WHAT IS HOLY SPIRIT BAPTISM?
This is a question that has become of special interest and concern in the last century arid a half. For beginning a little over one hundred and fifty years ago some ignorant and misguided people began to try to "restore primitive Christianity" by reintroducing what they considered to be the standard practices of Christianity of Apostolic times. That is, they thought that miracles, speaking in tongues and other of the special gifts by which Christianity was authenticated in its beginning, Mark 16:17-20, were to be the constant and continuing practices of Christianity. The modern day Charismatic Movement that is so widespread is the result of this ignorance.
Now a miracle is, by its very nature, not an ordinary thing, and should these become regular things, they would immediately cease to be miracles. Not only so, but the gift of speaking in a foreign language without a natural knowledge of that language, which is what Biblical tongues exclusively are, was to cease (1 Cor. 13:8), with no promise of it ever being "restored." This was, along with the speaking of inspired prophecies, and the gift of new inspired knowledge, to pass away, and did certainly pass away by the end of the first century by which time the Canon of the Bible was closed. With the giving of the perfect, infallible Word of God in its entirety, there would henceforth be no more need for these confirmatory signs (1 Cor. 13:10). Indeed, even during the Lordís earthly ministry He always rejected the seeking of signs as an evidence of unbelief, and so, of spiritual adultery (Matthew 12:39; 16:4; John 4:48). Sign-seekers need to take this to heart, for their seeking for signs and wonders is no evidence of spirituality, but rather it evidences unbelief and a hunger for something to move one emotionally, and that relates only to the flesh. This is not living by faith which is the declared duty of saved people (Rom. 1:17; Gal. 3:11; Heb. 10:38), but is wholly an attempt to live by sight. To live by faith requires obedience to the Bible, for that is faithís only foundation.
These special gifts are associated in many peoplesí minds with Holy Spirit baptism, and they mistakenly assume that every time these gifts were exercised it was evidence that the individual that performed them had been "baptized by the Holy Spirit." This idea involves multiple errors, some based upon unwarranted assumptions, some upon heretical theology, some upon poor translations of Scripture and some simply upon the desire of man to glorify himself. Almost without exception, when you find someone that boasts of having these special gifts as a result of supposedly having been "baptized by the Holy Ghost," you find a person that is trying to make a name for himself or herself in religious matters. Such have a Simon Magus complex, wanting to be known as "the great power of God" (Acts 8:9-11), and they endeavor to bewitch people in order to attain this proud desire, and, commonly, to make merchandise of them.
A proper understanding of Baptism in the Holy Spirit, which is the consistent way that this is referred to in Scripture, will eliminate almost all of the errors associated with the modern so-called "Charismatic Movement," for they are almost entirely based upon a wrong understanding of this great event.
But tragedy of tragedies, many that bear the name of "Baptist" are also in gross error regarding the baptism in the Holy Spirit, and one has only to read what some prominent "Baptists" have written on this, to see what hopeless confusion exists in this area. It seems evident that many people have not carefully studied the Scriptures on this subject, but have rather consulted only their own imagination (see the duty involved about this in 2 Cor. 10:5), or else have taken their views from the perverted writings of those in the Charismatic movement, or from other equally mistaken people.
The point that all need to recognize is, that the deciding factor is not what some famous "name" believes about a Biblical subject, but rather "What saith the Scripture?" This was what Jesus often emphasized in His teachings (Matthew 21:42; 22:29; Luke 10:25; John 5:39, etc). Perhaps one of Satanís most effective means of invalidating Scripture authority is by the old magicianís trick of distracting oneís focus to some secondary thing. Thus, the devil moves people by an oblique distraction to disregard what the Word of God says for what the preacher believes. How many times have we heard the plainest declaration of the Scripture set aside by someone saying, "Well, that is just what the preacher believes!" What a preacher believes or doesnít believe is totally irrelevant to anyone but himself. No preacher is to have dominion over other peopleís faith (2 Cor. 1:24). However, if he is faithfully preaching Godís Word it becomes obligatory to every hearer unquestioningly to submit to Scripture. We are to "stand by faith," but that demands Scripture, which is the only foundation for true faith. Let no preacher ever admonish his hearers to "take my word for it," for his word carries no authority. All authority rests solely in the faithful preaching of the Word of God. Having said that, let it also be said to all rebels that would make this an excuse for contempt of the preacher, that he is an ambassador of the King of all Creation (2 Cor. 5:20). Any disregard of an ambassadorís words, is an open contempt of the authority represented by the ambassador (Luke 10:16). Contempt of faithful preachers is a solemn sin, being rebellion against God, and shows the highest discourtesy (Heb. 13:17).
Having laid these things as a groundwork for the consideration of the question "What Is Holy Spirit Baptism?" we now proceed to an examination of Scripture in regard to this matter, by notingó
I. Holy Spirit Baptism was the Subject of Prophecy.
By this is meant that it is not something that has always been around from Godís first dealings with man. The importance of this fact will be come apparent under our second division. The first mention of Holy Spirit Baptism was by John the Baptist shortly after he began his ministry. "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire" (Matthew 3:11). The first "baptize," which deals with water baptism, is in the present tense, but the second, which deals with Holy Spirit baptism, is in the fixture tense, for the first example of this was yet more than three years away. Thus this, the first mention of it, shows that it was not then a present reality, but was only in prospect.
We find the same prophetic forecast of this in Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16; John 1:33 and Acts 1:5. This last text shows that baptism in the Holy Spirit was a yet future event even after the crucifixion of the Saviour, yet it was to be fulfilled "not many days hence." It was not to come about until after the Saviourís ascent back to the Father, at which time the Holy Spirit would be sent in a special capacity not hitherto known, John 14:16-17, 26; 15:26; 16:7. The Holy Spirit has always indwelt saved people, and none can be saved without this (Rom. 8:9), and He indwelt individuals even in Old Testament times as several Scriptures show (Neh. 9:30; Job 32:8; Ps. 51:11; Isa. 63:11; 1 Pet. 1:11), et al, contrary to what some dispensationalists hold. But this promised coming of the Holy Spirit in capacity as the Comforter was a wholly different thing from the personal indwelling of believers by Him, for it was to be a coming, not upon individuals as such, but upon groups of believers.
Consideration of the references to the future coming of the Holy Spirit in His capacity as the Comforter shows some very instructive facts. John 14:26 shows that the coming of the Comforter would be in order to teach the church about Christ and His doctrine, not to give individuals some emotional experience. It was to be a didactic event in which Christ was to be central, not the Holy Spirit. John 15:26 further reveals the authority and purpose of His coming. The Holy Spirit was never meant to glorify Himself, which is one of the many errors of the Charismatic Movement, but He comes to glorify Christ. It is the spirit of the Antichrist that would rob Christ of His glory. In John 16:7-15 we see that (1) He comes only in Christís absence (v. 7). (2) He comes to reprove the world (vv. 8-11), in three areas and for three reasons. (3) He guides the church into all truth (v. 13). (4) He glorifies Christ (v. 14). (See John 7:37-39).
In all the declarations about this, it is never an individual experience to be sought. Charismatics make this to be something to be sought as an evidence of spirituality, though throughout Scripture it is always set forth as Godís work alone, and this given unsought and unconditional. Some even claim that no one can be saved without it, and some ignorant people, in making this to be salvation related, in essence take this position, as well. Of course, this is partly due to confusing the baptism in the Spirit with the indwelling or filling of the Holy Spirit, which are three totally different things.
The baptism in the Holy Spirit is totally misunderstood by the majority of professing Christendom. It was a future event before Acts 2, and so, was unknown before that and could not have been what it is often thought to be, and also because its function is so precisely limited by Scripture it could not be what it is claimed by many to be.
Being a prophecy of a coming event that did not come to pass the first time until Acts 2, how could the baptism in the Holy Spirit have anything to do with salvation, unless one thinks that Godís salvation changes from age to age and nation to nation? But because so many, including many Baptists, associate this in some way or another with salvation, it is necessary for us to further consideró
II. Holy Spirit Baptism is Not Salvation Related.
Godís salvation has always been the same in every age and nation, and souls had been being graciously saved for millennia before the baptism in the Holy Spirit was even forecast. Many salvation texts have their basis in Old Testament prophecies and promises. Such a text as Acts 4:11-12 proves this. "This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." The reference here is to Psalm 118:22 and Isaiah 28:16, with possible reference also to Isaiah 8:14, which other New Testament quotations of the other two references often include. See Romans 9:33 and 1 Peter 2:6-8, 1 Corinthians 3:11 also refers back to Isaiah 28:16, as does Matthew 16:18 and other texts.
Acts 10:43 is clear beyond all denial that salvation is the same in this dispensation as it was in Old Testament times. "To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins." How many prophets bore witness to the sameness of salvation then and now? All of them. Yet baptism, both in water and in the Holy Spirit were totally unknown until John first announced them. How then could Holy Spirit baptism have anything to do with salvation unless one holds, contrary to the teaching of all Scripture, that God changed His plan of salvation after the resurrection of His Son. This is, incidentally, the position of many that know that their teachings about Holy Spirit baptism are totally contrary to the Old Testament teachings about Godís method of salvation. Behold to what ends a false teaching will drive its adherents!
Salvation has always been by grace through faith, yet never in Scripture is Holy Spirit baptism conditioned upon faith, although many of those that hold to it as a present duty try to make it to be an act of faith to seek for it. Nor is the statement ever made regarding Jesusí baptizing in the Holy Spirit that "He may baptize you in the Holy Spirit," as if it were conditional upon faith or something else in the individual. No! On the contrary it is always a clear, unconditional declaration that "He shall baptize you" etc., (as in Matthew 3:11; Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16; Acts 1:5), for it was conditioned upon nothing but the will of the Saviour.
All through Scripture the duty of people is to be saved by trusting in the Lord, and then to live by faith (Hab. 2:4), which is frequently quoted in the New Testament (Rom. 1:17; Gal. 3:11; Heb. 10:38). Those that hold to a present duty to seek Holy Spirit baptism prefer rather to live by feelings, which, they think gives factual evidence of their spirituality. This is what the modern charismatic experience involves, and is often totally separate from a real assurance that one has trusted in Christ, for the feelings experienced take the place of faith. But this is to reverse the Biblical order of things, for the proper order is (1) Facts-the Gospel message. (2) Faith in Godís Messiah. (3) Feelings manifested in love, joy, hope, etc.
In proof that this was not salvation related we have but to consider the first instance of this baptism in Acts 2. All those assembled together were the apostles and disciples who had been saved under the ministry of John or later under Jesusí ministry (John 4:1-2). Unbelievers do not come into the picture until the report of these things began to be noised abroad some time after they had happened (Acts 2:5-7). And the unbelievers themselves distinguish those that experienced this from themselves. Thus, no unsaved people were ever involved when these baptisms took place. And this was in harmony with the promises that were made about the coming baptism in the Holy Spirit, for in each instance the promise was made to saved people, not to unsaved. In the actual experience of the baptism in the Holy Spirit, we see that it took place only upon already saved people, not only in Acts 2, but also in Acts 8:12-17, and Acts 10:44-48. In the latter text it is confirmed by Acts 11:16-17 that God had given these Gentiles the gifts of repentance and faith. And in Acts 19:1-7, the last and only questionable instance of this, the Holy Spirit did not come on them until Paul had preached the necessity of salvation by faith, and they had been baptized upon their profession of faith in the Lord Jesus. How then could Holy Spirit baptism be salvation related?
And another point that must be made is that salvation is an individual matteróthe most personal matter in the worldóand in it God deals personally with souls one at a time. Souls are not saved in bunches like bananas. Yet, never did this baptism in the Holy Spirit ever take place upon any individual as such. In every one of the three or four instances of it, it occurred upon an assembled group of people. But Charismatics regularly encourage people as individuals to seek what they think is the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and for reasons nowhere given in Scripture. Thus, so far from being Scriptural in their practices, they are almost always is contrast to Scripture.
The limited number of tines that the baptism in the Holy Spirit took place is also against the theory that it is salvation related, for, as we will subsequently see only three or possibly four times did this baptism occur. This being the case, if it were recognized as salvation related that would not only unsave all those in Old Testament times that Scriptures records as saved, but would also limit the number saved in New Testament times to a very small number. Many people assume that it was a regularly occurring event but there is no evidence of this. And when we once understand the true purpose of this baptism, it will be seen that there would be no reason for it to be repeated beyond the three or four times that it is recorded.
The duty of living by faith is hard on manís fleshly nature, for the flesh cannot understand spiritual things (1 Cor. 2:14), and so it demands "feelings" for a confirmation, which is diametrically opposed to living by faith. Faith accepts what God says and moves upon it without any confirmation. "Feelings" may come later to those that are genuinely saved, but they cannot be depended upon, and must not be allowed to dictate in spiritual matters. Fleshly feelings will vary depending upon oneís health, oneís circumstances, oneís spiritual state, and a number of other things, but very little upon Scripture. For these reasons, human feelings are easily manipulated, as we see done by any person who has a little knowledge of psychology. Unscrupulous people often so manipulate others so that they can profit from them, and sadly, this is often true in religion as well.
In this supposed "Holy Spirit baptism" that is currently the rage in many areas, there is a great emotional "feeling" produced, and this pleases the flesh, which is why this erroneous practice is so popular with worldly people that otherwise would have nothing to do with sound preaching and worship. But this is a purely emotional thing, wrought by worldly means and for worldly ends, and is generally rather a substitute for genuine salvation than an evidence of it. To try to make this baptism to be salvation related is closely akin to the ancient and modern heresy of baptismal regeneration that has cursed the professing Christian world for the last eighteen hundred years. It only appears less odious because it is claimed to be a spiritual baptism instead of a physical one, but it is just as unscriptural as the other, and deceives people into a false hope just as readily as does the teaching that water baptism saves.
III. Holy Spirit Baptism was the Authentication of Churches.
Jesus had promised in Matthew 16:18 that He would build His church upon Himself as the "Rock" so often mentioned in the Old Testament. And since the New Testament church would supplant the Old Testament Tabernacle and Temple as the House Of God, it was necessary that it should be authenticated as such. The original prophecy that dealt with this showed that Jesus Himself would do the baptizing (Matthew 3:11). Never was the Holy Spirit to be the Baptizer, which is the common error of almost all that hold to this as a present thing. The consistent teaching of Scripture is that the Holy Spirit was always the element into which people were baptized. This does not appear in the English version, for all of the translators of the 1611 version without exception had departed from immersion except in exceptional cases, and so, they translated the common Greek word en by "with" wherever it is used of baptism. Thereby they were trying to justify their practices of sprinkling or pouring "with water," whereas the Word of God always says "in water." This Greek preposition appears over 2250 times in the New Testament and in almost 1900 times it is rendered "in," and has this meaning in most, if not all, of its other appearances. The translators were more consistent in translating the Greek en by "in" in most other settings. Some think that it may be used instrumentally, and so can be rendered "by" or "with," but this is doubtful, and this idea has certainly contributed to confusion in the present matter.
To see the foolishness of this rendering of "with" one has only to remember that the convert, not water, was the subject of the baptizing. Therefore try substituting in Matthew 3:6 and other such places either "sprinkle" or "pour" for "baptize" (or literally "immerse") and one will read "they were sprinkled of him in Jordan," or "they were poured of him in Jordan." The preposition "on" is never in the inspired text, for the water was not baptized on them, but rather they were baptized in water. On the other hand if one recognizes that only immersion is baptism, then Scripture makes perfect sense in saying "they were all immersed of him in Jordan."
So it is in regard to this prophesied Spirit baptism. Jesus was to baptize in the Holy Spirit, which is the consistent Scripture usage. In Scripture no one was ever baptized by the Spirit, for Jesus was always the One that did the baptizing, and the Holy Spirit was always the element in which a group of people was baptized. And the purpose of this was to authenticate groups of believers as Godís House of Witness in the present age. Where the subjects of this baptism are mentioned, the plural pronoun is always found (Matthew 3:11; Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16), so that, as said before, this was never an individual matter. It always involved a group of people that was, as a group, baptized in the Holy Spirit.
Some might argue that this plural pronoun is not significant, but Scripture proves otherwise, for often Jesus uses the plural pronoun yet applies it to some singular noun that is a metaphor for His church. We see instances of this in Matthew 5:13-16 where the plural "ye" constitute a singular "salt of the earth," and a singular "light of the world." The teaching here in verses 14-16 is of the responsibility of individual believers to put the light of their witness upon the candlestick of the church, for candlesticks symbolize churches according to Revelation 1:20. We see this same usage in 1 Corinthians 3:16-17, where the plural "Ye" constitute the singular "Temple," that is identified as the Corinthian church. Nor are these the only such instances, for this is a common usage. The problem is not with the language of Inspiration, but with human unwillingness to recognize that Jesus had a fully organized church long before the first Pentecost after His death.
Pentecost was not, as commonly called, "the birthday of the church," unless it was the second or third birthday. It was rather the authentication and empowerment of the already existing church that Jesus had brought into existence sometime in the second year of His ministry as set forth in Luke 6:12ff and parallel passages. Nowhere in Scripture is that Pentecost ever even hinted to be the beginning of the church. Such an idea exists only in the minds of dispensationalists such as C. I. Scofield and others, and has been perpetuated by others of like thinking.
This "Ye" that is so often applied to a singular metaphor for the church, was promised an empowerment on Pentecost, as we read in Acts 1:8. "But ye shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you," (literal rendering). This "Ye" was not first constituted here as anything, but was the ĎYe" that had accompanied Jesus ever since He called them into existence as a church.
This authentication of the Jerusalem church was a necessary thing in order for the Jews to recognize that the church was henceforth Godís House of Witness. They had already seen a similar authentication of the Tabernacle (Ex.. 40:33-38), and of the Temple (2 Chron. 5:13-14), at both which God had appeared in visible splendor to evidence His approbation of them. Without a similar display of the Divine Presence, the Jews would never have acknowledged the church as Godís House of Witness, but with the events of this Pentecost before them, they could hardly deny this. Thus, it is easy to see the importance of the baptism in the Holy Spirit to the Lordís churches.
But a similar authentication was necessary for converts from non-Jewish people as well, for the mindset of Jewsóeven Christian Jews-was that the people of Israel had a relationship with God that no other nationalities could have. But when the baptism in the Holy Spirit took place upon converts from the despised Samaritans, Jewish believers could not deny that Samaritan converts were also a House of Witness for God. This second baptism in the Holy Spirit is recorded in Acts 8:14-17, and took place when the Jerusalem church sent Peter and John down to pray for these that they might receive the Holy Spirit in a corporate capacity. This church realized its duty here.
This has to be recognized as a wholly different thing than individual reception of the Holy Spirit, which always occurs instantaneously at the moment of the new birth (Rom. 8:9-11; Eph. 1:13-14), and never occurs as the result of the prayers of others. It is part of the salvation experience. But this baptism in the Holy Spirit, which is always a corporate thingóit is experienced by a group, and never by individuals as such-was in fulfillment of one of Godís original laws of reproduction. Like must beget like, for this is one of the natural laws that God has instituted. In the creation week it is repeatedly said that each genus brought forth "after his kind" (Gen. 1:11). Ten times (the number associated with Divine government) in this chapter this is said. Man cannot invent a scriptural church, for it is an organismóa living thingóand can come into existence only by being born out of an already existing church. Scriptural churches must be born out of churches. This is what the Jerusalem church did on this occasion.
The third occasion of the baptism in the Holy Spirit is recorded in Acts 10:44-48, but this presented a more difficult situation than the Samaritan believers did. Because the Samaritans were half-caste Jews, the more pure blood Jews could believe that God might take them to be His House of Witness, but it was hard for them to believe that those "ungodly Gentile dogs" could ever be so used. Hence, Peter was called on the carpet by the Jerusalem church for going down and ministering to the Gentiles. And not until he had explained that the same thing that had happened to the Jewish church on Pentecost had happened to the Gentile believers, did they accept them as on an equality with the Jerusalem church as a House of God (Acts 11:1-18).
That there was a sameness about these three events is evident when we notice that the Greek word epipipto [epipipto] óto fall uponóappears concerning these events only three times in Scripture, and these in regard to these three occasions. The aorist tense on each of these occasions witnesses to this being a one time action in past time, for it was never repeated on the same group. (See Acts 8:16 [epipeptwkoV]; 10:44 [epepesen] and 11:15 [epepesen]).
Another interesting thing is that these three groups involve the same divisions to whom the Lord had commissioned His truth to be taken in Acts 1:8. "Jerusalem and in all Judaea" was the field of the Jerusalem Church, which was baptized in the Holy Spirit in Acts 2. "In Samariaí was the field of the Samaritan church that was baptized in the Spirit in Acts 8:14-17. And "unto the uttermost part of the earth" was the field of Gentile churches, the first one of which was baptized in the Spirit in Acts 10:44-48.
The events that took place in Acts 19:1-7 when a spurious church was reorganized by Paul seem to be similar to these three times when groups were baptized in the Holy Spirit. This is why we have said that there were only three or possibly four times when the baptism of the Spirit took place. However, against this, is the fact that, never are the events of Acts 19:1-7 said to be the baptism in the Spirit. Nor is the Spirit said to have "fallen" upon the believers there. He "came" on them, but this is an entirely different Greek word than the one used of the three certain baptisms in the Spirit.
Therefore it is probable that Acts 19:1-7 was not a baptism in the Spirit, but it is certainly clear evidence of what is the duty of groups that have not been organized by proper authority. And Paul, having been sent out under the authority of the Antioch church, would have had authority to do this, and the result was that the Ephesian church had the indwelling Comforter the same as if it had been baptized in the Spirit.
But it had this, not as a result of having been baptized in the Spirit, but because it was birthed by the authority of an already existing church that was indwelt by the Comforter, Who was passed on to the new church in the process of the proper organization.
An important principle is involved in proper church organization, and that is, that not only is truth passed on organically in proper church organizations, but that the Spirit is passed on as well. As living organisms, churches are like people. A child not only is born with the physical characteristics of its parents, but also with the same spirit that they have. This is the only way to explain the Biblical truth that everyone has inherited a depraved nature from his parents. This is called theologically traducianism. When a church is properly organized out of an already existing Scriptural church, not only does it have an organic connection with the organizing church, but the Holy Spirit, in His capacity as the Comforter, is passed on as well.
This is not only very important, but also explains why so many "churches" are so doctrinally unsound. John 14:16-18, 26; 15:26, and 16:7-14, all promise the Holy Spirit in His capacity as the promised Comforter to Scripturally organized churches, Whose ministry is to lead them into all truth. False churches, not having the Comforter, are left only to the wisdom of human teachers, which is so often faulty. True churches have the teaching ministry of the Comforter, which is why each is "the pillar and ground of the truth" (1 Tim. 3:15), in its locality, and they generally send out men that are sound in the faith to teach others (2 Tim. 2:1-2).
IV. Holy Spirit Baptism was a Short Term Phenomenon.
This was never an individual experience, but was always experienced by a group, specifically a church either already in existence, or one in prospect. The purpose was to authenticate such as a House Of God, and for this reason, was always experienced by a group of people that were already saved and submissive to the will of God. This authentication was necessary because God had authenticated the two former Houses Of Witness after they had been prepared for their Divinely given work, and without this, the Churches would have been considered, especially by the Jews, to be inferior to the Tabernacle and Temple. This authentication was experienced three times by people of the three different nationalities, and this conformed to the divisions of the Lordís commission in Acts 1:8, to each of which the Holy Spirit was promised.
But with these authentications the Lordís churches were forever established as Godís witnesses throughout this age, and within a short time the Lord had so blessed the ministry of His churches that no one could doubt the Lordís hand in all this. Even pagan emperors were amazed at the spread of the churches even in the face of the most intense persecutions, and so the word came to be that "the blood of martyrs is the seed of the churches."
In the face of these things, no one could doubt that God had established the New Testament church as His House of Witness, so that henceforth to seek for another baptism in the Spirit is to manifest the most blatant unbelief. Either that, or else it is to wholly misunderstand what the baptism in the Holy Spirit was and to try to make it a way to glorify self.
This baptism in the Holy Spirit was not a common thing even in Apostolic times, having only happened three times for sure, as recorded in Acts 2, Acts 8 and Acts 10. And by the middle of the first century it was already acknowledged as a thing of the past, not a continuing thing, for Ephesians 4:5, which was written around 60-65 A.D., records that there is but "one baptism." This was water baptism, which is recorded as continuing to be practiced after this, and has, in fact, never ceased to be practiced by churches both faithful and false. One baptism, NOT TWO, as there would have to be if baptism in the Holy Spirit was still a privilege or duty. Baptism in the Holy Spirit had fulfilled its purpose as decreed by the Lord Jesus Himself, and it could not but cease for this reason. And He, as the original administrator of it, was no longer administering it. This is evident from the silence regarding it by the Son of God Himself when He addressed the Seven representative Churches in Asia in Rev. chapters two and three.
We have now looked at all the Scriptures that relate to baptism in the Holy Spirit. No, we have not dealt with 1 Corinthians 12:13 here for that does not relate to Holy Spirit baptism, but rather to water baptism, and so, has been examined in the section dealing with the proper means of entrance into the church. See section on "What Is The Body of Christ?" And not one of these even hints that this would be a continuing thing, or that it ever occurred beyond the first three instances of it. Scripture is totally silent about this ever occurring from the middle of the first century onward, so that any attempts to reinstate this in these latter apostate days is manifestly an endeavor to go contrary to the revealed will of God.
In view of all of these Scripture facts, let no one be deceived that he either has or can receive this baptism. It no longer exists and has not existed since the Apostolic Age in either outward actions, or subliminally in salvation. Anything that is today assumed to be baptism in the Holy Spirit is at least an error, and perhaps a satanic delusion. Beware that you be not deceived and led into an unscriptural practice! The only thing that can come out the attempted reinstatement of a supposed baptism of the Holy Spirit is an inflating of the fleshly pride, and that is always an abomination to God, as we read in Proverbs 6:16-17; 8:13; 16:5, and elsewhere.