The holy spirit

God’s gift to us is Jesus, the Son.
Jesus’ gift to us is the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit’s gift to us is power.
That power is released in us through the Baptism in the Holy Spirit.


The Baptism in the Holy Spirit


1. The entrance of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost

Acts 2:1-21

When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.

5 Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. 6When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard them speaking in his own language. 7Utterly amazed, they asked: “Are not all these men who are speaking Galileans? 8 Then how is it that each of us hears them in his own native language? 9Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome 11(both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” 12Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?”

13Some, however, made fun of them and said, “They have had too much wine.”


Peter Addresses the Crowd

14Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. 15These men are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning! 16No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
17”‘In the last days, God says,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your young men will see visions,
your old men will dream dreams.
18Even on my servants, both men and women,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy.
19I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. 

20The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. 

21And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’


2. The Baptism in the Holy Spirit

Matthew 3:11

“I baptize you with (in) water for repentance. But after me will come one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptize you with (in) the Holy Spirit and with fire.”

Mark 1:8

“I baptize you with (in) water, but he will baptize you with (in) the Holy Spirit.”


3. Receiving the Holy Spirit While the Word is preached.

Acts 10:44-46

While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. 45 The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles. 46 For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God.

Through the laying on of hands.

Acts 19:1-7

While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2 and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?”
They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”
3 So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?”
“ John’s baptism,” they replied.
4Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.” 5On hearing this, they were baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. 6When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. 7There were about twelve men in all.

By asking God the Father.

Luke 11:13

“If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

Saul (Paul) receiving the Holy Spirit

Acts 9:17

Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”


4. A Christians empowered life

Luke 10:19

I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.

Mark 16:15-18

He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.”

2 Tim. 2:20-24

In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble. 21 If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work.

22 Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. 23Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. 24And the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful.

1 Cor. 3:10-15

By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should be careful how he builds. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, 13his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work. 14If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. 15 If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.


5. The purpose and benefits of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues.

I Corinthians 14:4 Edifies oneself

He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church.

Romans 8:26, 27 Perfect prayer

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.

Jude 20 Builds up faith

But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit.

John 14:26 Understanding of the Word

“But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.”

Acts 1:8 Power to witness

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Luke 24:44-49 Power to witness and serve

He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.” 45Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46He told them, “This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48You are witnesses of these things. 49I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”


6. Called the “gift of God”
The gift can not be purchased.

Acts 8:9-23

Now for some time a man named Simon had practiced sorcery in the city and amazed all the people of Samaria. He boasted that he was someone great, 10and all the people, both high and low, gave him their attention and exclaimed, “This man is the divine power known as the Great Power.” 11They followed him because he had amazed them for a long time with his magic. 12But when they believed Philip as he preached the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. 13Simon himself believed and was baptized. And he followed Philip everywhere, astonished by the great signs and miracles he saw.
14When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them. 15When they arrived, they prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16because the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them; they had simply been baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. 17Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.
18When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money 19and said, “Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.”
20Peter answered: “May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! 21You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. 22Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. 23For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.”


Fan into flame the gift of God

II Timothy 1:5-7

I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also. 6For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. 7For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.

At the “new birth”, we are baptized into the Body of Christ. This is often referred to as the “in-dwelling of the Holy Spirit”. (Note – the Holy Spirit is the baptizer.)

With the Baptism in the Holy Spirit, Jesus immerses us into the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit. This is often referred to as the “in-filling of the Holy Spirit”. (Note – Jesus is the baptizer.)

Because you are born again, you have the Holy Spirit on the inside, and through the Baptism in the Holy Spirit, you have the power and the anointing on the outside.

The Baptism in the Holy Spirit is the anointing and power of God. The power of God (which is a reality to your spirit when you are born again) is brought from the inside out, where it affects you, your body, your soul, and those around you.

Acts 1:8 “You shall receive power (dunamis – super natural ability) after the Holy Spirit comes upon you.”

John 14:12 – Jesus said, “The works that I do, you also will do, and even greater.”

Luke 10:19 – Jesus said, “I have given you authority to overcome all the power of the enemy.”

We do speak in other tongues as the Spirit gives us utterance, being that the speaking in tongues is an outward sign of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit.

Mark 16:15-18 says that these shall be the signs that accompany the believers… speaking in tongues is one of those signs.

It is important to note that the “In-filling of the Holy Spirit” is a continual action of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Christian who has been Baptized in the Holy Spirit.

Acts 2:4 – “And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit…”

Ephesians 5:18 – “Do not be drunk with wine, instead, be filled with the Spirit.”

The Greek word here is of a continuous action, meaning to be constantly filled, a filling which never ceases.


More Power – Spiritual Gifts


1 Cor. 12:1

Now about spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be ignorant.

1 Cor. 12:4-11

There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men. 7Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines.

Definition: A spiritual gift is a supernatural capacity or power bestowed on a believer by the Holy Spirit to enable that person to exercise his or her function as a member of the body of Christ. These gifts are not natural abilities nor permanent possession, but are supernatural (and often sudden) manifestations of the Holy Spirit Himself (v. 7,11). A gift is not given primarily to benefit the one through whom it is manifested, but is “for the common good” (v. 7), for the profit of the entire congregation.


I. Gifts

  1. There are three Greek words used in I Corinthians chapters 12-14 for the English word gift.
    1. pneumatikos (12:1; 14:1) Strongs #4152 – literally it means “spirituals”, a term which always bears the connotation of “supernatural” in the epistles of Paul.
    2. pneuma (I Cor. 14:12) Strongs #4151 – literally, “spirits”.
    3. charisma (I Cor. 12: 4,9,28,30,31) Strongs #5486 – occurs seventeen times in the new testament. In general, charisma refers to any gift of divine grace.
  2. In addition to the three terms translated “gifts”, the apostle Paul used three other Greek words to reveal various facets of their nature.
    1. I Cor. 12:5 “differences of administration” Greek – diakonia – means “services” in the sense of opportunities to serve or to minister.
    2. I Cor. 12:6 “different kinds of workings” Greek – energema – means “energies” or “effects” – this signifies the activities or results produced by God’s imparted spiritual energy.
  3. I Cor. 12:7 “manifestation” Greek – phanerosis – means a visible act which can be seen, heard, or felt, not an invisible grace like the fruit of the Spirit.

II. The Purpose of the Gifts

  1. The gifts manifest the power of God in the body of Christ on earth. God’s purpose is to confound all mere worldly wisdom ( I Corinthians1:27; 2:6-10). That is why Paul was led to turn from his training in Judaism and to tell only what Christ had accomplished through him in the power of signs and wonders (Romans 15: 18,19).
  2. The gifts aid in carrying out the great commission of Mark 16:9-20. The apostles fought heathenism by the gifts of the Holy Spirit, not with great oratorical skills and superior education. (Acts 14:8-18; 16:16-18; 19:11-20; 28:1-10)
  3. The gifts edify and perfect the church.
  4. The gifts effect the deliverance of God’s people (Luke 1: 74,75 and Luke 4:1,18).

III. Classification and Description of the Gifts 
 A. There are nine gifts in three classifications as mentioned in I Cor. 12:8-10

  1. Gifts of revelation
    1. word (message) of wisdom
    2. word (message) of knowledge
    3. discerning (distinguishing) of spirits
  2. Gifts of power
    1. gift of faith
    2. gifts of healing
    3. working of miracles
  3. Gifts of inspired utterance
    1. prophecy
    2. tongues
    3. interpretation of tongues

Word of wisdom – a spoken utterance of wisdom from the Holy Spirit at a given moment, which is different from the daily wisdom given by the Holy Spirit that we are to pray for use in everyday life (James 1:5). Examples of the gift of wisdom are found in: Matthew 22:21; Acts 6:1-7; Acts 15:13-21.

Word of knowledge – this is a partial knowledge given by the Holy Spirit about a particular person and/or situation. It is often given in conjunction with a word of wisdom in order to show how to apply the information God has revealed. Examples of the word of knowledge include: II Kings 5:20-27; Matthew 9:2-6; John 4:17-19; Acts 5:1-9

Discerning of spirits – literally means a “judging through” , a seeing right through to the inner reality with a judgment based on that insight. It is being able to know immediately what is motivating a person or situation, good or bad. An example of discerning of spirits is found in: Acts 16:16-18 (Paul discerned the evil spirit of divination working in the slave girl.)

Gift of faith – a sudden surge of faith, usually in crisis, to confidently believe without a doubt, that as we act or speak in Jesus’ name it shall come to pass. It works in conjunction with the gifts of healing and the gifts of miracles. Examples of the gift of faith can be found in: Hebrews 11:33; Daniel 6:22; I Kings 18:22-38, 41-45

Working of miracles – this covers all of the wonderful and supernatural works of the Holy Spirit separate from the gifts of healing. Examples of the working of miracles can be found in Acts 9:36-41 Acts 20:2-12; such as raising the dead back to life.

Gifts of healing – any type of healing to the physical body or the emotional state. Similar to Jesus’ healing the lame to walk, the blind to see or the deaf to hear. Examples of gifts of healing in the New Testament can be found in: Acts 3:6-10; Acts 28:7,8

Gift of tongues – this is not to be confused with one’s private prayer language. This is a gift that is a sign to the unbeliever ( I Cor. 14:22). It is a supernatural utterance of the tongues of men or angels. It is a tongue unknown by the one speaking. It however, may be supernaturally interpreted ( not translated ) by the speaker under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The apostle Paul said however that it is better to prophesy (I Cor. 14:5).

Gift of interpretation of tongues – the supernatural ability to understand what the Lord communicates to the church through the gift of speaking in tongues. It is a message to the church that should comfort, edify, and exhort the church.

Gift of prophecy – a supernatural utterance to the church that comforts, edifies, exhorts, and strengthens the church. Paul said that it is the gift that we should desire to work in us ( I Cor. 14:1 ). This gift is not to be confused with the office of the prophet. The office of the prophet is one who preaches the gospel to the church and can bring about words of correction and warning. Also included with the office of the prophet is the ability to predict future events by the power of the Holy Spirit.


Examples of some of the gifts in scripture


Wisdom

Matthew 22:21
" Caesar's," they replied. Then he said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's."

Acts 6:1-
In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Grecian Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. 2So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables. 3Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them 4and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.”5This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. 6They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them. 7So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.

Acts 15:13-21
When they finished, James spoke up: “Brothers, listen to me. 14Simon has described to us how God at first showed his concern by taking from the Gentiles a people for himself. 15 The words of the prophets are in agreement with this, as it is written: 16”‘After this I will return and rebuild David’s fallen tent. Its ruins I will rebuild, and I will restore it, 17that the remnant of men may seek the Lord, and all the Gentiles who bear my name, says the Lord, who does these things’18that have been known for ages. 19“It is my judgment, therefore, that we should not make it difficult for the Gentiles who are turning to God. 20Instead we should write to them, telling them to abstain from food polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from the meat of strangled animals and from blood. 21For Moses has been preached in every city from the earliest times and is read in the synagogues on every Sabbath.”


Knowledge

2 Kings 5:20-27

Gehazi, the servant of Elisha the man of God, said to himself, “My master was too easy on Naaman, this Aramean, by not accepting from him what he brought. As surely as the LORD lives, I will run after him and get something from him.” 21So Gehazi hurried after Naaman. When Naaman saw him running toward him, he got down from the chariot to meet him. “Is everything all right?” he asked. 22 “Everything is all right,” Gehazi answered. “My master sent me to say, ‘Two young men from the company of the prophets have just come to me from the hill country of Ephraim. Please give them a talent of silver and two sets of clothing.’” 23 “By all means, take two talents,” said Naaman. He urged Gehazi to accept them, and then tied up the two talents of silver in two bags, with two sets of clothing. He gave them to two of his servants, and they carried them ahead of Gehazi. 24When Gehazi came to the hill, he took the things from the servants and put them away in the house. He sent the men away and they left. 25Then he went in and stood before his master Elisha. “ Where have you been, Gehazi?” Elisha asked. “Your servant didn’t go anywhere,” Gehazi answered. 26But Elisha said to him, “Was not my spirit with you when the man got down from his chariot to meet you? Is this the time to take money, or to accept clothes, olive groves, vineyards, flocks, herds, or menservants and maidservants? 27Naaman’s leprosy will cling to you and to your descendants forever.” Then Gehazi went from Elisha’s presence and he was leprous, as white as snow.

Matthew 9:2-6

Some men brought to him a paralytic, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.” 3At this, some of the teachers of the law said to themselves, “This fellow is blaspheming!” 4Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, “Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts? 5Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 6 But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority

John 4:17-19

“I have no husband,” she replied. Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. 18The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.” 19“Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet.

Acts 5:1-9

Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. 2With his wife’s full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet. 3Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? 4Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God.” 5When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. 6Then the young men came forward, wrapped up his body, and carried him out and buried him. 7About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. 8Peter asked her, “Tell me, is this the price you and Ananias got for the land?”“ Yes,” she said, “that is the price.” 9Peter said to her, “How could you agree to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also.”


Discerning of spirits

Acts 16:16-18

Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a slave girl who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling. 17This girl followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” 18She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so troubled that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her.

II Kings 6:13-1

“Go, find out where he is,” the king ordered, “so I can send men and capture him.” The report came back: “He is in Dothan.” 14Then he sent horses and chariots and a strong force there. They went by night and surrounded the city. 15When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh, my lord, what shall we do?” the servant asked. 16“Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” 17And Elisha prayed, “O LORD, open his eyes so he may see.” Then the LORD opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.


Faith

Hebrews 11:32-33

And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets, 33 who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions,

Daniel 6:22

My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, O king."

1 Kings 18:22-38

Then Elijah said to them, “I am the only one of the LORD’s prophets left, but Baal has four hundred and fifty prophets. 23Get two bulls for us. Let them choose one for themselves, and let them cut it into pieces and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. I will prepare the other bull and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. 24Then you call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the LORD. The god who answers by fire—he is God.” Then all the people said, “What you say is good.” 25Elijah said to the prophets of Baal, “Choose one of the bulls and prepare it first, since there are so many of you. Call on the name of your god, but do not light the fire.” 26 So they took the bull given them and prepared it. Then they called on the name of Baal from morning till noon. “O Baal, answer us!” they shouted. But there was no response; no one answered. And they danced around the altar they had made. 27At noon Elijah began to taunt them. “Shout louder!” he said. “Surely he is a god! Perhaps he is deep in thought, or busy, or traveling. Maybe he is sleeping and must be awakened.” 28 So they shouted louder and slashed themselves with swords and spears, as was their custom, until their blood flowed. 29Midday passed, and they continued their frantic prophesying until the time for the evening sacrifice. But there was no response, no one answered, no one paid attention. 30Then Elijah said to all the people, “Come here to me.” They came to him, and he repaired the altar of the LORD, which was in ruins. 31Elijah took twelve stones, one for each of the tribes descended from Jacob, to whom the word of the LORD had come, saying, “Your name shall be Israel.” 32With the stones he built an altar in the name of the LORD, and he dug a trench around it large enough to hold two seahs of seed. 33 He arranged the wood, cut the bull into pieces and laid it on the wood. Then he said to them, “Fill four large jars with water and pour it on the offering and on the wood.” 34“Do it again,” he said, and they did it again. “ Do it a third time,” he ordered, and they did it the third time. 35The water ran down around the altar and even filled the trench. 36At the time of sacrifice, the prophet Elijah stepped forward and prayed: “O LORD, God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. 37Answer me, O LORD, answer me, so these people will know that you, O LORD, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.”38Then the fire of the LORD fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil, and also licked up the water in the trench.

1 Kings 18:41-4

And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy rain.” 42So Ahab went off to eat and drink, but Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees. 43“Go and look toward the sea,” he told his servant. And he went up and looked. “ There is nothing there,” he said. Seven times Elijah said, “Go back.”44The seventh time the servant reported, “A cloud as small as a man’s hand is rising from the sea.” So Elijah said, “Go and tell Ahab, ‘Hitch up your chariot and go down before the rain stops you.’” 45 Meanwhile, the sky grew black with clouds, the wind rose, a heavy rain came on and Ahab rode off to Jezreel.


Miracles

Acts 9:36-41

In Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha (which, when translated, is Dorcas), who was always doing good and helping the poor. 37 About that time she became sick and died, and her body was washed and placed in an upstairs room. 38Lydda was near Joppa; so when the disciples heard that Peter was in Lydda, they sent two men to him and urged him, “Please come at once!” 39Peter went with them, and when he arrived he was taken upstairs to the room. All the widows stood around him, crying and showing him the robes and other clothing that Dorcas had made while she was still with them. 40Peter sent them all out of the room; then he got down on his knees and prayed. Turning toward the dead woman, he said, “Tabitha, get up.” She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat up. 41He took her by the hand and helped her to her feet. Then he called the believers and the widows and presented her to them alive.

Acts 20:2-12

He traveled through that area, speaking many words of encouragement to the people, and finally arrived in Greece, 3where he stayed three months. Because the Jews made a plot against him just as he was about to sail for Syria, he decided to go back through Macedonia. 4He was accompanied by Sopater son of Pyrrhus from Berea, Aristarchus and Secundus from Thessalonica, Gaius from Derbe, Timothy also, and Tychicus and Trophimus from the province of Asia. 5These men went on ahead and waited for us at Troas. 6But we sailed from Philippi after the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and five days later joined the others at Troas, where we stayed seven days.


Eutychus Raised From the Dead at Troas

7On the first day of the week we came together to break bread. Paul spoke to the people and, because he intended to leave the next day, kept on talking until midnight. 8There were many lamps in the upstairs room where we were meeting. 9Seated in a window was a young man named Eutychus, who was sinking into a deep sleep as Paul talked on and on. When he was sound asleep, he fell to the ground from the third story and was picked up dead. 10Paul went down, threw himself on the young man and put his arms around him. “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “He’s alive!” 11Then he went upstairs again and broke bread and ate. After talking until daylight, he left. 12 The people took the young man home alive and were greatly comforted.


Healing

Acts 3:6-10

Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” 7 Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. 8He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God.9When all the people saw him walking and praising God, 10they recognized him as the same man who used to sit begging at the temple gate called Beautiful, and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.

Acts 28:7-8

There was an estate nearby that belonged to Publius, the chief official of the island. He welcomed us to his home and for three days entertained us hospitably. 8 His father was sick in bed, suffering from fever and dysentery. Paul went in to see him and, after prayer, placed his hands on him and healed him.


Why speak in tongues today?

There are two basic functions of “tongues” for those who have received the in-filling of the Holy Spirit:

  1. for personal edification
  2. for public exhortation

In the experience of the in-filling of the Holy Spirit, “tongues” function as a sign of the Holy Spirit’s presence. Jesus prophesied it as a sign in Mark 16:17 when He said, “…these are the signs that will follow (accompany) those who believe…”, and Paul referred to tongues as a sign for the unbeliever in I Cor. 14:22. Therefore, speaking with tongues is a properly expected sign, affirming the Holy Spirit’s abiding presence and assuring the believer of an invigorated living witness for Christ.


1. Tongues for Personal Edification

Speaking in tongues is a private affair for self-edification.
1 Cor. 14:2-4
For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God. Indeed, no one understands him; he utters mysteries with his spirit. 3 But everyone who prophesies speaks to men for their strengthening, encouragement and comfort. 4 He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church.
The following are reasons why we speak with tongues.
Speaking with tongues is the unique spiritual gift identified with the church. (I Cor. 12:28; I Cor. 14:21)
Speaking with tongues is a specific fulfillment of prophecies by Isaiah (Isaiah 28:11) and Jesus (Mark 16:17).
Speaking with tongues is proof of the resurrection and the glorification of Jesus Christ. (Acts 2:32,33)
Speaking in tongues is evidence of the in-filling (baptism) of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2:4; Acts 10:45,46; Acts 19:6)
Speaking with tongues is a spiritual gift for personal edification or Jude would not have told us to build ourselves up by praying in the Holy Spirit (Ghost). (I Cor. 14:4; Jude 20)
Speaking in tongues is a spiritual gift for communication with God in private worship. (I Cor. 14:15)
Speaking in tongues is a means by which the Holy Spirit intercedes through us in prayer. (I Cor. 14:14; Eph. 6:18; Romans 8:26)
Speaking in tongues is a spiritual means for rejoicing. (I Cor. 14:15; Ephesians 5:18,19)Paul’s application of Isaiah’s prophecy seems to indicate that speaking with tongues is also intended as a means of “rest” or “refreshing”. (Isaiah 28:11,12)Isaiah 28:11-12 Very well then, with foreign lips and strange tongues God will speak to this people, 12 to whom he said, " This is the resting place, let the weary rest"; and, "This is the place of repose"-- but they would not listen.

2. Tongues for Public Exhortation

  1. Speaking in tongues only edifies public worship when it is interpreted. (I Cor. 14:5,28)
  2. The Spirit works only to edify; thus, whenever He is truly present all things are in order and devoid of embarrassment or uneasiness. (I Cor. 14:16,40)
  3. The basis for all gifts is love. Love, not the experience of a gift is the qualifying factor for those who would exercise spiritual gifts. The Word demands that we “judge” (I Cor. 14:29) to confirm that those who exercise gifts actually do “pursue love”.
  4. The Author and Dispenser of the gifts is the Holy Spirit, who divides them as He wills; thus no gift becomes the exclusive possession of any believer for his personal edification and pride. Rather, the gifts are placed in the church to be exercised by the body for the mutual edification of the believers (I Cor. 12:1-11).
  5. The exercise of tongues is to be limited to sequences of two or three at the most. (I Cor. 14:27) While many hold this to be a rigid number, others understand it to be a guideline to keep the worship service in balance. Seldom will the Holy Spirit go beyond these guidelines. The idea of balance is found in I Corinthians 14:40 where Paul said, “Let all things be done decently and in order.”

If you would like to become a child of God and to know that you have eternal life, say this prayer out loud and from your heart.

“Lord, I thank you for Jesus and all He has done for me. I know that I am a sinner and need to be saved. I believe that Jesus Christ died for my sins and rose from the dead so that I might be saved and have eternal life. I accept Your cleansing of all my sin. I take Jesus to be my Savior and Lord. I will not serve sin, the devil, or myself any longer. I am living for Jesus from this day forward. Thank you, Heavenly Father, for making me your child, giving me eternal life, and for saving me. In Jesus name, Amen.”

Once you are born-again, or saved, God wants you to be filled with His Holy Spirit. To be filled with the Holy Spirit, say this prayer out loud and from your heart.

“Lord, I thank you for saving me and giving me eternal life in Christ Jesus. Jesus, thank you for all that you have done, and will do for me, in this life, and through all eternity. I want to be filled with the Holy Spirit so that I can live a life of power and service for you. Help me to pray a perfect prayer when I don’t know how. Help my witness and life-style to be strong for you. I want to be filled with the Holy Spirit of God, with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. Help me to interpret what the Holy Spirit is saying, as He speaks through me. I receive the in-filling of the Holy Spirit by faith now, and will speak in other tongues as the Spirit gives me utterance. In Jesus name, Amen.”

Now open your mouth, make an utterance (sound) with your vocal chords, and allow the Holy Spirit to take over from there. You can start and stop at any time you want to. Take time every day to pray in the Spirit, as well as taking time to pray every day in your natural language.