What Baptism?

“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.”
‭‭Acts‬ ‭19:1-6‬ ‭NKJV

This is an interesting passage to say it lightly. Paul finds in Ephesus a group of disciples that were committed to following the Messiah, Jesus. However, we are told that for some reason Paul sees something that leads him to ask “did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?”  Isn’t that strange? Now, why would Paul ask such a thing?

We have been taught, Scripturally, that the Holy Spirit resides inside of us when we believe. We pass from darkness to light and God, Himself, makes His home inside of us. Then why the question to these men?

As much as we want to compartmentalize and believe that Acts 2 was a once and a moment event that happened to launch the church, it seems that God has a different plan. These 12 men that Paul met responded to the question...what’s this Holy Spirit? When they heard the good news of another baptism they were overjoyed and received a fresh baptism of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of tongues and began to prophesy as the Spirit overflowed in their life.

Today, we need the same message carried to our churches. Many have great programs and fill buildings with well intentioned disciples. Yet, who is asking the question: “do you want more?” We can walk into finely tuned programs that run with machine precision. We can set our clocks to when it begins and when it ends. Yet, is this the good thing or the God thing? Doesn’t God want to ask the question: “have you received the Holy Spirit?”  Who is asking the questions today to the people of God: “what about more?” Does anyone want more?

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