By: Waylon Bailey ~
Yesterday was a great day.
No one on earth planned it this way but the coordination of events was beautiful to behold. Yesterday morning I preached on the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and last night we baptized sixty-four people in the Bogue Falaya River in Covington, Louisiana.
All four gospels speak of the promised baptism of the Holy Spirit. John testified that Jesus was the promised Messiah. “The one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ I have seen and I testify that this is God’s Chosen One” (John 1: 33-34).
Baptism is an apt picture for the baptism of the Holy Spirit. As baptism with water covers the person entirely, baptism in the Holy Spirit encompasses the entirety of a person’s life. Nothing is left out or unaffected.
When we repent of our sins and put our faith in Christ, we receive the gift (or baptism) of God’s Spirit. This is not a delayed receipt but occurs as we turn from our sin and turn to Christ. To be in Christ is to have the Spirit of Christ (Romans 8:9).
What happens when we are baptized with the Holy Spirit?
First, we receive the abiding presence of God in our lives. Jesus promised to ask the Father to give His disciples another advocate “to help you and be with you forever–the Spirit of Truth. . . . you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you” (John 14:16-17).
Second, we experience the power of God. We can accomplish whatever pleases the Father because we do so in His power rather than our own. “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples” (John 15:8)..
Third, to be baptized with the Holy Spirit means we have moved from death to life and from the realm of the flesh to the realm of the Spirit. Because of the work of Christ, we have the power to live different lives (Romans 8:9).
May we walk today in that newness of life in Christ.