Examples Of Holy Spirit Baptism:

Although not a ‘Holy Spirit Baptism,’ the disciples ‘received the Holy Spirit’ at conversion. -- their ‘baptism’ took place later at Pentecost:

John 20:19-22

On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord. Again Jesus said, "Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you." And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.”

Holy Spirit Baptisms in the Bible

There are five (5) instances of believers being ‘baptized in the Holy Spirit’ in the Bible – Acts 2, 8, 9, 10 and 19.

The 120 on the Day of Pentecost:

Acts 2:1-4

When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.

The "New Converts" at Samaria: (this means they were already saved).

Acts 8:14-19

When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had "accepted the word of God," they sent Peter and John to them. When they arrived, they prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them; they had simply been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money and said, "Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit."

Saul in Damascus with Ananias:

Acts 9:17-20

Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, "Brother Saul, the Lord--Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here--has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit." Immediately, something like scales fell from Saul's eyes, and he could see again. He got up and was baptized, and after taking some food, he regained his strength. Saul spent several days with the disciples in Damascus. At once he began to preach in the synagogues that Jesus is the Son of God.

The Gentile New Believers at Cornelius’ Household:

Acts 10:43-46

All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name." While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles. For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God.

The Twelve Believers at Ephesus:

Acts 19:1-6

While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples and asked them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?" They answered, "No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit." So Paul asked, "Then what baptism did you receive?" "John's baptism," they replied. Paul said, "John's baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus." On hearing this, they were baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came "on them", and they spoke in tongues and prophesied.

Acts 11:16-17

“Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, "John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.' If therefore God gave them the same gift as He gave us when we believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could withstand God?"

Peter states clearly in Acts 2:11 and Acts 11:16 that what was experienced by the believers at Pentecost, and what was experienced by Cornelius and his household, was the same ‘Baptism with the Holy Spirit’ that was promised by Joel and John the Baptist. “This is that” which was promised! It is the gift of the Holy Spirit!

In four instances of baptism with the Holy Spirit described in the Bible, the baptism with the Holy Spirit explicitly occurred "after the believer had come to salvation through faith in Christ "seven weeks after in Acts 2, several days after in Acts 8, three days after in Acts 9 and months if not years after in Acts 19.

In three of the five instances, tongues are explicitly mentioned (Acts 2, 10 and 19). In the remaining two, tongues are very likely to have occurred. In Acts 8, the Scripture says that “…Simon saw that through the laying on of hands the Holy Spirit was given.” Simon saw something that made him know that the individuals were receiving the Holy Spirit. It is likely that he saw them speaking in tongues. Although Acts 9 does not explicitly mention Paul speaking in tongues, we know explicitly from 1 Corinthians 14 that Paul indeed spoke with tongues, very often, and considered it important to his spiritual growth. Tongues are a normal part of receiving the Baptism in the Holy Spirit.

What is the Baptism with the Holy Spirit for?

Acts 1:8

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."

Romans 8:26-27

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will.

Luke 24:49

“I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”

It is this clothing with power that allows believers to minister by the spirit of God. Through the baptism in the Holy Spirit, access is made possible to the powerful vocal and ministry gifts of the Spirit, such as prophecies, words of wisdom and knowledge, supernatural faith, workings of miracles, gifts of healings, discerning of spirits, tongues and interpretations of tongues. Most important among the abilities that the Spirit gives through the baptism in the Holy Spirit, and most directly tied to the baptism itself (with tongues), is prophecy. In many instances we read that the people “spoke with tongues and prophesied.” Prophecy encourages and builds up the body of Christ. And all of the gifts work together to equip the saints for service in God’s Kingdom to build up the body of Christ. The doorway to any of the gifts is through first being baptized in the Holy Spirit.

What is ‘Speaking in Tongues’ all about?

Tongues are a special spiritual gift, given by God (see 1 Corinthians 12:10).

1 Corinthians 14:2

For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God. Indeed, no one understands him; he utters mysteries with his spirit.

1 Corinthians 14:4

He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself

1 Corinthians 14:14

For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my mind is unfruitful…

1 Corinthians 14:15

So what shall I do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my mind; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my mind.

1 Corinthians 14:16

…praising God with your spirit…

1 Corinthians 14:17

…giving thanks…

1 Corinthians 14:39

Do not forbid speaking in tongues…

Prayer tongues are not intended for us to show off or to look spiritual or important to other people – tongues are spoken to God! Talk to people in understandable English:

1 Corinthians 14:19

“But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue.”

Prayer tongues are a beautiful language of prayer, praise and thanksgiving to God, spoken from the spirit to God. When a person prays in tongues, their spirit is praying directly to God, speaking mysteries of praise. Praise and thanksgiving to God confuse Satan, and tongues even more so. The human mind cannot understand tongues (1 Corinthians 14:14).

Apostle Paul’s desire: ‘I would like every one of you to speak in tongues’ – 1 Corinthians 14:5

Ephesians 6:18

“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.”

Jude 1:20

“But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.”

What are ‘prayer tongues’?

1 Corinthians 14:28

“If there is no interpreter, the speaker should keep quiet in the church and speak to himself and God”

Our prayer language is when a believer speaks in tongues to himself and God as described in this verse. Prayer language is different from the church-office spiritual gift of tongues. Believers who have received the spiritual office gift of ‘different kinds of tongues’ (1 Corinthians 12:10) are used by God to speak to the church in tongues, which are then interpreted by someone with the gift of interpretation of tongues so that the church can understand and be built up and encouraged. The church-office spiritual gift of tongues is a different kind of tongues than the prayer language that is spoken to oneself and to God. Everyone who is baptized in the Holy Spirit may use a prayer language (praying in the Spirit to God); and God has appointed some to be gifted with different tongues to speak in the Spirit to the church.

Gift of Tongues Prayer Tongues

· Spoken to the church · Spoken to God

· Must be interpreted · Need no interpretation

· Edify the church · Edify the speaker

· Some are appointed · All spirit-filled believers may use


What Should I Do To Receive the Baptism with the Holy Spirit?

There are several aspects of obedience that believers in the New Testament fulfilled in receiving the baptism with the Holy Spirit. This list is not meant to represent requirements to being baptized in the Holy Spirit. However, in seeking the baptism with the Holy Spirit it is beneficial to investigate any areas where we may need further obedience.

Believe the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ – His death, burial and resurrection (Romans 10:9; Acts 10:43-44)

Repent and confess Jesus Christ as Lord (Romans 10:9; Acts 2:38)

Be baptized in water in the name of the Lord Jesus (Acts 2:38; Acts 19:5)

Understand that the baptism in the Holy Spirit is a promise from God to all believers, and is therefore promised to you (Joel 2:28; Acts 2:38-39)

Have hands laid upon you in prayer by Holy Spirit-baptized believers (Acts 8:17; Acts 9:17; Acts 19:6)

Ask the Lord to baptize you in the Holy Spirit (Luke 11:13)

Believe that you will receive what you ask for (Galatians 3:2,14; James 1:6; Matthew 21:22; Hebrews 11:6)

Yield to God (Romans 6:13)


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