One of our readers recently wrote asking the following simple but sincere question: "Does a person need to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit in order to receive healing?"
The short answer to that question is, "No." Jesus IS our healer and as 1 Peter 2:24 says - He took those stripes on His body for our healing. We were healed! Now, we do need to believe and receive by faith what Jesus has already done for us. But, I felt lead to elaborate on the baptism in Holy Spirit and to share that with you here.
Jesus told His followers, in John 16:12-14, "I have much more to say to you, more than you can now understand. But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on His own; He will speak only what He hears, and He will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you."
In the book of Acts 1:5, after His resurrection from the dead, Jesus spent 40 days with His disciples and told them: "Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father has promised, which you heard me speak about. For John (the Baptist) baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit."
The Holy Spirit is our comforter, guide, helper, encourager, and teacher. He is the one who gently convicts us of our sins and helps us change. He is our free gift - to be received just by asking the Father and receiving His gift. We do not have to work for the infilling of the Holy Spirit - we just need to receive Him by faith and God's grace.
The Holy Spirit helps us to pray - Romans 8:26. He also makes God's Word plain to us so we can receive all things from God - 1 Corinthians 2:6-16.
It pleases the Father to give us all things. Acts 1:8 says that you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses to all the ends of the earth. That is a promise for us also!
Now, some people believe that when they were water baptized they received the Holy Spirit in all His fullness. Water baptism was a symbol of your death, burial and resurrection. We went down into the water, sins and all, and came up a new person, cleaned through and through. We came up living for Jesus Christ - desiring to please God the Father. Read Romans 6:1-14.
Receiving the fullness or the infilling of the Holy Spirit is actually a two-step process. Let's read a few scriptures to explain. Acts 8:14-17 - Peter and John prayed for the Samarians to receive the Holy Spirit. Why? Because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them, they had simply been (water) baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
Acts 10:44-48 - As Peter was speaking to a group of Gentiles the Holy Spirit was poured out on them. They began speaking in tongues and praising God. THEN they were water baptized in the name of Jesus. So they received the Holy Spirit first, and then were water baptized.
Acts 19:1:7 - Paul was speaking to twelve men in Ephesus. They had been water baptized, but had never even heard of the Holy Spirit. So Paul placed his hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit.
God our Father will NEVER withhold anything from us, especially when we are acting in faith; faith pleases God. John 16:23 - Ask for anything in Jesus' name and the Father will grant your request, so your joy may be complete. Why? John 17:23 - Our Father loves us - JUST AS MUCH - as He does Jesus. WOW! Think about that!
Luke 11:13 explains that a natural father will not give his children a snake when he or she asks for a fish, or a scorpion when he or she asks for an egg. SO HOW MUCH MORE WILL YOUR FATHER IN HEAVEN GIVE THE HOLY SPRIT TO THOSE WHO ASK HIM.
If you do not know if you have the infilling of the Holy Spirit and/or desire this wonderful gift from God then ask God to fill you with His Sprit. You will be glad you did. This baptism really changed Tim's and my life!