Jesus died so that we would recieve the promise of the Father. Our salvation is sealed when we recieve the baptism of the Holy Spirit and are born again, and yet there is so much that is not understood about how God comes to live inside of us.
Why do so many churches ignore this whole subject altogether ?
It is a crying shame that the Holy Spirit is ignored in Church teaching so often. I lead a monthly informal worship session at my Church (The Salvation Army, Glenrothes, East Scotland) and at our next meeting (June 4th) we will be focussing on Pentecost and the power of the Holy Spirit. I'm after quotes about what Pentecost means to people and if its okay with you, will use the text from this post on the night. See more about what we're hoping to do on the blog pages at catchthefireglenrothes.viviti.com Blessings
I can't remember where I read this and it will not be word for word, but one quote that sticks in my mind is "The Word without the Spirit - you will dry up. The Spirit without the Word - you will blow up. The Spirit AND the Word - you will grow up".
Ephesians 1 "Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession—to the praise of his glory."
This is not the baptism of the Holy Spirit. In Acts 10 Cornelius was obviously a believer. While Peter was talking to them, they were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in tongues. This is the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
I believe it is an misunderstanding to say that salvation is sealed with the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. They are separate. The Holy Spirit dwelling in us when we believed. And the distinct filling, overflowing, baptism. I do believe that it is important for believers to be baptised with the Holy Spirit. It is also worth noting that Cornelius was Filled with the Spirit before and water baptism took place, for those who believe that they are linked.
The Baptism (Full immersion) in the person of the Holy Spirit is a vital part for a believer. Without out him, it is like having a car and pushing it everywhere instead of starting the engine. God has poured his spirit out on us a filled us with his power to bring his kingdom in.
We receive the Holy Spirit by faith, and unfortunately, some have not received him in the past and so come up with a theology that fits their experiences rather than their faith.
I wish I could answer that one, and I find it so sad that so many churches ignore the Holy Spirit, afterall He is the one who is active on earth and in our hearts and brings us closer to Jesus and the Father ............ You already have some great comments on here, so I won't repeat what has been said, but I think unless the Holy Spirit is active within you and you are experiencing His indwelling presence, then I think it would be difficult for some church leaders to teach or explain about Him. There is so much fear and misunderstanding about the Holy Spirit and often people throw things at me like "but He was meant only for the first Christians etc.etc." Where does it say that? I could go on and on, but I am sure that you will receive loads more comments on here, so thank you Michael for your discussion. God Bless.
It is controversial, wrought by opinion and interpretation from different 'factions'. This dillutes it's importance, and instead of focusing on SALVATION...and getting this salvation to those who need it, bringing them to the Lord; instead they are turned away by much debate, argueing and disagreement amongst 'christians'....
I do not believe it is the most important thing...Salvation, and calling those who need Jesus, is the most important thing the church should be doing, instead of getting distracted.....and there is a very long list of 'distractions' in the church. And while the church is not doing the Lord's work, people are dying and going to hell....and living now in hell.
This is the very attitude I'm talking about ! While we work out our salvation with fear and trembling are we going to simply ignore Christ's statement that unless we recieve the baptism of the Holy Spirit we shall not enter the kingdom of heaven ? Jesus said go to Jerusalem and wait for the promise of the Father to over 500 people, and yet only 120 actually went and waited for the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentacost. Obviously, most of them had more important things to do.
There can be no debate about the importance of recieving the Holy Spirit and having it come and live within you. Jesus turned the work he was doing over to the Holy Spirit to continue, so instead of him being just one man among millions of people, the Spirit of God could be everywhere at once connecting us all together with one heart, one mind and one spirit. Churches that ignore the teachings about the Holy Spirit and refuse to allow God's Spirit to direct and influence the meetings are building their own kingdoms not the kingdom of heaven, and resemble social clubs instead of gatherings of God's people.
(Quote)....Christ's statement, unless we recieve the baptism of the Holy Spirit we shall not enter the kingdom of heaven ?)
Can you show me that scripture?
I know Jesus said, unless we become like one of these little children.....we shall not enter the kingdom of heaven, but unless I am mistaken....I do not remember Jesus making salvation conditional on receiving gifts of the Holy Spirit. I could be wrong. I do not want to argue.....but as of late, I have been more concerned that, ....to be obedient to Jesus, 'I' need to be more concerned with learning how 'I' can learn to 'fill others' rather than to 'be filled'.
I like to remember the parable of the man with the great debt that he could not pay. Instead of throwing him in prison and selling his family into slavery....the Lord forgave the entire debt. Then he went out and threw another man into prison who owed him a very small debt. I am 'wary' of putting a price or condition on what I received freely, telling other people that they will not enter heaven unless they follow MY RULES.
What is the very simplest requirement...the 'bottom line' for someone to be redeemed/saved/born again/receive eternal life? Is it not to beleive that Jesus Died to pay the entire price for us? If He paid the entire price for us...that means it is FREE 'for us'....If we require a price or a condition from others then we make Jesus a liar. He died for me, so I would not have to pay a price. The requirement has been met. I think that a very simple man...even an illiterate, or mentally challenged...who is not able to grasp all this 'theology' and 'philosophy' of the wise and learned concerning the Holy Spirit, spiritual gifts.....can enter the kingdom of heaven......the same for a little child, who all he/she needs to know is, "Jesus Loves me." It is enough.
This may become a foolish argument - that is, something to be avoided (Titus 3). But here are my two cents... I think what Michael is saying is that many Christians "put out the fire of the Spirit", which is something the Bible specifically says we are not to do (1Thess 5:19).
The Holy Spirit doesn't always do things the way we want, or behave like we expect He should. This is very unsettling to many Christians. Inversely, many other Christians welcome His presence.
I have found that trying to persuade someone to change their mind about this subject is an unfruitful endeavor. The Spirit will prompt them when they are ready. That's when I need to be ready - in season or out of season (2Tim 4).
What we're dealing with here is the classic situation where people fight change because it's uncomfortable, scary and goes against the denomenational emphasis in some bible studies. Some skip right over the book of John and Acts and pick and choose which of Paul's teachings they include. You're correct that we can't persuade anyone to change their mind about the subject of the Holy Spirit, but my concern is that they're mission the most important teaching Jesus left for us to recieve. It's, in fact, critical to their ultimate salvation, which is being born again into the kingdom of heaven. Everything Jesus taught about in his parables was trying to reveal the kingdom of heaven to those the Father was drawing to him, while at the same time hiding the meaning of the teachings from his enemies. Any person who denies the importance of the Holy Spirit in Jesus teachings is lost and confused.
Wow, your talking about the " once saved, always saved " teachings that keep people complacent and content to just put their toe in the water instead of diving right in and getting soaking wet.
I would suggest that you get involved in bible study that includes the book of John and Acts. Study the teaching of Paul in his many letters on faith and grace. " We are to work out our salvation with fear and trembling ", because there is no guarantee that we are saved if we don't bear fruit of the presence of the Holy Spirit living in us. Our flesh can never accomplish all that God has for us to do without the help of the comforter and councilor.
Believing that Jesus died for our sins is the first step, but unless we bear continual spiritual fruit then we are simply playing a game and have no relationship with God. The Holy Spirit accomplishes all the signs and wonders of drawing people into salvation and gives them a hunger and thirst for righteousness. Our part is small and is more about our faith and commitment to being available so that God can use us in many ways.
If you'll read John 3:5 you will see that Jesus states a fact that unless we are born again of water and spirit we shall not enter the kingdom of heaven. Why ? Because we have to completely change in order to be like him. We can't stay like we used to be when we were in the world; that person must die so that the new and resurrected you can be born into the kingdom of heaven and be filled with the Holy Spirit. We are incomplete without the presence of God dwelling within us and consequently we can never be perfect as our Father in heaven is perfect.
Please pray that God will open the eyes of your heart and the ears of your understanding so that you can start to grasp the mysteries of his teachings about the Holy Spirit. Until he reveals himself to you, you are still on the outside looking in, wondering what is really going on. DEATH, RESURRECTION, SUBMISSION, CHANGE, GROWTH, FRUIT, LOVE these are all conditions that Jesus set for us to come to be more like him. Don't fight the truth of his teachings, but try to learn about them and grow to include them in who you are.