Summary: The baptism in the holy spirit is the fulfillment of Gods promise to endue Christians with power in order that they may fulfill God’s purpose in the world
TITLE: God’s Power in You
TEXT: Acts 1:1-8
Theme: What’s the Big Deal About the Holy Spirit
The story is told of a logging foreman who sold a city slicker a chainsaw guaranteed to cut down fifty trees in a single day. A week later, a very unhappy city slicker came to report that the power saw must be faulty – it averaged only three trees a day. The foreman grabbed the saw, pulled the cord, and the saw promptly went, “Bzzzzzzz.” The startled city slicker demanded, “Hey what’s that noise?”
We laugh at the naïveté of the city slicker. But, how many of us have had a similar experience when it comes to living the Spirit filled life? At first we respond with great joy and enthusiasm, but after a while, we think that we have been had. “This is hard. This is tough. I feel like a failure. I can’t do this!”
But, the Spirit can help us do it, if we ask Him to! He is the power source to live for God. We must plug into Him if we are going to live for Him! This is why Jesus promised that His followers would be baptized in the Holy Spirit.
In order for us to fulfill the mission Jesus has given the church, The power and promise of the baptism in the Holy Spirit is not a luxury it is a complete necessity
But Pastor, have you not said that we receive the Holy Spirit when we are saved? Then, why do I need anything more?
Again, let me repeat, when you received Jesus as your savior you were born again by the Holy Spirit. You became a temple of the Holy Spirit as He now dwells within your spirit. This work is referred to as the REGENERATING work of the Holy Spirit.
The baptism is not the same as salvation. The baptism is the EMPOWERING work of the Holy Spirit. Someone has tried to explain the difference this way,
When you were born again, you have the Spirit. The question remains, how much of you does the Holy Spirit possess and control?
Perhaps an analogy will best clarify this. As Christians we may be compared with a reservoir for producing electrical power, like one of those you see when you drive past a Hydro electrical facility or even Niagara falls. When we accept Christ, construction of our reservoir is complete. We now have the potential to be useful and to affect lives. But until the flood gates are opened and the cascading river waters pour through, no power is realized. So it is when we are baptized in the Holy Spirit. We open our lives to God and the Holy Spirit pours into us and through us. It is then we become most effective in God’s service. As with the reservoir, this power-generating experience is not intended to be a one-time occurrence. It is to be an ongoing process. When our spiritual power runs low, we need to return to the Source and let the blessed Holy Spirit pour into us again, bringing fresh power. ...
That is what you and I need in order to be effective as ministers for Jesus. Fresh Power. So, then what exactly is the baptism in the Holy Spirit?
The Baptism as we have said is not the same as salvation. It is subsequesnt to salvation.
This teaching is not exclusive to traditional Pentecostals. The famous fundemetnalist Baptist preacher, Dr. John R. Rice, said, “There is an experience after Salvation, called the Baptism with the Holy Ghost. All Saved people do have the Holy Spirit. When someone is saved, the Holy Spirit puts him into the Body of Christ. But besides that, Christians ought to be filled with the Holy Spirit and special Soul-Winning Power.
And Dr.R.A.Torrey, one of the founders of the Missionary Alliance movement once said, the‘infilling of the Holy Spirit is a definite and distinct experience. A Christian will know whether he has received the Spirit or not.’
But, what did Jesus teach? On one occaision following the resurrection, the disciples were hiding away in an upper Room. There, John records that Jesus suddenly appeared bodily before them and His disciples were indwelled by the Holy Spirit. In John 20, John recors this scene,
When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord.21 So Jesus said to them again, "Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you."22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit."
It is without question that this passage clearly says that they received the Holy Spirit, but the real power was to come later. Several ays later, as the disciples were gathered to listen to Jesus, the Lord gave this promise,