Hindrances to Receiving the Baptism in the Holy Spirit
This great experience is not an optional experience for a select few or just those who belong to a "Pentecostal" denomination but is intended for EVERY CHRISTIAN who will but ask and believe the Lord Jesus. Unbelief and not yielding one's tongue to the utterance the Spirit gives are the two main hindrances to one receiving this glorious experience. We pray this journal will encourage you to step out in faith and RECEIVE this glorious infilling of the Spirit. The Holy Ghost gives the utterance but YOU must do the talking!
By Chris McDonald
TEXT: Acts 2:4
And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.
Acts 1:4-5 - And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.  For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
The Baptism in the Holy Ghost is a gift from God for the believer. It is important for the reader to understand that when we state "gift," we are not referring to the "gift" of tongues and interpretation of tongues spoken of in 1 Corinthians 12. There are many people baptized in the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking with other tongues that may never be used in the gift of tongues as outlined in Corinthians. One is for personal devotion and our daily walk with Christ, the other for corporate worship and the edifying of the Body. One is a mandate the other is "as the Spirit wills," according to Scripture.
We, as the Lord has helped us on this website, have tried to lay a foundation of the Cross the past several months to establish the source of victory for the believer who may be struggling with sin. True victory never comes without a fight but it's a fight that has already been won - at the Cross - through the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. He that the Son has set free is FREE indeed. When we by faith embrace what Christ did for us at the Cross then the Holy Spirit can work in our lives and bring victory in the areas of our weakness - and we ALL have weakness! If someone tells you they don't, well then I would tell you to earnestly pray for that person with all your heart because they are headed for one of the worst falls in the history of Christendom. It is when we see our weakness as God sees it - sin - then we can experience victory through Christ and the power of the Holy Ghost. Christ is the source, the cross the means and the Holy Ghost the power.
Once we're born again the believer then becomes a candidate to receive the glorious infilling of the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking with other tongues as the Spirit of God gives the utterance.
And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
In 1987 I was gloriously baptized in the Holy Ghost for the first time after spending many years in the Baptist Church not even as much as knowing about the Holy Ghost. I remember the struggle at the beginning when I first starting seeking the baptism and the many obstacles and questions I had as an honest seeker but a frustrated seeker to boot. I remember one night in particular in late 1986 when I went down front of a church I was attending to have people pray for me to receive the Holy Ghost for the first time. I was about as scared as an human being could be to be frank. When all you have heard about the baptism in the Holy Ghost is negative or as many reading this not heard a message on the baptism in the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking with other tongues in years it's easy to understand why one would fear or be at arms length from this. That was me up to the fall of 1986.
While growing up in Atlanta, Georgia I remember the first time I ever heard someone speak in tongues while visiting my aunt's church on my mom's side of the family. My first cousin had went down to be prayed for to be healed when he began to weep and began to speak with other tongues. As a young Baptist boy I wanted to run like a deer out of the church to be frank. When I went home and told my parents of what had transpired their response was not one to encourage me to pursue anything my cousin had experienced. My dear dad, and this is not meant to take a slap at him believe me, he has come a long way since these days, was probably less encouraging than my mom. My point in stating this is to comfort those reading this who may have many questions, doubts and fears about this glorious experience and to let them know they are not alone. Very few jump right into the baptism of the Holy Ghost without a bit of fear or trepidation.
One reason for this is the atmosphere of the modern church which has changed since the message of the Holy Ghost first started being preached near the beginning of the century. Most preachers today speak of the baptismal experience of power for the believer in negative tones and connotations instead of preaching faith and encouraging folks to go on and receive! It's really sad but it's the state of the modern church. I got in on the Pentecostal experience at a time when it couldn't have been worse to be frank. The late 1980s was experiencing one of many shakings the Body of Christ has experienced over the past 20 years or so with the sad revelations of many high name Pentecostal preachers. As a former Southern Baptist who had never even as much as heard about the Holy Ghost, I couldn't have been happier but also found out real quick just how quick friends become enemies over religious matters. Notice I say "religious" matters, not spiritual ones.
However, my little taste of alienation by a few of my good old Baptist "buddies," was nothing to the venom and attacks the early church faced or those associated with the 20th Century outpouring at Azusa Street experienced. Rev. William Seymour would have men come into his meetings and point fingers in his face accusing him of every thing and calling him every name under the sun. This Pentecostal experience has never come without a price which makes the modern unbelief of the Church even more sickening and degrading to this writer.
America's mainline Pentecostal denominations - Assemblies of God, Church of God, Pentecostal Holiness, Foursquare, Church of God in Christ, and a few others, are teetering on a dangerous ledge of no longer being Pentecostal!!!!!!!!!!! You have to have 51% of your members speaking in tongues to be considered a Pentecostal denomination; right now that figure stands at 49% in ALL major denominations!!! The reason for this decline is unbelief in the pulpit and hardness of heart in the pew.
Despite all the enemy's tactics of fear and doubt, I also know that there is NO one and I mean NO one who has experienced the baptism in the Holy Ghost who then turns around and says, "this is not for today," or "this is of the devil," or "I don't need to speak in tongues to pray," or "you need an interpreter," like some of these rabid theologians seek to spouse who would not believe if the Lord Jesus Himself appeared to them in the Flesh, held out His Hands, and said, "This is WHAT I SHED MY BLOOD FOR!"
It amazes me that 100% of those who resist and reject the mighty baptism in the Holy Ghost are those who know very little about this experience or never have tasted this powerful experience.
Let's take a closer look at some of the things that can hinder one from being baptized in the Holy Ghost.
Unbelief and Not Yielding Are Two Major Reasons That Keep Some From Not Receiving The Baptism in the Holy Ghost
Acts 7:51 - 53 - Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.  Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which showed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers:  Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it.
There are two factors which can throw up a wall and prevent the believing Christian from receiving the baptism in the Holy Ghost. The first of these is UNBELIEF while not yielding one's self to the direction and leading of the Spirit is the second.
The person who comes forward to receive the Holy Ghost, while harboring doubts in his heart, can go away unfilled. Personal reservations as to the validity of the experience will almost surely prevent the seeker from receiving this glorious experience. If one is not sure something is real or for them, they will never pursue and realize the end result! Satan, of course, uses this doubt to prevent many well meaning Christian believers from receiving the Holy Ghost. And this, of course is an important truth for every Christian to face. Satan WILL send doubts, but it is up the individual Christian to REJECT them and stand on Scripture claiming what God has promised.
The Christian does not have to entertain Satan's lies but most do. It's ashamed the modern church has more faith in Satan's ability to deceive us than in the Holy Spirit's power to lead us into all truth!
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 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.
The problem is doubt is removed when we embrace and believe God's WORD when it comes to our pursuit of the baptism in the Holy Ghost. Unbelief was Israel's problem in accepting the power that Christ performed His miracles was from God. Many times the Pharisees accused Christ of performing miracles by the power of Satan instead of the power by which He performed these miracles - the Holy Ghost.
Matthew 12:22 - 32 - Then was brought unto
him one possessed with a devil, blind, and dumb: and he healed him, insomuch
that the blind and dumb both spake and saw.  And all the people were amazed,
and said, Is not this the son of David?  But when the Pharisees heard it,
they said, This fellow doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub the prince of
the devils.  And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every
kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house
divided against itself shall not stand:  And if Satan cast out Satan, he is
divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand?  And if I by
Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore
they shall be your judges.  But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God,
then the kingdom of God is come unto you.  Or else how can one enter into a
strong man's house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man?
and then he will spoil his house.  He that is not with me is against me; and
he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.  Wherefore I say unto
you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the
blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.  And
whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but
whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither
in this world, neither in the world to come.
As we have stated many times in previous journals, Israel had a moment of unprecedented opportunity as a nation when she came out of Egypt. God had ordained this generation led by Moses and Aaron to inherit the promises God made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob nearly 250-300 years before.
The Holy Spirit through Paul warns the New Covenant as to why Israel failed so we today in modern times not fall into the same trap of unbelief. I must tell you that it’s a sad indictment on the modern church that we are so steeped in the same unbelief as Israel was of old. At times I know I don’t believe God as I should for many things. I’m not just thumping my chest and laying it on someone else. One may say, well that’s impossible! We have so much more than they did – we have the completed canon of Scripture, the Word of God we have the gifts of the Spirit; we have great revelatory knowledge of all things; we have been blessed and blessed some more with great financial gain; and we have the greatest numbers coming and flocking to our church buildings ever in human history. Yet despite all our modern trinkets, the church does not believe GOD!
Preachers preach unbelief week after week to their flocks denying the supernatural working of the Holy Ghost and refusing to point their listeners to the only source of deliverance for the ills of man – the Cross of Christ. Some say miracles have passed; others proclaim tongues and the gifts of the Spirit “ceased” with the apostles; Neighbor, if the gifts ceased then God ceased and God didn’t cease! How stupid can we get? How so unimpressive can we get with all our education and knowledge yet stand empty, naked, blind and wretched before a Holy Creator who cries to His church to just believe what His Word says so He can show us His unparalleled power and grace? My Lord, someone needs to shout!
In the book of Romans, Paul warned the Gentile branch of the church that if the Lord cut Israel off temporarily because of unbelief, we’d be wise to not stand so conceited and arrogant but FEAR, lest we be cut off too. Despite this warning, the church world today, made up of mainly Gentiles (even though a great number of Jewish people are coming to Jesus in record fashion) CHOKES with unbelief
Romans 11:18-25 - Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.  Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in.  Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not high-minded, but fear:  For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.  Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.  And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be graffed in: for God is able to graff them in again.  For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be graffed into their own olive tree?  For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
Unbelief permeated the culture of Jesus' day, just as it dominates many sectors of our modern world. Jesus' ministry to a boy with seizures contains jewels of insight to help keep us from being influenced by our faithless culture.
Mark 9:17-24 A man in the crowd answered, “Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech.  Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not.”  “O UNBELIEVING GENERATION,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? BRING THE BOY TO ME.”  So they brought him. When the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into a convulsion. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth.  Jesus asked the boy’s father, “How long has he been like this?” “From childhood,” he answered.  “It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But IF YOU CAN DO ANYTHING, take pity on us and help us.”  “ ‘IF YOU CAN’?” said Jesus. “EVERYTHING IS POSSIBLE FOR HIM WHO BELIEVES.”  Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I DO BELIEVE; HELP ME OVERCOME MY UNBELIEF!”
Israel's issues of unbelief centered around the validity of the power of Christ! Think about that and consider the attitude of the church world today! Charles Finney once stated the following of preachers who preach unbelief:
One unbelieving soul may do immense evil; especially if he be a minister of the gospel. How easy it is for a blind minister to keep his congregation for ever in darkness, in regard to the meaning of the gospel and the fulness of the salvation provided.
Finney goes on to say:
"A mind under the influence of unbelief, is a very dangerous interpreter of the word of God. Without faith, no man discovers the true meaning of the Bible. Nor can he by any possibility discover its spiritual import, without the state of mind which is always implied in a right understanding of the word of God. The Church is robbed of its inheritance by unbelief. Inasmuch as the promises are conditioned upon faith, and cannot in their own nature be fulfilled where there is not faith, how immense is the evil of unbelief in the Church of God? Gospel rest and salvation lie before them in all their fulness, completeness of Christian character in Christ Jesus, and the sanctification of body, soul, and spirit, are proffered to them and urged with infinite sincerity upon them; but all are rejected through unbelief. Those who are unbelieving in regard to the fulness of Christ's salvation, take away the key of knowledge. They neither enter into gospel rest themselves, and those that would enter they hinder; especially is this true of those ministers who call in question the attainability of entire consecration to God in this life."
Unbelief, whether it is unbelief by the sinner regarding salvation, or that of a believing Christian in the supernatural power of God through the ministry of the Holy Ghost, is eminently a willful sin. When it comes the baptism in the Holy Ghost this writer has seen through the years that it is exceedingly hard to make men believe in this powerful work of the Spirit when they are unwilling to believe. Sadly, when the will is strongly opposed to any truth it is next to impossible to retain the confidence of the mind in that truth. In other words if a person's mind is made up they are not going to change their mind "even if one came back from the dead," to tell them what they are doubting is real and right.
Finney added this comment on unbelief which sums up best how most people few the baptism in the Holy Ghost:
"But what must be the strength of
depravity in that heart--what must be the power of prejudice, what invincible
strength must there be in the opposition of that will, when the confidence of
the mind is not secured by infinite evidence; when the mind can look over the
whole field and see mountains of evidence piled upon mountains, and yet feel not
a particle of inward confidence and resting of heart in the character and word
of the blessed God."
In other words despite everything the Word of God says about the baptism in the Holy Ghost and the fact that untold MILLIONS have received this glorious infilling many will still not believe!
A drunkard does not believe that alcohol is poison. A Universalist does not believe that there is any hell. A tea and coffee drinker will not believe that those substances are injurious. And it is often striking to observe the amount of influence which the will has in modifying the opinions of men. And when we come to speak of the faith of the gospel, which implies and includes volition, it is self-evident that there can be no faith where the will does not yield. And to talk of an unwilling faith is to speak of an unwilling willingness. The truth is that men are not influenced by evidence in cases where their will is opposed to the truth. They are stubborn and rebellious, not convinced, not humbled, and their confidence not gained, let God say what He will.
That brings us to the second interfering factor that causes many not to receive the Baptism in the Spirit which is in many ways much harder to banish from the equation - the matter of yielding.
Yielding is inextricably wound up with our all-too-human-need for individuality. We are taught from childhood to "stand on our own two feet," to "make our own way," and "not to be beholden to others." This is good advice within the worldly realm and will, in most cases, stand us in good stead when dealing with other humans.
Unfortunately, this human tendency becomes so ingrained that we find it difficult, when confronted with the necessity of yielding our will to that of God, to give up our lifelong search for "independence." God doesn't want us independent of Him! He is the Loving Father of our souls who wants us to turn TO HIM with our every living need. This is the damnable result of the invasion of New Age Humanistic thinking into the modern day church world. The modern gospel teaches people to "take control and keep control" of every facet of their lives. The Holy Spirit speaks to us and says, "Give in and throw yourself on the mercy of God." Herein lies the great conflict, not just for the sinner seeking salvation many times, but also the seeking believer who is hungry and thirsty for the baptism in the Holy Ghost.
Since we've started writing these sermons on the baptism in the Holy Ghost we've received several emails from Christians just like the last statement - HUNGRY and THIRSTY for more of God but in many cases being just like the disciples Paul encountered in Acts 19, "we have not even as much as heard of the Holy Ghost." How sad the modern church has abandoned the preaching of this all important subject as it relates to the life of the believer.
For those seeking the baptism many fell a strange pressure growing within, a bubbling up of a force demanding expression. What is one to do? Are we to "keep control of ourselves," as we have always been taught, or are we to capriciously throw ourselves down a new path which leads to who-knows-where?
This is the moment when the problem of "yielding" is most dramatically brought to the fore. The business of speaking in other tongues isn't something that be easily and logically explained within the perimeters of our overly sophisticated and scientifically oriented world AND church system! Perhaps this is the very reason God has set things up in this way. He offends the minds of men many times to lay bare the motives of our heart! The Cross of Christ in many ways falls into the same category. There is an offense attached to the Cross that many reject -that is why Paul said "not many mighty, not many noble," are called. The Spirit bids ALL men to come to Christ but few receive this invitation. As it relates to the believer the same is true when it comes to the baptism in the Holy Ghost! The Lord Jesus bids ALL men to come to Him and receive the infilling of the Holy Ghost but precious few hear the voice of our Lord and receive this glorious infilling.
In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.  He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.  (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)
Paul explains in Ephesians 3:19 that God's standards and the world's standards are in conflict when the areas of wisdom and foolishness are concerned. God laughs at the things mankind values as great wisdom. Conversely, mankind in its smugness, laughs at those many time who believe the simple unvarnished or untarnished Word of Almighty God!!!!!
To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God,  According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:  In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.  Wherefore I desire that ye faint not at my tribulations for you, which is your glory.  For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,  Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,  That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;  That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,  May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;  And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.
What could be more natural, then, tan for God to choose something which could be basically "embarrassing" (and capable of being scoffed at by the world) as the benchmark of submission to His will? On the surface, what could seem less logical than uttering words we don't understand????? Yet this is exactly that God has chosen as HIS documentation of OUR willingness to YIELD the moment-to-moment control of our lives to Him. The question to the reader is simply this. Are we willing to stand up and make ourselves "fools for Christ," as Paul was??
1 Cor. 4:10
We are fools for Christ's sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honorable, but we are despised.
Of course, once across that great divide and recipients of the Holy Ghost, "old things are suddenly passed away" and that (which moments before may appeared to be foolishness) suddenly becomes a bubbling forth of "living waters" - a praise song from the innermost foundation of our being. Jesus documented the validity of all this when He spoke of "rivers of living water" springing up "out of the belly." Many things in the Bible are symbolic and "belly" certainly points to the very center of our spiritual and worldly life. Where else then should we expect to feel these first stirrings of a NEW language crying out to be released and freed to praise the God who saved us?
Once over this hurdle I can tell you first hand that all of that which this writer is trying to convey makes perfect sense! However, BEFORE stepping across that line, it can be frightening and it can be confusing. When we, for the first time in our lives, feel a compulsion to open our mouths and speak forth supposedly unintelligible phrases or sounds, the first rational inclination is to clamp our mouths shut so no one will suspect there's something wrong with us. That of course is precisely te wrong reaction!!
The Holy Ghost will not speak for you! When one is prayed for to receive the Holy Ghost we must not fight God's leadings. If we will but yield our tongues to the leading and direction of the Holy Ghost - HE WILL SPEAK through us using OUR VOICE and give the utterance!!!! That has been the pattern since the Day of Pentecost and it is the pattern for today!
The problem of course is that all too many Christians simply don't know how to YIELD. We are beset on all sides by worldly considerations. What will our neighbors think? What will the family think? What do I think? I know that the hardest person I faced right after I was baptized in the Spirit was my father who was a Southern Baptist preacher at the time. I had never heard one positive thing in our household about speaking in tongues or the baptism in the Holy Ghost!! I was 22 when I was filled so the reader can do the math - that's MANY years and many walls of unbelief the Lord had to break down to break through to this writer's heart to realize the Holy Ghost experience was real!
Speaking in tongues just does not seem to make sense to most! When we read the Word of God however we see that worldly wisdom if foolishness to God and Godly logic is foolishness to the world.
1 Cor. 1:18-31 - For the preaching of the
cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the
power of God.  For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and
will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.  Where is the wise?
where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made
foolish the wisdom of this world?  For after that in the wisdom of God the
world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to
save them that believe.  For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek
after wisdom:  But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a
stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness;  But unto them which are
called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God
is stronger than men.  For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many
wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:  But
God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God
hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are
mighty;  And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath
God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:
 That no flesh should glory in his presence.  But of him are ye in
Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and
sanctification, and redemption:  That, according as it is written, He that
glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
The message of the Cross in general is foolishness to a world that perishes through its rejection of its power through unbelief! The Holy Spirit, who cannot be divorced from the Cross, nor can the Cross be divorced from the Holy Ghost, is rejected on the same grounds! Sometimes however in our Christian walk there are times when we must just "LET GO AND LET GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" We have to take a giant step of faith forward into the unknown - trusting God for the result before we can document the result based on our experience.
When Thomas stood before Jesus doubting the resurrection because he had not seen proof, Jesus said "thrust your hand Thomas into My side and stop your DOUBTING!!!" Jesus responded to this event by telling Thomas that "blessed" are those who believe WITHOUT previous proof!
Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.
This is exactly the situation when God prompts us to open our mouths and VOICE the stirrings within us! This is done by faith just as we stepped out of our lives as sinners into the glorious liberty of Christ at conversion! The very moment a believer asks the Lord Jesus to fill him with the Holy Ghost (and he or she is sincere in heart) God's promises WILL work! Down inside there will be words or phrases or "sounds" that will start to form and seek expression. This is the Holy Ghost "giving the utterance!"
We are not in any wise shape or form telling you that an individual can stand in front of you and tell you what to say. Charismatics who do such stupidity and foolishness hurt the cause of Christ and many times add to the anxiety of the sincere seeker who is scared to death because of the horror stories the unbelieving tells them of such events. The Charismatic world has done itself NO favors when it comes to this message of the Holy Ghost believe me. I'm what you may call Bapticostal and in many ways I'm thankful for that. I don't buy into all the Charismatic foolishness no more than I buy into the denominational world's unbelief and hardness of heart in resisting and rejecting this glorious experience. The baptism in the Holy Ghost is REAL and it's for today and you as a reader need to be filled with the Spirit with the evidence of speaking with other tongues! But that said, always remember that the Holy Ghost is number one a gentleman and number two He is God; as both He will never lead the seeker of His power down a path of error, foolishness or stupidity as I've witnessed the past 20 years in certain circles of the Charismatic camp.
I will say this however; just because they are a few morons out there who do foolish things we do not need to reject the Holy Ghost or blame Him for that!!!!!
When the Holy Spirit "gives the utterance," that is as far as He will go! From this point on it is up to the believer! This is the point where YOU the sincere seeker must take over and do your part! It is up to YOU to part your lips, expel your breath, and VOICE the sounds crying out for expression within you! It will no doubt sound unlike anything you have ever heard before. it will not doubt sound different from what YOU expected it to sound like. Satan will no doubt intrude and say, "but surely this isn't the way it should sound!" IGNORE SATAN and IGNORE your own natural skepticism! This IS the Holy Spirit giving the utterance. Just open your mouth and start to speak out and at that precise moment you will have received the Baptism in the Holy Ghost!
Many Christians seeking the baptism believe, erroneously, that there is some type of coercion or possession involved in speaking in tongues. They believe that some strange trance descends on the baptized Christian and he MUST bring forth the message stirring inside him, whether he wants to or not. This simply is NOT the case.
A Spirit-filled Christian retains full control of ALL his faculties at all times. God's Holy Spirit is the ultimate example of propriety, courtesy, and restraint. The Holy Spirit does not impose, He suggests. No leading of the Spirit will ever cause any Christian to do anything improper. By the same token, the Holy Ghost will never FORCE anyone to speak in tongues. ALWAYS, no exceptions, this is under the control of the individual. Of course, the question then arises, "But if it is up to me to speak in tongues, then it will be me speaking in tongues and not of the Lord." What the believer must realize is this. Who reaps the benefits of your speaking in tongues? The Lord's situation and the Lord's plans will proceed apace whether you speak in tongues or not. YOUR plans and situation, on the other hand, will be dramatically affected by your speaking in tongues. Let's look to Scripture to demonstrate what I am saying.
Acts 2:4 says, "And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost and began to speak with other tongues." Notice the pronoun "THEY" appears once, but only because the second writing of it would be redundant. The COMPLETE passage might read, "And they will are filled with the Holy Ghost and they began to speak with other tongues."
And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
Notice that this passage does NOT say, "They will filled with the Holy Ghost and the Holy Ghost started to speak through them." It is quite clear THEY WERE FILLED and THEY spoke with tongues. The Spirit GAVE the utterance - they had to speak! Again, the important, critical point to remember is that the Spirit gives the utterance (plants the "message" within the believer), but the believer does the speaking!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There is no place in the Bible where a single word expresses the thought that the Holy Spirit either speaks in tongues, or forces anyone else to.
In Acts 10:46 it says:
For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter,
Peter heard "THEM" speak with tongues and magnify God! The "them" is the people in the house of Cornelius, not the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost was the source of the utterance when this glorious outpouring was first given to the Gentiles!
In Acts 19:6 we see a similar statement concerning the disciples upon the Ephesus coast:
And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.
This issue of yielding is one of the greatest single hindrances of one receiving the Holy Ghost! We are not a spiritual robot with buttons that God pushes and we do certain things. He created us with a WILL that either obeys the Spirit of God or resists the Spirit of God. Some believe the Spirit will take control of their tongue or put them into some type of "possession" or trance. Possession is the domain of the devil! God respects our free will (even when it gets us into trouble!) God does not overwhelm us with His power and "take over" our normal functions.
Many of you reading this journal WANT to be baptized in the Holy Ghost. I don't think we have many left who are reading this who seek to take issue with us anymore. That bunch left us in the first message in this ongoing series. You who are left are serious about knowing more about the Holy Ghost. Some of your frustration in your quest is because many don't realize that THEY are the ones who must OPEN their mouths and EXPRESS the utterance formed inside them by the Holy Ghost. We ask the Lord Jesus to baptize us then we open our mouths as the Spirit of God gives the utterance!
Are you seeking the baptism in the Holy Ghost today? How many times have you sensed God's presence? You WANT to be baptized in the Holy Ghost and sensed God moving in your life. His presence has flooded and overflowed you Deep down inside there were stirrings of words you didn't recognize as English or any other language you've ever heard. If that is the case then take the POSITIVE STEP of opening your mouth and "speak out" that which is inside. As Jesus said, the baptism in the Holy Ghost is like "RIVERS OF LIVING WATER," that flow from your inner most being!!!! Jesus should know because HE IS THE BAPTIZER IN THE HOLY GHOST!
You don't need any man there to lay hands on you right now. If someone who is Spirit filled IS there get them to agree with you in prayer and agreement on this. JESUS is the one who lays His hands on you to receive this glorious gift! Ask Him right now to fill you with the Spirit; when you ask Him, just relax and begin to speak praises to His name and speak OUT THE WORDS (NOT ENGLISH or any other language you have learned) that you hear or sense down inside of you. The Holy Ghost is the one giving the utterance, YOU are the one who will do the speaking. To be frank, EVERY CHRISTIAN is ready to receive the baptism in the Holy Ghost. The only thing that hinders this glorious process is the reluctance (or lack of awareness or knowledge) to go ahead and speak out what's bubbling up inside of them! God has given the promise neighbor, the SPIRIT will descend. Jesus is the baptizer and He WANTS you to have this experience! The only thing remaining is for you to set out in faith and receive!! Praise God.
Biblical References To The Baptism In The Holy Ghost
The Man With The Line In His Hand-Miracle River Part Two - 8/7/06
The Camels Are Coming - 6/9/06
The Power and the Promise - 6/7/06