Second Experience? Hmmm


We have been doing a series on fundamental Christian beliefs in church and a couple of weeks ago we looked at the topic of the Holy Spirit. Unsurprisingly, the issue of a second experience (of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit I guess) came up, albeit cursorily. I was thinking about it when preparing some thoughts for cell discussion on Friday and continued thinking about it on the periphery. A short while ago I came across these statements:

1. The baptism with the Holy Spirit occurs the moment a person is saved. It is not the same experience as salvation but happens at the time of salvation. It is not a second experience following conversion.

2. God has given believers everything in Christ. When we are saved we are complete in Him. We lack nothing. There is nothing else for Him to give to us.

3. Nowhere are believers commanded to receive any second blessing that would give them power. All power is already available.

4. The power of the Holy Spirit working in a persons life is something that should be desired. Some who have legitimately experienced the Spirit’s power label the encounter as the baptism with the Holy Spirit whereas the Scripture calls this experience the filling of the Holy Spirit. previously mentioned, everything has been provided for us upon conversion. We only need to appropriate what God has already done for us.

I think I agree with these statements and am reasonably at peace with not having a second experience, although who is to limit God – He can show me otherwise.

 

In the meantime, I have to contend with the historicity of the Messianic Jesus seen through the incident of the Triumphant Entry…sigh indeed….

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Ides of March


The Ides of March was a few days ago I think. But I wake up today feeling perhaps today is closer to that traditionally ominous day. Maybe it is the UN led attack on Libya – the French warplanes have bombed Libyan air defence sites overnight – but despite a beautiful sunny morning here in Melbourne and a 1-0 win by Manchester United over Bolton and Arsenal’s 2-2 draw against West Brom, it feels sombre this morning.