The mobs who are tearing America apart have succeeded so far, because they have been able to make Christians feel alone, overwhelmed, and resigned to the lie that this is the new normal. The mobs can do this because they are organized and coordinated, and the church is not. We are under a demonic cloud of psychological manipulation.
The church is being flooded with advice, but that advice only seems to add to the confusion and heaviness. There are many things we need right now, but one stands out. An answer that was right under our noses, and it is so simple we missed it.
We need to correct the worst mistake that the Spirit-filled/ Charismatic/ Pentecostal movement ever made. We need to return to preaching the Baptism in the Holy Spirit and we need to make it a priority to start praying for believers to be filled!
Whatever happened to the Baptism in the Holy Spirit? You don’t hear about it anymore. Churches don’t pray with people to receive it anymore. And there’s a big reason why.
Preacher, if you stopped presenting the Baptism of the Holy Spirit to your people—Satan made you do it. If there is no room in your service for people to receive this urgent gift—the enemy has seized control of your agenda. If your people don’t even know what it is—you will answer to God.
No matter how noble, persuasive, or convincing the argument, the decision to exclude the Baptism of the Holy Spirit from the life of the church, is a decision conceived in hell.
Omitting this Baptism was a masterstroke of Satan.
He knew this was the most destructive deception possible. It created lukewarm Christians. It single handedly wiped out a huge amount of our soulwinning. And, it opened the door to untold heresy.
Today, we are swimming in more false teaching, false prophecy and false Christianity than ever before. All across the internet, ministries dabble in New Age-hybrids of Christian faith, exotic extremes, drunkenness and even perversion. Turns out, the church is the other swamp that needs draining…
Noted Christian Apologist Ravi Zacharias said, “I had dinner with the most popular preacher on television. He told me that he did not see much difference between Islam and Christianity.”
How can we hang the blame for such foolishness on the way we have neglected the Baptism of the Holy Spirit? Let’s examine the evidence.
Jesus said, “However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all Truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come” (John 16:13).
Jesus calls Him the Spirit of Truth. He imparts hunger for the Truth. It is futile to layer Truth on the unwilling soul. False teaching abounds because there is a lack of hunger for Truth that the Holy Spirit awakens. Let’s go back to the root issue:
Don’t make a move without it!
And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “Which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now” (Acts 1:4-5).
The church has no witness without it. Acts 1:8 states: “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
The Apostles considered it an extreme urgency for all who have believed on Christ as Savior, to be filled with the Holy Spirit.
-Acts 8:14-15: “Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them, who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit.”
-Acts 19:1-6: “And it happened, while Apollos was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper regions, came to Ephesus. And finding some disciples he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” So, they said to him, “We have not so much as heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.” And he said to them, “Into what then were you baptized?” So, they said, “Into John’s baptism.” Then Paul said, “John indeed baptized with a baptism of repentance, saying to the people that they should believe on Him who would come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.” When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied.”
We have two extremes in the church: Those who believe in nothing and those who believe in everything.
Or to put it another way: We have those who know nothing of what the Bible says, and those who believe anything anyone says about the Bible. Both are products of a lack of discernment and power. It is only after you experience the real presence and power of God that you know what is fake.
Look at the discipleship that resulted from the Baptism of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost:
Acts 2:41-43: “Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.”
One big reason that the Baptism of the Holy Spirit is not preached today is because it is the natural enemy of church marketing.
When God falls, church culture instantly changes. Human promotion becomes obsolete. An audience morphs into an army. An insatiable hunger for the Word of God replaces sales-pitches.
The preacher who withholds the Baptism of the Holy Spirit is guilty of treason—of withholding a priceless gift that was bought and paid for by the blood of Jesus. They are guilty of holding back an edge of power that would keep the believer strong, alert, and able to win others, a gift that endows them with a prayer language which pierces all adversity. How dare we hold this back!
The Pentecostal revival is the greatest Christian revival in history. Beginning in the humble Azusa Street Mission, it has blazed for on for over 100 years, with over 650 million converts. Only one thing explains it: The Baptism of the Holy Spirit. It is the answer for this dark hour!