Did You Receive the Holy Spirit?

Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed? (Acts 19:2).

Paul encountered in Ephesus a group of disciples who believed in Jesus, but they had not received the Holy Spirit.  Today’s conventional teaching on the reception of the Holy Spirit and salvation in Jesus’s name rests on the assumption that both are bestowed when one believes in Jesus.  

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Need a Hero?

The germ of any great idea, machination or agenda is necessity; without a need the scheme is frivolous and the greater the need, the more highly esteemed the solution to the need is. Mickey Mantle was a hero of sorts in his day and he satisfied millions of peoples' entertainment 'needs', but Dr. Jonas Salk was THE hero of the day and Mantle's flame was very dim to the blaze of Salk's stardom. The reason is simple: people valued the polio vaccine even more than they did Mantle's baseball exploits.

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Jews and Gentiles

"But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for possession, so that you might speak of the praises of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light..." 1Pe 2:9 With Christ's triumphal ascension to the right hand of God and the establishment of the Church there was, no later than this, a change that took place in the way of access to the Father. Since no one may come to the Father but through Jesus (by His own words) and "there is no other name under Heaven by which we must be saved", there is no ambiguity in the NT regarding the covenant and the 'covenant people'; who they are, how they came to be, etc.

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Modern Confusion on Baptism

Therefore laying aside all malice and all guile and hypocrisies and envyings, and all evil speakings, desire the sincere milk of the Word, as newborn babes, so that you may grow by it; if truly you have tasted that the Lord is gracious."   I Peter 2:1-3 I remember, since it was only 15 months ago, holding my firstborn, a daughter, for the first time and I hope never to be able to forget it. In my arms was a piece of me, sharing obvious genetic traits, probably predisposed to certain desirable and undesirable personality wiring as well. Yet, for all that, she was pure, untainted, more so than she ever would be again. I marveled as I beheld and studied her.

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The Wrath of God

The Wrath of God is real and powerful. The Hebrew writer tells us that it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. (Hebrews 10:31) Many in the denominational world seek to minimize or even eliminate the Wrath of God from the nature of God. I have often seen and heard comments about "the God of the Old Testament" being much different than the God of the New Testament. But this is something that is simply not supported in scripture.  James 1:17 tells us clearly that He is without variation or shadow due to change. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. In fact the wrath of God is as much a part of the nature of God as His Love, Mercy, or Grace. God would not be God without the wrath of God.

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A Body You Have Prepared

The offerings of animal sacrifice were preparatory for the coming of Christ. They at once demonstrated the need of blood to atone for sin, and the insufficiency of animal sacrifice to bring about the desired change in man’s condition.

  • For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect.

  • For then would they not have ceased to be offered? For the worshipers, once purified, would have had no more consciousness of sins.

  • But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year.  (Heb.10:1-3)

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