Baptism of the Holy Spirit
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Among all the works of the Holy Spirit which are in connection to the believer’s salvation, baptism is the most difficult area to present. In most of the cases people will misunderstand it especially when it comes to the writers who have different opinions. The confusion in treatment of the said doctrine is as a result of several factors. One cause of the disagreement is lack of apprehending distinctive ways of church. Most of the theologians view the church as a common group of the saints who are of all the ages. Others continue to add even the unsaved people. This kind of ministry does not find its foot in the Old Testament neither is it found in millennium prophesies.
Other Christian groups are currently teaching that the time a believer gets saved, he or she will have receive the Baptism of Holy Spirit and the phenomena of talking in tongues. The Charismatic and the Pentecostals will explain that the feeling comes when an individual prays for Holy Spirit baptism. This becomes very much emotional and a person feels as if the Holy Spirit is in the midst. The signs or evidence that the person is filled with the Holy Spirit is authenticated when the said person starts to speak in tongues. Other people will continue and say that the whole thing confirms the salvation.
The presence of Holy Spirit may be felt as warmth or feeling a powerful presence which is silent enfolding a person. One may feel as if he or she has been touched by electric current. However, even one does not feel anything, he or she is advised to rest quietly and have the confidence that Holy Spirit is coming to you and will put in you a new language to pray with and then praise God.
More over a person who is baptized with the Holy Spirit has all the power of God in his soul and also the power with the Father and man. The moment the Holy Spirit takes us to be His instruments, a certain power convicts men to be able to see the true reality in making a choice to serve Jesus Christ.
In summary, there are two Holy Spirit ministries advocated by the bible, one is the baptism of the believer by Holy Spirit, second one is the filling of Holy Spirit where a person is controlled by Holy Spirit in his or her daily life.
What The Bible states about Baptism of Holy spirit
Baptism in the Holy spirit has been mentioned seven times in the Bible. Baptism is defined as an act done publicly when a believer identifies with Christ. John the Baptist was baptized as a way of publicly declaring the need to repent for sins. His message was,
“Repent for the Kingdom of God is at hand.” (Matt. 3:2, 11)
The Jews were informed that there was another person coming who is greater than John and John was just preparing a path. Those who believed looked forward to the birth of the Messiah. They were ready for the water baptism awaiting or preparing for Messiah. John’s baptism was different from the one practiced earlier in church. He rebuked them as they had no true repentance.
Peter also talks of baptism and tells people to repent and be baptized in the name of the Lord and they would receive the Holy Spirit’s gift (Acts 2:38). He had been preaching and telling his people that Jesus is the Messiah and he urged them to repent and be baptized. Those who were able to repent were baptized with water, received Christ and the Holy Spirit’s gifts. They were also added to the Church.
Baptism of Holy Spirit is God’s act where the believer becomes indwelt by Holy Spirit. This identifies the believer as a Body of Christ member, who has a new nature. He also becomes a Christian whose life becomes changed.
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”(2 Corinthians 5:17).
John the Baptist confirmed to people that the Messiah who would be baptizing people with Holy Spirit actually was Jesus. His evidence was God’s Spirit that he saw descending onto Jesus as he was baptized and God Himself proclaimed to him that this was none other than the Messiah (John 1: 33-34).
Jesus also promised His disciples that they were to receive Holy Spirit’s baptism. This happened on the Pentecost’s Day and they received the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:5). He also told them in John 14:16-17 that when He is gone, he would send them a comforter who is Holy Spirit. He said to them that the comforter was to be with them for ever.
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When Paul went to Ephesus, he met the disciples of John and asked them whether they had received Holy Spirit’s baptism. They said they did not know about it. He therefore told them about Christ and they baptized in Holy Spirit (Acts 19 1-7). This was the last time the Scriptures have recorded of people receiving Holy Spirit. Verse 8 of the same talks of Paul in Jewish Synagogue where he preached the gospel of Christ in three months. Most of the Jews rejected the message of Jesus being Messiah but Paul continued to in Tyrannus in two years to ensure that the entire Asia received the gospel of Christ. The believers received Holy Spirit’s Baptism, they left the synagogue and started meeting. Because of the events and the miracles done by Paul, many people believed and God’s word grew (Acts 11:20).
It is true to say that the Gospel brings to us the good news of God making a good way of our salvation through the very life, death as well as the resurrection of Jesus Christ. This is because the desire of our Father is to see every person is saved.
Baptism with Holy Spirit is a very unique work of Holy Spirit during conversion. Through this, people who believe are able to identify with Christ and put Him as their Head. This was prophesied by John the Baptist and Jesus Himself in Acts 1:5. The fulfillment happened in Acts while doctrinal explanation is in the epistles.People sometimes interprets baptism with Holy Spirit wrongly leading to a lot of confusion among the believers. This may make a person to be unable to fully recognize a new position in Jesus. This may lead to people failing to get salvation taught in the Good news. It is therefore important for the believers to recognize that God has done great things not once but many times. The justification is not necessarily be the total salvation, but the fullness of the salvation of God at any time for a sinner who is able to repent and reconcile with Jesus Christ.
When a person gets to repent his or her sins, and put faith in the Death and resurrection of Jesus Christ as the only hope for eternal life, he or she will have been relieved a burden and have great joy.
For one to be filled with the Holy Spirit, the following steps could be used as guide; One, prepare the heart by repenting all your sins, ask Jesus Christ to baptize you in Holy Spirit, be ready to receive Him, thank the Lord in prayer and step to new boldness. Jesus wants you to tell others about him and He will give you courage.
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