3 Baptisms

In our Wed. night study we ended up talking about Spirit baptism. I was again encouraged by going through the Scriptures in the Book of Acts and seeing how important Jesus and the Apostle made Spirit Baptism. Jesus tells the Apostles to wait in Jerusalem until they have been baptized into the Holy Spirit. In Acts ch. 8 we see a powerful revival: miracles, salvation’s and water baptisms. But that was not sufficient for the Early Church Leaders. Acts 8:15-16 says that even though these people were now saved (meaning the Spirit lives in them) and water baptized, the Holy Spirit had not yet COME UPON THEM.

A question: “how did they know these Christians did not have the Holy Spirit come upon them yet? Another question, “how did they know when the Holy Spirit DID come upon them?

In Acts 9 Saul is saved, and baptized in the Spirit and also baptized in water. We again see a distinction of these. Why? Peter tells us in his sermon in Acts 2:33-39. Specifically v 38-39 Repent and be baptized for forgiveness of sins, (this is salvation) then He goes on to say you will receive (Greek future tense) the PROMISE (Luke 24:49, Acts 1:4, 2:39) of the Father which is Baptism into the Holy Spirit or being clothed with power or having the Holy Spirit come upon you. This promise is for every believer Acts 2:39 says. Now Peter says this in the context of hearing people speaking in other languages or (tongues) and then he preaches to thousands of people and tells them in v.33 of what they are hearing and seeing. He then tells them how to receive the same thing they are hearing and seeing.

To summarize as I close the Bible shows us 3 distinct baptisms:

  1. the Holy Spirit baptizes a believer into the Body of Christ (1 Cor. 12:13. Here the Holy Spirit is doing the baptizing into the ELEMENT of the Body of Christ. This is what happens at salvation.
  2. A believer baptizes a believer into the ELEMENT of water. This is sign of our surrender to Jesus as our Lord.
  3. Jesus (Luke 3:16) baptizes a believer into the ELEMENT of the Holy Spirit. This is Spirit baptism and has to do with us being in the Holy Spirit not the Holy Spirit being in us. The Holy Spirit is in every believer, the important thing that the early church wanted to see happen was that every believer was baptized in the Holy Spirit. (See. Acts 1:4-5,8, Acts 2:33-39, Acts 8:15-17, Act 9:17-19, Acts 10:44-47, Acts 19:1-6.

Baptism into Christ, baptism into water and baptism into the Holy Spirit. Today’s church must reclaim this standard. This is what propelled the Church forward in a culture that was full of sin and all kinds of spirituality, just like ours today. We must return to the pattern the Lord has given us.