Personal Influencing & Fruiting Presence of the Holy Spirit (7)
By Eusebio Tanicala
Ang temang ito ang pinagdebatehan noong nakaraang taon sa Urdaneta City at Quexon City: “Resolved, that the Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit indwells, influences, and guides the Christian today only through the word of God.” Tapusin muna natin ito bago talakayin yaong “indwelling” kung referido ba sa individual Christian or the corporate church.
Proper understanding of Acts 2:38’s “gift of the Holy Spirit” and Acts 2:39’s “promise” will greatly help us understand the presence of the Holy Spirit in the Christian’s life.
The promised pouring out and reception of the Holy Spirit among the Israelites was an anxiously awaited happening by the Jews. Why was possession of the Holy Spirit a much coveted gift? It was so because those in the OT who received the Holy Spirit, were great leaders, powerful workers, courageous fighters and outstanding artisans. Sa ating Pinoy ito ay katumbas ng agimat. Sa taga-Ilocos ito ay anting-anting. It’s a talisman and amulet. Sino ba naman ang ayaw magkaroon nito?
This Holy Spirit’s coming is both a prophecy and a promised gift from God. Please read Isaiah 11:2, Isa. 32:15;Joel 2:28-32; Zech. 12:10; Ezek. 36:27; 39:29; Luke 11:13; 24:49; John 14:16, 17, 26; John 16:7, 13; Acts 1:4-5; Acts 2:33; Acts 10:44-47 and 11:17. The promise and prophecy was not confined to the “baptismal measure.”
Reception of this pouring of the Holy Spirit in its Baptismal Measure on record was received by the Apostles in Acts 2:1-4. Other groups upon which the Holy Spirit directly descended were, first, the group in the house of prayer in Acts 4:23, 31which possibly included those who would become deacons in Acts 6:1-8; and secondly, that of Saul who later on became Apostle Paul in Acts 9:10-19 and the household of Cornelius in Acts 10:44-47.
On the other hand, those who received the Laying-on-of-Hands Measure on record are those in Acts 8:17-19 and Acts 19:6. It’s possible that others received this measure of the Holy Spirit as suggested in 1 Cor. 12 and 1 Cor. 14.
Another measure or degree of Holy Spirit presence as a gift is the Ordinary Measure. This degree is received by all who repent and are baptized into Jesus Christ. Apostle Peter declares this in Acts 2:38. Actual reception of this gift is recorded in Acts 5:322; Romans 8:11, 15; 1Cor. 6:19; Gal. 3:2; 3:14; Eph 1:13-14; Eph 2:22; 4::30; Phil. 2:1; Heb. 6:4 and James 5:4. Under the Ordinary Measure, are the charismatic gifts for administration, for teaching, strength of faith, charitable works, bountiful giving, etc. The Holy Spirit’s presence in the genuine Christian’s life serves as “seal of ownership” as well as “earnest, partial payment, down payment, guarantee, assurance of redemption.”
The baptismal measure, the laying-on-of-hands measure and the ordinary measure, are all parts of the promised pouring and coming of the Holy Spirit. There are many things that the Holy Spirit does to the obedient believer especially in the spiritual level which is why the Spirit is a spiritual agimat, a spiritual amulet which the Israelites desired.