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Some Christian groups today are teaching that after a believer has been saved, they have an experience in which they receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit accompanied by the “speaking in tongues” phenomena. Don Basham, a leading Charismatic writer, says that this:
". . . Experience is a second encounter with God (the first is conversion) in which the Christian begins to receive the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit into his life."
Charismatics and Pentecostals teach that this experience usually comes when one prays for the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. It is a very emotional experience in which the person "feels" the presence of the Holy Spirit. The evidence or sign that a person has received the Holy Spirit is said to be authenticated by that person speaking in tongues.
"His (the Holy Spirit) presence may come as a warmth enveloping you, or as a silent powerful Presence enfolding you. You may experience a tingling sensation or a gentle vibration as if touched by an electric current. But even if you feel nothing, rest quietly in the confidence that the Holy Spirit is now coming upon you in power and is about to furnish you with a new language of prayer and praise to God." (Don Basham, A Handbook on Holy Spirit Baptistm, Monroeville, Penn.:Whitker Books, 1969. p.10 )
After having this experience “they are then empowered” by the Holy Spirit. Basham further states: "The average Christian, although truly professing Christ, operates largely on his own power, making his own decisions, living by his own strength, and controlling his own life. But through the baptism of the Holy Spirit the Christian steps out of this natural realm into a realm where he can begin to experience the supernatural gifts and powers of God's Holy Spirit."
It often comes when other Charismatics, who have had the experience, lay hands on the person seeking the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. Often with the laying on of hands there is a great deal of coaching in which the person is told to make verbal sounds which is supposed to help the person begin to speak in tongues. They teach that when one receives the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, they will speak in tongues and which is the “evidence” that they have received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
In summary, this teaching says that the Baptism of the Holy Spirit does not necessarily happen when a person is saved. It is called a "second blessing" in which a believer is empowered by the Holy Spirit and that: “receiving the Baptism of the Holy Spirit is always accompanied by speaking in tongues”.
In this article it will be shown that the teachings of the Charismatic and Pentecostal Movement are false and not taught by the Word of God. The Bible teaches about two ministries of the Holy Spirit: the first is the Baptism or Indwelling of the new believer by the Holy Spirit, and the second is the Filling of the Holy Spirit. These are two different and distinct ministries.
The Baptism of the Holy Spirit occurs, according to the Bible, at the time of salvation. The term Baptism of the Holy Spirit refers to the indwelling of the believer by the Holy Spirit. God the Holy Spirit comes into the believer and gives him a new nature. The Filling of the Holy Spirit, is different from the Baptism of the Spirit. It also will occur simultaneously when one is saved and indwelt by the Holy Spirit. However, the Filling of the Spirit can happen often in the believer's life or it can be continuous if the believer obeys God, fights sin and allows the Holy Spirit to control him. However, the born again believer can disobey God, fall into sin or simply into a state of apathy towards the things of God, and thus lose the Filling of the Holy Spirit; but the child of God can never lose the Baptism or Indwelling of the Holy Spirit. God's Spirit is always present in the believer's life. The Bible teaches there is only one Baptism of the Holy Spirit, but there can be many Fillings of the Spirit.
The Baptism of the Holy Spirit is mentioned only seven times in the New Testament. To understand the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, one must understand the word Baptism. Baptism, in the Bible, is a public act of a believer identifying themselves with Christ. The first mention of Baptism in the Bible is of John the Baptist's baptism. John's Baptism was a sign of one publicly acknowledging their need of repentance for sin. John's message was, "repent for the Kingdom of God is at hand." (Matt.3:2, 11) The Jews who were looking for the coming Messiah, were told that there was one coming greater than John and that he was preparing the way (verse 3). The Jews, who were believers and looking for the coming of their Messiah, believed John's message that the Kingdom was at hand. They submitted to baptism as a public demonstration of their repentance, in preparation for the coming Messiah.
John's baptism was not the same as the baptism practiced later in the church. Some Pharisees and Sadducees coming to be baptized were rebuked by John the Baptist. He rebuked them because they came without truly repenting. He refused to baptize them and told them first to "bring forth fruits meet for repentance." (Matt. 3:7-9) because John's baptism was a public declaration of one's belief in God. Those coming to his baptism, did so in faith looking forward to the coming of the Messiah. It must be understood that John's baptism did not impart any power or supernatural gift. Only those who were believers and showed evidence of their repentance and faith in the Messiah were baptized. It was a public demonstration of their faith.
Water Baptism in the church, identifies one publicly as a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, and with Christ's death, burial and resurrection.
"Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life." (Romans 6:3-4)
Further, one is identifying with others who are saved by joining the local church. Acts 2:38, says, "Then Peter said to them, Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit." Peter had just preached unto them Christ, proclaiming that Jesus was the Messiah. This was the invitation. Peter urged them to repent of their sins. He continues by telling them to also be baptized because they repented. He says if they receive Christ, they would receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Verse 41 records that they who received Christ were baptized the same day. Verse 47, adds that those who received Christ were "added to the church."
The record is that those who were saved, repented of their sins, received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit when they were saved and then were baptized by being immersed in water, and became members of the local church.
The Baptism of the Holy Spirit is an act of God whereby the believer is indwelt by the Holy Spirit. The presence of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer identifies him as a member of the Body of Christ, having been indwelt by the Holy Spirit and having the New Nature. Publicly the believer's changed life identifies him as Christian. "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)
Israel is never mentioned in Scripture as the "Body of Christ." Believers in the Old Testament were not permanently indwelt by the Holy Spirit as are believers in the Church Age, or New Testament era.
1. Matthew 3:11. "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:" John the Baptist, was promising that when the Messiah came He would baptize them with the Holy Spirit. It was a promise of the indwelling of the Spirit of God. This was confirmed by Peter in Acts 11:16 when Cornelius, the centurion, received the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
“Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.” (Acts 11:16)
2. Mark 1:8, Luke 3:16. These are parallel references to Matthew 3:11.
3. John 1:33-34. "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.'” And I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God." This was John's confirmation, that the One who was the Messiah, and who would baptize with the Holy Spirit was Jesus. John the Baptist's evidence was that he saw the Spirit of God descend on Jesus, and then God told him this was the Messiah.
4. Acts 1:5. "For John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now." Jesus promised his disciples they would receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. This is what happened on the Day of Pentecost. The disciples of Christ received the Baptist of the Holy Spirit. In John 14:16-17. Jesus told His disciples about His sending of the Holy Spirit (Comforter): "And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you." (John 14:16-17)
Note that Christ said the Comforter would abide with them, that He would indwell them, and be in them. This is the first mention of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. Jesus was explaining to His disciples that after He returned to Heaven, the Spirit would continue to abide in and with them. In John 16:7-14 Jesus later explained more of the ministry of the Holy Spirit.
5. Acts 11:16. "Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit." Acts 10, records that there was a Roman centurion named Cornelius who was a devout man who feared God. He was a Jewish proselyte to Judaism. God sent an angel to Cornelius and instructed him to send for Peter who was in Joppa. The angel told him that Peter would tell him what he should do? Evidently Cornelius was praying about questions he had about God. Peter at the same time receives a vision from God that prepared him for Cornelius's visit. Peter a devout Jew would not normally even enter a Gentile’s house. God told Peter, in the vision, to eat animals that the Mosaic law declared to be unclean. When Peter refused, God told him not to call common what God declared to be clean. (Acts 10:14) As the vision ended the men Cornelius had sent to fetch Peter stood knocking on his door. They related how the angel had appeared to their master Cornelius and beckoned him to go with him. Peter went and preached Christ to Cornelius. (Acts 10:23-43) Verse 44 says they received the Holy Spirit and afterwards received water baptism. What happened to Cornelius, and those in his home who believed, was identical to what happened on the day of Pentecost to the Jewish disciples in Jerusalem. Peter says that the receiving of the Holy Spirit was what John the Baptist had prophesied. (Acts 11:15-16) Acts 11:18, records that this was a sign to the Jews in Jerusalem that, "Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.”
6. Acts 19:1-7, records that Paul came to Ephesus and encountered twelve disciples of John the Baptist. He asked them if they had received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. They replied that they had no knowledge of anything about the Holy Spirit. Paul told them about Christ and they also received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. This is the third and final time that the Bible records anyone receiving the Holy Spirit, in the manner it was received at Pentecost. It is important to note that verse 8 says that Paul then went to the Jewish synagogue and preached Christ there for three months. Many of the Jews in the synagogue rejected the Gospel message of Jesus being the Messiah. Paul, however, continued to preach in the school of Tyrannus for two years, so that all in Asia heard the Gospel (Acts 19:9-10).
This account says that these believers received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. These believers left the synagogue and began meeting together. It states that because of these events, including miracles performed by the Apostle Paul, that many believed and the Word of God grew mightily and prevailed (Acts 11:20).
It should be understood that in each of the three accounts of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit coming upon believers in the Book of Acts the local church was in view. In each case, those who received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit were believers. It must be noted that although they feared God, as the Old Testament saints did, they did not have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. They were not, at that time, New Testament believers. They did not know that Jesus was the Messiah; this had to be explained to them. After they heard that Jesus was the Christ, they believed in Him and received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. Understanding that the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit was a new phenomenon given only to the bride of Christ (the church) sheds great light on these events.
Old Testament believers were not indwelt by the Holy Spirit on a permanent basis. During the period of the Old Testament only one man was said to have been indwelt by the Holy Spirit all of his life. That man was David. "Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward." (1 Samuel 16:13) The Old Testament records that the Spirit of God came upon Othniel, Gideon, Jephthah, Samson, Samuel, King Saul, Amasai, Azariah, and Zechariah. (See Num. 24:2, Judges 3:10, 6:34, 11:29, 14:19, I Sam. 10:10, 11:6, 18:10, I Chron. 12:18, II Chron. 15:1, 24:20) In each case, it was not a permanent indwelling, but rather a temporary one, intended for a particular service for God.
In Acts 2:16-18, Peter says that new permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit was prophesied by the Prophet Joel. (Joel 2:28) Pentecost signaled the beginning of the church, the bride of Christ. In Acts 1:4, Jesus told His disciples to wait for the "promise of the Father." Jesus says in Verse 5, that the promise is the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. They waited fifty days until the Day of Pentecost and then all received the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. They became “charter members” of the newborn church. Until the Day of Pentecost Jesus’ disciples were not indwelled permanently by the Holy Spirit. After they received the Holy Spirit, they were told, "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." (Acts 1:8)
7. Galatians 3:26-27. "For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ."
Paul says that all who have been baptized by the Holy Spirit have “put on Christ”. This is a key verse because Paul is saying that those who by faith have trusted the Lord Jesus have been "put on" (or "clothed") with Christ. The believer is clothed with Christ! This reference is not to water baptism, but to Spirit Baptism in which one is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, and given an eternal living union with Christ (1 Cor. 12:13). The Word of God tells us that the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ. "And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, Abba, Father!" (Gal. 4:6) Paul is saying that every son of God has the Holy Spirit, which is the Spirit of Jesus, in our hearts.
It is important to understand that nowhere in Scripture is the believer told to be baptized with the Holy Spirit. I Cor 12:13, says "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body". One who is saved, at salvation, is regenerated by the Holy Spirit, and indwelled and put into the body of Christ. Ephesians 4:4-5, "There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling, One Lord, one faith, one baptism." There is only one Baptism of the Holy Spirit, and it is automatically received by all who by faith trust in the Lord Jesus and are saved. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit, is the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit which is given to all Christians. Ephesians 1:13 says that a person, after hearing the Gospel, and having believed they were saved, were "sealed" with the Holy Spirit which had been promised. Verse 18 says that those who had been saved, had their understanding enlightened, and that they "know what is the hope of his calling". Verse 19 says that the believer has great power.
The major doctrine that the Pentecostals and Charismatics do not understand is the dispensational truth that: we are not in Old Testament times, but rather, we live in a different dispensation of God's dealing with men. The period of the Gospels and the early church was a transitional time of the Jews rejecting the Savior, and the Gospel going to the Gentiles. There was no New Testament, which addresses God's instructions for this age. Further the Jews were looking for signs to authenticate God's presence and work (1 Cor. 1:22).
Even after God graciously gave them signs which accompanied the preaching of the Word, and fulfilled Old Testament prophecies concerning the coming of the Messiah, they still rejected Jesus. Because the Jews rejected their Messiah, God temporarily withdrew the offer of the Kingdom, meaning the Millennium, when Israel will be restored and Christ will reign for a 1000 years from Jerusalem. With the Jews off the scene and the Gospel going to the Gentiles there was no need of the sign gifts any more. Gentiles seek after wisdom (not signs) meaning the study of the Bible and the Word of God (1 Cor. 1:22).
God gave the sign gifts to the early church because they were Jews. In fact the early church was 100% Jewish, except for Cornelius, until Acts 11 with the establishment of the Jewish-Gentile church at Antioch. All this time from 33 AD until 70 AD, when Jerusalem was destroyed, the sign gifts were valid to authenticate that the Apostles were speaking for God and had his Spirit directing them. But the Jews rejected Christ and the Gospel went to the Gentiles through the ministry of the Apostle Paul. After 70 AD the Jews had no nation, God had destroyed Jerusalem and scattered the Jewish people to the four winds. The sign gifts then ceased as 1 Corinthians 13:8f said they would because the Jews were no longer in view in this dispensation and most of the New Testament was written, that is, “that which is perfect is come" meaning the written word of God. (1 Cor. 13:10).
Jesus told the Pharisee Nicodemus, "Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." (John 3:3) In Verse 5, Jesus further explained that, ". . . Unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God." There can be no mistake that Jesus was saying a person, in order to be saved, must be born again of the Holy Spirit. These verses do not say that being born of the Spirit and the Baptism of the Holy Spirit are the same. However, in verse 6, Jesus said that, "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." He is saying what the Holy Spirit produces is Spirit.
John explained that the Jesus spoke of the coming indwelling of the Holy Spirit in John 7:33-38; John says, "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." (John 7:39)
The Bible teaches that the Filling of the Spirit is not the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. Whereas the believer is not told to be Baptized with the Spirit, he is told that he is to Filled with the Spirit. “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;” (Ephesians 5:18)
This verse instructs us not to be drunk with wine, which is excess; but be filled with the Spirit. The verse is using the example of one being drunk or under the control of alcohol to similarly illustrate that a Christian should let himself be controlled by the Holy Spirit.
Paul's use of the example of "be not drunk with wine" is a reference to the first century idea that alcohol was the "drink of the gods" and its effect on man was the power of God, which enabled the drinker to receive greater spiritual awareness or inspiration. Paul dismisses this idea as debauchery which is what the phrase "wherein is excess" means. Paul illustrates by using the example of one who is letting alcohol control him, in contrast to the Christian who is to let the indwelling Holy Spirit control him.
The phrase "filled with the Spirit", means "to be under the influence of". Examples in the New testament of being filled with the Spirit are as follows:
1. Jesus, in Luke 4:1, said he was "full of the Holy Spirit."
2. Stephen, was "full of faith and the Holy Spirit" Acts 6:5, 7:55.
3. Barnabas, also was full of the Spirit. Acts 11:24.
4. Peter, preached in Acts 4:8 "filled with the Holy Ghost."
5. The first deacons, in Acts 6:3, to be qualified must be men "full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom."
Nowhere in scripture does God command a person to be baptized with the Holy Spirit, however, God does command that we be filled with the Holy Spirit. Letting oneself be filled with the Spirit is reference to the fact that the Christian has two natures (Rom.6 and 7). One is the old or carnal nature and the other is the new nature or spiritual one. The Christian can let himself be controlled by the old nature and sin (1 John 1:8-10), or can allow the Holy Spirit who indwells him, control him. (Eph. 5:18) Who is controlling us is determined by our submission to the Holy Spirit or to the lust of our carnal flesh. In Acts 13:8-10, Elymas the sorcerer who was a false prophet, and is said by Paul to have been ". . . Full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child of the devil". Paul, in Romans 1:28-29, says that man, ". . . Being filled will all unrighteousness, fornication, . . .” willingly gave up his knowledge of God. These verses show that man in different degrees can let himself be controlled by his carnal nature.
The Bible teaches that the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and the Filling of the Holy Spirit are separate functions or ministries of the Holy Spirit.
The examples in the Book of Acts of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, after salvation, as happened at Pentecost, Acts 2, and subsequently in Acts 8, 10 and 19, are accounts of believers receiving the "indwelling" of the Holy Spirit. In each case mentioned in Acts those who received the Baptism, were believers who were saved under the Old Testament dispensation of the Law.
When they heard the Gospel, which was the "Good News” that Jesus was the Messiah and had risen from the grave, they gladly accepted this and received the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, which had been promised by Jesus. They received Christ and became a part of the Church Age or the dispensation of Grace, and became part of the Body of Christ. It is important to note that in no case in the New Testament was the Baptism of the Holy Spirit sought. It was understood that all who were saved would receive the indwelling as promised.
At the time of the beginning of the church things were different. One thing different was that all those who became a part of the church, in its beginning, were Jewish believers! They were saved saints of God. However, they were not, at first, in the church. Why? Because Christ had not begun the church until the Day of Pentecost! Today, this is not the case. The church now carries the Gospel to the lost. However the Jews, as a people, are still rejecting their Messiah. Those who are saved today were once lost in their sins, both Jew and Gentile. The lost, when they receive Christ as Savior receive the Holy Spirit, and being indwelt by the Spirit of God become a part of the church, the bride of Christ.
Historically, as the Gentiles heard the Gospel and were saved, the early churches became part Jew and part Gentile. This was the case at Antioch. After Paul's missionary journeys to Asia some Jews were saved, but there were more Gentiles in the churches than Jews. After a time most of the saved Old Testament Jews of the first Century, who were waiting for the coming Messiah, heard the Gospel and accepted Christ and became members of local churches in their areas. After 70 AD, with the destruction of Jerusalem and the scattering of the Jews, the nation of Israel and biblical Judaism ceased to exist. The churches, within a century, had become mostly Gentile which is our situation today. We rejoice to hear today of Jews who are saved and receive Christ as their Savior. There are a good number of Messianic Jewish congregations today. However, the Jews that were saved after Pentecost are not Old Testament saints, but when saved, become a part of the body of Christ.
The point is that few Jewish people believed in Jesus as their Messiah, and certainly not the nation of Israel. God's offer of the Kingdom to the Jews was valid until they, as a nation, rejected Him. Thus, from Pentecost, until the destruction of Jerusalem and the nation of Israel, God was offering the Promised Kingdom to the Jews; however the Kingdom could only have come at that time if the Jews, as a people, had received their Messiah. Therefore, there was a transitional period of time from Pentecost to 70 AD when the Jews could have believed and received their Messiah. After 70 AD and the destruction of Jerusalem, the offer of the Kingdom was postponed until after the Rapture, the Seven Year Tribulation and the Second Coming of Christ. During the Tribulation, Israel will be purged, and after the Lord's Second Coming He will set up the Promised Kingdom. Everyone in this Dispensation, who believes in Jesus Christ and is saved, is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, which is the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, the Lord promised in Acts 1:5 and which began in Acts 2.
Nowhere in the Bible does it say or infer that it is a "second blessing" or that the proof one has experienced the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, is that they speak in "tongues" (known languages). However, Galatians 5:22-23, says “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.”
Note that "tongues" is not mentioned as a fruit of the Spirit. Further you must have the Spirit in order to have the fruit of the Spirit. These "fruits" do not come from our carnal nature, but from one's submissiveness to the spiritual nature only which the believer receives when he is saved and receives the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. If God says these are the fruits of the Holy Spirit in a believer's life, then the believer must have the indwelling and the presence of the Holy Spirit in order to have such fruit. Never in the New Testament is there even a hint of a class of believers, who have not had the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, but yet can still serve God and have the fruits of the Spirit in their lives. All believers are exhorted to have the fruits of the Spirit in their lives. Galatians 5:16 says Christians are to “. . . Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.” Would God tell us that the way to overcome our sinful flesh was to "walk in the Spirit" when we are not able to? The answer is “of course not”. The command of God is based on the fact that we have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and can absolutely "walk in the Spirit."
Further, one cannot partially receive the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is a person. You can not partially receive a person. The Holy Spirit can only be fully and permanently received. Once He is received in salvation, we can obey and let Him lead our lives, or we can walk in the flesh. That is why Paul said, in Ephesians 5:18, "And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit." In other words, let the Holy Spirit control us. Again, He cannot control us if He does not indwell us.
"Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us." (Romans 5:5)
Please note that the following passage says that if a person is not indwelt by the Holy Spirit, meaning having received the baptism of the Holy Spirit, he is not saved. "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.” (Romans 8:9-11)
This verse is emphatic in stating a believer absolutely has the Holy Spirit and if they do not have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit that are not His and they are not saved! God cannot state it any clearer than that.
Also note these passages:
"For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God" (Romans 8:14).
"The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God" (Romans 8:16).
"Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own" (1 Corinthians 6:19)?
"Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God, who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a deposit" (2 Corinthians 1:21-22).
"This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh? Have you suffered so many things in vain? if indeed it was in vain. Therefore He who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you, does He do it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?" (Galatians 3:2-5)?
"In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory" (Ephesians 1:13-14).
"Therefore he who rejects this does not reject man, but God, who has also given us His Holy Spirit" (1 Thessalonians 4:8).
"But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things." (1 John 2:20)
The Bible settles the matter and corrects the false teachers. According to God's own word all believers have received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and are permanently indwelt by Him.
Shortly after January 22, 1972, when the Lord saved me, I came into contact with Charismatics. I was a happy maturing new born child of God! I loved the Lord and was witnessing, being faithful to my church, and also teaching a teenage Sunday School Class. I was then told by the Charismatics I was not what Christ wanted me to be. I was told I did not have the whole Gospel and I was spiritually lacking. However, they said all that could be remedied if I would receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
I loved God and wanted God's blessing. I did not want to be lacking in anything, so I started attending the Full Gospel Business Men's Association and other Charismatic services. I was impressed with the high spirits of those present, but disappointed at the tone of the meetings. These folks seemed to represent themselves as far superior to others who have not had their experience.
I prayed for the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and this wonderful encounter with God I was told I needed. No one could have prayed in anymore in earnest than I did, yet nothing happened. Then I turned to the Bible and began reading everything it has to say about the Holy Spirit. I purchased all the books on the subject I could find. I listened to hours of tapes, pro and con. My teenage Sunday School class was at this time also being greatly influenced by Charismatic teenage musicians outside of our church as was my Training Union Class. I desperately wanted to know the truth. I began a series of lessons in which our class began to study the matter in depth. It was not long before I began to see major differences between what was happening in the Bible and what happened in the Pentecostal and Charismatic churches. Further, I found great numbers of problems with what these groups were teaching and what God says clearly in His Word.
In time, I separated myself from this group as did the teenagers in my class. We all grew in the Lord as we studied the Word of God. We let the Holy Spirit, who had indwelt and empowered us when we were saved, have free course in our lives. I am happy to say that God continued to work in my life and called to be a pastor in 1977. I have been faithful to that calling to this very hour. I am also happy to report these many years later that every member of my teenage Sunday School class is faithfully serving the Lord. They are all now grown with families. One was a missionary to Scotland for over fifteen years and now, with her husband, are faithly serving the Lord as missionaries. The others all have married Christians and have Christian homes. They are faithful servants in their church, youth leaders, Christian singers, and faithful supporters of their churches. My heart weeps in joy when I think of how God is using each of them. What a glory they are to the Lord and testimony of God's faithfulness.
Sadly, these misguided Charismatics mistakenly told us to pray and seek what we already had. That is evident by what the Bible says on the matter and the power of the Holy Spirit and God's Word is evident also in what God has done in each of our lives.
There are many believers who are caught up in groups which teach this error. They teach that when believers are saved they are not baptized in the Holy Spirit and do not receive the permanent indwelling of the Spirit of God. How confusing it was and how confusing it must be for many under this false teaching. How discouraging to supposedly be saved yet be told you are not empowered by the Spirit of God to live a victorious life in Christ. Some I knew faked the experience to be able to receive the praise of their groups. One very good friend of many years told of the years of emotional ups and downs and the frustration he felt by the teaching of the Pentecostal movement.
Some had an experience and were told it was the receiving of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. In Charismatic meetings, groups of people whipped up emotionally and coaxed into an emotional fever. They are told to repeat phrases over and over as fast as they could in order to get the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and speak in tongues. YET, NONE OF THIS IS FOUND IN THE BIBLE! NOWHERE DOES THE BIBLE INSTRUCT A BELIEVER TO RECEIVE THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
I wonder how many who had this experience live in a false sense of being right with God because they had this emotional experience. How many found that even after this high emotional experience they were no more able to live for the Lord than before? How many are now living disaffected lives, because their experience in time wore off and left them empty? Many have fallen by the wayside because of being misled by the teachings of the Pentecostals and Charismatics.
God's way is the only way. A believer is totally forgiven and saved at conversion. He is indwelled and given the New Nature, which is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit of God. He literally becomes the Temple of God. When he fails and sins, he is convicted by the Spirit of God. He can then return to full fellowship with God, by confessing his sin and letting God cleanse him and take it away. If he does not, God chastens him in order to bring him back into fellowship once again (Heb. 12:6-11).
At times I know I am not what I know Christ would have me be. It is the Holy
Spirit that brings conviction when I stray. When I fail and cry out to my Savior to forgive me and is it most comforting to know He does. My very favorite verse in these times is Colossians 2:9-10, "For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power." Because I was saved by God's Grace and indwelt by the Holy Spirit, I have all the power of God in me, if I would but yield to it.
My life's verse:
"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God." (Romans 12:1-2)
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