The baptism in the Holy Spirit is a very important, in fact crucial, event in the life of a true believer in the Lord Jesus Christ.
As with so many, if not all, other teachings and testimonies of the Scriptures, there is horrible confusion concerning all aspects of this teaching. Wicked and ignorant men wrest the Scriptures to their own destruction; they either do not receive the Spirit of God at all, or they receive other spirits from the realm of darkness thinking they have received the Holy Spirit.
With the baptism in the Holy Spirit comes the baptism with fire.
The other spirits are counterfeit, of course. There is a false Holy Spirit, religious spirits who feign worship and praise, and spirits that seduce people into thinking they have drawn closer to God; these people are given various pleasurable feelings, emotions, and spurious gifts such as visions, tongues, prophecy, words of knowledge and wisdom, faith, healing, and miracles. All these gifts exist in the true, but they can also be counterfeited by the false.
Besides these counterfeits, many spirits come to bind, deceive, and destroy. People receive laughing, shaking, screaming, convulsing, divining, and many other kinds of spirits in various ways. One prominent way in which they receive these spirits is when praying to presumably receive the Holy Spirit or some gift of the Spirit. This prayer may be by the individual in private, but it can also involve the laying on of hands by others who have evil religious spirits themselves (spirits counterfeiting God, aspects of Him, or worshipping of Him) and who come in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The truth of the matter is that only rare few have the Spirit of Christ, and fewer still are granted by God to impart, through prayer or preaching, the gift of the Holy Spirit to others. It is a horrible day in which we live with all the religious confusion and counterfeiting. Only the sincere, earnest repentant toward God will prevail to receive the Holy Spirit.
Let the reader be forewarned: With the baptism in the Holy Spirit comes the baptism with fire. God is a consuming fire; He will begin to purge you, to deal with your sin nature until it is no longer in a state of opposition to Him. “Every man will be salted with fire,” said Jesus.
This is not a pleasure trip, but a path of suffering and sorrow. (Don’t be deceived by the counterfeit that promises otherwise.) When the Lord is done, however, you will rest and be very, very glad.
Let me clarify some things:
There is only one God, one Lord, one faith, one baptism. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God is the Spirit of Christ is the Spirit of the Son is the Spirit of the Father. There is no such thing as receiving the Spirit of Christ and then the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost and Jesus Christ are One and the Same Person. There is One God, manifest in three offices or roles, but not three persons.
Simply believing in one God, however, is no guarantee that one is in right standing with, or accepted of, God. As James says, “You believe that there is one God; you do well: the devils also believe, and tremble” (James 2:19). Satan also knows there is one God, not a trinity.
It is taught that one receives Jesus into his heart or life as Savior at conversion, and there is no more to receive. The logic goes, if you have the Lord Jesus Christ in you, what further need do you have of any other experience, if He is all there is? How true! The problem is that this truth is misapplied. I know of nobody who has come to a relationship with the Lord Jesus simply by accepting Him as Savior. That is a diabolical deception of the most insidious kind, because it gives the victim false hope and false security.
We are in no position to accept or reject Jesus as Savior as though we had authority of some kind. Who do we think we are?! Rather, we must acknowledge and submit to Jesus Christ as LORD, in everything, totally. Only then will He save us, that is, be our Savior (although it is impossible to submit to Him as Lord without His saving grace).
Many have been deceived by evangelists and preachers (some famous) into thinking they have begun a genuine new life in Christ, but they have only gone through a psychological change. Some have made rather impressive changes in lifestyle (to varying degrees); so have many people in other religions that don’t confess Christ. The point is that repentance from all sin and submitting to Jesus Christ as Lord are paramount. Such takes genuine faith, not merely an oral formula.
There are those who think they have experienced the filling of the Holy Ghost, when they have only experienced repentance. Repentance is a life-changing event in itself. At repentance, there is a significant, undeniable change in the life of one who repents. (I am giving the benefit of the doubt here to some who have experienced something.)
Before I experienced the Spirit baptism, I did not truly believe that I had already received the Holy Spirit, though repentance had dramatically changed my life in many ways. I was told I had the Spirit of Christ when I was converted, but the Lord quietly, gently urged me on in spite of those who tried to convince me otherwise, and He led me to receive His Spirit over a year and a half later.
The truly penitent will not be deceived into thinking they have more than they have; they will go on to receive the Spirit, knowing deep inside that there is more. I would suspect, therefore, that those who insist they have all, when clearly not having the Spirit, are not genuine penitents in the first place.
When one first repents or is converted, one does not immediately receive the Holy Spirit, contrary to men’s teachings.
The Bible is clear:
The disciples in the day of the Lord were repentant, but they were not baptized in the Holy Spirit until Pentecost. An argument one may give is that the Holy Spirit had not been given until Pentecost, so they could not receive.
So here is another example:
In Acts 8, Philip preached to the Samaritans who repented, believed, and were baptized in water. Devils came out of them, and they rejoiced. But Peter and John had to come down and lay hands on them that they might receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, “for as yet He [not ‘it’ as some refer to God] was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the Name of the Lord Jesus.”
There were clearly two spiritual events involved here for the Samaritans. First they experienced repentance, and later they received the Spirit. And as full of faith and the Holy Spirit as Philip was, it was not given that he should lay hands on the Samaritans to receive the Holy Spirit. Peter and John had to do so.
Already living a godly life in repentance, Cornelius received the Spirit.
In Acts 9, Saul confessed Jesus as Lord (not Savior), and three days later he received the Spirit by the laying on of hands by Ananias. Here again we see two separate events, one of repentance or conversion and the other of receiving the Spirit.
It is commonly argued that only apostles had the commission to lay hands on people to receive the Spirit, and that is why they did so with the Samaritans. But Ananias was not one of the apostles, at least not that we are told! So that argument against the validity of receiving the Spirit for today is false. This argument of gainsayers implies that if only apostles laid hands on people to receive the Spirit, there is no extra-conversion experience today (assuming there are no longer apostles – the Bible does not say there are not).
In Acts 10, Cornelius was described as a repentant man before receiving the Spirit. Many professing believers should be put to shame by his pre-Baptism conduct. Notice: “A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God always.”
He fasted, saw visions, addressed God as Lord, was commended by the angel of the Lord, was obedient by faith (thus sending men to Joppa immediately), reverenced a man of God (Peter), and was earnest in all the things of God. (For those who don’t think Cornelius was repentant, how would they measure up to him?) Already living a godly life in repentance, Cornelius received the Spirit. And it took the ministry of another in order for him to receive; he could not do it by himself.
In Acts 19, years after they repented, the Ephesian disciples received the Holy Spirit by the laying on of hands by Paul.
I demonstrate in the examples above that there is a second step of the spiritual walk in God, recorded by more than two or three witnesses in the Scriptures. (There is even a third step – read The Three Degrees and my testimony.)
It can be difficult for some to accept the fact that because they have not had the Spirit baptism, they do not have the Spirit. They may say, “I have the Spirit because I know I repented.” To this the Scriptures reply: The Spirit is WITH one (if that one has truly repented), but He comes to dwell WITHIN one, when he or she is baptized in the Holy Spirit (John 14:17).
There are some who say that at conversion (repentance), Christ comes to dwell IN one, and when baptized in the Holy Spirit, the Spirit comes UPON that one. Foolishness! If Christ is IN me, why must I also have Him ON or UPON me? Can He get any closer to me than when He is IN me?
The new birth and receiving the Spirit are one and the same.
There are also those who say that at conversion, we receive the Spirit of Christ, and in the baptism in the Holy Spirit, we receive the Holy Spirit, making a difference between the two. But I have already said there are not two.
It is also argued that the baptism in the Spirit is an anointing for special ministry. While it is an anointing in that God comes to make His abode in one, it is not an anointing for ministry, for the Scriptures point out that certain are anointed for ministry long after receiving the Spirit. Paul and Barnabas are examples (Acts 13:2-4).
Another example is where the seven men chosen to serve in the mundane had already been full of the Holy Spirit when the saints chose them (indeed, that was one of the qualifications for the choice), and the apostles laid hands on them for that ministry (Acts 6:1-6). Also, Paul instructed Timothy not to neglect the gift given him by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery (1 Timothy 4:14). Timothy was Paul’s son in the faith, born of the Spirit through Paul before being anointed for his calling (1 Timothy 1:2).
That now brings us to another term used for receiving the Spirit, a controversial one because of false doctrine prevalent today:
Timothy was BORN AGAIN as a son in the faith, that is, he was baptized in the Holy Spirit by the ministry of Paul (and later he was anointed by the presbytery for his ministry of evangelism). The new birth and receiving the Spirit are one and the same.
Jesus said, “That which is born of flesh is flesh; and that which is born of spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said to you, You must be born again” (John 3:6-7).
After I repented and received a new lease on life, I had some understanding in the things of God, unlike before, but I still could not see the Kingdom of God, and I did not enter into It until I received the Spirit.
What are the evidences of having received the Spirit? First of all, the Lord must reveal this. By outward appearance, one cannot tell. Fruits of repentance and a changed life confessing Jesus as Lord might lead some to believe one has the Spirit (and there is also the counterfeit to mimic the real). But under the discernment of God, here are indications:
There will be a genuine hunger for, and enjoyment of, the truth of Scripture. The Scriptures will come alive almost instantly to the one having received the Spirit. Revelations will come; the Bible will open to the reader, not necessarily in all things, but some or many.
Gifts will be manifest, as recorded in 1 Corinthians 12. These gifts must be judged by others (elders) as to whether they are of God or are counterfeit or emotional, imaginary things.
One will understand the things of the Spirit. As a new repentant, I knew the Law, but not the Spirit; I knew to hand out tracts and testify, but I was totally ignorant of being led by the Spirit. I was seduced or deceived by outward religious trappings and works, not having discernment. I couldn’t judge the things of the Spirit, and I, therefore, couldn’t tell false from true.
I was also overwhelmed by all that I thought I had to sift through to gather knowledge and truth. Where was I to look? With only one lifetime and part of one at that, which of the millions of books should I read, when, where, how? And of them, what was I to believe with thousands of voices contradicting one another in the Name of Truth? Calvin or Armenius? Luther or Zwingli? Billy Graham or Jimmy Swaggart? The Pentecostals or the Baptists?
I began to discern between good and evil, between religious and real.
Then I was baptized in the Holy Spirit. That did it! I was free, free, free! Knowledge of the truth was within. As it says:
“But you have an unction from the Holy One, and you know all things” (1 John 2:20).
“But the anointing which you have received of Him abides in you, and you need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teaches you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it has taught you, you shall abide in Him” (1 John 2:27).
I threw out all books except the Bible, and from then on I spent hours and hours in It. I began to discern between good and evil, between religious and real, between the works of darkness in Jesus’ Name and the work of God, between the works of men and the work of God, between what the Bible really says and what men say It says, between the doctrines of devils and the doctrine of Christ. The Lord revealed to me the leaven of the Pharisees spread everywhere in “Christendom.”
One will hear the Voice of God! When I received the Spirit, I heard Him personally speak to me. He wasn’t speaking to “my heart” as wishful professors of faith would put it. He was speaking to me! It wasn’t just impressions or feelings. It was, “Thus says the Lord”! He wasn’t just quickening certain Scripture verses to me, though there was that as well, He was speaking to me directly and personally. He also spoke to me by others from time to time as He chose, through prophecy, visions, tongues, word of knowledge, and word of wisdom. In short, the Lord became real.
The Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of God. He bears witness of us to others and others to us, that is, to those who are His.
The children of God are led by the Spirit of God. The Lord was now leading us, and we knew it. He led us both consciously and unconsciously, but mostly the latter. Often we would be unaware until after the fact, when events or revelation occurred demonstrating His having led us along. Now, 34 years later, we know God is sovereign and leading.
I know those who have the Spirit and those who don’t. I know those who are His and those who aren’t by whether they hear me or not, by whether they understand me in the basics of the things of God or not.
“They are of the world, therefore speak they of the world, and the world hears them. We are of God. He who knows God hears us. The one who is not of God does not hear us. From this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error” (1 John 4:5-6).
John quoted Jesus:
“Why do you not understand My speech? Even because you cannot hear My Word… and because I tell you the truth, you don’t believe Me…. He that is of God hears God’s words: you therefore don’t hear them because you are not of God” (John 8:43-47).
John also said:
“By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God; and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the antiChrist you heard is coming, and even now is already in the world” (1 John 4:2-3).
If people receive me in the Lord, I know they are of God, because I come in His Name, speaking according to His will. If they do not discern the Lord’s Body, if they do not say, “Blessed is he that comes in the Name of the Lord,” they are not of God. It’s that simple.
Jesus said, “You shall know them by their fruits.”
Here is something the false use as an ornamented, padded (ever so thinly) club to beat and discredit the true. They expect the true to appear the same as the false with which they are familiar. In Galatians, we read that the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance. The harlot church (formal man-made religion) loves particularly the first word, “love.” In Proverbs 7:18, Mystery, Babylon the Great, the harlot, the strange woman, says, “Come, let us take our fill of love.” Hollywood preaches its concept of love. The world loves its own, Jesus said.
See our section, False Love – Satan’s Last Stronghold.
The love seen in nominal Christendom is the love of the world (its kind of love). Smiles are cheap, handshakes easy, flatteries enjoyable to both giver and receiver; quoting Scripture and witnessing bring awe and respect, hopefully reward. Saying, “I love Jesus,” is impressive. But Jesus says, “He that has My Commandments and keeps Them, he it is that loves Me” (John 14:21). One who truly loves Jesus does not go around saying, “I love Jesus.” He doesn’t because it would be boastful; one who loves Him will not boast of himself.
Who has the fruit of the Spirit? One will know them only by the Spirit.
Jesus is called the Prince of peace; but could one tell that of the One described as a Man of sorrows, acquainted with grief, from Whom men hid their faces (Isaiah 53:1-5)? Seldom is there mention of Jesus rejoicing, but many times angry, frustrated, weeping. Did He not have joy? Reader, the life of the saint is hid in Christ – the fruit of the Spirit hidden to the carnal eye; but the harlot displays the carnal, claiming it to be the true; she deceives the simple and ignorant.
But tell us, you who deem yourselves to have the fruit of the Spirit and to be able to see it in others: Do you keep the Commandments in a way the rich young ruler could not? Is there Truth in you? You quote Galatians 5:22-23, but what about Ephesians 5:9-10? “For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth: proving what is acceptable,” not to man, but “unto the Lord.” Read carefully and repeatedly Ephesians 5:1-18, and know that the “wine” is that which the harlot gives. Who has the fruit of the Spirit? One will know them only by the Spirit, and not by appearance.
For those who have been able to put away their pet doctrines, preconceived ideas, and prejudices while reading what has been written here so far, we come to this most important question: HOW DO I RECEIVE THE SPIRIT OF GOD? or HOW CAN I BE BORN AGAIN? Notice Jesus never gave specific instructions to Nicodemus. I believe this is so because the question is not really the right one. Rather it should be, WILL GOD BE PLEASED TO GIVE ME HIS HOLY SPIRIT?
If so, the “how” will be put in place by Him, as it was in the cases described in Acts. His are the timing, place, and instrumentality. He is sovereign. It is God Who reigns and determines all things, working all things according to the counsel of His own will.
I will, nevertheless, point out some crucial conditions that must be present for one to receive His Spirit. There is no formula but a right heart. Here are those conditions as put forth in Scripture, which will guarantee receiving the Spirit of God. When my wife and I received, we prayed through conditions put forth by R. A. Torrey in a booklet called “The Baptism with the Holy Spirit.”
Here they are:
Repent. Turn from all sin. The first word of command in the gospels is, “Repent.” Acknowledge every sin and confess it, whether a sin committed, an action omitted, a sin of attitude, word, deed, desire, or thought.
Restitution must be made in full to the reasonable satisfaction of the one wronged. Apology is not enough in many cases. What about their loss of goods, peace of mind, freedom, or general well-being? By the Law, God commanded that in some cases fourfold was to be returned as compensation. How far above the laws of men are the Laws of God! If you hope to receive God, you better prepare yourself for His holy Laws.
Confess. It is not enough to whisper it to God. If your sins have been public, then the repentance and confession ought to be public. If you unduly embarrassed someone publicly without cause, you must make it right publicly, voluntarily. Confess other sins to a man of God, as they confessed sins to John the Baptist or to appropriate persons. If you have hidden adultery in your heart from your wife, you must confess it to her – specifically.
Confession of sin must always be specific – none of this, “I’ve been dishonest,” stuff. How were you dishonest, why, with whom, in what, when, and where? Get real, get right. You will not deceive God; you cannot satisfy a Holy, Perfect God with half-heartedness or hypocrisy. You will only disgust Him and possibly bring wrath rather than good.
Forgive. You must forgive others their offenses against you, or you will not be forgiven your offenses, all of which are against God as well as neighbor.
Turn to the Lord Jesus Christ. Have not some in the world quit smoking or drinking or swearing? Have not some gotten straight after prison or fines? Have not some had impressive changes in lifestyle for the better upon changing religions or becoming religious other than believing in Christ? Certainly! But if it is the Spirit of God indwelling you that you are after, it must be to the Lord Jesus Christ you turn in your repentance. Jesus Christ alone is Lord of lords, Savior, God Himself. He alone laid down His life for us and took it up again so that He as God would come and dwell within those who receive Him – not only as Savior, but as Lord.
When we submit to Him as Lord, He saves us. This notion of “accepting” Jesus as personal Saviour is diabolical heresy. It is delusion fostering false security and false belief. The first thing Saul said at conversion was not, “Jesus, I accept you as Savior into my heart,” but, “Who are You, Lord?” and, “Lord, what will You have me to do?”
The first statement says, “Jesus, my will be done. I want to get.” The latter statements say, “Lord Jesus, Your will be done; I submit to You; I fear You; my life is no longer my own but Yours.” The former appears to be somewhat like the latter, but it is not. The former statement is the fruit of a religious, self-righteous rebel who takes upon himself the Name of the Lord in vain, drinking damnation to himself and becoming a vessel for others to drink from to the same end. They become blaspheming children of hell, evil in false virtue. It boils down to motive, and God sees the heart.
So, for one to receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit, one must first submit to the Lord Jesus Christ in repentance, and not in a delusional “accepting” of Him as Savior.
Identify with the Lord Jesus Christ.
Whereas we have learned that water baptism is no longer necessary in this great Day of the Lord, just as circumcision and other practices and rites came to an end in other ages, that which water immersion symbolizes is not only necessary, but is a work of the Lord in the soul of a believer. All believers come to say, “Where You go I go, even to death if this must be.” And it must be, one way or another. We must all die to follow Him.
We must be prepared to do whatever is required of us. We can no longer entertain the silly notion that our lives are ours. Even before believing, they never were. All things are His, period. We must accept this completely. We must forsake all that stands between us and the Lord.
Upon committing to the Lord, the world, the devil, and your own self will immediately oppose the move. Your family will turn against you, as will friends and other religious associations, including your church. You will be very surprised to find that those who profess Christ will become your enemies. You will discover how few friends you really had, and that nothing is as it appears. Are you prepared for that?
It is not only sin that must be put away, but good things must be left behind – mother, father, wife, children, brothers, sisters, friends, lands, houses, dreams, aspirations, riches, entitlements, and vocations. Everything must be forsaken. Paul said he lost everything and counted it garbage for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus, his Lord.
There is the wicked notion that Jesus did it all for us, and all we must do is believe it. Yet the Bible clearly teaches that we must follow Him outside the city, without the gate; we must forsake all, not only in theory or intellectual assent, but in actuality. We are called to take up the cross and die to ourselves, meaning we no longer live to please ourselves and do what is convenient for us.
Be prepared to suffer persecution.
“All those who live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution” (2 Timothy 3:12).
Almost every professing “believer” suffers no loss or persecution. There is only one reason for that. They do not have the life they profess to have in Christ. For the most part, though some aspects may change, they continue with their lives as usual, with families, friends, jobs, clubs, and entertainments of all sorts. Even their churches remain quite comfortable in this world.
“Whoever desires to save his life shall lose it, and whoever desires to lose his life for My sake shall find it” (Matthew 16:25).
Is there anything in your life, as good as it may be, that is more important to you than God? Honestly? If so, you will not be baptized in His Holy Spirit. What fellowship does God have with idols?
Have intense desire.
God spews the lukewarm from His mouth; the half-hearted He does not honor. “You shall seek Me and find Me if you search for Me with all your heart,” says God by Jeremiah. That law is absolute, no exceptions.
The widow seeking redress would have failed had she not persisted in all earnestness (Luke 18:1-8). So with all of us for whom the parable was told. Count the cost and be prepared to pay, because pay you will. This is not an invitation to a picnic, but to your cross and grave. Beyond these, however, is the resurrection and glory, a sure reward for all who overcome unto the end.
“You have not because you ask not,” said James (4:2).
Jesus said, “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?” (Luke 11:13)
By our hearts and not by our lips do we ask. I have known of some who asked for the Holy Spirit, but they received either nothing or devils instead. While some appear to ask for something good, they are really asking for something evil.
An American preacher came and preached “healing and salvation” once in Winnipeg. A friend of mine went and saw this preacher pray for a person’s legs to be evened out while that person sat in a chair with one leg extended farther than the other. The short leg appeared to grow to be of equal length to the other. While my friend marveled at this, the preacher asked him if he would like to be able to do something like that. (Doesn’t that remind you of Simon in Acts 8 without the money element? Except that this preacher, unlike Peter, was quite willing to sell his powers in that he took up collections.)
One asks with the heart, and the heart is what is answered.
My friend jumped at the prospect; the preacher laid hands on him and prayed that he would be filled with the Holy Spirit. My friend was “slain in the Spirit”; he fell to the floor and rolled around in ecstasy for what was, or seemed like, hours. He spoke of overflowing with love for everyone, full of joy and peace.
After this, dear readers, he was Satan’s man for keeps. He had sold his soul to the Devil in very real terms. He was not seeking the Lord Jesus Christ, but power, glory, and fame (as Judas had sought), which he surmised this preacher possessed. He spoke of and praised Jesus (yes, Satan’s men praise Jesus, and loudly, too, with smiles and uplifted hands – did Jesus not say, “In vain, do they worship Me with their lips but their hearts are far from Me”?).
He prayed in tongues, prophesied, and laid hands on people to be healed and delivered from devils. He pastored a church and travelled with other preachers, preaching with them. But he was Satan’s man, lock, stock, and barrel, fiercely opposing the Lord Jesus Christ while appearing to love and serve Him. One asks with the heart, and the heart is what is answered.
“If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?” (Luke 11:13)
In 1 John 5:14-15 we read, “And this is the confidence we have in Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us: And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of Him.”
Jesus said, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”
All things of God are through faith. Without faith it is impossible to please Him. Those who seek signs will receive signs, but not from God, Who gives no signs but the one of which He spoke. Other signs are from the devil, for the wicked.
Is tongues the sign of having received the Spirit?
There are those who teach that the gift of tongues is the sign of having received the Spirit of God. Not so. While tongues are recorded as being manifest at Pentecost for the 120, with Cornelius and his household when they received the Spirit, and with the Ephesian disciples in Acts 19, tongues are not recorded for the 3,000 in Acts 2, with Saul (Paul) when he received the Spirit by Ananias, or with the Samaritans in Acts 8 when they believed by Philip and received the Spirit by Peter and John.
Not only were tongues mentioned when the Ephesians received, in Acts 19, but also prophecy. When Pentecost occurred, Peter bore witness to the event as having been prophesied of by Joel; while Joel mentioned dreams, visions, and prophecy (all tokens of the outpouring of the Spirit), he did not mention tongues. If tongues were the sign of the outpouring of the Spirit of God, one would expect he would have done so.
I do not say a believer will never speak in tongues. Sooner or later, all those baptized with the Holy Spirit will pray or speak in tongues, and all the other gifts will be manifest as the Spirit wills. But Paul says that the gift of tongues is the least of all gifts. Why would God then choose tongues as the seal of authenticity, and not a more important gift?
Endure to the End
Paul said, “Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His” (Romans 8:9).
You may therefore conclude that I say that if one is not baptized in the Holy Spirit, that one is not saved or is not Christ’s. True! If a believer does not go on to receive the Spirit, any belief or repentance up to then is of little value. Of little value, I say, because there is value in putting away the cigarette and the bottle even if one does not get saved. “But he who goes through to the end will get salvation” (Matthew 24:13 BBE).
Repentance is the very first step to salvation, an absolute prerequisite to receiving the Spirit. It says that God gives the Holy Spirit (that is, He imparts Himself or commits Himself) to them who obey Him (Acts 5:32). The disciples did not have His Spirit before Christ’s resurrection. Were they therefore none of His? Yes and no. If they had turned away and not received the Spirit as with Judas and the seventy and others, they would have been none of His. They had to go on.
But the disciples were chosen – they repented, and they obeyed in belief. Others believed, but their belief was in vain. Read John 2:23-24; 7:2-10; 7:31; 8:30-59; 12:42-43; Acts 8:13-23; 1 Corinthians 15:2.
By these Scriptural testimonies, one can see that belief is not as simple as imposters make it out to be, beguiling silly souls. Salvation begins with repentance, but one is not saved unless one receives the Spirit of Christ and proceeds from there to the end.
The world is flooded with the works of men in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and all are abomination to Him. All who partake of those works will suffer, unless they repent and are delivered. The wrath of God is on all church organizations, services, building projects, crusades, and religious activities presuming to serve Him. Read Counterfeit Christianity, The True Marks of a Cult, and Mystery’s Message.
Do not assume that your interpretation of what I say here is correct. In many cases, it surely will not be. It takes revelation of God and dialogue with one who understands to understand even simple statements.
It is God Who does the work.
“For it is God Who works in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure” (Philippians 2:13 MKJV).
He calls and chooses. May His will and not ours be done. Amen!
* The baptism in the Holy Spirit or the new birth is referred to in the Scriptures as “the Promise of the Father” (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:4), “the Holy Spirit coming upon” (Acts 1:8; 19:6), “filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:4), “the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38), “receiving the Holy Spirit” (Acts 8:15-17), “the Holy Spirit falling upon” (Acts 10:44), and “the Spirit baptizing (immersing, including) one into the Body of Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:13).
What this ordinance meant when introduced, and how it is no longer important, having a parallel with physical circumcision in its symbolism and what has come for those who believe: “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything, but a new creation” (Galatians 6:15 EMTV).
We received this note in response to How the Lord Exposed Billy Graham: While I respect your difference of opinion about the gifts of the Spirit and their application today, I cannot subscribe to teachings that would take these differences and create division within the Body of Christ. This is not a salvation issue.
My experience with water baptism, and what the Lord has taught me about it through His understanding.