In our pursuit of living for God, we are to be driven by the Spirit that lives within us. It is called “walking in the Spirit.” We are to be continually filled with the Spirit. In the following verse, the phrase “be filled” has a meaning that translates from the Greek more correctly as, “be being filled” or continually filled. It is like consuming food and water. We have to continue being filled in order to survive. The same is true of the Spirit. We must continually fill up with the Spirit.
Eph 5:18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;
But here in this verse, we see that what stands at opposition to being Spirit filled is being drunk with wine. Why? Because the alcohol has a controlling influence and leads the drinker by its own power. Paul described some of that here:
1 Tim 3:3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
So to qualify as a Spirit-driven candidate for leadership in the kingdom, we must stay away from that misguided influence and control:
Titus 1:7 For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre;
The destructive results of alcohol consumption are seen over and over again all around us. Solomon observed this truth:
Prov 23:21 For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty: and drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags.
Some people say they do not have enough money to pay their rent or to provide proper food or clothing for their family, but they have enough to purchase alcohol, cigarettes, and lottery tickets. Why? Because they have become led by another power other than God. Let the Spirit be the controlling influence not some chemical substitute. That is the pursuit of someone who wants to live for God.
We conclude this topic today on “How can I live for God?” and tomorrow will begin a very difficult subject: holiness in our talk.