedding. And it all seems so random, but it was very intentional. Like the first 100 days in office for an elected official, everything that you do in that season is intentionally pregnant with meaning. So Jesus being at a wedding, to pretend like He doesn't want to begin His earthly ministry, which is how He plays it off with his mom, like, aw, mom, I'm not ready yet. And my hour has not yet come. All right, all right, all right. And then He makes the best wine anyone has ever tasted.
It's a very funny story because the master of the feast taste tests it before it gets served and goes, what is this wine? Where did you keep this? When was this made? When was it made? And the servants are literally convulsing in laughter. When was it made? Five minutes ago. No, he goes, was it aged in French barrels? They're like, no. He actually just made it in the bathtub. This is full on hooch, I'm telling you what. And in that moment, there's a little sneak peek of how, once again, Jesus is greater than Moses. Why? Because Moses too began, really, his ministry by turning water into not wine, blood. Because if you want to live and die based on what you bring to the table, all that's going to turn to is a bloody mess. But wine, which is a symbol of blessing of the Holy Spirit, of God's new covenant, this is what Jesus came to bring, following him.
You get to enjoy what he has cooked up, what he has done, what he has prepared because when Moses says do, Jesus hung on the cross for you and says done, it is finished. Anybody thankful for Grace today? Anybody thankful that it's not about you? It's not what you can do. We don't come into church to get a pep talk so we can go back out and please God. We come into church to bask in the glow of His finished work, of His new and better way that He has opened up for us. And from that place, to go out and serve Him all week long with a smile on our face, knowing there's nothing we can do to earn or lose His favor. You will never be more or less loved than you are right now. Interestingly enough, and how it pertains to Luke chapter 10, Moses, one day, was struggling to lead the people. And it was just too much for him. He was trying all day long to lead the people. And his father-in-law pulled him aside and said what every leader needs to hear at some point.
Homie, you've got to delegate. You can't do it all yourself. I remember when I was early on in ministry, someone said, Levi, the acronym for leadership is DAD. Delegate And Disappear. You can't delegate and micro-manage. Delegate and give people the space to actually execute the authority that you've entrusted into them, invested into them. You can't do it all yourself. You're going to kill yourself. You are a mere mortal. You cannot, do not be Atlas with the world hanging, crushing down on your shoulders. So Jethro, Moses's father-in-law, said, bro, you need some help. You need some managers. You need some people, you need some vice presidents up in this organization. So that's exactly what Moses did. And he picked numbers, chapter 11 tells us, a cross-reference on Exodus chapter 18, you knew that, that he picked 70, 70 leaders. Brilliant, and to this day, I mean, that's how the Jewish Sanhedrin was set up moving forward. Why? Because there would always be the tie-breaking vote.
If there were 35 against 35 in a decision, Moses could be that deciding factor. He was the chief among equals there in that sense, stepping in to make that ultimate decision. Someone has to have that tie-breaking vote. Even when you delegate and disappear, they're going to, at times, be a faction and all this. And so that happened. And I love the poetry of it all because Jesus in Luke 10 has just sent out 70 disciples to go preach, 70 disciples to go lead. It doesn't get talked about nearly as often because we tend to focus on the 12. Why? Because we know their names. We know the Twelve Apostles' names. And within that, we know that there was three of them who were the really high up apostles, Peter, James, and John, who were with Jesus more often. But I'm telling you something. Jesus understood it takes more than just Him. It took more than just the 12. It took more than just the 70. It took more than even just the 500. His whole plan was to get His spirit into you, to get the gospel into you.
Like Moses one day prayed, I pray that all God's people would prophesy and be opened up to the gift of the Spirit, a day that we're living in the fulfillment of, by the way. But I love the difference because Moses had to raise up 70 because he couldn't do it all. Jesus raised up 70 to go into the whole world, telling everybody Jesus had done it all. It's a different thing. Jesus is better than Moses. It's awesome. Well, the 70 came back. It was a little mission trip, little test run. They went out preaching. They went out leading. And where we're going to jump into scripture is right as the 70 have come back to tell Jesus how their efforts went. Verse 17, "Then the 70 returned with joy, saying, 'Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.' And He said to them, 'I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents, scorpions, and over the power of the enemy.'"
Essentially saying no weapon formed against you can prosper. "Nothing shall, by any means, hurt you. Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to your name, to you, but rather, rejoice because your names are written in heaven. In that hour," and here's the text I really want to preach on, this verse 21, "Jesus rejoiced in the spirit and said, 'I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and the prudent, and You've revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in your sight, all things have been delivered to me by my Father, and no one knows who the son is except the Father and who the Father is except the son and the one to whom the son wills to reveal Him.' Then He turned to his disciples, and he said to them privately," so we're snooping now. "'Blessed are the eyes, which see the things you see, for I tell you that many prophets and kings have desired to see what you see and have not seen it and to hear what you hear and have not heard it.'"
You ever felt like someone was ghosting you? You saw the confirmation. The iPhone has not helped with this whole thing. We know that text went. We even saw bubbles for a second. Now, where is that communication that says received? Where's that communication that's going to reciprocate what you said? Have you ever thought you were being ghosted and found out you were just incorrect? I had someone who when we saw each other, it's like, all hurt. I could just tell there was something. We're like, what's up? It's like, well, I've been texting you so much, and you haven't been responding. Do you not like me anymore? And we're not friends anymore. We're not going to frolic in the meadow anymore. And it's like, Rodney, I know what you're talking about. There's a lot of emotion coming off this thing. It's steaming. But I haven't heard from you in months, OK?
Matter of fact, I was like, where is this guy? He's dropped off the radar. And so I went to my phone, showed him our thread. There's nothing. He's like, no, no. It's all there. And I'm telling you. Not one thing he sent me was going through. And I was like, hold on a second. I went to my contact and looked. And I was like, that's your problem right there, bro. You blocked me. You told your phone I'm bad news. You threw me out with the garbage. He thought I was ghosting him. He was the one who had blocked me. You ever feel like God's ghosting you? You ever feel like God's blessing everybody else? God seems to have an easy time answering other prayers, helping other people out, but your prayers just keep going to heaven and bouncing off the ceiling and coming back down to Earth unanswered. That's how the disciples felt.
When Jesus was preparing them for his leaving the world after the cross, He was going to go to heaven where He sits now as king forever enthroned, receiving our praises. But before He left, He was telling the disciples about it, and they were frustrated. They were confused. It was not what they thought life was going to look like. They thought the book of Revelation was going to come to pass in their lifetime and him sitting as king and them getting to live with them and the lion lying now with the lamb, promises of heaven, all the beauty that we look forward to. They thought it was going to happen in their time. Peace in our time. And Jesus said, no, I'm leaving. And they're like, hold on a second. This is terrible. They started to get agitated. They started to get worried.
Their heart started to get troubled because they're like, are you kidding me? We've given up everything to follow you, and you're going to ghost us? Jesus said, yeah, with the Holy Ghost. I'm going to send the Holy Ghost. You don't understand it now. But truly, I say to you, when you experience and walk and what I got planned for you, you're going to be glad that I left because He said, and this is so key. If I don't go, the helper can't come. If I don't go, the comforter can't come. The reason they didn't understand is because they liked being physically with Jesus. They liked it. You can't blame them. When there was a tax bill due and the disciples were stressing, it's like, the pastors have got to pay taxes, brother. How are we going to pay our tax bill? Jesus is like, all right. Here's what we're going to do. We're going to catch a fish, and we'll sort it out. I fail to see how this is going to help. They catch a fish, there's exactly enough money in the fish's mouth to pay their tax bill.
So you can understand when Jesus is like, I got to go. They're like, no, no, no, no. You need to stay with us. Not unless you're going to heaven. You're better than Charles Schwab. We need you here. When they were hungry, there's food for everybody. When there's a storm, Jesus calms the storm. So they thought, and they reckoned, that there was nothing better than being physically with Jesus. They didn't even have a category in their head for what He intended, which was not for them to be with Jesus, but Jesus's spirit to be in them. That's why Jesus said, it is to your advantage that I go because right now, I'm only in one place at one time. But if I go, if I ascend to heaven, I'll tell the Father, he'll send the helper, the comforter will come. Let me tell you something. Once you're filled with the Holy Spirit of God and every single Christian on the face of the earth can simultaneously have the benefits of their own personal Jesus, you will be glad. I know you're sad now.
Here's what he said. Here's what he said. Here's what he said. He said, you will be sad when I leave, but then your sorrow will be turned to joy. When? When you're filled with the Holy Spirit. When the Holy Spirit comes upon you. When you're not just, to use Moses' language, baptized in blood, salvation, but you're baptized in oil, the picture of the relationship God wants his followers to have with the Holy Spirit. Sorrow is turned to joy. So I want to talk to you in the weeks of the series. And we're just going to begin the conversation today about how to experience joy in the Holy Spirit. How do you experience the joy of the Holy Spirit? I've heard a lot of sermons about the power of the Spirit, like the Holy Spirit is like a skill saw or something. Rrrr, like Tim the Tool Man Tayl... rrrr, power. Yeah, that's totally true, and there's a place for that, and we'll talk even a little bit about that today.
But I've not heard a lot of sermons about enjoying the Holy Spirit. And Jesus said in scripture, shows that one of the chief characteristics of a life marked by being filled continually with the spirit is joy. And if we experience joy, we have strength, for the joy of the Lord is our strength. So dear Lord, we ask for that to take place, that your blessing would be upon the serious, that we would look differently at you not being with us physically. Like the disciples, we would not let our hearts be troubled, but our sorrow would instead turn to joy. We feel like, where are you, God? You are right there. The kingdom of God is within. You are in us. You're with us, and You want to come upon us. I pray it would be so, and I pray our church would never be the same in Jesus's name. Amen. The 70 come back. It's so comical. The 70s show up, and Jesus can just tell it's problematic.
I see it when I read the Bible. I see popped collars on their robes. I see some of them wearing sunglasses, even though it's night time. He sent them out to preach. He gave them power. He gave them authority. They preached. And shockingly, it went well. I don't know why they were so surprised. They were told to announce the kingdom. They were told to announce the good news. They were told, we need to tell people God is love. We get to tell people God wants to have a relationship. We get to speak in the name of Jesus power. They're probably scared about the assignment. Oh my god, are you serious? How's it going to work? Where we going to go? Where we going to eat? How's it going to go? Is it going to go well? All the things that we do. And then it went super well. And they were like, oh my gosh, Jesus. You have no idea. It went so well. The demons listened to us. Darkness was vanquished by light. Jesus, you should have seen me. I was amazing. I'm going to go download my own podcast, it was that good. You just get this sense because they come back, and the text tells us they came back full of joy over what they had done.
Does that sound like Jesus or Moses? Their joy was based on what they did for God. You live by that. You die by that. What you live by, you got to die by. you got to stand by. What you think defines you and gives you identity in the good seasons, it better be enough to carry you through the bad seasons too. There are good and bad times in business. There are good and bad times in parenting. There are good and bad times in ministry. And so everything hinges on what your joy comes from. Jesus saw, and really, the purpose for this leadership experience of them going out, I think, was to teach them not to put their joy in unstable terrain. And there's nothing more unstable than what we do for God. The demons listen to us. Oh. She just goes, hey, guys. Come here. Take your sunglasses off. Unpop the collar on your robes.
Don't rejoice in the fact that you preached and a demon had to run away. He said, I saw Satan fall from heaven like lightning. Do you know what I think is the coolest thing ever? Our names are written in heaven. We're going to heaven. We're going to heaven. And then Jesus modeled for them what should be the posture of every one of his people. Joy placed in the Holy Spirit given that seals us and promises us and gives us the guarantee of our arrival in eternity shores at that land called heaven, that we get to live with God forever. And so what he did, and the text puts it this way, I had you take note of it as we approached it, it's actually a very significant verse because it stands alone in all of the story of the scriptures.
Jesus stopped, and in that hour, verse 21, He rejoiced. It's the only time this exact phrase is used of Jesus. He rejoiced not in what He was doing, what He was about to do because He was modeling for us how we were to live. He rejoiced, notice, in the spirit. He rejoiced in the spirit, having made mention of heaven and the promise of heaven. And in that rejoicing, it's just this eruption, this volcano of praise that we're given access to.
He says, I thank you, Father. I thank you, Lord. I thank you that you made heaven. I thank you that you made earth. Thank you that you've hidden from the mighty and the wise, and you've given it to babes that you don't use those who have the greatest gifts. You use those who have the greatest humility, who depend on you. And anybody can become a mighty warrior in your hand as they tr...so there's this praise he rose. He's showing them how they should have come back from ministry, how we should come back from work, how we should lead our homes and parent our children in the good times and the bad, that we're not reading our own press clippings and getting proud if something works because guess what? We have a really good message to preach. And that message is, hey, do you want free salvation? Jesus offers it.
Isn't he awesome? That's going to work. Who else is offering resurrection? Who else is offering heaven? Who else is offering pardon? Who else has power that can cast out darkness? Yeah, it's going to work. It's going to resonate. It can't be stopped. But rejoice not in what you do, but in what God has done in the spirit. Jesus rejoiced in the spirit. The actual Greek word for rejoice means to greatly exult and to be overjoyed. The idea is being soaked or being drenched. One commentary says this, in Jesus's heart, is an explosion of joy that we witness. And it is, one commentary says, the rare cases in the Bible where a veil is lifted from off of our Savior's heart, the Redeemer's heart, so that we can look in on the inner workings of His inner man and see how it works for just a moment. That's awesome. Because of Christmas, at Christmas, God became a man. I know it's not December, but is anybody thankful that God came down and didn't leave us on our own?
Anybody, I realized there's not lights everywhere, but I'm still pretty fired up on the incarnation. The incarnation was not the subtraction of divinity. It was merely the addition of humanity. So in his time on Earth, Jesus had the full divine privileges because He never stopped being God, very important. But He laid aside the use of them. He laid aside the use of them. So when we read the Bible and we read about Jesus performing a miracle or doing these things, we should never go, ehh, but He was Jesus. You know what I'm saying? He still had His wicked awesome Jesus power. You know what I'm saying? That's how he...no, no. He laid aside the use of all those privileges. That is to say that he felt hunger, he felt temptation and weakness. He had little naggings of insecurity speaking to Him, vying for His attention. And He relied on the Holy Spirit, just like you and I are told to and taught to, in order to do everything that He did. So that's powerful.
So what's my point? My point is that this little moment where we had the veil taken away and we see Jesus modeling, rejoicing in the spirit, this is what connects the dots on Him living the life that he lived, and it's telling us how we can do the same thing. For this was a teaching moment for not just the 70, but for all of us. He rejoiced in the spirit. And this explosion of joy, this dynamic energizing presence that one Him put it, when you're experiencing it, I wish I had 1,000 tongues because if I had 1,000 tongues, then maybe I could do a better job at scratching the surface in praising Him how much I feel right now. Oh, for 1,000 tongues because then I could sing my redeemer's praise. That's what Jesus was doing here. And that's how He ministered. And that's how He calls us and invites us to minister as well.
Charles Spurgeon, he's been nicknamed the prince of preachers, a nickname he did not give himself, by the way. He preached to a megachurch before they had thought of a word to describe it. And so many people wanted to hear his sermons. They could not physically build a building in London big enough. And even more people around the world wanted to hear the preaching of the word from this man. And so they did the best they could. Someone's job was to transcribe every word that came from his mouth, and they would run them in the newspaper the next week. It was an old school podcast, bro, before there was such a thing. And he, at times, would instruct other pastors. And he had a leadership college, much like we do. And they would tell, hey, here's what you need to know. Here's what you need to do. And one of my favorite things he ever told aspiring young ministers was this.
He said, don't go into the ministry to save your soul. Don't go into the ministry to save your soul. Don't think for a moment that what you do for God is somehow going to make up for some deficiency inside of you. Jesus is modeling the exact opposite of that. He's praising God. He's rejoicing in the spirit. He's inviting these 70 who are so excited about what they're doing for God. But they're doing it to save their own soul. Their identity is now based on it. And He's inviting us all into something better. So what do we need to know as we begin our time and as we wind down today's lesson and look forward with anticipation to what's going to come next week? And quite frankly, I'm full of faith even more for the quiet moments that you will have in the days that separate our times together in the series. As you will hopefully look up these verses and reflect on these things and let God take them to a deeper level in your heart, both in Fresh Life groups and on your own.
Here's what we need to know. Jot this down. Firstly, the Holy Spirit is a person. When we look into what scripture says about the Holy Spirit, it is not Star Wars. It is not some impersonal force that's all around us. The Holy Spirit is a person. How Jesus spoke about the Holy Spirit was always He, when He comes. You don't ever refer to some force that gives you the back of your neck, like the hair stands up, as He. No. When He comes, the Holy Spirit comes, He will do this. He will bring your attention to me. He will lead you in the way you should go. He will convict you of sin when He comes, when He gets here, the God who lives inside of you, my spirit, when He comes. So the Holy Spirit is a person. So important to know. And he's not only a person, he's a person who is God. Jesus in John 14:16 said, I'll pray the Father when I ascend, and He will give you another helper.
That's a key description of the Holy Spirit because in the Greek, there are two different words for another, one that's another of the same kind and the other that's another of a different kind. Example, if you are going to go on a horse riding trip and it was dangerous, and you're going to be on a cliff ledge the whole way, and but you knew from the website that they only basically hired people who have been on horses their entire life. And this guy, Bronco Bill was his name. And he was going to take care of you. You're in good hands. Bronco Bill. This guy's a horse whisperer. It's just phenomenal. He's literally made out of saddle leather. His skin now is good. And at the last minute, before you got on the horse, they said, hey, look. Bronco Bill couldn't come. It's a real unfortunate thing, but Pastor Levi said he would step in and be your guide, take care of you the whole way. He's going to make sure the tack and the saddle and the horses have the things they need.
And look, it's dangerous. It's full of cliffs. It's a problem. But don't worry. Another guide has come, and here I am. You just said, there may be a guide, but it's not another of the same kind. We want Bronco Bill. Otherwise, we're going whitewater rafting, and that's what we're going to be doing instead because it's another, sure, but another of the different kind. Jesus used the Greek word for another of a same kind to describe the Holy Spirit. To those who He said, don't you worried that I'm gone because I've been your helper, but I'm leaving in another of the same kind, one God, but three persons, and the Holy Spirit is God just as the Father is God, and just as the son is God. If you're like, Levi, that's all very well to say, but I don't fully understand that, I would just say, welcome to the club. But that's how God has revealed himself to us.
Secondly, the Holy Spirit is a promise. It's a promise. Do we have any engaged couples in the church today? Anybody engaged, looking to get married soon? Congratulations, Jayden. Very exciting. We're very excited about that. OK. So you have anything on your left hand that I could inspect? Oh, yeah. Ooh, shiny. I need sunglasses to look at that. It's very bright and shiny. And that's a promise. The day that ring was placed on her finger, she was being promised more to come. The Bible says that the Holy Spirit is God's down payment for the wedding that is heaven, for the honeymoon that is heaven, for the promise of all that is to come, which is heaven. This is 2 Corinthians 122. We have been sealed and given the Holy Spirit in our hearts, as I say it out loud with me, as a guarantee of what? That this is not all, that your body is coming up out of that grave, that the lion will die down with the lamb, that Jesus Christ will rule and reign forever.
So we've been given the Holy Spirit as a reminder of what? More. More to come. So any time we're hurting, any time we're in a trial, we, like Jesus, can rejoice in the spirit and be reminded of our glorious future and that what's next is going to be greater than what's now. Romans 15, may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace and believing that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. We think of the Holy Spirit as that engagement ring, that He's not left us orphans. He's got more in store for us. He's given us His presence in the meantime. Thirdly, the Holy Spirit will, and we alluded to this, give you power. That's, in fact, how Jesus first began to frame the conversation of the Holy Spirit, that when he comes, you'll have power for ministry, power for serving, power to witness.
As a fun experiment, I would point you to the book of Acts and notice how many different times someone is described as being full of the Holy Spirit. And every single time, there's some demand being exerted. They're stepping on faith to do something, to share the light with someone. You see, the power is for a purpose. You see a bodybuilder, and you see them greased up with baby oil, waxed to perfection in a Speedo. You're like, that's awesome, but what are those muscles for? You know what I'm saying? You're going to go chop down a tree? No, I'm just going to. OK. God didn't give us his Holy Spirit so we could just strut on a stage. The power is for a purpose. The power is for how you parent. The power is for how you lead. The power is for how you teach. The power is for how you live. I'm not trying to offend any bodybuilders here because you could beat me up, and I wouldn't want that. You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you to be my witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the ends of the Earth. And that promise was fulfilled.
As they waited before they went, as they saw God around the table before they began to go and share, Acts 2, 2, suddenly there came from heaven a sound. The sound is of a mighty rushing wind. It filled the whole house where they were sitting. And the prophecy was fulfilled. Each of them got filled with God. This, Jesus said, is what you guys are going to get to see, that David and Samuel and Ruth and Naomi and Saul and every other cat from the Old Testament would have killed to get a piece of. Every single person filled with God, no longer having to go to a Tabernacle to seek Him, no longer having to go through a priest to get to Him, no longer having to be someone unique who would have the Holy Spirit perchance come upon them, that all God's people could prophesy. All God's people could know there's a priesthood of all believers because there is one mediator between God and man, and that is the Lord Jesus Christ.
And we all stand on equal footing at the foot of the cross. We've all been given gifts. We've all been given talents. We've all been given the right to grow fruit. Jesus says, dude, are you kidding me? What Moses and Elijah wouldn't do to get to be a part of this. Power from on high. The word power is the Greek word didymus. We get our English word dynamite. Imagine being tasked with digging a tunnel for a train through a mountain, doing that on your own strength. That is you trying to live for God without the Holy Spirit's power. I just can't feel, I just can't get traction. No, I'm spinning my wheels. You are not meant to do it on your own. You're not meant to lead your kids to Christ on your own, testify and shine a bright light in a dark city on your own. You need power, and you have it. You've been given the Holy Spirit, and joy will follow.
Number four. This is awesome. The Holy Spirit will heal your parent wounds. The Holy Spirit will heal the wounds that have been left on you by parents who imperfectly parented you. To varying degree, this hits home for all of us. Some of us, like I have a great parent. But many of us, there's things that you would say, like this harmed me. And ironically, we're now doing the things our kids will need counseling for one day. And for some of us, it's overparenting. Some of us, it's underparenting. Some of us, it's like we're just basically flat out refusing to be the parent that we had. And in so doing, we're creating, in our children, our parent.
Think about it because your parents' parent, they're the overreaction to. And so they led you the way that they did, and now you're doing the thing that they did. So it just perpetuates the cycle forward. But the Holy Spirit comes into our heart. And what happens? He gives us the spirit and sense of adoption. If we listen to the Holy Spirit, this is the book of Romans, this is powerful, He is not the spirit of bondage. That's Moses. La, what you got to do? Be afraid. You got to earn my love. I won't show you that love unless you earn it. But you received the spirit of adoption by whom we cry out Abba, Father.
So people who only knew the god of lightning and thunder, who showed up on Sinai, for Jesus to show up and to teach the people to pray because I said, you seem to have something very unique in your heart with God. Could you teach us how to pray? And he's like, yeah. Oh, yeah. Hey, dad. Hey, dad. Dad? Dad? Father? And the spirit in you causes you to cry out, dad. There's nothing more primal than that, healing your parent wounds, pointing you to the perfect parent, letting you be an agent of healing that causes there to be even blessing and restoration that flows both directions in your family tree. How did Jesus respond to the father? The Bible says that when Jesus was baptized, the spirit came upon him like a dove, and the father spoke, I'm pleased with you, boy. I'm pleased with you. Well pleased with you, son. Pause right there.
How many sermons had Jesus preached? The answer is zero. How many miracles had He performed? He had not done a single one. So what was the father pleased in? Just his son. And so He could go and be free to do all the ministry He did, not to earn His father's pleasure, but because He already did it. And so the spirit works in you to free you up from thinking, I got to earn the father's favor, got to earn his pleasure. The Bible just says just rest in the fact that you're loved. Rest in the fact that I'm pleased in you. I'm proud of you. I'm smiling upon you. That's what the Holy Spirit wants to do in your life.
Number five. The Holy Spirit is key to passion. It's a genuine passion to tapping you into joy, to light a fire of joy inside your heart by opening you up to God's river of delight that flows from His throne. And He wants it to be in your heart. First Peter chapter 1 tells us we haven't ever seen Jesus, but we love Him. Though now, you do not see Him because he went away. But because He sent His Holy Spirit, what do we get to experience? Joy and rejoicing with joy inexpressible and full of glory, volcanic eruptions of joy, like Jesus did, tapping into "My Name is Written in Heaven," tapping into rejoicing in the spirit, the earnest of all that is to come. And throughout church history, I spent a lot of this week looking into it. Those who have done the most for God have been those who experienced and drank from that river of delight and learned to joy and place their joy and rejoicing in the Holy Spirit.
Charles Spurgeon, who I mentioned a moment ago, he writes of a time. Here's the quote. "Some of us have known what it is to be too happy to live. The love of God has been so overwhelmingly experienced by us on a few occasions that we almost had to ask God to stop the delight, for we could not endure anymore. If God had not shielded his love and glory a bit, I think we would have died for joy". He's describing the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the sense of the nearness and the gloriousness and the preciousness of who Jesus is. Blaise Pascal, who was the mathematician and philosopher who famously came out with the argument of the void in all of our hearts that only God can fill. Have you ever heard that? There's a hole in everyone's heart that only God can fill. It was Blaise Pascal who made that argument first. He experienced Jesus, experienced salvation, and experienced the baptism of the Holy Spirit. And the day that it took place was in the year 1654.
And it so marked him, so moved him that moment that he wrote it on a little piece of cloth and had it sewn inside of his favorite jacket so he could see it every single time he put this coat on. It wasn't found until his death, when his maid and those who were managing the estate were going through his things. And they found this little annotation in his jacket. A portion of it said, "This day of grace, 1654, from about half past 10:00 at night to about half after midnight". And then notice this. You kids think you're the only one to use this language? "Fire". That truck was fire. That mood was fire. That concert was fire. 1654. Homie was like, I encounter God. Fire. And then he wrote this. "Joy, joy, joy, tears of joy".
Jonathan Edwards, it happened while riding a horse by himself, his first encounter being baptized by the Holy Spirit. John Wesley, famed revivalist and preacher. It was at 3:00 in the morning when he was with a group of 60 at a prayer meeting that included George Whitfield. "The power of God came mightily upon us. Many of us cried out for exceeding joy. Many fell to the ground. As soon as we were recovered a little from the awe and amazement of the moment at the presence of His majesty, we broke out with one voice. 'We praise thee, oh God. We acknowledge thee to be the Lord.'" DL Moody, preacher, had been ministering for a long time. And his efforts were OK. He would preach, and he was all right. Nothing like we know history talks about, revival meetings, like Billy Graham meetings. In his day, people coming to know Christ all over the world as he preached. But he points to the fire that was lit when he experienced the joy of the Holy Spirit.
It happened in New York City, of all places. And he writes in his diary, "Well, one day in the city of New York, oh, what a day. I cannot describe it. I seldom refer to it. It is almost too sacred an experience to name. I can only say that God revealed himself to me. And I had such an experience of his love that I asked him to stay his hand. I went to preaching again. The sermons were not any different. I did not present any new truths. And yet hundreds were converted. I would not now be placed back where I was before that blessed experience if you gave me all of Glasgow". The capital of Scotland where he was speaking at this time. He said, "It would be as the small dust of the balance". All the world that you could be given, he says it would be a drop in the bucket compared to what I experienced in just one moment in God's presence.
As I think back to my first encounter with the Holy Spirit, which God has promised to every Christian, it is the birthright of every Christian. But so many will get to heaven and look back and realize how little they settled for with how much they were offered. And how marked I have been by not only the initial being touched by God's Holy Spirit, but moments in His presence from then to now. Not all so dramatic. Some little. I had one last Sunday in the quiet moments as I was preparing to preach. By the fire were just explosions of joy in my heart through the name of Jesus being lifted up. Moments and meetings. Moments alone. Little walks. But just this life of enjoying the Holy Spirit that makes sense of the trials and gives you power for everything you put your hand to. I sense God here, I sense God moving.
As we all think about Jesus Himself in that same hour, rejoicing in the spirit, I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth. You see, like Jeremiah says, the wise man is not to glory and wisdom. The mighty man is not to glory in his might. Let not the rich man glory in being rich. But if you want to glory in something, glory in this. That you understand and know Me. I am the Lord, exercising loving kindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth, for in these, I delight. He said, you've hidden these things from the proud. You've revealed them to the babies. It is those that I can bless, those who I can show and give a glimpse of my river of delight to. You would say, Levi, what do I need to do? How do I need to experience this?
The last point is this, that the Holy Spirit is waiting for permission. For the Bible has promised that God will draw near to any who draw near to Him. He only opposes the proud, but He always gives his grace to the humble. If you're willing to ask in faith and then step out, believing you've experienced it, you open yourself up to a life where whether on a horse or on a boat or during a fire or a worship moment where you can, in faith, rejoice again and again in the Holy Spirit. They won't all, as I said, be so dramatic as the firework. Sometimes it's as soft and subtle as a whisper. But you will all of a sudden tremble at the thought that God, who created the world, lives in you. And some of you, I'm certain of this. You've been following Jesus for a very long time, but you have never actually asked for the promise of the Holy Spirit on your life because you are terrified at what God's going to take from you if you do.
You know as well as I do that Jesus said, if you ask the Father, He's not a bad dad. He's going to give you the spirit. But you've tiptoed around that and never really entered in. You've put your toe in the water, but you're not doing a cannonball because you would say, Levi, he's going to force me to go to Ghana and be a missionary. I know if I do that, he's going to have me holding babies in the kids ministry next Sunday. First of all, don't flatter yourself. God loves the people of Ghana too much to send someone with such a bad attitude their way. And we don't want you to hold our babies that bad, actually. We really have this thing about you have to love babies to hold them, all right? Preach a whole sermon. That's the only part you're going to remember.
I was thinking about how all these great James Webb images have been floating around, all these space telescope, million miles away. It's been taking all these great pictures. Everyone's like, ahh, ooo, ahh. The funniest one to me is the chorizo galaxy. Have you seen the chorizo galaxy image? This is this physicist who tweeted this image that Webb took of the nearest star to our sun and trillions of miles away. And everyone, oh, my gosh. Oh my gosh. This image. It's never seen before. And then he later on was like, it's actually just my breakfast. It's literally chorizo under a microscope. Chorizo. Not chorizo galaxy, just chorizo. That's literally what that is. Don't believe everything you see on the internet, baby. Now, take that compared to an actual image from Webb. Look at this one. I mean, this is the cartwheel galaxy.
Let me tell you something. Whatever you think that God wants to take from you that's giving you such joy today, you're hanging on to a piece of chorizo when the god of angel armies offers you a life of mission and purpose and joy. Olivia, my oldest, and I were getting on a plane one time, and her ticket said 5D. My ticket, 5C next to it. And so she sits down. I sit down. And the stress is over, getting on the airplane. Such stress. Everyone's got to get on it so quickly. Go sit down. Everyone's got nerves. This guy comes up. Excuse me, that's my seat, he says to my little girl. I'm like, I will bow up. Well, actually, it's 5D, homie. He says, my ticket says 5D. He shoves it in my face. I'm like, OK. We're going to de-escalate this immediately. Ding. Calling to a higher power here. Ding. Meanwhile, you stay seated where you are. He can stand here in the aisle.
Lady comes over, what's the problem? 5D, 5D. She says, oh, sir, sir, sir, sir, I got another seat for you. He goes, I am sitting in 5D. She says, sir, sir, sir, we have another seat for you. He said, I got 5D, I picked 5D, I want the window. This always happens to me on these planes. You need to sort this out. You need to get her out of my seat. And she goes, sir, sir, sir, I moved you to 1C. It's an upgrade. Oh. Yeah, yeah. Never wanted to sit there anyway. Excellent. Wonderful. Excellent. And he just goes off like, yeah. I always knew I was going to sit in 1C. I think about that sometimes when I'm worried that God wants to take my joy. God, when he tells me, He's trying to kill my joy.
Let me tell you something. Your upgrades come through. You've been given the help, or you've been given the comfort. You've been given the spirit. So what's our job in all of this? It's just to say these simple words. There are four of them. Ready? I need some juice. I need some juice. My boy, Linux, he says that to me when we're snowboarding and he gets on a cat track. He just puts his hand up and goes, dad, I need some juice. I don't know at what point along the way he realized that I would unstrap my foot and do the awkward hobble all the way and just pull him, and he could just stand there and glide, glide, glide. But if I don't refer to his go go power as juice, he'll correct me, like he did in this moment. You need a push? Here. Boost. Turbo boost activated. Wee! No, dad. Juice. Juice, juice, juice. Come on. That's my prayer for our church, that we would just raise up our hands and say, dad, dad, dad. Come on, who in our church has that in your heart right now? Jump up to your feet, raising up the hands.
Dad, we need some juice. We need new wine. We need power. We need what you're offering. We want a mighty rush of wind to fill our lungs.
As we're praying, I'll tell you that it's no mistake that Jesus rejoiced in the pneuma. Pneuma is spirit, pneuma, like pneumatic, like an air compressor, wind that's produced. The Holy Spirit's a wind to fill our lungs. Preaching the sermon to you with a broken rib. Fell off a bike. Broke this rib here. And they told me the biggest problem for you in this coming days is not getting pneumonia because if you have a lung that's not getting expanded enough, it can get infected. And I feel like, as we're praying, there are some of us who the sin and the backsliding and the problems, these little issues, is the infection that's coming because our lungs have not been properly inflated with the wind of the Spirit.
So Jesus, You want to breathe fresh wind into our hearts, that we would regularly breathe in and breathe out Your spirit, Your presence, Your love, Your glory. Open us up, Jesus, to a bigger life. Lord, we're not going to look at the chorizo on our plate. We're going to look to the heavens, to the one who made the heavens. And these experiences, these moments, that are going to mark us forever are going to come. They're going to go. We're not building our lives on feelings, but we sure are grateful for them when You give them. And so I do pray for every single heart that is postured through the humility that says, I need some juice. Raising the hands up in this church, that You would rain down fire. I pray You pour out a baptism of Your spirit. I pray for an encounter with the creator that would mark them forever. In Jesus's name.