Paul traveled through Turkey and arrived in Ephesus, where he found several disciples. “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” he asked them. “No,” they replied, “we don’t know what you mean. What is the Holy Spirit?” — Acts 19:1-2 TLB
We could all use a little help sometimes. Perhaps this is why two of the Beatles’ catchiest hits included lyrics like, “I get by with a little help from my friends,” and, “I need somebody, help! Not just anybody, help!”
That last part is very true. Sometimes when we need help, we don’t need it from just anybody. We need supernatural help. We need big things to happen. We need a person in our lives to change. We need our own hearts to change. We need the type of help that a fellow human cannot really provide and the type of help that we can’t muster on our own.
Enter the Holy Spirit.
Now, Christians have all sorts of opinions and reactions when it comes to the Holy Spirit. Some nod their heads and say, “Amen.” They deeply believe in the power of the Spirit and have witnessed it in their lives. Some roll their eyes. To them, the Holy Spirit is a biblical figure that doesn’t have much to do with their faith today. Others scratch their heads. They don’t know much about the Holy Spirit or understand who He is and what He does in their lives.
No matter where you fall on this spectrum, this session will help you understand who the Holy Spirit actually is and how He can actually help in your life. (Because we could all use a little help from our friends, right?) You will discover that when it comes to your need for supernatural help, the Holy Spirit is your best friend.
He didn’t just exist in the Book of Acts. He isn’t a mysterious figure that you can never get to know.
If you or any of your group members don’t know each other, take a few minutes to introduce yourselves. Then, to get things started, discuss one of the following questions:
- What do you do when you need help with the bigger challenges in life?
— or —
- What thoughts or images come up when you hear the name Holy Spirit?
At the start of each session, you will be given a passage of Scripture to read that relates to the key themes and ideas that will be presented in the video teaching. Break into groups of two to three people to read through this passage, and then take a few minutes to write down your responses to the questions that follow. Share your answers before you rejoin the main group.
If you love Me, keep My commands. And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever — the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept Him, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him. But you know Him, for He lives with you and will be in you. — John 14:15–17
- What does Jesus instruct His followers to do if they love Him? Why do you think that He emphasizes this point to His disciples?
- Jesus told His disciples they already knew the Holy Spirit. Do you feel like you know the Holy Spirit? Why or why not?
Now it’s time to watch the video for this session. Fill in the blanks below as you follow along, and also record any thoughts that stand out to you. (See the answer key at the end of this group section if you get stuck or miss any of these blanks.)
1. Followers of Christ have been given access to the ______ _______ Just like a big brother, He chooses each day to be our powerful _______.
2. The Holy Spirit is the executor of God’s will, come to infuse us with _________. He equips us not to just get by but to actually _________, shine forth, and live the abundant life that Jesus spoke about so often.
3. Challenges come with life, but they need not __________ your life. Help is here. And He comes with the promise of _________.
4. The power of the Holy Spirit does not only apply to us as ___________. Yes, the Spirit is always there to fill us when we approach Him. But sometimes He pours out His power over entire _____________.
5. You can be a part of this great outflowing of power. A contributor to this raging _______. For you have something to offer to others who are _________.
6. When the Living Water of our Lord and Savior pours into our ________, the Holy Spirit flows out of us and electrifies the dead places of the world. This is how _________ happens.
Take some time to discuss what you just watched by answering the following questions.
- Do you have an ally in your life — someone who is on your side and supports you? If so, how does it feel to have that person in your life?
- From what you know about the Holy Spirit, how could He be an ally for you?
- Read aloud John 14:16. How is the Holy Spirit described in this passage? How have you experienced the Holy Spirit in this same way?
- Read aloud Acts 1:4 and 8. How is the Holy Spirit described in this passage? How have you experienced the Holy Spirit in the way that He is described here?
- Read Isaiah 44:3–5. How does this passage speak differently about the Holy Spirit as compared to the other two passages? Describe a time, if any, that you felt the Spirit’s power flow out of you or you felt the Holy Spirit’s power flow from someone else.
- How do you hope this study will impact your understanding of the Holy Spirit?
The Bible records more than a dozen metaphors to describe the work of the Holy Spirit. On your own, look up the following passages listed under each of the images below. Then write down what the verse says about that particular role of the Holy Spirit.
End your group time by asking if anyone has any prayer requests to share. Write those requests down and your group members can pray about them in the week ahead. Finish by asking one person from the group to close your time in prayer.
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Come share with us how you feel about the Person of the Holy Spirit. Who is He to you?