“And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit” (Ephesians 5.18).
These instructions to the early Church in Ephesus apply to us today. Just as if Paul penned these words on a Hallmark card, wrote your name on the envelope and had it delivered to your door and placed into your hand, so, too, is the letter to the Ephesians written to you.
In this short sentence from Ephesians 5 we are given two commands and one warning.
The first command is don’t be under the influence, under the control of alcohol or any other drug for that matter.
The word “drunk” in the Greek refers to a drenching, a soaking that results in the person being under the controlling influence of whatever he or she has allowed in the body.
Of course, I am not referring to powerful prescription drugs used wisely under the direction of a physician. But what is controlling your life today? Do you find that you are allowing yourself to be influenced by anything that is not of God?
Along with this first command in the verse, Paul gives this warning: if you place yourself under the power of alcohol or another drug it will result in “dissipation.” Dissipation simply means “a wasteful use of resources.”
The resource that is being wasted is your life! Dissipation is literally throwing your life away. The Holy Spirit is saying through Paul, “Don’t do it!”
You don’t have time to waste.
I’m not saying that, for you, death is imminent. I am saying you and I have been given the most precious commodity in the universe. The most precious thing ever given, a gift that was breathed into the nostrils of man by God Himself, is life. God the Father, the giver of time and the giver of life, never intended that you would throw your life away. He did not give you your life to waste it away on selfish indulgences that draw you away from Him.
Anything that numbs the senses of the body, has the potential to numb your feelings for God. Anything that comes between you and your feelings for God will affect your relationship with Him.
And anything that would come between God and His beloved, is anathema to Him.
You are God’s beloved and God wants your love in return.
David wrote, in Psalm 27.4
One thing I have desired of the LORD, That will I seek:
That I may dwell in the house of the LORD
All the days of my life,
To behold the beauty of the LORD,
And to inquire in His temple.
Worship leader Eddie James said that the secret of David’s life was that he played the harp when no one was around. It was good enough for David that he lived before an audience of One.
David had his priorities straight and the Heavenly Father greatly honored him …
And when He had removed [Saul], He raised up for them David as king, to whom also He gave testimony and said, ‘I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My own heart, who will do all My will.’ (Acts 13:22)
Wouldn’t you like to known as a man, a woman, a child after God’s own heart? Wouldn’t you like to get to the place in your spiritual life where you live, work and play before an audience of One?
You can’t do it alone. You need to be under the influence, under the control, power of Another. The second command that Paul gives in Ephesians 5.18 is this: be filled, be drenched, allow yourself to be placed under the influence and control of the Holy Spirit.
Simply say, “Come, Holy Spirit. Fill me, I pray. In Jesus’ name.”