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Thursday, July 24, 2014, 1:48 a.m.
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On Christianity

By Billy Graham

This article was published June 9, 2014 at 1:47 a.m.

DEAR REV. GRAHAM: How can I get the Holy Spirit? I didn't decide to follow Jesus until I was in my 40s, and He has made a real difference in my life. But someone told me I need the Holy Spirit, also.

-- S.B.

DEAR S.B.: Yesterday, many churches celebrated "Pentecost Sunday," recalling the day almost 2,000 years ago when Jesus' followers received the gift of the Holy Spirit, shortly after His resurrection and ascension into heaven. (You can read about that remarkable day in Acts, Chap. 2.)

But listen: You don't need the Holy Spirit to come into your life -- because He already has! The Holy Spirit is God Himself as He works in the world and in our lives. And even before you gave your life to Jesus, the Holy Spirit was working in your heart -- convicting you of sin, convincing you of the truth of the Gospel, and giving you the desire and the strength to put your faith in Jesus. Jesus said, "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them" (John 6:44).

Furthermore, when you gave your life to Christ, the Holy Spirit came to live permanently within you. Think of it: God Himself now lives within you! You may not necessarily feel His presence, but He is still there. The Bible says, "If anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ" (Romans 8:9).

Why has God's Spirit come to live within you? He did it because He wants you to become more like Jesus -- and He knows you can't do this on your own. You need God's help, and He has made it available to you by His Spirit. Thank Him for His presence with you, and yield yourself to His guidance and transforming power every day.

Write to Billy Graham in care of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C. 28201 or visit the website at

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