HOLY SPIRIT

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Presented here are videos that have helped me to learn more and to better understand the biblical teachings about the Baptism in the Holy Spririt.

SPRINGS CHURCH WINNIPEG: THE HOLY SPIRIT

The following is the first talk in a series of messages about the Holy Spirit by David Pawson in his teachings about the Holy Spirit.
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The rest of the talks in this series by David Pawson may be found here:

COMPLETE SERIES OF TEACHINGS ABOUT THE HOLY SPIRIT

This message was given by Pastor Mac Dumcum, Steinbach, Manitoba: “The Seven Spirits of God” by Mac Dumcum.

Mac’s Youtube Channel is at: LIVING IN THE REIGN

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I appreciate that there are many excellent pastors, teachers and theologians who also address this topic. For that I am truly thankful. I am especially thankful for the Holy Spirit, who is my ultimate guide!

LINKS

THINK LIFE CHANGE

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE INDWELLING AND BEING FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT

May the Lord bless us on our journey as we seek to learn all that the Bible teaches about this important matter!

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PLEASE NOTE: THE FOLLOWING ARTICLE IS NOT WRITTEN BY ME. I FOUND IT ON AN OLD DISC AND HAVE NO IDEA WHERE IT CAME FROM. SINCE I CANNOT CREDIT THE ORIGINAL AUTHOR, I OFFER MY SINCERE THANKS FOR THIS INFORMATIVE AND EDIFYING MESSAGE.

It was written by an author whom I do not know, so I cannot offer credit to the originator. However, I am thankful for the message and hope that you will be blessed as we all work together to learn more about the amazing God that we serve!)

THE BAPTISM IN THE HOLY SPIRIT — PURPOSE AND POWER

Jesus commanded His disciples to be baptized in water. (Matthew 28:19)

Water baptism is the outward expression of the inward transformation that occurred within us when we were saved: our old man of sin died in Christ when we were born again of His Spirit and we are now a new man in Christ. (Romans 6:3-11)
 
However after they were saved, Jesus also commanded his disciples to be baptized in the Spirit (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:5 & 8). Therefore, we see that water baptism is associated with salvation, whereas Spirit baptism is associated with something more than salvation.

This raises a very important question:

If we received the Holy Spirit when we were saved, then why do we need to be baptized in the Holy Spirit after we are saved?

The answer can be found by comparing two key events in church history: Resurrection Sunday and Pentecost Sunday.

On Resurrection Sunday, when Jesus appeared to His disciples as a group for the first time, scripture states: “He breathed on them and said to them: “Receive the Holy Spirit.” (John 20:22)

This is the moment when the disciples passed from ‘Old Covenant salvation’ to ‘New Covenant salvation.’
 
Believers in the Old Covenant were saved by looking forward in faith to Christ’s redemption, which had not yet taken place; whereas believers in the New Covenant are saved by looking back in faith> to the historic event of Christ’s redemptive death and resurrection.

In the Book of Romans, Paul gives two conditions for New Covenant salvation: “If you confess with your mouth and believe in your heart that God raised Jesus  from the dead, you will be saved.” (Romans 10:9)

Before Resurrection Sunday, the disciples had already confessed Jesus as Lord. But now for the first time, they also believed God raised Him from the dead.
 
Therefore, Resurrection Sunday is when the disciples were born again of the Spirit. This is the day when God replaced their old nature in Adam with a new nature in Jesus.

Thus even though the disciples had received the Holy Spirit for salvation, Jesus made it clear they also needed to be baptized in the Holy Spirit for empowerment.

Just before His ascension, Jesus gathered His disciples together and commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for the gift My Father had promised, which you have heard Me speak about.

“For John baptized in water, but in a few days you will be baptized in the Holy Spirit … you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you and you will be My witnesses.” (Acts 1:5 & 8; see also Luke 24:49)

The Father’s promise to baptize them in the Holy Spirit was fulfilled on Pentecost Sunday when the disciples “were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.” (Acts 2:4).”

THE DISCIPLES IN JERUSALEM BAPTIZED IN THE HOLY SPIRIT

On that morning, the apostle Peter explained to those present what had just occurred: “Therefore having been exalted to the right hand of God and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He (Jesus) has poured out what you now see and hear.” (Acts 2:33)
 
Thus, the disciples were born again of the Holy Spirit on Resurrection Sunday They were baptized in the Holy Spirit seven weeks later on Pentecost Sunday.

These two different events show that our new birth in Jesus Christ is distinct and separate from Jesus baptizing us in the Holy Spirit!

 When we are born again, we receive Christ’s life. When we are baptized in the Holy Spirit, we receive Christ’s power!

This is an absolute spiritual necessity “for the Kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power.” (1 Corinthians 4:20)

We simply cannot be Christ’s overcoming witnesses and spiritual warriors in this godless world ruled by Satan unless Jesus Christ has baptized us in the power of the Holy Spirit.

The Greek word for baptism means immersion. When we are baptized in the Holy Spirit, we are completely enveloped in the power of the Holy Spirit.

In the natural realm, there are two possible ways we can be immersed under water. We can go down under the surface of the water and then come up out of it. This is what happens when we are water baptized. The other way is if the water is poured over us until we are completely immersed and enveloped by it. This is the type of immersion that occurs when we are baptized in the Holy Spirit.

This is why the Bible, when describing the baptism in the Holy Spirit, uses language such as “I will pour out My Spirit” and “He poured out this which you see and hear” and “the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word” and “the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles.”

 We should also note the terms, “the baptism”of the Holy Spirit; the promise of the Holy Spirit” and gift of the Holy Spirit are used interchangeably to describe the same Biblical experience. (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:4-5; 2:33, 38; 10:44-45; 11:15-17)

After Pentecost Sunday the term “received the Holy Spirit” always refers to receiving the baptism in the Holy Spirit. (Acts 8:17; 10:47; 19:2)

THE DISCIPLES IN SAMARIA BAPTIZED IN THE HOLY SPIRIT

There are two other occasions after Pentecost where the Bible describes when people were baptized in the Holy Spirit. The first event takes place when Philip the evangelist preached the gospel to Samaria.
 
 Many people believed in Jesus Christ and were water baptized (Acts 8:12). However, even though they had received the Holy Spirit for salvation, they had not yet received the baptism in the Holy Spirit for empowerment.
 
When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them. When they arrived, they prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them. They had simply been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. “Then they began laying hands on them and they were receiving the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 8:14-17)

The disciples at Samaria were saved through the ministry of Philip, but were later baptized in the Holy Spirit through the ministry of Peter and John.

THE DISCIPLES IN EPHESUS BAPTIZED IN THE HOLY SPIRIT

The second event takes place when Apollos preached the gospel in Ephesus. A number of people believed in Jesus Christ but had not yet been baptized in the Holy Spirit. (Acts 19:2).

Shortly thereafter, the apostle Paul then encountered the new believers and discovered they had not been properly water baptized nor had they been baptized in the Holy Spirit.

“He said to them, ‘Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?’

And they said to him, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”

So Paul asked, ‘Then what baptism did you receive?”

“John’s baptism,” they replied.

Paul said: “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in Him who was coming after him—that being, Jesus! When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

“And when Paul had laid hands on upon them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, they began speaking with tongues and prophesying.” (Acts 19:1-6)

We see that the disciples at Ephesus were saved through the ministry of Apollos, but were later baptized in the Holy Spirit through the ministry of Paul.

THE BAPTISM IN THE HOLY SPIRIT AND SPEAKING IN TONGUES

This is an important feature of the baptism in the Holy Spirit: When Jesus baptizes us in the Holy Spirit, He gives us the ability to speak to God in the spirit through a new language or what the Bible calls a “new tongue” or “other tongue.”
 
Just before He ascended to heaven, Jesus said one of the supernatural signs that would follow believers is that they would speak in new tongues.

He told them to go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. Jesus said to them: “He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned. These signs will accompany those who have believed: In My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues.” (Mark 16:15-17)

Here are the five examples in the book of Acts when believers were baptized in the Holy Spirit and spoke in a new tongue:
 
1. The first example is when the 120 disciples were baptized in the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. “They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.” (Acts 2:4). When the first 120 disciples were baptized in the Holy Spirit, they spoke in other languages than their own.

2. The second example of believers being baptized in the Holy Spirit takes place when Philip preached the gospel in Samaria. “Then they began laying their hands on them, and they were receiving the Holy Spirit.”

When a man named Simon witnessed what occurred as Peter and John laid their hands on the Samaritan Christians and they were baptized in the Holy Spirit, he tried to purchase from them the same ability to impart the Holy Spirit.
 
“Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was bestowed through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money, saying: ‘Give this authority to me as well, so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 8:17-19)

What did Simon see that impressed him so much? We know that Simon had already seen supernatural miracles, such as people being delivered from demons and being miraculously healed. (Acts 8:6-7)
 
Although the Scripture does not explicitly say that the believers in Samaria who spoke in new tongues when they were baptized in the Holy Spirit, it is a reasonable to conclude that Simon personally witnessed the same phenomena that occurred every other time believers were baptized in the Holy Spirit in the book of Acts—he saw and heard them speaking in other tongues.

The third example in the book of Acts of someone receiving the Holy Spirit is the case of Saul of Tarsus, later known as the apostle Paul. He had been saved on the road to Damascus, where he had also been temporarily blinded.

Three days after his conversion, a man named Ananias was divinely sent to him. “So Ananias departed and entered the house, and after laying his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road by which you were coming, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit. And immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he regained his sight, and he arose and was baptized.” (Acts 9:17-18)
 
There is no doubt that Saul was born again before Ananias arrived to pray for him. He believed in the Lord Jesus while he was still on the road to Damascus. Also, when Ananias first met Saul, he called him “Brother Saul.”  Therefore, we know that Saul was filled or baptized in the Holy Spirit three days after his salvation. There is also no doubt that Paul spoke in other tongues because he himself later testified: “I thank God, I speak in tongues more than you all.” (1 Corinthians 14:18)
 
When we combine Paul’s personal testimony with all the other examples of believers being baptized in the Holy Spirit, it is reasonable to conclude that Paul received the ability to speak in other tongues when Ananias laid hands on him to be baptized in the Holy Spirit.

GENTILES BAPTIZED IN THE HOLY SPIRIT SPOKE IN TONGUES

The fourth example of believers being baptized in the Holy Spirit occurred when the apostle Peter preached the gospel in Caesarea to Cornelius and his household.
 
In this unique incident, Jesus baptized Cornelius and his household in the Holy Spirit at the very same time they received Him as Lord and Saviour. (Acts 10:44-48; 11:15-18)
 
Jesus sovereignly poured out His Spirit on them in this manner to supernaturally witness to Peter that God had granted salvation to the Gentiles. Peter knew Jesus had baptized these Gentiles in the Holy Spirit when he heard them speaking in tongues.

“The Holy Spirit fell upon all those who were listening to the message. All the circumcised believers who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also. For they were hearing them speaking with tongues and exalting God.”(Acts 10:45-46)

Recognizing that God had saved Cornelius and his household, Peter then instructed them to be immediately water baptized.

The fifth example of believers being baptized in the Holy Spirit occurred when Paul laid his hands on the new believers in Ephesus so that they might receive the Holy Spirit.

“And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking with tongues and prophesying. (Acts 19:6).

Once again, we see that when the believers in the book of Acts were baptized in the Holy Spirit, they spoke with new tongues.

Let us now review the five examples. In four of them, receiving the baptism in the Holy Spirit resulted in the believers speaking with other tongues. In the fifth example, something obviously occurred (other than supernatural miracles) when the believers in Samaria received the Holy Spirit because Simon tried to buy from the apostles the power to baptize people in the Holy Spirit.

Therefore, it is reasonable to conclude those believers also spoke in tongues when they were baptized in the Holy Spirit since this would be consistent with the other Scriptural examples.

From the overall Biblical record, we can confidently state that born-again believers in the first century church spoke in other tongues when they were baptized in the Holy Spirit. Thus, through the obedience of their faith, these disciples were baptized in the Holy Spirit and spoke in new tongues just as Jesus had instructed them. In the same way, everyone who is born again today should also be baptized in the Holy Spirit and expect to speak in new tongues.

DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TONGUES FOR PERSONAL PRAYER OR FOR MINISTRY

There is a difference between tongues for personal prayer, which everyone who is baptized in the Holy Spirit receives, from the gift of tongues, followed by interpretation of tongues and the gift of the Holy Spirit given to various believers for ministry to the body of Christ. (1 Corinthians 12:10)
 
This is the gift of tongues, which Paul lists along with the gifts of healing and miracles, when he says: “All do not speak in tongues, do they? All do not interpret, do they?” (1 Corinthians 12:30)

Paul is not speaking here about the baptism in the Holy Spirit, but about the supernatural operations of the Spirit, which can be exercised by the believer in the assembly of the church, as a resultof being baptized in the Holy Spirit.
 
In 1 Corinthians 12:7-11, Paul enumerates nine different gifts of the Holy Spirit, which are imparted to believers when they are baptized in the Holy Spirit.

Although every Holy Spirit baptized believer can speak in tongues at any time, this does not mean God will use him with the gift of tongues to bring a message to the church.

The main difference between the two is that one is for private and personal devotion to God, and the other one is for public ministry to the church.
 
When we pray privately in tongues, we are edified; however, the entire church is edified when we speak in tongues in the church when it is followed by an interpretation!

When we pray privately in tongues, we can pray as we will.  But the gift of tongues for ministry to the church only operates as the Holy Spirit wills.

When we pray in tongues, our spirits are praying to God, but when we speak out loud in tongues in church, it is so God can speak to the church. (When it is followed by an interpretation.)
 
For this reason, the gift of tongues is always be accompanied by the gift of interpretation of the message in tongues.

As Paul instructed: “Therefore let one who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret  what they say. (1 Corinthians 14:13)

THE PURPOSE OF TONGUES FOR MINISTRY

The distinction between the baptism of the Holy Spirit, also called the gift of the Holy Spirit.  I is accompanied by the evidence of personal tongues versus the gift of tongues, which is accompanied by interpretation of tongues. This is differentiated in the New Testament by two different Greek words for gift.

Whenever believers received the baptism or gift of the Holy Spirit, the New Testament uses the Greek word ‘dorea’ for gift (Acts 2:38; 10:45; 11:17); whereas the New Testament always uses the Greek word ‘charisma’ for gift to describe the ministry gifts. (Romans 11:29; 1 Corinthians 1:7; 12:4, 9, 28, 30, 31;13:2; 1 Timothy 4:14; 2 Timothy 1:6)
 
These two Greek words, ‘dorea’ and ‘charisma’ are never interchanged in the New Testament.

Charisma is never used to describe the believer’s personal prayer language, which they receive when they are baptized in the Holy Spirit (Acts 10:45), and ‘dorea’ is never used to describe the gift of tongues and interpretation of tongues, which the Spirit gives believers for ministry to the church. (1 Corinthians 12:7)
 
Therefore, Paul’s question, “Do all speak with tongues” means “Do all believers, after they receive the gift (dorea) of the Holy Spirit, exercise the gift (charisma) of tongues for ministry?”
 
The answer is no. Not all believers have this particular gift of ministry. For example, in the five cases mentioned where believers spoke in tongues after they received the baptism or gift of the Holy Spirit, in none of these five situations did the believers use the gift (charisma) of interpretation.
 
This once again demonstrates that when you receive the gift (‘dorea’) of the Holy Spirit, you also receive the personal, devotional prayer language of tongues but not necessarily the gift (‘charisma’) of tongues, which should always be exercised with the gift of interpretation to edify the church.

Paul clearly instructs that whenever you speak in the gift (charisma) of tongues in an open assembly of the church, it should be followed by the gift of the interpretation of tongues so that others can understand the message that is given in tongues. 1 Corinthians 14:5 & 13).

Thus everyone who has been baptized in the Holy Spirit has the capability of speaking in private, devotional tongues (though they may not exercise this capability because of unbelief, ignorance, fear or other reasons); but not everyone receives the gift (charisma) of tongues which is used in conjunction with the gift (charisma) of interpretation.

If you cannot interpret the message that the Holy Spirit has given you or if there is no other gifted interpreter present in the assembly, then Paul says, “the speaker should keep quiet in the church and speak to himself and God.” (1 Corinthians 14:28)

When the gift (charisma) of tongues with interpretation is properly used in the church, it is similar to the gift of prophecy, which is given to build up, exhort and comfort the body of Christ. (1 Corinthians 14:3)

For example, one time when we met together, a sister in Christ who does not speak any Chinese gave a lengthy, edifying message for the church in the Chinese language, which was then interpreted in English.
 
This is how God intended the gifts (charisma) of the Spirit to be used to minister to the body of Christ. “What is the outcome then, brethren? When you assemble, each as a psalm, a teaching, a revelation, tongues that has an interpretation. Let all things by done for edification.” (1 Corinthians 14:26)

THE PURPOSE OF PERSONAL TONGUES

If you do not speak in tongues immediately when you are baptized in the Holy Spirit, don’t be anxious. After you have been baptized in the Holy Spirit you have a reservoir of living water ready to overflow from your spirit.

Jesus said: He who believes in Me, as the scriptures said, from his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’ By this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified. (John 7:38-39)

Releasing the gift of tongues is like turning on a water faucet. You learn how to turn on the faucet to speak in your prayer language.

Jesus said we must receive the Kingdom of God with faith like a child. (Mark 10:15; Luke 18:17) This does not mean that we should not use our mind.  

Our intellect is a very useful tool but our faith must always spring from a pure and open heart towards God!

Why does Jesus Christ want to give us the ability to speak in a prayer language that we do not know when we are baptized in the Holy Spirit?  We are talking about personal prayer language here and not the ministry gift (charisma) of tongues accompanied by interpretation.

One reason is that when we speak in another tongue we are able to speak directly to God in the Spirit. This is what the apostle Paul taught: “For the one who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God; for no one understands, but in his spirit he speaks mysteries.” (1 Corinthians 14:2)
 
There are many times when you may not be sure how or what to pray. By speaking in tongues, you can communicate directly to God in your spirit. As Paul said: If I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays. I will pray with my spirit and I will pray with my mind also. (1 Corinthians 14:14-15) Paul clearly valued this spiritual benefit of speaking in tongues when he wrote, “I thank God, I speak in tongues more than all go you.” (1 Corinthians 14:18)

Paul says the second reason is that speaking in tongues builds you up in the Spirit. (1 Corinthians 14:4)  When you pray in tongues, the Holy Spirit is able to strengthen your inner man.
Jude also speaks to this benefit: “But you, dear friends, build yourself up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.“ (Jude 20)

The third reason to speak in tongues is mentioned by Paul when he exhorts Christians to “pray at all times in the Spirit” (Ephesians 6:18) so they might intercede for the saints.
 
In this way speaking in tongues can help us “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17) as the Spirit Himself intercedes for us and through us according to the will of God. In the same way “the Spirit also helps in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groaning too deep for words, for He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of  the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.” (Romans 8:26-27)

We can be sure we are praying accurately because the Spirit prays the prayer that God wants to hear and wants to answer. In this way you will fellowship with God the Father and His Son and you will build yourself up in the Holy Spirit, and the Spirit will empower and lead you to effectively intercede for others.

THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT WITH FIRE

There is one more very important aspect of the baptism in the Holy Spirit we need to understand. John the Baptist called this “the baptism in the Holy Spirit with fire.” (Matthew 3:11) Fire represents the holiness of the Lord.
 
Therefore, when Jesus baptizes us in the Holy Spirit, He intends it not only to empower us but to also purify us. Our immersion into Christ’s Spirit of holiness is meant to expose, convict, purge and burn away all the dross from our lives. The Holy Spirit‘s purifying fire in our lives is essential if we want to be Jesus’ holy witnesses.

Jesus said His disciples would be salted with fire (Mark 9:49) but if they lose their saltiness (holiness) they are not good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by the world. (Mark 9:50; Matthew 5:13)

Without holiness, we cannot display God’s power. Without holiness, we cannot be Christ’s witness.  Without holiness, we cannot know Jesus Christ.
 
Of course, we must always remember we cannot possibly live in Christ’s holiness (even if we have been baptized in the Holy Spirit and with fire) if we don’t know (believe and act on) the truth that we have been crucified with Christ. The gospel of Christ crucified reveals the power that God has provided for us to abide in Christ and overcome sin, the world and the devil.

To sum up, Christ’s completed work on the cross delivers us not only from the penalty of sin but the power of sin. Water baptism demonstrates we have been immersed into the power of Christ’s crucifixion; whereas Spirit baptism immerses us into the power of Christ’s resurrection.

We need to know both the power of His crucifixion and resurrection if we want to know Jesus Christ in fullness. As the apostle Paul testified: “I want to know Christ and the power of His resurrection… becoming like Him in His death. (Philippines 3:10)

In view of Jesus’ command for His disciples to be baptized in the Holy Spirit to empower them to be His witnesses, let every believer be encouraged to walk in obedience to the faith and be baptized in the Holy Spirit.

When anyone was saved in the early church, they were normally baptized in water the same day and were baptized in the Spirit shortly thereafter thereby receiving supernatural power to enable them as Christ’s witnesses.

When they were baptized in the Holy Spirit, Jesus gave them the ability to speak to God directly in another language. In the same way, when Jesus baptizes you in the Holy Spirit, He will give you the supernatural ability to speak in another language.
 
HOW TO RECEIVE THE BAPTISM IN THE HOLY SPIRIT

You can receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit the same way you received Christ when you were saved, that is, by faith. (Galatians 3:2)

Jesus said, “If you, 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? (Luke 11:13) Our heavenly Father has promised to give us the baptism of the Holy Spirit. His Son, Jesus, is the one who will baptize you in the Spirit.

The baptism in the Holy Spirit is not an emotional experience; it is a divine promise and gift, which is received by faith.

You may or may not express any emotion when you receive Him. When you ask Jesus to baptize you in the Holy Spirit, you can count on the Word of God Jesus will do exactly that.

END NOTE

If Jesus Christ baptizes us in the Holy Spirit to empower us, then why do we need to know we have died with Christ?

Jesus does not intend the baptism in the Holy Spirit to have only a one-time impact; He means it to be the spiritual gateway for a Christian to be continually empowered by the Holy Spirit and exercise the gifts of the Holy Spirit to build up Jesus body, the church. (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 12:4-13)
 
However, the only way the power of the Holy Spirit can be manifested continually in our lives is if we know (and act on this knowledge) that we have been crucified with Christ!
 
CALVARY MUST COME BEFORE PENTECOST

This is the divine principle! Jesus had to be crucified at Calvary and ascend to His Father before the power of His Spirit could be poured out at Pentecost. (John 7:39)

In the same way, our baptism by immersion into the power of Christ’s resurrection is only effective if we have also been baptized (immersed) into the power of Christ’s death.

The divine truth is that we have already been baptized into Christ’s death.

We were baptized into Christ’s death when we were born again (Romans 6:3) and God removed our sinful nature. (Romans 6:6; Colossians 2:11)  Therefore, we now need to abide (remain united by faith) in the power of Christ’s crucifixion so that the power of Christ’s resurrection might abide in us.

If we do not know this divine fact by divine revelation (that we have died with Christ and our sinful nature has been removed), we won’t be able to act on this divine truth and overcome sin.
We will mistakenly try to live the Christian life by the power of our soul (our natural personality and ability) and mistakenly think it is with the help of the Holy Spirit.

However, when we live by the power of our soul, we are not relying by faith on the power of Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection.  And when we do not live in faith and obedience to the truth of God’s Word, we are blocking the Holy Spirit’s power from being expressed in us and protecting us.

This has tragic results even though it may not be evident to those who are spiritually undiscerning or immature. If we continue to live by the strength of our soul, we become open to deception since a soul not governed by the Holy Spirit is a gateway to potential demonic influence. We simply cannot expect to be filled, empowered and protected by the Holy Spirit if we are not obeying God and His Word.

Therefore, it is essential that we know (believe and act on) the Word of God! We have been crucified with Christ (Romans 6:8; Galatians 2:20: 6:14) and no longer have a sinful nature. Therefore, the resurrected Christ can express the power of His Holy Spirit through us.

‘Galatianism’ is starting in the spirit but finishing in the flesh (Galatians 3:3). Otherwise, even though we may have been baptized at one time in the Holy Spirit we will end up living by the power of our soul. Tragically, this has been an all too common experience for many Christians.

However, when we have been baptized in the Holy Spirit and know (believe and act on) the truth that our sinful nature died when we were born again, then Jesus can train us to daily walk in the power of His Spirit and to place no confidence in the strength of our soul (our natural ability), then we will truly be Christ’s witnesses and disciples.

 Jesus said, “If you continue in My Word, then you are truly my disciples and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. (John 8:31-32)”

THE GIFTS AND THE FRUIT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

The gifts and fruit of the Holy Spirit are both supernatural expressions of God and are intended to encourage and comfort the body of Christ. However, they are different in many respects.

The Bible describes the fruit of the Spirit as love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23)
 
The Bible describes the gifts of the Spirit as the word of wisdom, the word of knowledge, faith, healing, working of miracles, prophecy, discerning of spirits, plus various kinds of tongues and interpretation of tongues. (1 Corinthians 12:4-11)
 
Some additional spiritual gifts, such as the gifts of leadership, teaching and service, are also addressed in Romans 12:6-8 and 1 Peter 4:10-11.

God Wants the Church to Have Both Gifts and Fruit!

Because of unbelief, ignorance or disobedience, the church has two common problems concerning the spiritual gifts–either a lack of use of the gifts or a misuse of the gifts.

Both these problems would be solved if Christians truly believed they had died with Christ and no longer relied on their natural abilities and church traditions to do God’s work but instead trusted solely in Christ to sovereignly live through them.  

Many Christians often pursue the fruit but neglect the gifts.

However, from God’s perspective it is not a matter of one or the other. God wants us to desire both the fruit of the Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit. We are instructed to “Follow the way of love and eagerly desire spiritual gifts.” (1 Corinthians 14:10)  

When Christians lack spiritual fruit, the church is sick but when Christians lack spiritual gifts, the church is not strengthened.

Since our warfare is not against mortal men but against the spiritual forces of darkness. Our equipment, tools and weapons must also be spiritual, otherwise we will not prevail. “ For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, powers and the rulers of darkness of this world and against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (Ephesians 6:12)
 
Paul instructed: “Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant.” (1 Corinthians 12:1) Although there may be various interpretations on the meaning of specific gifts, there is no question that the gifts of the Holy Spirit are valid today.

Arguments against the use of the spiritual gifts are normally not based on Biblical grounds but instead on a fear of abuse of the gifts, which the apostle Paul effectively deals with in 1 Corinthians, Chapter 14.

There is no scriptural support to suggest that the gifts were only for the first century or that the gifts were only intended for men or leaders.

The apostle Peter, citing the prophet Joel, declared: “And it shall be in the last days,’ God says: ‘I will pour forth of My Spirit on all mankind; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy… even my bond-slaves, both men and women, I will in those days pour forth of my Spirit and they shall prophesy.” (Acts 2:17-18)

Scripture clearly states that the Holy Spirit distributes the spiritual gifts to every believer for effective ministry to the church and effective evangelism to the world. (Acts 4:29-30; 14:3; 1 Corinthians 12:7; Ephesians 4:12) “But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually just as He wills.” (1 Corinthians 12:11)

The Bible also says that the spiritual gifts are given to every believer to comfort, encourage and strengthen the body of Christ. (1 Corinthians 14:3, 26)  Paul wrote: “To each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” (1 Corinthians 12:7)

If we reject the Holy Spirit’s gifts or misuse them, we reject God’s will and divine provision for equipping His church. The body of Christ will then suffer as a result our unbelief and disobedience and God will ultimately hold us responsible.

THE GIFTS AND THE FRUIT ARE DIFFERENT IN NATURE AND PURPOSE

A major difference between the two is found in the nature of spiritual fruit compared to the gifts of the Spirit.

The fruit of the Spirit is an attribute of God’s divine character; whereas the gifts of the Spirit are instruments of God’s divine power.

The gifts are the supernatural operation and manifestation of the Holy Spirit who distributes them to each member of the body of Christ according to His own will. (1 Corinthians 12:11; Hebrews 2:4)
 
For example, when the elders of the church laid hands on Timothy, the Holy Spirit gave him a spiritual gift, the gift of teaching. (1 Timothy 4:13) This gift was confirmed through a prophetic message. (1 Timothy 4:14)

It is important to note that all gifts are distributed by the initiative of the Holy Spirit, not by man’s will.

“So then, does He who provides you with the Spirit and works miracles among you do it by the works of the law or by hearing with faith?” (Galatians 3:5)

Therefore, in order to exercise the gifts of the Spirit properly, we must be submitted to Christ’s authority and act only in obedience to His initiative. (John 15:5)
 
Jesus Himself never said or did anything on his own initiative. He acted only upon his Father’s initiative. (John 5:19, 30; 8:28; 12:49)
 
That God’s will and initiative is required to properly exercise the spiritual gifts is also evident by the apostle Peter’s instruction on prophecy:

“No prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.” (2 Peter 1:21)

BOTH THE GIFTS AND THE FRUIT ARE SUPER-NATURALLY IMPARTED

Just as the fruit of the Spirit is not the same as naturally endowed virtues; the gifts of the Spirit are not naturally endowed abilities. All of the gifts of the Spirit are supernaturally endowed; they are not the product of natural effort or education.

All of the spiritual gifts are either described or displayed by the apostles in the Book of Acts. In every case, the results that the spiritual gifts produce are far superior than anything we could ever achieve with our natural ability.

For example, someone may be a naturally eloquent speaker but that doesn’t mean the Holy Spirit has bestowed on them the supernatural gift of teaching. Natural eloquence can never produce the spiritual results that can only come from the Holy Spirit and His gift of teaching.

Someone may be a natural born leader, but this does not mean the Holy Spirit has given them the gift of spiritual leadership.
 
The Holy Spirit’s gift of prophecy is definitely not the same as an “inspirational” sermon. Unfortunately, due to spiritual ignorance and unbelief about the gifts, many people are following teachers who are speaking from their own natural wisdom and ability rather than from the revelatory and enabling gifts of the Holy Spirit.

THE GIFTS AND FRUIT ARE PRODUCED DIFFERENTLY

The major difference between the spiritual gifts and fruit is how they are imparted.

Whereas the gifts of the Spirit are received spontaneously by an act of faith; the fruit of the Spirit Is produced over time by abiding or persevering faith. (Luke 8:15)

Romans 11:29 states that “the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.”  This means the gifts are not loaned out and then recalled. If someone falls away from the faith and becomes carnal and ungodly, their ability to use the gifts will not cease. For example, even though King Saul became rebellious, ungodly and depraved, he still prophesied. (1 Samuel 19:18-24)

Consequently, the gifts do not necessarily reflect the spiritual character and sanctification of the person who exercises them; whereas fruit is an expression of that person’s character and sanctification. As a result, the great danger for Christians who exercise the gifts is for them to think and feel they are more “spiritual” than others, or than they really are.

For this reason and because of the different nature and function of spiritual fruit and spiritual gifts, the gifts can often be misused by someone who is spiritual, yet carnal.

For example, the Corinthian church abounded in the spiritual gifts but sorely lacked spiritual fruit since they remained very carnal minded. (1 Corinthians 1:7; 3:1-3; 11:17-32) Their failure to be convicted that they were spiritually carnal and lawless even though they exercised the spiritual gifts is a sobering warning to all of us.

You shall know them by their fruit, not by their gifts. (Matthew 7:16-23)

Whenever Christians are more impressed with dramatic gifts rather than authentic fruit, there are major problems. We need to always keep in mind Jesus’ warning: “You shall know them by their fruit.”

 Jesus did not say: “You shall know them by their gifts.” Nor did He say, “You shall know them by their outward moral behaviour.”

Morality apart from the cross of Christ is not true sanctification: it is just another version of the flesh. It is very important to know that exercising the spiritual gifts can be dangerous and will backfire if you are not walking in sanctification. If you are not walking in sanctification, (holiness) God cannot protect you from Satan’s schemes to deceive and attack you when you function in the supernatural realm.
 
 The only way we can safely function in the spiritual gifts is if we are submitted to Christ’s sovereignty and hear and obey His voice.

The only way we can be truly submitted to Christ’s authority is if we know (believe and act on) the truth that we have been crucified with Christ and our sinful nature has been removed from us. (Romans 6:6; Galatians 2:20)

God will hold us accountable for everything He has given us, including our spiritual gifts.  Therefore, we should desire to fully use the spiritual gifts as responsible stewards for the good of Christ’s body, the church

We do not want to be like the slave who refused to do anything with what his master gave him.  Jesus said that this slave was wicked, lazy and worthless. (Matthew 25:26-30; Luke 19:22)

It is a serious and grievous matter to refuse any gift God wants to give us and for which His Son died. This includes the gift of salvation, the gift of the baptism in the Holy Spirit and all the spiritual gifts, which God has given every believer for building up the body of Christ, his church.

We need to pursue holiness and love to ensure that we use the spiritual gifts safely and properly; otherwise Christ’s judgment will be severe. Jesus warned that he would reject many in the Day of Judgment who exercised the spiritual gifts even while they willfully and habitually practiced sin. (Matthew 7:21-23)
 
This is why it is imperative that we “pursue sanctification” without which no one will see the Lord! (Hebrews 12:14)

The spiritual gifts, which are instruments or tools, will cease at the end of this age but the fruit of the Holy Spirit, which expresses Christ’s character, will remain forever. (1 Corinthians 13:8)
Therefore, without the fruit of the Spirit in evidence, the use of the gifts has no eternal value. The gifts, which are exercised by faith, must always function in love to have any spiritual worth. (1 Corinthians 13:1-2) Paul taught that “faith works through love.” (Galatians 5:6)
 
The Peter exhorted: “As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” (1 Peter 4:10)

Therefore, God’s desire is that all Christians would exercise his spiritual gifts in his love to build up his church.

THE NEW COVENANT PRIESTHOOD OF BELIEVERS

Under the New Covenant, all believers constitute God’s priesthood who together are responsible for the work of the ministry. (Ephesians 4:12)

Alas, in most churches today the work of the ministry is performed primarily by professional, salaried clergy who are paid by the rest of the church members, who are considered to be only supporting lay people.
 
Some pastors do not have the Lord’s spiritual authority. Rather, they direct and control church affairs by their own religious authority.
 
Jesus hated this man-made hierarchy and spirit-quenching dichotomy of clergy and laity, which He called Nicolaitanism. (Greek for lording it over the people!) (Revelation 2:6, 15-16)
 
In true Christianity, there is true spiritual authority. The Holy Spirit raises up spiritually mature men (elders, who are non-salaried) from among the flock who together work with the Lord to help shepherd His church. Scripture also states that the Holy Spirit gives each member of the body of Christ a special function or spiritual gift to equip them to minister together to the whole church.
 
It is God’s intent that whenever His church meets under Christ’s headship, each member should be able to freely share their spiritual gifts with the body of Christ as the Holy Spirit directs them.

Paul taught: “Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly. (Romans 12:6)

Thus, the Bible states that when the body of Christ meets together under Christ’s headship, one member might share a psalm, another member a prophecy, another member a teaching, and another member might share tongues and interpretation of tongues. (1 Corinthians 14:26)

This functioning priesthood of all believers is one of the fundamental building blocks of Christ’s church. “You also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house as a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.” (1 Peter 2:9)

Therefore, whenever we come together in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, every member of the body should fix their eyes on Jesus, who is the true head of each body of believers. The Holy Spirit will then spontaneously prompt each member to share their spiritual gifts in proper order for the good of the whole body. (1 Corinthians 14:40)

 To this end, Paul wrote: “We are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being  fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.” (Ephesians 4:15-16)

In this way, all the members actively participate in building up the body of Christ so that the church as a whole can fulfill God’s eternal purpose, which is to express the fullness of Jesus Christ.

WHAT A GLORIOUS PROMISE THIS IS!