Baptism means ‘to submerge’ so to be baptized means to be immersed in water. By definition there is no such thing as full immersion baptism as opposed to any other sort, because – at least as I see it – the word implies full immersion and nothing else.
So, if baptism means ‘to be submerged’ then what is Holy Spirit baptism? What is the baptism of the Holy Spirit’?
On the Day of Pentecost, 50 days after the Passover and Christ’s Crucifixion, many were gathered when tongues of fire descended upon them and they spoke in various languages (Acts 2). This is one manifestation of the Holy Spirit. The Pentecostal Church denomination was founded upon this truth, and it is their doctrine which says you will speak in tongues if you are baptized in the Holy Spirit. For me, Baptism in the Holy Spirit is even simpler than that: the manifest presence of God will fall upon anyone it wills and the power and presence of God will be experienced.
The Holy Spirit is our teacher, comforter, and will convict us of sin. He is our helper (John 14, 15, 16) Any who believe and follow Jesus receive the Holy Spirit at the time of rebirth. But how do we experience His presence? How do we know the power from on high? And do we need this power if we are saved by God’s grace? Indeed we do. Why?
We live in dangerous times. Many say it is the End Times.
Jesus had the Holy Spirit’s power and presence. In Luke 4 Jesus quotes Isaiah 61, speaking of the Holy Spirit of the LORD resting upon him. If he operated in and through the Spirit, then how much more do we need Him?
“The Spirit of the LORD God is upon me, because He has anointed me to preach good news….” (Isaiah 61: 1)
And yet I for one, haven’t enough of Him. I have experienced His power and presence. I have basked in the beauty of His holiness on more than one occasion. And yet, I am fearful of Him whenever He draws near, not because He will hurt me, but because I am anxious when it comes to surrender. Even though it is always good, always refreshing, always renewing, my flesh resists and I struggle to yield.
I experience the presence of the Holy Spirit in the following ways:
He makes me nervous
He makes me tremble
He gives me a rumbling ache in my tummy
My mouth wants to shout praise
I am sleepless
These are just clues to manifestation of Holy Spirit.
The fruit is patience. The fruit is greater love for others and for God
The fruit is joy, peace, goodness, faith, greater kindness, gentleness and/or self control.
Nothing ill comes from Holy Spirit. He does not overtake our bodies or our minds. He does gently and sometimes persistently prompt us to surrender to God’s timing, Word or wisdom. He does wake us up to spiritual understanding, deepening our experience or understanding of God’s word. He does not take over or harm. He is to be awed but not feared, to be followed, to be comforted and nurtured by. He protects, warns and guides.
Yes, in these end times, if indeed they are End Times, we need Holy Spirit. And those operating with Him can do much to bring God’s kingdom here, on Earth, as it is in Heaven.
Plan to experience a deepening awareness of God’s Spirit upon you.
1. Invite Him
2. Choose to trust Him
3. Give Him time to descend upon you and to fill you
4. Surrender: fear, suspicion, anxiety to Him
5. Receive from Him
May you have a Spirit-filled day!