Q. So can a new believer today receive salvation but not the Holy Spirit? What about vice versa?
A. One of the difficulties in preaching a series of messages is that much of the current message is built on the foundation of the previous messages. That is the case with this message. I think I can answer your question and also the question of several other people from last Sunday that did not text in. There has never been another way of salvation other than in Christ and through the "new birth" (John 3:3). This new birth takes place by the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit in the life of a person. Thus if a person does not have the Holy Spirit, they cannot be saved. Romans 8:9-11 makes it very clear that if a person does not have the Spirit, they do not belong to Christ. 1 Corinthians 12:13 states that it is the Holy Spirit that takes us and adds us to the body of Christ. So, remember this in context of everything else I may say or write: Every person who is born again, saved, etc must have the Holy Spirit at work in their life in salvation. This was true for those under the old covenant and those in the new.
With that said, what I was talking about in the baptism of the Holy Spirit was something other than salvation. I gave five biblical examples and one historical church practice of how this baptism of the Holy Spirit from Jesus is different from salvation in Jesus. They are not the same. Really that was my whole argument. Regeneration and the baptism of the Holy Spirit that Jesus promised, that which came at Pentecost (Acts 2), are not the same. In Baptist life, while perhaps not intentional in most cases, we have given the impression that they are the same. That Pentecost is what made salvation available to all. But that is not true. A closer look at the biblical evidence of those under the old covenant and even those outside the old covenant that came to faith would remove that argument. Pentecost did add to this, but it did not start this. Pentecost did something else. That something else is, I'm afraid what we have lost. That is all I was saying.
Q. Why have I been in a Baptist church since I was 2 weeks old and I've never been told that I need to be baptized with the Holy Spirit? Have I just been blind to it? What do I do to receive the Holy Spirit in the kind of power they had in Acts?
A. I hear your heart. I think my realization of the need for something more just came out of a Bible study that went through the book of Acts and then intersected it with the letters of Paul and Peter in the context of the Book of Acts. I would then look at where my life was and where the people in our church were in comparison. It just didn't match. If Acts and the Epistles were the standard, we were sub-standard. "Why" was the big question.
My intention was not to describe what the baptism of the Holy Spirit by Jesus was or to give a prescription for it, nor what it would look like in believers then or today. All I wanted to do was to show that there was a difference between regeneration, the new birth and the baptism of the Holy Spirit that Jesus promised from the Father. I will explore these other issues in later messages.
I do want to offer a word of caution to whoever may be reading this blog. When talking about the things of the Spirit, there are many different conclusions and opinions by good and godly people. They vary from how the Holy Spirit works in salvation to His empowering believers today and evidence for that. I am not presenting my messages as theological papers but as a road map to seeking revival. I believe that when God inaugurated the body of Christ at Pentecost, He did it in revival. Revivals have occurred all over the world since then in the Christian church, much like what we see in Acts. The outpouring of God's Spirit on His people is revival. That is what I am seeking and that is what I believe God is directing us at Village to seek. That will make us consumed by the love of Christ. That is revival.
Mon, April 30, 2012
by Jimmy Kinnaird filed under