February 2019

25 Feb Does God Want to Baptize You in His Spirit?

From time to time, I will hear people question for any number of reasons if God will baptize them in His precious Holy Spirit. I honestly could write pages of information and cite many scriptures to answer their question. But really, there's no need to go through all of that writing. Charles G. Finney in his Revival Lectures answered the question in just 110 words. I know that you will want to copy, paste, and send Finney's quote to many of your friends. “God says he is more ready to give his Holy Spirit to them that ask him, than parents are to give bread unto their children. Here we are bound to believe that we shall receive it when we pray for it. You have no right to put an if, and say, “Lord, if it be your will, give us thy Holy Spirit.” This is an insult to God. To put an if into God’s promise, where God has put none, is tantamount to charging God with being insincere. It is like saying, “O God, if thou art in earnest in making these promises, grant us the blessing we pray for.”  ...

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11 Feb Simple & Powerful!

I recently shared a series of posts with simple-to-do, easy-to-understand illustrations to help those wanting to teach/preach about the importance of praying in the Spirit (also known as praying in other tongues). I trust that you are enjoying and taking advantage of these illustrations. I want to share just how easy it is to use these illustrations. A few weeks ago, I received a Facebook message from Tracey Zannini Guillory asking permission for her 10-year-old son, Austin, to use one of these illustrations, Holy Spirit Illustrations Part 12, in an upcoming Assemblies of God statewide competition. The Louisiana district had just added an Object Lesson category to their Fine Arts Festival. I gave a Texas-size YES to her request for two reasons. First, this series was posted to be USED!  Second, I love the Fine Arts Festival because it allows children and youth to showcase their God-given talents. These children and youth will be the future leaders of the church. Was the object lesson simple? Yep. Was is powerful? Double yep! 10-year-old Austin nailed it!!! (And so can you!) Take a minute and view this short video that Tracey posted on my Facebook page.   https://billyburns.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Illustration.mp4 Way to go Austin. I know for a fact that the video of your presentation has been viewed around the world. Keep on teaching and preaching the gospel. You are needed. If you missed any or all of these illustrations, you can find them at www.billyburns.com/blog beginning with Praying in Spirit Illustrations - Part 1 which posted on October 8, 2018. Here is a link to the illustration that Austin shared.     ...

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04 Feb The Baptism in the Holy Spirit – Part 3

Because they heard your teaching (Part 1), prepared for and know what to expect upon receiving this gift (Part 2), this final part is easy (and exciting).  The Baptism in the Holy SpiritPart 3 – The Receiving Let me first relieve you as the pastor/teacher/leader of any anxiety or fear by sharing the verse that we used in the first blog post in this series. “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children:how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spiritto them that ask him?”Luke 11:13 This verse reminds us that there is absolutely NO pressure on your part. (Go ahead and let out a great big sigh of relief. ) You have nothing to do with this gift. You don't have to create the gift. You aren't the giver of the gift. And, you aren't the one receiving this gift. All that you have to do is provide the opportunity for these believers to receive! (This would be a great time for another Texas-size whew!)  Here are some simple steps to take during the altar ministry. Read or share Luke 11:13 to instruct that our part is to ask and His is to give. Read or share Acts 2:4 to turn on their "expectator". (See Part 2) Ask for a Spirit-filled believer to stand with each individual.  After leading in a prayer asking to receive the gift, set the example by boldly praying and worshiping God out loud in your heavenly prayer language. Leading by example gives an assurance that the language that they have isn’t spooky or weird.  I would be amiss if I didn't close out by sharing this final bit of wisdom. Over the years, I have witnessed some really unbelievable things happen during these altar times. Let’s use a little brain power. Here are some things to not do: PLEASE don’t tell the seeker the words to say. I have witnessed well-intentioned people tell people to repeat words like these … “who stola the keysa to my Honda”, “tie a my tie, tie a my bowtie”. Don’t insult the Holy Spirit by creating a language that according to Acts 2:4 should come from Him. “… as the Spirit enabled them.” PLEASE don’t frighten the seeker by being loud and boisterous. The Holy Spirit is a Person, not an emotion. You don’t have to MAKE things happen by being loud and emotional. PLEASE don’t create confusion. Don’t beat them on the back and holler “hold on” while the person on the other side is saying “turn loose!” Is this difficult? No. It this complicated? No. No. Is ministering on this subject pressureful? No. No. No. Again, to me this is the EASIEST message to preach because the Father is ANXIOUSLY awaiting the opportunity to GIVE this GIFT to EVERYONE who asks!  If you have any questions, I am just an email away. billy@billyburns.com. ...

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