I had to overcome two problems before I could be spirit filled. First, my tradition told me that everything God wanted to give me, he gave at salvation. If that is true, then why is everyone in the church seeking something else? Once I overcame my tradition, I encountered a second problem. Now that I know the problem, how do I receive this awesome gift?
Everyone has a different scenario for getting baptized in the Holy Spirit. Some have told me you have to sanctify yourself by getting all of the sin out of your life and then living a holy life. Some have even presented a multistep plan to receive it. While these things sound good and holy, this is not how it happened to me. I need the Holy Spirit to live a holy life; therefore, how can I sanctify myself before I receive him? God knows our weaknesses and sins better than we do; therefore, would he not be the best person to handle them? Here is what the Bible says about receiving the Holy Spirit:
- If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him? (Luke 11:11-13)
This presents us with two requirements to receiving. First, in order for him to be your heavenly father, you must be saved (born again). No one can receive the Holy Spirit until they first know the Son of God. Jesus even told this to his disciples:
- And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. (John 14:16-17)
The second requirement is even simpler. He will only give it to those that “ask” him. This means you must want it with all of your heart, and you will never receive it. You must further ask in prayer and then seek with all of your heart. You may not receive it at first. In fact I prayed for several years before I received. I have no idea why it took so long. All I know is that God said I could have it, I wanted it, and I was not going to quit asking until he gave it to me. My tradition taught me that if God did not answer, then it must not be his will. However, God cannot lie nor change his mind; therefore, if he said it, he has to do it. Furthermore, he also said:
- Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)
- For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them. (Mark 11:23-24)
I don’t have a seven, ten, or twelve step program for receiving the baptism in the Holy Spirit. I can, however, give two steps:
- You must be born again
- You have to ask and seek it
Have you received it yet?
Next Page: The Gifts of the Holy Spirit