Grace Bible Church
The Tree of Life
A Weekly Review
Week ending 052712
The New Testament analogy of the Fish Gate and the Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
In relationship to our main passage in ROM 9:18-24; the apostle Paul writes “So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.
ROM 9:19-24, You will say to me then, “Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?” On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, “Why did you make me like this,” will it? Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use, and another for common use? What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? And He did so in order that He might make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.
There are actually seven salvation ministries of God the Holy Spirit.
- Regeneration which means the Holy Spirit creates a human spirit for the imputation of eternal life, TIT 3:5 He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit,
- Then we have a second ministry which is the one we are now noting which the Baptism of the Spirit entering us into union with Christ, Acts 1:5; 1CO 12:13.
- Then there is the indwelling of God the Holy Spirit who indwells our body in order to create a temple for the indwelling of Jesus Christ as the Shekinah Glory, 1CO 6:19-20.
- Next is the sealing of the Spirit which is our security as royal family in time as well as eternity, and a guarantee of the existence of our escrow blessing, 2CO 1:22; EPH 1:13; EPH 4:30.
2CO 1:21-22, Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and anointed us is God, who also sealed us and gave us the Spirit in our hearts as a pledge.
EPH 1:13, In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation‑‑ having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise,
EPH 4:30, And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
- The distribution of your spiritual gift, 1CO 12:11; But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually just as He wills.
- Efficacious grace; EPH 2:8 – the ministry of God the Holy Spirit in making the faith of the spiritually dead person effective for eternal salvation.
Efficacious grace emphasizes the total helplessness of the spiritually dead person. No matter what a spiritually dead person can do, it is not salvation. Salvation is accomplished by faith alone in Jesus Christ, the one thing that God the Holy Spirit can make effective.
- Then there is the filling of the Holy Spirit, EPH 5:18.
The substance of the New is greater that the shadow of the Old because the New Testament believer is given the filling of the Spirit which is the first power option in the Christian life. And the reason why we say it is an option is simply because you must make a decision to be filled with the Spirit. It is your choice or option.
We have now begun to note the next salvation ministry of God the Holy Spirit, the baptism of the Holy Spirit. We have also noted that we are in one of two stages of the intensified stage of the angelic conflict. The intensified stage of the angelic conflict is divided into two parts of the Church‑age:
- The hidden stage which is the Church-age, the age of invisible heroes and the dispensation or period of time where they are and how they are formed. The invisible heroes are formed by passages like 2CO 4:10, always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.
Now, what is the dying of Jesus?
It is the fact that as an innocent individual, He went through undeserved suffering and He didn’t complain, He didn’t quit, He went forward in the plan of God for His life.
The word life is the noun zoe which means the state of one who is possessed of vitality, it is used of the absolute fullness of life which belongs to God.
2CO 4:10-12, always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So death works in us, but life in you.
This is the attitude of the adult believer and the one on the road to Invisible Hero-ship. The Invisible Hero advances to spiritual maturity. He executes the PPOG. He spends enough time inside the PPOG and under the ministry of whomever is his right pastor he or she learns the principles of the mystery doctrine of the Church-Age.
The principle: Invisible God plus invisible assets plus invisible power equals the invisible hero. No one can become an invisible hero apart from perception, metabolization and application of Bible doctrine which emphasizes consistent exposure to and cognition of the mystery doctrine of the Church-age, through which the believer attains spiritual maturity and provides invisible impact. So, the Church‑age is the most intensive hidden stage of the angelic conflict because this is the stage where every believer is a target of Satan and the kingdom of darkness in contrast to the fact that in the Old Testament dispensation, Christ and the line of Christ was the target.
- The overt stage of the intensified stage of the angelic conflict which is the Tribulation period, the age of visible heroes.
The point is that once TLJC was seated at the right hand of the Father in the Church‑age, every believer becomes a target of Satan. Therefore, right now, you are personally the target of Satan.
Because right now, you have been baptized by the Holy Spirit and are in union with TLJC and represent Him personally to a lost and dying world.
Because of this GAL 3:26-28 says, For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. That makes this the most intensive time in the angelic conflict.
Now, since every believer is a target of Satan, divine provision for every believer is intensified, and this is why you now possess as an individual believer, certain things that believers did not possess before. For example, as a part of the mystery doctrine of the Church-age, you are an ambassador for Christ, there never were ambassadors in the Old Testament, that is for Christ only. TLJC is in heaven, He’s absent from the earth, and you are an ambassador representing Him on the earth. You are also a priest, every believer is a priest, and this was never true before, and you represents yourself before God.
These two are brand new functions for every believer. Never before in history has every believer been an ambassador nor has he been a priest, but now that we possess these things. There are two periods to the intensified stage of the angelic conflict:
- The mystery stage, the Church-age.
b. The overt stage, the Tribulation.
The Church-age is the most intensified stage of the angelic conflict because it is hidden and invisible. And you as a doctrinal believer are a target. This is why for the first time in history every believer needs unusual assets and every believer has it. They learn these assets and learn how to use them from EPH 4:11-12.
EPH 4:11-12, And He gave some apostles, some prophets, and some evangelists, and some pastor-teachers for the equipping of the saints, for the vocation of the ministry, for the building up of the body of Christ.
The three-fold purpose of the pastor-teacher is given in EPH 4:12.
To equip and train the Royal family for combat.
For the vocation of the ministry, i.e., training future pastors.
For the edification of the body which is to teach and encourage the body of Christ through doctrine.
So, you are in full-time Christian service. You have been baptized by the Spirit.You have the unique pre-designed plan of God taking its precedence from the dispensation of the Hypostatic union. You have the unique equality factor of the Church-age. You have your very own portfolio of invisible assets, prepared for us by God the Father in eternity past. You are a royal priest, in which you represent yourself before God. You are a royal ambassador, in which you represent our Lord to the world. You have the unique mystery doctrine itself of the Church-age.
You have the indwelling of all three persons of the Trinity, something that has never occurred before.
You have the unique availability of divine power, the omnipotence of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. You have all of your instructions in writing and in written form. You have a spiritual gift.
REV 6:16-17, and they said to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of their wrath has come; and who is able to stand?”
It’s a time called the time of Jacob’s trouble in JER 30:7 not the time of the church’s trouble, JER 30:7 ‘Alas! for that day is great, There is none like it; And it is the time of Jacob’s distress, But he will be saved from it. For example, as a part of the mystery doctrine of the Church-age, you are an ambassador for Christ, there never were ambassadors in the Old Testament, that is for Christ only. TLJC is in heaven, He’s absent from the earth, and you are an ambassador representing Him on the earth.
You are also your very own priest, every believer is a priest, and this was never true before, and you represent yourself before God. These 2 are brand new functions for every believer.Never before in history has every believer been an ambassador nor has he been a priest, but now we possess these things. But, in addition to that, every believer is in union with Christ and every believer is also indwelt by TLJC. Never true before ‑ All the way from Adam to Enoch to Noah, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Abraham, Joseph, Moses, David and Elijah and Isaiah, and great believers of the past were not indwelt by Christ.
Every believer is also indwelt by God the Holy Spirit. And this is brand new because of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. So, we have a brand new set of provisions, this is what we call intensified provisions for an intensified conflict.
Turn now to Rom 12.
1. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is a real baptism, an actual identification, in which God the Holy Spirit, at the moment we believe in Christ, enters the new believer into union with Christ.It is one of the seven ministries of God the Holy Spirit at salvation whereby the individual church age believer is entered into union with the person of Jesus Christ.
ROM 12:5, so we, who are many, are one body “in Christ”, and individually members one of another.
- The baptism of the Holy Spirit is the means of forming the royal family of God during the Church age.
It is a function of the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit at salvation. By being entered into union with Christ, we are adopted as royal family of God. We are a new spiritual species, or a new creation, 2CO 5:17.
GAL 6:15, For neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation.
- This union with Christ is called positional sanctification or the sanctification of the body, EPH 5:25‑27.
EPH 5:25-27, Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her; that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she should be holy and blameless.
The body here refers to the church or the bride of Christ.
- The baptism of the Holy Spirit is not an experience, 1CO 12:13, It is a function of the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit putting every believer into union with Christ, making him a new spiritual species.
- There is only one baptism that unifies the royal family of God, the baptism of the Spirit, 1CO 12:13 “For by means of one Spirit, we were all baptized into one body; whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves of free, all were made to drink into one Spirit.”
EPH 4:5 “One Lord, one faith, one baptism.”
ROM 6:3-4, “Do you not know that all of us have been baptized into Jesus Christ? Therefore, we have been buried with Him through baptism into his death, in order that as Christ was raised again from the dead to the glory of the Father, we also might walk in newness of life.”
The newness of life refers to our being a new spiritual species and royal family of God.
ROM 6:5, “For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death [and we have], and not only this [retroactive positional truth], we shall also be united in the likeness of His resurrection.”
- The many references to positional sanctification, or the baptism of the Holy Spirit are often found in the preposition phrase en + the locative of Christos, translated “in Christ.”
Almost everywhere this phrase is found, it is a technical reference to the baptism of the Holy Spirit and resultant positional truth.
- The baptism of the Holy Spirit is related to the Church-age only. This ministry of the Holy Spirit is not found in the Old Testament, and there are no eschatological references to it beyond the Church age.
ACT 1:5, “for John baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now. “
- The baptism of the Holy Spirit is not the function of any spiritual gift, as alleged by the holy roller heresy, which equates the baptism of the Holy Spirit with speaking in tongues.
No one has legitimately spoken in tongues since A.D. 70 when Jerusalem was destroyed and there was no longer a need for God to warn the Jews. Notice this in 1CO 12:12-13, For even as the body is one and yet has many members, and all the members of the body, though they are many, are one body, so also is Christ. For by one Spirit we were “all” baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.
Notice that all believers have been baptized by the Holy Spirit. And the apostle Paul makes it crystal clear that not only have all believers been baptized by the Holy Spirit but they all did not speak with tongues.
1CO 12:27-28, Now you are Christ’s body, and individually members of it. And God has appointed in the church, first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, various kinds of tongues.
Notice that on this list tongues is the least of the gifts mentioned.
1CO 12:29-30, All are not apostles, are they? All are not prophets, are they? All are not teachers, are they? All are not workers of miracles, are they? All do not have gifts of healings, do they? All do not speak with tongues, do they? All do not interpret, do they?
The baptism of the Holy Spirit is not the function of any spiritual gift, as alleged by the holy roller heresy, which says that speaking in tongues is the evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. This is heresy and it is wrong. Now, you might say, well how can people speak in a language today that they cannot understand or that is mere gibberish?
The answer, the same way that they can sing words that they don’t understand and that have no meaning because of hearing them repeated over and over again.
- Therefore, because of the universality of the baptism of the Holy Spirit provided for all church age believers, it is not in any sense experiential. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is an act of the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit. And any time God uses His divine power, whether it is the omnipotence of God the Father, the Son, or the Holy Spirit, it excludes any form of experiential cooperation. That’s grace!
- Christ as battlefield royalty had no royal family.
Therefore, the baptism of the Holy Spirit is the mechanics for providing Christ with a royal family. It is unique to this dispensation. Our Lord’s victory was confirmed by His resurrection, ascension, and session at the right hand of the Father, where He received his third royal title “King of kings, Lord of Lords, the bright morning star.”
- Therefore, the baptism of the Holy Spirit could not occur until there was the strategic victory of Jesus Christ in the angelic conflict. The Levitical priesthood was inadequate for the Church age. Now there was the need for a universal priesthood, since every believer was now a target of Satan.
- The baptism of the Holy Spirit occurred first in Jerusalem and included the gift of tongues to warn the Jews of the coming of the fifth cycle of discipline.
- This union with Christ is a permanent identification which distinguishes Christianity from religion.
- Finally, the baptism of the Holy Spirit forms the body of Christ, He being the head, Our Lord’s gifts to His body is found in Rom 12; 1Co 12; Eph 4.