Have You Received The Holy Ghost?
Have You Received The Holy Ghost?
William Stout / General
Acting Out Acts / Acts 19:1–20
Acts 19:1–7 KJV 1900
1 And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples,
2 He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.
3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism.
4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.
5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
6 And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.
7 And all the men were about twelve.
- Have you received the Holy Ghost?
- There has been very much controversy among Christians over the years concerning this topic
- Evidently, these Christians were not even aware of the Holy Ghost
- It is apparent that they were Christians because Paul refers to them as disciples
- A reminder that we are not saved by our knowledge of the scriptures or theology, but by faith in Jesus alone
- Nevertheless, having salvation through faith, God would have us to grow.
- There are benefits and gifts
Hebrews 5:12–6:1 KJV 1900
12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.
13 For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.
14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,
- Evidently, these disciples knew of John’s baptism, but not of Jesus promised o e Spirit
- John had said Jesus would baptize with the Holy Spirit
- And so, they were baptized in Jesus name, and Paul laid hands on them, and then “the Holy Ghost came upon them”
- another way of saying they received the Holy Spirit
- The “evidence” of this was that they began to speak with tongues and prophesy
- This was also a sign back with Cornelius
These signs will follow those who Believe
- For some reason, as soon as we mention tongues, so many Christians begin to divide into camps
- This should not be so.
- The bible is our authority for what we believe. It is clear that Christians speak in tongues
- In fact, Paul instructs that we should desire to prophesy, and not to forbid o to speak in tongues
- the fact that he would instruct “not to forbid” would seem to indicate that there were people attempting to do so even then.
- Perhaps many Christians become intimidated since they have not experienced this and feel that it suggests they are not as good, or not saved if it is so.
- with his kind of logic, they seek to discredit the doctrine, since they have not experienced it
- We shouldn’t do this. There are many things that any of us have never experienced, yet we know that they exist.
- The evidence for tongues and prophecy is irrefutable, so we cannot deny it
- Instead, some claim that it ceased, yet there is no mention of that in the bible either.
- Instead, we should understand that this is a past and present gift of the Spirit, which we receive by faith if we so desire.
- as such, we should seek to receive.
- It is also a desirable gift, for edifying the church
Acts 19:8 KJV 1900
8 And he went into the synagogue, and spake boldly for the space of three months, disputing and persuading the things concerning the kingdom of God.
- again we see Paul “disputing and persuading”
- This was a very prominent characteristic of Christians
- they thought it was necessary to “persuade”, even if it required “disputing”
- Paul instructed to “reprove, rebuke, and exhort”
- If we love people, how can we not persuade them of the truth to their salvation?
Acts 19:11–12 KJV 1900
11 And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul:
12 So that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them.
- similar to the miracles seen with Peter in chapter 5
- These cloths were not magic, had no power in themselves
- yet they were a tangible sign of God’s power and anointing
- a point of contact if you will for people’s faith
- like the woman who touched Jesus’ cloak
- Although these cloths were not “magic”, and they were actual events that happened, they were not common, or ordinary
- Luke refers to them as “special miracles” or extraordinary
- These cloths might have been sent to people whom Paul could not go to in person for the laying on of hands
- These were miracles of faith, and were rare, even among Christians of the time
- in that they were rare, does not mean that they were exclusive, or not repeatable
- all miracles are extraordinary, that’s why they are called miracles.
- At the same time, we should expect to partake in miracles, and to be used of God miraculously
- We are instructed to desire spiritual gifts
- So we should neither reject these gifts as legends nor consider them lightly as common
Acts 19:13–20 KJV 1900
Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth.
And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so.
And the evil spirit answered and said Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye?
And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.
And this was known to all the Jews and Greeks also dwelling at Ephesus, and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.
And many that believed came, and confessed, and shewed their deeds.
Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver.
So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed.
- These vagabond Jews were not Christians, not believers
- But they had seen that there was some power in the name of Jesus
- that people were affected by this name and set free from demons
- They attempted to use the name of Jesus without first having faith in Jesus
- attempting to profit from this name, without genuine repentance or submission to Jesus as Lord
- not unlike the TV preachers who offer to send you “prayer cloths” today, if you will send in an offering of such and such
- these preachers are as phony as these vagabond Jews
- and yet, there are the Genuine believers
- the demons said “Jesus I know, and Paul I know”
- The devil does know and recognize genuine Christians who are authorized and empowered by the Holy Spirit (Luke 10:18-19)
- “but who are you”?
- And they were beaten and left naked and wounded
- What does the devil say when you use the name of Jesus?
- All over Ephesus people heard of this and turned to Jesus
- The name of Jesus was magnified
- And many people brought their witchcraft items and burned them – 50,000 pieces of silver worth
- Another point we will notice in the book of Acts is numerous references to supernatural spiritual beings
- Angels, and demons were acknowledged both by Jesus and the disciples
- The angel who let Peter out of Prison twice
- The angel who struck Herod
- The angel who appeared to Cornelius
- The demon who possessed the girl at Philippi
- These are specific references to activity of demons or angels and are distinct from ordinary actions of people good or bad.
- There are both angels and demons in the world today
- likewise, they are distinct from people,
- The actions of people, good and bad, are distinct from angels and demons, we can’t blame them – the devil did not make you do it
- although they have power to influence, they have no power to control a Christian
- They may indeed ain power to control non-Christians
- Demons are not to be feared by Christian but cast out
- Although we acknowledge Angels, we do not pray to them
- There is one mediator between God and man – Jesus Christ
- They are ministering Spirits
- Have you received the Holy Ghost?
- separate and subsequent to your salvation experience
- Seek the spiritual gifts
- Is the gospel worth disputing and persuading people for?
- How can you be used to persuade those in your circle of influence?
- Special miracles: Are you seeking God for greater things?
- Do you believe Him for the extraordinary?
- Who are you?
- The demons recognized Jesus
- They recognized Paul
- Do they recognize you? (because of Christ in You)
- Are you living your Christian life in a way that acknowledges and expects the supernatural and the Spiritual?