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The Persecuted Church


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Spirit Baptism

Scripture tells us that John came baptizing in water but that, "There is one who will come after me. . . He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit." (Mk. 1:7-8 Matt. 3:11: Jn. 1:33).

In John 15:3, Jesus told the disciples they were already clean because of the Word He spoke to them. They were believers having salvation by faith, yet they still had to receive the Spirit.

The promise of the Spirit In John 20:21-22, Jesus commissioned them, "As the Father sent me, I also send you." He then breathed on them saying, "Receive the Holy Spirit." There is much dispute whether they were given the Spirit or it was a pledge or possibly a preserving factor until the Spirit came in power. In verse 26, several days after this occurred, the disciples were still hiding in a locked room, fearful. They were certainly were not showing any change or evidence of the Spirit being in them.

The strongest argument which seems to clarify that this was only a promise of a future event of how the Spirit was to come to them is found in Acts 1:4-5. Jesus states, "you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now."   In John 14:16, Jesus will ask the Father and He will give you another helper, that He will be with you forever. (vs. 26 the Father will send the Spirit.)

In Acts 1:8, before Jesus ascends, He promises the disciples power when the Holy Spirit comes upon them. In vs. 4, he commanded them to wait in Jerusalem for the promise you have heard from me. In Acts 1, we find them still waiting so they could not have already received the Spirit in John 20 or there would be nothing to wait for. (So His breathing on them signified what manner the Spirit was to be given as breath from on high, just as Adam was breathed the spirit into him he became alive Spiritually and physically. So too the disciples would receive a new nature from on high, as Jn.3 states you must be born again ;literally in the Greek from above.)

 John 16:7, Jesus told the disciples it was to their advantage that He goes away so that the Helper (the Holy Spirit) will come. "If I go I will send Him to you." In John 7:39, Jesus, speaking of the Spirit, stated those who believe in Him would receive the Spirit when He was glorified. This event happened when He ascended to heaven and then sent the Spirit. Peter, in Acts 2:14-16, "This is what was spoken by the prophet Joel (His Spirit being poured out from on high). In Acts 2:38-39, he identifies this event as the promise Jesus foretold. The Spirit came from heaven, sounding like a mighty rushing wind (Acts 2 and 3), so there would be no mistake in knowing that this is what Jesus promised. It was a totally separate event from water baptism and continues to be that way today.

All three different people groups the Jews Acts 2 the Samaritans acts 8 The Gentiles Acts 10 had a Spirit baptism to allow them into the body of Christ. It is the same for individuals today.

 1 Cor. 12:13 tells us that the baptizing work of the Holy Spirit puts one in the body of Christ. one is put into the body by the Spirit who is God himself. (In Acts 2, the 120 in the upper room were baptized in the Spirit.

In Eph. 4:3-6, we are told to be diligent in preserving the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. Verse 4 says, There is one body (universal), one Spirit (Holy Spirit). Vs. 5, one Lord (Jesus Christ), one faith (the belief that saves and what we function in). "That we all hold in common" (Jude 3), one baptism (the Holy Spirit's work) a Spirit baptism. Nowhere are we commanded to continually be baptized in the Spirit but we are commanded to be continually filled, this is a filling available every day of ones life. It is necessary to live a spiritual life, it means to let God have control.

All of the above-mentioned are spiritual workings and functions of Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit. In vs. 6, "One God and Father of all, who is above all through all, and in you all." These passages not only describe the triune nature of God, but can be referred to as unique spiritual aspects that brings one into the body of Christ. Therefore the baptism spoken of above should be interpreted as a spiritual baptism rather than a physical water baptism, since the context of the passage is dealing with the Spirit's work. As in Acts 2 they were baptized in the Spirit before they were baptized as well as in Acts 10 (the only exception Acts 8 where they were water baptized first and later received the Spirit. They needed the apostle Peter to officially allow them into the Church and then the Holy Spirit was poured out after they laid hands on them.)

Real faith means to have a spiritual birth which is by baptism of the Spirit, Not by water. In Acts 10 the Gentiles had the Spirit before they had the water! While the ICC squirms around this text, it is proof that God honors ones faith since God can look at the heart. Acts 15:8 Peter says that they were given the Holy Spirit just as they (the Gentiles) were. In vs.11He states we believe that through the grace of the lord Jesus we shall be saved in the same manner as they. They were saved by their faith Acts 11:17 God gave them the same GIFT as he gave us when we first BELIEVED on the Lord. Just as it says in Eph.1:13" they were sealed by the Holy Spirit when they first believed."



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