We just finished covering all the aspects to Water Baptism. This is a simple but important ceremony signifying your submission to God and acceptance of Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour…
Our next step will be to receive the Holy Spirit as the controller of your life. Let me explain. When you get saved, God cleans your house (removes all your past sins- you are free from guilt). God also destroys the work of the Devil in your life. One more important thing God does is place his Divine Nature in you meaning that his Spirit now lives in you (The Holy Spirit). In a nutshell being saved means God will protect you, God will preserve you and God will deliver you, all done by His Spirit.
Now even though the Holy Spirit lives in you, that doesn’t mean you have relinquished control. My son Victor lives at my house, that doesn’t mean he is in control of my house. Just because the Holy Spirit lives in your body (house) doesn’t mean that you have given him full control. To be a good witness of Jesus Christ you must be empowered by this Spirit to lead you in the path of righteousness (a path acceptable to God himself).
The hardest thing I had to learn was that I had no power to be on this righteous path of my own ability, I need Gods Spirit to lead me! Think of it this way, we all want to spend an eternity with Jesus in Heaven. We all want to find God and do his work. Who better to lead us to God than HIS Spirit? We on our own DO NOT know the way, we need to be led and led by someone who can get us there. Who is qualified to lead you in making a million dollars, a millionaire or someone working at a fast food joint talking big? The person that has actually already arrived at the destination you are trying to get to. The Holy Spirit knows how to find God and will lead us the entire way if we will receive him and turn over the control to direct us. Why not let the Holy Spirit have the drivers seat in your car (life). He is a flawless driver and knows exactly where to go. Without him do you know the directions to steer yourself to God? Do you understand what I’m getting at?
Let’s go through some scripture so you see this is not my opinion but Gods instructions from His manual, the Bible…
Baptism In The Holy Spirit
Acts 19:2-3 (New King James Version)
2 he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?”
So they said to him, “We have not so much as heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.”
3 And he said to them, “Into what then were you baptized?”
So they said, “Into John’s baptism.”
This scripture explains the majority of the Church world as we know it today. Most don’t even know that there is another baptism let alone what that baptism will do for you. This is proving that there is a difference between water baptism and Holy Spirit baptism. John only baptized in water even when he baptized Jesus.
John 1:33 (New King James Version)
33 I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’
Here you see the reference again that John baptizes in water and that whoever you see (it will be Jesus) the Spirit descending and remaining, this is who baptizes with the Holy Spirit. Understand that until Jesus received the Holy Spirit he did not do any miracles (healing, feeding 5000 etc.). So it was this Spirit that gave him power to do miraculous things in other peoples life. It will be the same for you!
Luke 3:16 (New King James Version)
16 John answered, saying to all, “I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I is coming, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
Mark 1:8 (New King James Version)
8 I indeed baptized you with water, but He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
Matthew 3:11 (New King James Version)
11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
Again the reference of a different baptism… Why do I continue these examples? because they are plastered all over the Bible yet other Preachers don’t seem to know that there is a difference. Just because the Bible uses the word baptism, it doesn’t mean they are all the same. There are 7 different baptisms (which I will explain in other posts as the Spirit leads). I have discussed this issue with other “elect” and they just couldn’t seem to get it even though it is so evident and plain.
Matthew 3:13-16 (New King James Version)
John Baptizes Jesus
13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. 14 And John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?”
15 But Jesus answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed Him.
16 When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him.
If you think of what water baptism represents you will see why John was saying he needed to be baptized by Jesus. Water baptism is the symbol that you have already repented of your sins and have submitted to God . Jesus never sinned and was always doing exactly what the Father had required. Jesus did this ceremony to fulfill scripture and to be an example to man. That is why it is an insult to God when you do not do what Jesus showed us to do. Remember Jesus is our example to follow if you are going to be considered His disciple.
Well what if you don’t follow HIS example and decide to do things your own way? Then you are not His disciple… Doesn’t this seem elementary?
John 7:37-39 (New King James Version)
The Promise of the Holy Spirit
37 On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. 38 He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” 39 But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
Jesus cried out. This is such an important factor for your salvation that Jesus is passionate about what he is saying. A very important aspect to note, “as the scripture has said”. This is a qualifier to what is available (or promised) next. Do you see how important it is to go by the instruction manual? Anyone who believes that Jesus was the Messiah (Saviour), will always have hope in their life. This hope I speak of is not the type of hope the world offers (like buying a lottery ticket, you hope to win). Hope that springs (as in water gushing) from the Cross of Christ is considered an assurance or guarantee. Rivers of living water refers to the regeneration of your mind that occurs daily when you accept the finished work of Christ at Calvary daily. Jesus is pointing out that until he finishes his mission (redeeming mankind through a sacrificial death at Calvary) and ascends to sit at the right hand of the Father, the Holy Spirit will not be imparted to man.
Acts 2:2-4 (New King James Version)
2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
This filling of the Holy Spirit is a supernatural occurrence. If you try to consider this with a natural mind this will seem far fetched. I even have heard some say that the Baptism in the Holy Spirit does not occur today or is not relevant for our times. That type of thinking is exactly why the Church at large is in Apostasy. If you are not empowered by the Holy Spirit then you do not have the power and direction necessary to be a true witness for Jesus Christ. Notice I did not say you couldn’t get into Heaven. Heaven is available to all that believe the message of “Jesus Christ and him crucified”.
To lead other people unto righteousness you must have the Holy Spirit working or it becomes a work of man and not a work of God. Mans type of righteousness is corrupt and not accepted by God and never will be. However He has provided a way and we need to submit to this will and way. You will know this supernatural work that has occurred in your life when you speak in other tongues as the Spirit gives you utterance.
On a personal note, when I received the Holy Spirit (yes it’s true for today’s time) I was so overwhelmed by this supernatural experience that I called everyone I knew and told them about it. “It’s true, It’s true, God is real, Jesus is alive, this Holy Spirit thing is true”. I did that for two weeks and to date have never been the same. I was seeking and asking to receive the Holy Spirit for a few weeks before I actually received.
Acts 1:4-5 (New King James Version)
The Holy Spirit Promised
4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; 5 for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
This is a command not a suggestion even though we treat it that way in today’s time. Jesus told his followers before he ascended, that they should not do anything and wait for the promise of the Father (God). Do not try to help anybody without the helper to do it through you. Jesus goes on to give hope, you will get this gift not many days from now. With that last sentence his followers could have this hope I described earlier. They knew that Jesus did everything that he ever said, he was good for his word! They waited and they got their gift just as Jesus had promised and so will you.
Acts 1:8 (New King James Version)
8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
You need power to do the works “of God”. This power is just waiting to be given to you. If I can prove this to you in one sentence, would you believe to receive. Let me remind you that the Bible is 100% true and accurate and God always confirms HIS Word. Look at this with expectation and Joy…
Luke 11:13 (New King James Version)
13 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”
Think about this some. Remember from earlier posts that I showed you from the word that we all fall short of the glory of God and we need Jesus (the only acceptable sacrifice) to meet Gods standards continually. So in this fallen condition, if you know how to give good gifts to your children (Xbox, Wii, autos, college= physical) how much MORE, how much MORE, HOW MUCH MORE will God give us (spiritual). God has promised to GIVE the Holy Spirit to those who ASK him. Remember, God will not let His Word return void, He will do what he says in His Word every time.
Matthew 7:7-9 (New King James Version)
7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. 9 Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone?
If you look at my personal experience you will see that I really wanted this “power” to witness. I stayed up night after night reading about this supernatural experience that was available to all that ask. I asked other people in church about it. I listened to several cassettes of sermons on it (yes this was back when we had cassette tapes and no cd’s). I really wanted this gift and God delivered. I received just as He promised.
I said earlier that it took a couple weeks for me to receive, why? How bad do you really want something? If you really want something you will not stop until you get it. At times we are tested to see if our talk aligns with our true desires. I wanted my wife, I truly desired her and didn’t stop until I got her and it wasn’t easy.
Luke 4:14-18 (New King James Version)
Jesus Begins His Galilean Ministry
14 Then Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee, and news of Him went out through all the surrounding region. 15 And He taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all. 16 So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. 17 And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written:
18 “ The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
Again personally, I have layed hands on the sick and they have recovered. I have ministered to the broken hearted and they were healed. I have with clarity preached the acceptable year of the Lord to all who would listen and even to many who would not listen. I have casted out demons from people and set them free from all types of bondage’s.
All of these manifestations are a result of being directed and empowered by the same Spirit that Jesus had. Understand that man can not help man. What I am referring to is a change on the inside, an actual real change. Man can give you a hair cut or shave and change the outside, but this is temporal. In a couple weeks you look the same as you did before (on the inside you were the same the whole time no matter what someone did to the outside).
If you want to debate psychology (man helping man at its best) there is no internal change that comes from psychology. We are known as a coping society. We cope with our problems by medication, therapy, or just flat out suppression. Psychology works on the symptoms or results of the true problem but never eliminates the root. As long as the root is alive, the plant is going to grow again. God works from the inside out. God can and will pull the root out and give you a new existence if you believe in His sacrifice to justify you. Why put a band aid on your problem for you to just need another band aid. Get to the source and allow the true work of God to be done. Anyone yielding to the direction of the Holy Spirit will create miracles for others who believe. True changes of the heart will be done.
I was promised the Holy Spirit if I would just wait to witness and ask to receive. I believed this so much that my actions aligned and God did His part as expected.
Life will never be the same for you or the people around you if you just take this step of faith and ask God to give you the gift of the Holy Spirit. How will you know when you have received? With the evidence in speaking in other tongues. I have given you some background into this supernatural experience. What would help you now would be to find a church that teaches and speaks of these things as I have described. You can also on this site go to- blogroll and the link ”The Upper Room” find the sermon called “anointed“. This is a comprehensive teaching in this area and it is free, you can even download it and listen at your leisure…
Well, we have only scratched the surface of the Holy Spirit and there is a ton of enlightening things that will be presented to you in the upcoming posts. I pray that all who read these words are now “ready and willing to receive” the gift (costs nothing) God has for you. You will be able to make a real change in your community and in religious circles turn things upside down, just as Jesus did. Remember it is His Spirit and it will be His good works done in you and through you. Just ask him for it, He will be faithful and give it to you.
Much more to come…