Grace Victory MEO L.A.M. Norman Oetker Missionary “The Light Amidst the Mong/MEO” Hmong Thailand, Reynosa Mexico, English Class, St. Charles Missouri US.

Grace Victory MEO L.A.M. Norman Oetker Missionary "The Light Amidst the Mong/MEO" Hmong Thailand,Reynosa Mexico,English Class, St. Charles Missouri US. 

WANTED… A WRITER FOR A BOOK ON MY LIFE AS A CHRISTIAN MISSIONARY CONTACT: normanoetker@hotmail.com  October 2009

 

       

       

October 24, 2009 Just a note before bringing this previous article from last year’s blog to this month.
 
Christians are New Creatures in Christ. We, the Christians, are not the same person as before, if one isn’t changed then one wasn’t born again by the Holy Spirit of God. When are the Christians going to stop whining about all of their woe! It seems all that one hears from the religionists leaderships, is to draw the continual parallel how that we are failures in the things of God, we have missed this are that, and we are to continually, week after week, year after year, confess our inward secret sins repeatedly. We are slaves to our sinful passions as long as we are in these sinful bodies here on earth.
 
Hello!!! is this it ?? As a Christian?
 
Look at all the Christian self help, awareness, unveiling, how to books, every sympathy plan known to man in trying to get support funds.
 
Christians are lead to believe they are just a helpless lot, and that their true purpose, is to give used cloths to some poor person, are to give food to the hungry, this in their mind is the emblem of their Christian humility.
 
We are a different person, made different by God’s power, by us agreeing,with a repentant heart to God’s terms through the Cross of Christ.
 
We are different! we are a ""NEW CREATURE IN CHRIST""
 
Break free Christian of this continual "YOKE  Of  BONDAGE," You are free! believe "Jesus!"
 
Walk in the Promises, stop believing the religionists, you are a "New Creature In Christ."
 
Stop living as a secret failure as a Christian!
 
Stop thinking that somehow in the future your going to become what God wants you to be! You are that now, in God’s eyes! Walk in the Christian New Testament, New Covenant promises, not in some future emotional wish list! of what you think your going to be…Believe  Jesus! trust Jesus! You are as He, Jesus says, "a NEW Creature!" not new in Sin!
 
But, A new creature In Christ
 
 Believe, walk, talk, to-be what Jesus- By His Power alone that emanates from His precious Atonement- freely gives to all that ask, the opportunity to become a new creature in Him, In Christ! Grace, Grace thank you Jesus! Praises to You!
 
Believe the Bible, you are not the first century person, that the bible talks about and too.
 
You are the continual, ongoing, Living Book Of Acts! 
 
Believe God! ….Believe Jesus! …. Believe The Bible! …..
 
Follow The Teachings Of The New Covenant/Testament Writer’s
 
Christ, the Apostles, and the Evangelists.
 
YOU ARE A NEW PERSON, A NEW CREATURE IN CHRIST! BELIEVE JESUS! 
 
N. Oetker Christian Missionary Serving in Reynosa Mexico October 2009
 
 
 
Is Grace Earned By Christians By Acts Of Humility? A Review. 
  • Many Years In The Past, During A Sunday School Class, I got a checked in my Spirit about a statement that was made. Eventually, through the years I have recognized that "check"’ as an inward witness from the Holy Spirit, indicating that something wasn’t correct in what was being said.

  • Back then, and even more so now, I  spent, and spend, a lot of time researching things and sure enough you would find the error. More importantly, the error found, would be based on it’s contradictions to the Bible, not through man’s current theologies. The example I want to give starts like this, "We are God’s People."

  • Consequently, from this statement a general message evolves, that as the people in the Old Testament where God’s people, so today, we are God’s people. (The everyday church going people.)

  • The Blessing’s of God are our rights’s, As the Jewish People thought. 

  • Based on this simple repetitive statement by religious leaders to their religious people, this people begin to have a false since of security.  

  • Theretofore, the next step is easy to believe, that as God was the great protector of the Old Testament thus, He will protect them, if  they will keep His commands. 

  • This error continues…

  • We are God’s Children, and, if we obey God, by doing things for Him, then "God" will take care of everything for us.

  • Our erroneous performance based actions insures us of those blessings.

  • The error continues… 

  • For us to receive "Grace," we need to do something.

  • The Prosperity message is based in a similar concept, it normally goes something like this, that we have a sort of contract with God.

  • If we do our part in this contract arrangement then God is obligated to do His part. 

  • For example, if I do this service, or give this much: time, effort, money, then God is under His own Word to give back to me this, and so much more, strictly a contractual arrangement.

  • I do, give etc. and God gives back in a more bountiful measure.

  • I receive because I have done something to earn it or to receive it.

     

    • God is sovereign, and "He, God and He" alone, can and will do what He so desires.

    • We know that Mercies and Truth’s are God’s given from generation to generation.. 

         

             Quote from the article under review which is below. "God’s grace is accessed through humility and faith."  

    • No, it’s not, we have nothing to do with accessing God’s Grace. It’s from God and God alone. This ideal is very difficult for most to realize.

    • Furthermore, this is simply a miss applied meaning of Grace in scripture, in fact, it is contrary to the trueness about the Bible doctrine of salvation by Grace.

    • This miss-applied application about Grace, is in fact, a law based concept.

    • Why is this so popular? Why does it have a large following? Why is it taught and preached?

    • Man is a law based creature, man general thinks you get what you deserve attitude.

    • I will determine to be humble therefore, I’ll receive God’s Grace.

        This thread plays out like this …being God’s children, as demonstrated over and over with Old Testament examples, then we, the children of the New Testament deserve this or that. Why? because we have done this and that, or we have acted in our minds, in humility or this way in faith; thus, we receive from our performance based actions, which in our mind seems right.

    • In short, this ideal that has been taught over and over. That we, the religionists deserve… something because of who we are, because of the actions that we performed, whether they be mental or physical (humility or faith.)

    • This concept, which is  sad to say, is embraced in most of Christendom.

    • It is an error, and the explanations of Grace given in the writings under review below, are incorrect, and are theologically based, not biblically.

    • Grace from God is not based on our actions.

    • Grace is God’s, and it’s given in abundant measure, from His heart, His love, and His kindness, to wards man, whom He created in His image. 

    • N. Oetker… I have included one of the excellent articles on Grace from the Fundamentals.
    •   Then after this Fundamental article on Grace below, the article in review continues.
    •   Fundamentals
    • http://blueletterbible.org/Comm/fundamentals/44.html
    • "The Grace of God"By C. I. Scofield, D. D.
    • "Grace" is an English word used in the New Testament to translate the Greek word, Charis, which means "favor," without recompense or equivalent. If there is any compensatory act or payment, however slight or inadequate, it is "no more grace"—Charis.
    • When used to denote a certain attitude or act of God toward man it is therefore of the very essence of the matter that human merit or deserving is utterly excluded. In grace God acts out from Himself, toward those who have deserved, not His favor, but His wrath. In the structure of the Epistle to the Romans grace does not enter, could not enter, till a whole race, without one single exception, stands guilty and speechless before God. …  
    • The Three Errors
    • In the Epistle to the Galatians the Holy Spirit through Paul meets and answers the three great errors into which in different degrees, theological systems have fallen.
    • The course of this demonstration is like the resistless march of an armed host. Nothing can stand before it. The reasonings of ancient and modern legalists are scattered like the chaff of the summer threshing floor.
    • We have, most of us, been reared and now live under the influence of Galatianism. Protestant theology, alas, is for the most part, thoroughly Galatianized, in that neither law nor grace are given their distinct and separated places, as in the counsels of God, but are mingled together in one incoherent system. The law is no longer, as in the Divine intent, a ministration of death (2 Corinthians 3:7), of cursing (Galatians 3:10), of conviction (Romans 3:19), because we are taught that we must try to keep it, and that by Divine help we may. Nor, on the other hand, does grace bring us blessed deliverance from the dominion of sin, for we are kept under the law as a rule of life despite the plain declaration, "Sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace" (Romans 6:14).
    • The First Error
    • The Spirit first meets the contention that justification is partly by lawworks and partly by faith through grace (Galatians 2:5 to 3:24).
    • The steps are:
    • 1. Even the Jews, who are not like the Gentiles, hopeless, "and without God in the world" (Ephesians 2:12), but already in covenant relations with God, even they, "knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ" (Galatians 2:15,16), have believed; "for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified."
    • 2. The law has executed its sentence upon the believer (Galatians 2:19); death has freed him. Identified with Christ’s death by faith, he, in the reckoning of God, died with Christ (Romans 6:3-10; 7:4).
    • 3. But righteousness is by faith, not by law (Galatians 2:21).
    • 4. The Holy Spirit is given to faith, not law-works (Galatians 3:1-9).
    • 5. "As many as are of the works of the law are under the curse"—and the reason is given: "Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them" (Galatians 3:10). The law, then, cannot "help", but can only do its great and necessary work of condemnation (Romans 3:19,20; 2 Corinthians 3:7,9; Galatians 3:19; James 2:10).
    • Elsewhere (Romans 5:1-5) the Spirit, by the same Apostle, sums up the results of justification by faith with every semblance of human merit carefully excluded. Grace, through faith in Jesus Christ, has brought the believer into peace with God, a standing in grace, and assured hope of glory. Tribulation can but serve to develop in him new graces. The very love that saved him through grace now fills his heart; the Holy Spirit is given him, and he joys in God. And all by grace, through faith!
    • The Second Error
    • The Spirit next meets and refutes the second great error concerning the relations of law and grace—the notion that the believer, though assuredly justified by faith through grace wholly without law-works, is, after justification, put under law as a rule of life.
    • This is the current form of the Galatian error. From Luther down, Protestantism has consistently held to justification by faith through grace. Most inconsistently Protestant theology has held to the second form of Galatianism.
    • An entire section of the Epistle to the Romans, and two chapters of Galatians are devoted to the refutation of this error, and to the setting forth of the true rule of the believer’s life. Romans 6, 7, 8, and Galatians 4 and 5, set forth the new Gospel of the believer’s standing in grace.
    • Romans 6:14 states the new principle: "For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace." The Apostle is not here speaking of the justification of a sinner, but of the deliverance of a saint from the dominion of indwelling sin. In Galatians, after showing that the law had been to the Jew like the pedagogue in a Greek or Roman household, a ruler of children in their nonage (Galatians 3:23,24) the Apostle says explicitly (ver. 25), "But after that faith has come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster" (pedagogue).
    • No evasion is possible here. The pedagogue is the law (3:24); faith justifies; but the faith which justifies also ends the rule of the pedagogue. Modern theology says that after justification we are under the pedagogue. Here is a clear issue, an absolute contradiction between the Word of God and theology. Which do you side with?
    • Equally futile is the timorous gloss that this whole profound discussion in Romans and Galatians relates to the ceremonial law. No Gentile could observe the ceremonial law. Even the Jews, since the destruction of the temple, A.D. 70, have not found it possible to keep the ceremonial law except in a few particulars of diet. It is not the ceremonial law which says, "Thou shalt not covet" (comp. Romans 7:7-9).
    • The believer is separated by death and resurrection from Mosaism (Romans 6:3-15; 7:1-6; Galatians 4:19-31). The fact remains immutable that to God he is, as to the law, an executed criminal. Justice has been completely vindicated, an it is no longer possible even to bring an accusation against him (Romans 8:33,34).
    • It is not possible to know Gospel liberty, or Gospel holiness, until this great fundamental truth is clearly, bravely grasped. One may be a Christian and a worthy and useful man, and be still under bondage to the law, but one can never have deliverance from the dominion of sin, nor know the true blessedness and rest of the Gospel and remain under the law. Therefore, once more, note that it is death which has broken the connection between the believer and the law. "The law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth" (Romans 7:1). "But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held" (Romans 7:6). Nothing can be clearer.
    • But I hasten to add that there is a mere carnal and fleshly way of looking at our deliverance from the law, which is most unscriptural, and I am persuaded, most dishonoring to God. It consists in rejoicing in a supposed deliverance from the principle of Divine authority over the life—a deliverance into mere self-will and lawlessness.
    • The true ground of rejoicing is quite other than this. The truth is, a Christian may get on after a sort under law as a rule of life. Not apprehending that the law is anything more than an ideal, he feels a kind of pious complacency in "consenting unto the law that it is good," and more or less languidly hoping that in the future he may succeed better in keeping it than in the past. So treated, the law is wholly robbed of its terror. Like a sword carefully fastened in its scabbard, the law no longer cuts into the conscience. It is forgotten that the law offers absolutely but two alternatives exact obedience, always, in all things, or a curse. There is no third voice. "Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them" (Galatians 3:10; James 2:10). The law has but one voice: "What things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law; that every mouth may be stopped and all the world may become guilty before God" (Romans 3:19). The law, in other words, never says: "Try to do better next time." Of this the antinomian legalist seems entirely unaware.
    •  
    •  
    • N. Oetker Missionary…below is the article in review, please remember it is the miss-application of ‘Grace.’ that is the review.
    • "Access to Grace through Humility and Faith." N. Oetker one cannot receive Grace by their actions, mental or physical. 
    • N. Oetker English Class Comments October 2008 Reynosa.
    •  
    • God’s Grace First Draws One To The Saving Knowledge Of Christ. Then, That Individual, if she or he so desires from a repentant heart, Will, Yield Their Mind, And Heart, For The Acceptance Of "Jesus," As Their Personal Lord And Savior.
    • The Atoning Work Of The Cross By Faith Is Applied To His Sin’s, His Guilt, And  Then Sin’s Condemnations Are Removed, Then and Only Then, Is One Converted.
    • Being Humble as a Little Child, can Only Be Accomplished By God’s Grace.
    • God’s Grace First Drawing One to the Cross, In Their Decision To Accept Christ.
    • Only Through God’s Grace Can That Process Begin.
    • And Being Humbled Can Only Be Accomplished By A Converted Person. For All Are Dead In Their Trespasses And Sin’s, Until They Are Converted.
    • 1 ¶  At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?
    • 2  And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,
    • 3  And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
    • 4  Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
    •  
    •  
    • God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble…through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand.
    • James 4:6; Romans 5:2
    • N. Oetker  October 2008 Reynosa.
    • The face value of the above statement "God resist the proud," one needs to stay within Biblical Context.
    • Jesus purpose is not to condemn, but to save mankind.
    • The way in which this sentence above is written is incorrect, compared to scripture below.
    • James 4:I-10. it is plain to see God does not say he gives Grace to the humbled person, look closely no matter how much sin is going on Verse 6, God gives more Grace.
    • To His converted person to overcome, Grace is available before any actions of Man are taken, either by the prideful or the humbled.
    • It’s available to the converted, however, if one is to proud to trust the Lord during his trials and testing, then this; prideful person isn’t receiving that which is abundantly available to him, "GRACE, WHICH IS GOD’S MERCY, COMPASSION, KINDNESS, AND ENDEARMENT TO US, WITHOUT MEASURE FROM A HOLY GOD."
    • Nevertheless, man then realizes that only God can help him, and then man’s dependance on Him. Man, throught trials is then humbled,  by that which he goes through. Because man understands, he could not sustain victory, if Grace’s Standard wasn’t raised and planned by God in His eternal salvation through Calvary’s cross, for the converted, to cling to, to hug tightly, and to hold on, at the nail scarred feet of our Blessed Savior… Praise Be Forever ! For Our Blessed Redeemer, Who Forgives All that Will But Come To Calvary’s Cross. .
    • God has in abundant measures of Grace to all. 
    • I believe that God’s Grace will eventually break through a converted heart that has become prideful.
    • For God’s ultimate plan is to Save all of his Children as Christ said to the Father " I have not lost that which you gave to me."
    •  
    • James 4:1-10
    • 1 ¶  From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?
    • 2  Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
    • 3  Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.
    • 4  Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
    • 5  Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy?
    • 6  But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.
    • 7  Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
    • 8  Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.
    • 9  Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness.
    • 10  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up
    •  
    • N. Oetker Comments October 2008 Reynosa Comments Below on Romans 5:2 From Article.
    •    
    • God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble…through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand.
    • James 4:6; Romans 5:2
    •  
    • …"we have access by faith into this grace.
    • Nevertheless, it needs to be brought into the open the implication of the above statement, for this is how it appears in it’s entirety.
    • Man is portrayed as being proud and thus, no blessings from God, if a man will be humbled he will have blessings. Now let’s look at the scriptures in it’s entirety in instead of this one verse only.
    •  
    • Romans 5:1-5
    • 1 ¶  Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
      2  By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
      3  And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
      4  And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
      5  And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
      6 ¶
    •  
    • N. Oetker October 2008 Reynosa Comments Below on Romans 5:1-5 From Article.
    • The Converted Have Peace With God.
    • Grace Brought Us To The Knowledge Christ.
    • Grace Gives Us The Faith To Believe.
    • Grace Given During Trials And Temptations Thus Enabling Us To Be, "More Than A Conquer Through Christ Who Dwells Within." 
    • N. Oetker. As one reads this author, and those who think likewise. The author’s views on Grace and it’s attainment by us is done by our actions, our works, which is incorrect. This isn’t the correct interpretation of God’s Grace and it’s practical application to our lives. Yet the majority, of nominal Christian religionists accept this view.
    •    
    • MEO L.A.M. Norman Oetker Missionary "The Light Amidst the Mong/MEO" Hmong Thailand, Reynosa Mexico, English Class, St. Charles Missouri US.


    • Part 2 Baptism Of Holy Spirit MEO L.A.M. Norman Oetker Missionary “The Light Amidst the Mong/MEO” Hmong Thailand, Reynosa Mexico, English Class, St. Charles Missouri US.

      Part 2
      Baptism Of Holy Spirit MEO L.A.M. Norman Oetker Missionary "The Light Amidst the Mong/MEO" Hmong Thailand, Reynosa Mexico, English Class, St. Charles Missouri US.

       WANTED… A WRITER FOR A BOOK ON MY LIFE AS A CHRISTIAN MISSIONARY

      CONTACT: normanoetker@hotmail.com  October 2009

       
       
       
       The Gifts of God. 
        
      Part 2  

      One desiring God’s Gifts, needs first to become a Christian.  A repentant heart, the acceptance of Jesus into their heart and life. The practical demonstration in their daily life, of the teachings of Christ, and the Apostles, and Evangelists.

      Accepting only the Christian Bible, of the Old and New Covenant/Testaments, as the rule of Faith, none other.

       

      Understanding God’s Plan for man:

      The Old Testament Law, was holy and pure, this holy and pure Law wasn’t known to the barbaric Hebrew peoples.

      Upon this rebellious group being freed from Egypt, by God’s power, with God’s choice of leadership in Moses.

      God, was then able to continue to prepare the people, for His future Son to come, as the Messiah to the World. 

      Purposed for the freeing of man, from his Original Sin, which had been past down to all people, by the first man, Adam.

      God instructed Moses of His Plan, for the preparation of the Hebrews, for the coming of the Messiah, through the giving of the "Law," that was given to Moses. One must remember, that when the Hebrews were lead from slavery, by the Power of God, how did they show God reverence? they made a golden calf and worshiped it! and in the end, because of their obstinence and inward, along with demonstrative outward attitudes, that entire generation died in the wilderness. Thereafter, God’s Plan continued with those, who choose to believe and trust in their delivering God.

      The Law thus began it’s true purpose, and that was in part, to instruct these barbarians, these Hebrews, into living a totally different type of lifestyle, to thinking of their God and fellow man in a new and complete light.  Furthermore, it was foreign to them, and, as a matter of fact, to all of the peoples of the known world, of how to live a pleasing life to God. 

      Accordingly, this paradigm, the "LAW" was an introduction to some of the following: honoring the beauty, perfection, and purity to wards God, virtue, humility, to have a contrite and humble spirit,  one needs to be slow to anger, lusts,and  lewdness of all kinds forbidden, along with gluttony, drunkenness, to not covet, not to oppress others, all violence, oppression, and fraud, forbidden. The Law is the defender of the poor and oppressed, thou shalt not hate thy brother, not avenge, or bear a grudge against your people, to help the stranger, or sojourner, thou shall love thy neighbor, If thy enemy be hungry feed him, or thirsty give him drink,etc… 

        The Law was good and perfect for the purposes that it was designed for, to civilize the Hebrews, for the preparation, in the receiving of the coming Messiah.

       Now, the Hebrews, at that time, had no ideal what they were being lead into, into a transformation of their total being, their mind, their heart and their soul. The Law and it’s affects, was God’s plan to wards all of humanity, it was the birthing of civilized civilization as we now know today.  God’s timing, God’s Providence.

       God’s timing, God’s Providence in the 1st. and 2nd. centuries.

      As the new Christians, of the first and second centuries A.D. began to understand God’s plan unfolding in their lives, they soon,-  through Grace and Prayer,- began to understand about God, through God directing their understanding’s about the Personage of God.

      In the formation and  of the three person in one God doctrine. Or, Of one, substance. 

      1. The Father, the first person of the Trinity.

           1a. Then, the Father said from Heaven, as Jesus was being baptized, that this was His Son, in whom He was well pleased.

      2. The Son, the second person of the Trinity.

           2a. Jesus said He was God.

      3. The Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity

            3a. Then upon Jesus leaving this earth and returning to the seat of holiness and honor, at the right hand of the Father.

          Jesus told the Apostles, and those gathered with them, to wait for the Holy Spirit to come upon them in Jerusalem,  which in fact, happened.

      Then, when Jesus told His disciples to go and baptize the new converts, "In the name Of The Father, In Name Of The Son, And In The Name Of The Holy Spirit. The Christian believers, then, in the second and third centuries, where able to understand the cornerstone of God’s relationship to man.

      As a result, the cornerstone, that was laid centuries after the risen Christ, was now the cornerstone, to the Christian faith, "The Trinity." This concept of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, being of the same substance, was clarified by the use of the name "Trinity," the word Trinity, is not in the Bible.

      The reason is simple, it was realized and understood after the fact. God’s providence, had that critical part, that revelation of His Godhead, to be known, in order to prepare for the next part of His Divine Plan.   

      God’s timing, God’s Providence, about the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. 

      This description of the Holy Ghost Baptism can be best understood by reading Parts One, and Two, from the Assembly Of God’s General Council, beginning below.

      God’s Timing To Receive This Additional Gift Of The Baptism Of The Holy Spirit, After Becoming A Christian, That Timing, God’s Providence Is For Now! "Asked And You Shall Receive." 

      Norman Oetker Christian Missionary October 2009

      Frequently Asked Questions

       

      Questions are often raised about the doctrine of baptism in the Holy Spirit. The following are a few
      of the more frequently asked questions.

      1. Is the Book of Acts intended to be history or theology, and can doctrine be based on less than
      declarative statements?

      The Bible itself responds to this question. The Holy Spirit inspired Paul to write, “All Scripture is
      given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine” (2 Timothy 3:16, KJV). Again Paul wrote,
      “Whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning” (Romans 15:4, KJV). After
      recounting Old Testament events that happened to the Israelites, Paul says, “These things happened to
      them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the fulfillment of the ages has
      come” (1 Corinthians 10:11).

      While doctrine should not be based on isolated fragments of Scripture, it can be based on substantial,
      implied truth. The doctrine of the Trinity is based not on declarative statement, but on a comparison of
      Scripture passages relating to the Godhead. Like the doctrine of the Trinity, the doctrine of tongues as
      evidence of the baptism in the Holy Spirit is based on substantial portions of Scripture relating to this
      subject. It is evident Peter and the church leaders in Jerusalem established doctrine based on repeated
      experiences of the Spirit understood to be the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy. They recognized
      tongues as evidence of people being filled with the Spirit (Acts 10,11). The weight of the biblical text,
      both in quantity and frequency, provides a solid base for doctrinal formulation.

       

      Luke’s writings (Luke and Acts) clearly present more than just history. While Luke describes his
      Gospel as a “narrative” (Greek diegesis—Luke 1:1) written to be “accurate” and “orderly” (1:3), the way he
      selects items to include and his editorial and narrative comments reveal an author with an agenda to
      advance the cause of Christ. Luke is clearly a Christian. In fact, today there is an overwhelming consensus
      among New Testament scholars that Luke is a theologian, not just a historian. For those interested in
      learning more about Luke and Acts as inspired historical narratives that also teach theology, we recommend
      Roger Stronstad’s Charismatic Theology of St. Luke (Hendrickson, 1984).

       

      2. Isn’t baptism in the Holy Spirit connected with water baptism in some special way? Since water
      baptism is a witness to one’s faith in Christ and the reception of God’s saving grace, isn’t Spirit
      baptism also associated with salvation?
       

      The answer to both questions is no. The theology of the Spirit presented in Acts emphasizes the
      empowering of believers by the Spirit for effective witness and the utterance of inspired speech. Only by
      wrongly imposing Paul’s theology of the Spirit (never intended to stand apart from the remainder of
      biblical revelation) upon Luke’s Gospel and Acts can baptism in the Holy Spirit be associated with
      personal conversion, spiritual renewal, or ethical transformation. In short, baptism in the Holy Spirit is a
      gift given to those who are already Christians. It does not make people Christians.

       

      3. Isn’t speaking in tongues a phenomenon that belonged only to the apostolic period? Did not
      Paul say that tongues “shall cease” (1 Corinthians 13:8)?

      First Corinthians 13:10 says, “When that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be
      done away” (NKJV). This does not imply, however, that speaking in tongues would be in effect only
      during the apostolic period or until the New Testament canon had been completed, as some have
      suggested. Clearly the arrival of “the perfect” is connected in some way with the second coming of Christ
      and the perfect establishment of God’s kingdom in which God’s will shall “be done on earth as it is in
      heaven.” Paul also indicated that at the time when tongues shall cease, knowledge shall also vanish away

       

      © General Council of the Assemblies of God 8 The Baptism in the Holy Spirit:

      and prophecies shall fail (1 Corinthians 13:8). If knowledge and prophecy are necessary and available to the
      Church today, then speaking in tongues is as well.

       

      4. When Paul wrote, “Not all speak with tongues, do they?” (1 Corinthians 12:30), does this not
      contradict the teaching that all should expect to speak in tongues as evidence of baptism in the
      Holy Spirit?

       

      To understand 1 Corinthians 12:30 one must recognize the various functions of speaking with
      tongues. Speaking with tongues serves as the initial physical evidence of the baptism in the Spirit (Acts
      2:4; 10:46). Speaking or praying with tongues in private is for personal edification (1 Corinthians 14:4).
      And speaking with tongues in the congregation, accompanied by interpretation of tongues, is for the
      edification of the Church (1 Corinthians 12:4–11, 14:5).
       

      There is no contradiction between Paul’s desire that all speak with tongues (1 Corinthians 14:5) and
      the implication of his rhetorical question in 1 Corinthians 12:30, since different contexts are in view.

      These contrasting contexts are highlighted in 1 Corinthians 14:18,19: “I thank God that I speak in tongues
      more than all of you. But in the church . . .” Here private tongues are contrasted with public tongues (that
      is, in a worship service).

       

      Paul recognizes that the Corinthian believers prayed quite frequently in tongues, so frequently in fact
      that congregational meetings had been disrupted because the distinction between tongues appropriate in
      public and tongues appropriate only in private prayer had not been observed. To address the potential for
      disruption, Paul limits the public exercise of tongues while encouraging private prayer in tongues (1
      Corinthians 14:18, 19,27,28). Thus private prayer in tongues is encouraged for “all” (1 Corinthians 14:5),
      with Paul’s own practice as a model (1 Corinthians 14:18), but “not all” pray publicly in tongues in church
      meetings (1 Corinthians 12:30; 14:27,28). Only those to whom the gift of tongues has been apportioned
      by the Spirit are to speak in tongues publicly (1 Corinthians 12:10,11) and such tongues must always be
      interpreted (1 Corinthians 14:27). Private tongues, on the other hand, do not require interpretation, for even
      without interpretation the one who prays in tongues privately is edified (1 Corinthians 14:4).

       

      When examined in context, any apparent contradiction between Paul’s teaching in 1 Corinthians
      12:30 and the Pentecostal expectation that all Spirit-baptized believers will speak in tongues quickly
      evaporates. Instead of contradiction, we find complementary truth.

      5. If speaking with tongues either as evidence or gift is scriptural, why were there periods in
      church history when the phenomenon seemed to be absent?

      The possibility exists that any biblical doctrine can suffer from neglect. In fact, great spiritual
      renewals have often been accompanied by the revival of doctrine. For example, the doctrine of justification
      by faith was almost completely lost until the time of the Reformation, when Martin Luther and others
      reemphasized this biblical truth. The doctrine of sanctification had suffered neglect until the time of the
      Wesleyan Revival, when it was again brought to the attention of the Church. While the truth of the
      baptism in the Holy Spirit and speaking with tongues has appeared in revivals throughout Church history,
      it did not have the emphasis it has received in the present revival.

       

      Just as there were those who opposed the revival of the doctrines of justification by faith and
      sanctification, there are those who oppose the revival of the doctrine of the baptism in the Holy Spirit with
      the initial physical evidence of speaking in tongues. The fact some refuse to accept a doctrine, however,
      does not make it unscriptural. The instruction for believers is to “prove all things; hold fast that which is
      good” (1 Thessalonians 5:21). The basis of the testing is not human opinion but the Word of God (Acts
      17:11).

       

      6. In teaching the doctrine of tongues as evidence of the baptism in the Holy Spirit is there a danger
      that people will seek for tongues rather than the actual baptism in the Holy Spirit?

      Unfortunately this is a possibility, but the abuse of a doctrine does not invalidate the doctrine.
      Abuses and counterfeits, rather than disproving a doctrine, help to establish the importance of the genuine.
      While speaking in tongues accompanies the baptism in the Holy Spirit, it is important to remember Jesus’
      command to the disciples was to wait until they were filled with the Spirit. The emphasis must always be
      on seeking to be filled with the Spirit. Tongues will naturally accompany the experience.

       

      7. If people speak in tongues, will there not be a temptation to spiritual pride?
       

      © General Council of the Assemblies of God 9 The Baptism in the Holy Spirit:

       

      When people truly understand the baptism in the Holy Spirit, it will result in humility instead of
      pride. Believers are baptized in the Spirit not because of personal worthiness, but to empower them for
      service and a more meaningful life. The baptism in the Spirit is received by faith and not because of
      meritorious works. It cannot be earned or bought. Like all gifts of God it is by grace through faith.

      Baptism in the Spirit does not guarantee spiritual maturity. Paul’s need to rebuke the Christians at Corinth
      provides clear evidence of that. The cultivation of fruit of the Spirit and a sanctified life are the real
      indicators of spiritual maturity.

       

      8. What about truly born-again people who have accomplished great things for the Lord but do
      not speak in tongues?

      Without question, some believers who do not speak in tongues have accomplished great things for
      God. However, every student of Scripture must determine whether to base doctrine on God’s Word or on
      experiences of even the most devout believers. Because the Bible indicates that all may speak with tongues
      in private prayer, if not in the congregation, every believer must determine whether to accept or reject this
      provision of God’s grace.

       

      Scripture makes clear that believers must recognize their accountability to God and not evaluate
      Christian experience on the basis of human comparison. Paul wrote: “We do not dare to classify or
      compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves
      and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise”(2 Corinthians 10:12). Doctrine must always
      be based on the Word of God, not on personal experience.
       

      9. What is the relationship between the baptism in the Holy Spirit and the experiences of
      regeneration and sanctification?

       

      Spiritual life is composed of specific experiences or events, ongoing processes, and occasional unique
      experiences. Conversion is a specific experience, or event. At a certain moment a person believes in Christ,
      is forgiven of sin, and is converted or justified. However, after that, there is a lifelong process of
      sanctification, of conforming to the image of Christ. In the same way, the baptism in the Holy Spirit is a
      specific event. After it, however, there is a lifelong development of Spirit-filled life and ministry. The
      person matures in the Spirit-filled life, is more responsive to the leading of the Spirit, and is more fruitful
      in the ministry of the Spirit. In the same way that salvation is an initiation experience leading to
      Christlikeness, the baptism in the Holy Spirit marks a supernatural enduement leading to Christlike
      ministry in the power of the Spirit. For example, children or teenagers may be baptized in the Holy Spirit
      at a young age. Their baptism is real and valid, but as they mature they will grow in their ability to be
      used by the Spirit in various supernatural ministries. What they receive at the moment of their baptism is
      not all they will ever receive, nor is it the fullness of the expression of the power of the Spirit that will
      flow through their lives.
       

      10. What is the relationship of the baptism in the Holy Spirit to other spiritual experiences such as
      weeping, falling, shaking, etc.?

      Periods of renewal and revival have historically included physical manifestations not described in
      Scripture.18 The writings of Jonathan Edwards and John Wesley contain many such references.

      As one’s spiritual life develops, one may experience a variety of spiritual responses. For example,
      during periods of revival, including both personal and corporate revival, it is not unusual for people to be
      overcome by compulsive weeping. They may fall or shake, or quake, when influenced by the power of the
      Spirit, or they may run, jump, and shout. In short, when people feel the power of God they may respond
      in a number of ways. These are, or can be, very legitimate and fruitful encounters with the power of God.
      However, it is a mistake to confuse these responses with the experience of salvation or the baptism in the
      Holy Spirit.

      11. What is the “anointing” and how does it relate to the baptism in the Holy Spirit?

      Old Testament kings and priests were anointed with oil to symbolize the power of God in their lives
      to fulfill their calling. Jesus used this imagery when He said that the Spirit of the Lord was on Him, for
      He was anointed to minister in a number of ways (Luke 4:18). Therefore, anointing is a declaration that the
      power of God rests on a person’s life enabling one to fulfill the ministry God has given.

       

      © General Council of the Assemblies of God 10 The Baptism in the Holy Spirit:

      The baptism in the Holy Spirit fits this imagery perfectly. This is the thrust of Peter’s words at the
      household of Cornelius when, in explaining the baptism in the Holy Spirit, he indicates that Jesus was
      anointed with the Spirit and went about doing good and performing miracles (Acts 10:38).

      Some, however, when they experience the presence of God in a significant way or when they respond
      to the power of God in an unusual way (falling, etc.) report that they have received an anointing. Further,
      some teach, or at least imply, that certain individuals possess a unique “anointing” and are able to minister
      it (pass it along) to others when they pray for them. We believe that this is an unwarranted confusion of (1)
      the anointing that comes from God in the form of the baptism in the Holy Spirit with (2) other legitimate
      spiritual experiences a person may have when sensing the power and presence of God. If people come to
      believe that the unusual spiritual experiences they have (falling, etc.) are the anointing, then the biblical
      doctrine of the baptism in the Holy Spirit could easily be replaced by other experiences. We can
      acknowledge and rejoice in these other experiences that contribute to a person’s spiritual life. Nonetheless,
      people should not be led into confusing these experiences with the baptism in the Holy Spirit. It is the
      baptism in the Holy Spirit that endues a person with power for ministry. Nothing else can take its place.

      12. Is speaking in tongues the only evidence of the baptism in the Holy Spirit and a Spirit-filled
      life?

       

      Tongues are not the only evidence of a Spirit-filled life, but they are always the initial, or first,
      evidence that one has been baptized in the Holy Spirit as the entrance into a Spirit-filled life. One purpose
      of baptism in the Spirit is to empower the believer for witness; therefore, enthusiasm and boldness in
      witnessing, divine guidance and enabling in the presentation of the gospel, and miraculous manifestations
      of God’s power before unbelievers all may serve as additional evidences of baptism in the Holy Spirit,
      though not as substitutions for speaking in tongues.

       

      The Spirit-filled life should also demonstrate progressive development toward a complete Christlike
      character. The fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22,23) should be developing in the life of every believer. It
      has been observed that some who have received the baptism in the Holy Spirit and claim to be living
      Spirit-filled lives demonstrate less evidence of the fruit of the Spirit than some who have not received the
      Baptism experience. Such a fact does not destroy the truth that the Spirit takes raw material and, if given
      the opportunity, helps develop Christlike character traits in every believer. Yet development of the fruit of
      the Spirit can, and should, be enhanced in those who have been filled with the Spirit.

      Other supernatural gifts of the Spirit (besides speaking in tongues), though sometimes seemingly
      evident in the lives of believers who have not been baptized in the Spirit, do not in themselves give
      evidence of having been baptized in the Spirit. The manifestation of supernatural gifts in the life of a
      believer who has not been baptized in the Holy Spirit is possible, but being baptized opens the door to a
      more dynamic, more effective manifestation. See Question 13 and its response.

      13. Can believers who have not experienced the baptism in the Holy Spirit minister with
      supernatural signs following?

       

      As the question is stated, the answer must be yes. Mark 16:17 speaks of signs following “those who
      believe.” Yet the promise to believers before the outpouring of the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost was,

      “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you” (Acts 1:8). The power is a supernatural,
      divine power consistently doing supernatural things through Spirit-filled believers.

       

      The question might better be, “Is there any difference between the frequency and effectiveness of the
      supernatural gifts of the Spirit in the life of a believer after being baptized in the Holy Spirit?” The Bible
      records many miraculous demonstrations of the supernatural in the lives of Old Testament individuals, and
      in the lives of New Testament believers both before and after their Baptism experience. When Jesus sent
      out the pre-Pentecost 70, they returned reporting with joy, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your
      name” (Luke 10:17).

       

      But there was definitely a higher incidence of spiritual gifts operating through Spirit-filled members
      of the Early Church than there was prior to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon yielded believers.
      Miracles were wrought through people like Stephen and Philip who did not have apostolic positions (Acts
      6:8 and 8:6,7). The full range of gifts was everywhere seen after the Day of Pentecost. It was as if a highoctane
      fuel additive propelled the Church to incredible growth and outreach. Activity after the Day of
      Pentecost was not just an extension of activity before the great outpouring. The Church had experienced a
      major empowerment for more effective ministry. The baptism in the Holy Spirit, with the initial physical
      evidence of speaking in tongues, is the doorway leading to a greatly empowered church of Jesus Christ.
       

      © General Council of the Assemblies of God 11 The Baptism in the Holy Spirit:

       

      14. What about persons who are convinced they were baptized in the Holy Spirit in a definite
      encounter with God, but did not speak in tongues until some time later?
      Since the Bible teaches and demonstrates that tongues are the initial evidence of receiving the baptism
      in the Holy Spirit, the Church cannot confirm the opinion of individuals until they actually speak in
      tongues. But neither can we depreciate a person’s special experience of the presence of the Holy Spirit of
      God. Such an in-between time might be described as involving a process that is completed only when the
      person speaks in tongues. To take any other position on the question would open the door to individuals
      claiming to be baptized in the Holy Spirit without having received the biblical evidence of speaking in
      tongues as the Spirit gives utterance, and feeling content with what they already have experienced
      spiritually.
       

      15. What is the relationship of John 20:22 with Acts 1:8 and Acts 2:4?
      John 20:22 is important to understanding the full ministry of the Holy Spirit. This verse records the
      disciples’ receiving the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit before the Day of Pentecost (under the New
      Covenant founded on the resurrection of the crucified Jesus). The Acts 2:4 experience occurred after the
      disciples’ regeneration by the Holy Spirit, as a separate and distinct work of the Spirit. The regeneration
      and the Spirit baptism experiences are normative for all believers. Thus all believers receive the Holy Spirit
      at salvation, or regeneration. After this regenerating work of the Holy Spirit, every believer can experience
      the baptism in the Holy Spirit, the enduement of power to be more effective witnesses (Acts 1:8; 2:4;
      2:39).

       

      Some have suggested that John 20:22 was merely a symbolic promise of the Holy Spirit’s descent at
      Pentecost. But the Greek aorist imperative for “receive” indicates that an action took place at that time, not
      sometime later. John recorded a historical event which had its own significance for the normative
      experiences of every believer today.
       

      Notes

      1All Scripture quotations are from the New International Version.

       

      2Vinson Synan, “Policy Decisions on Tongues as an Indicator of Future Church Growth,” Address to the
      Evangelical Theological Society meeting in Orlando, Florida, November 20, 1998.

       

      3Throughout Scripture, some kind of supernaturally inspired speech accompanies the giving of the Spirit. For
      example, it is said of the elders of Israel, “When the Spirit rested on them, they prophesied, but they did
      not do so again” (Numbers 11:25). The prophet Samuel told Saul, “The Spirit of the Lord will come upon
      you in power and you will prophesy . . . ” (1 Samuel 10:6,10). When God gave the promise to Joel, “And
      afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people,” He added, “Your sons and daughters will prophesy . . .
      ” (Joel 2:28). In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit is most often active in prophesying through specially
      selected human beings. The Spirit is quite literally the Spirit of prophecy, and some form of verbal
      proclamation, perhaps along with other power phenomena, is the special sign of His coming.
       

      In the New Testament, the Pentecost phenomena are consistent with this promise, “All of them were filled
      with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them” (Acts 2:4). The word
      “enabled” is from the Greek verb apophthengomai, which means “to speak” usually in connection with an
      inspired utterance, e.g., “to speak as a prophet.” The same word is found in Acts 2:14 where Peter
      “addressed” the crowd. Luke understood Peter’s address to be prophetic, a sign that the Spirit had come in
      power as prophesied by Joel.

       

      4“Being continually filled with the Spirit” is the meaning of the tense of the Greek word.

      5“Speaking in tongues” refers to the ability the Holy Spirit gives believers to speak in languages they have not
      learned. Like our English word tongue, the Greek word glossa of the New Testament era meant both the
      physical organ and the language it produces. The technical term for this usage of one word (tongue) to
      indicate a related concept (language) is metonymy.

       

      6Neither are such widely accepted theological terms as Trinity and Incarnation found in Scripture.

      7i.e., people are baptized only once as a first-time expression of faith in Christ and entry into the community of
      the Church.

      © General Council of the Assemblies of God 12 The Baptism in the Holy Spirit:

       

      8At the very outset of Jesus’ ministry, each one of the Gospel writers emphasizes John the Baptist’s prophecy
      “He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire” (Matthew 3:11; see also Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16;
      John 1:33). Jesus himself reiterated the prophecy to His disciples just before His ascension: “In a few days
      you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 1:5). Jesus also explicitly commanded the disciples to
      “wait” for the promised gift of the Spirit (Acts 1:4; cf. Luke 24:49), described by Him as being “clothed
      with power from on high” (Luke 24:49) and “power . . . [to] be my witnesses” (Acts 1:8). For the
      disciples, the promise was fulfilled on the Day of Pentecost when the Spirit came in dynamic and powerful
      ways, filling them with His presence and enabling them to speak prophetically in other tongues (Acts
      2:1–4). True to the baptismal language of the biblical promise, Pentecostal believers have referred to the
      Spirit’s coming in power as “the baptism in the Holy Spirit.”

       

      9The Holy Spirit baptizes into the body of Christ at conversion; Christ baptizes in the Spirit at Spirit baptism.
       

      10Though conversion and Spirit baptism appear in this instance to be simultaneous because Baptism with the
      evidence of speaking in tongues follows conversion so quickly, there is still a chronological distinction in
      the two experiences.

       

      11“As the Spirit gave them utterance” (KJV) does not mean that some who were baptized spoke in tongues
      while others did not. It simply means that all spoke in tongues prompted by the Holy Spirit. Speaking
      with other tongues as the Holy Spirit gives utterance is not achieved through a heightened emotional state
      or through the repetition of words and phrases. It is not the result of imitating the sounds made by others.

      To the contrary, human attempts to speak with tongues only stand in the way of the utterance the Holy
      Spirit gives. The believer speaks by the supernatural, motivating power of the Spirit, although cooperation
      is required. One needs only to respond in faith and speak out as the Spirit gives utterance. Any
      manipulative technique for receiving the baptism in the Holy Spirit is without biblical pattern or propriety.

       

      12The King James translation “since ye believed” is more accurate than “when.” The Greek pisteusantes is an
      aorist active participle more accurately translated as “having believed,” indicating that the believing took
      place prior to the action Paul is asking about.

       

      13See Ralph W. Harris, Acts Today: Signs and Wonders of the Holy Spirit (Springfield, MO: Gospel
      Publishing House, 1995). Includes documented instances of individuals speaking in French, Croatian,
      Chinese, Ukrainian, and Aramaic-Hebrew, despite a lack of any training in those languages.

       

      14The sound of wind and the sight of tongues of fire preceded and were external to the disciples’ personal
      experience.

      15For all its importance as initial evidence, speaking in tongues is not the only purpose of the baptism in the
      Holy Spirit. Another purpose of the baptism in the Holy Spirit, according to Jesus’ words in Acts 1:8, is
      to empower believers to be witnesses. The Greek word translated “power” is dynamis, or the power and
      ability to get things done. God’s Great Commission is the evangelization of the world. As the Book of

      Acts clearly shows, evangelizing the world is to be done in the power of the Spirit. The powerful
      proclamation of the gospel, healings, casting out of demons, raising the dead are all clearly seen in the
      Book of Acts as Spirit-empowered believers, after being baptized in the Holy Spirit, bear witness to the
      saving power of Jesus. All of these powerful signs of God’s presence are available to the Church today.

      When believers are baptized in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues, they should
      expect to become agents of God’s power in this world.

       

      16The fruit of the Spirit result from the sanctification process, which must take place continually after
      conversion.
       

      17For a complete biblical description of the gifts of the Spirit, see Romans 12:4–8; 1 Corinthians 12:1–11,
      27–30; Ephesians 4:11.

       

      18See Christian History, Issue 58 (Spring 1998).
      ©General Council of the Assemblies of God
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      Springfield, Missouri 65802-1894
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      Part 2
      Baptism Of Holy Spirit MEO L.A.M. Norman Oetker Missionary "The Light Amidst the Mong/MEO" Hmong Thailand, Reynosa Mexico, English Class, St. Charles Missouri US.