Acts chapter 19 opens with this narrative: "And it happened, while Apollos was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper regions, came to Ephesus. And finding some disciples, he said to them, 'Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?' "
Eventually, these followers of John the Baptist became followers of Jesus Christ, and were miraculously baptized with the Holy Spirit of God.
Charles Finney, in his book Power from On High, wrote:
“In a former article I said that the lack of the Baptism of the Spirit should be deemed a disqualification for a pastor, a deacon or elder, a Sunday School teacher, a professor in a Christian College, and especially a professor in a theological seminary.
"Is this a hard saying? Is this an uncharitable saying? Is it unjust? Is it unreasonable? Is it unscriptural?
"Suppose any one of the Apostles, or those present on that day of Pentecost, had failed through apathy, selfishness, unbelief, indolence, or ignorance to obtain this Baptism with the Holy Spirit, would it have been uncharitable, unjust, unreasonable, or unscriptural, to have accounted him disqualified for the work which Christ has in fact called us all?
"Christ had expressly informed them that without this endowment they could do nothing. He had expressly enjoined them not to attempt it in their own strength.”
So, the earnest, honest question for all who serve our Lord Jesus Christ is the same. Have we received the Holy Spirit? And beyond that, are we walking in His power and fulness? Do we rely upon Him — and upon Him alone — for the qualifications and power to do what only Christ can do through us by the Spirit's power?
Exhortation and encouragement are the two sides of the same spiritual coin. Prepare to be exhorted and encouraged, and may the Lord break out upon us with power, passion, and the pursuit of the highest calling imaginable... to know Christ, and to make Him known.
Paul Berry is the founder of Acts 19 Ministries, as well as a team pastor with Poimen Ministries. Paul pastored Calvary Chapel Santa Maria, CA for over 30 years until stepping aside to pursue the leading of the Holy Spirit in this next chapter of his ministry life.
Email: email@example.com--- Support this podcast: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/bill-holdridge/support