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Reformed. Christianity. Evangelism. Modern Culture.
I remember a couple of years ago when a friend, Ryan (not his real name), came rejoicing to church. Another buddy of his had come to faith in Christ. This of course was greeted with the usual jubilance when a sinner comes to repentance. Then my friend said something that got me thinking. Ryan said now that Rooney (not his real name too) was saved, he needed to pray hard so that he could receive the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is given to all Christians. Actually no body can be saved without the work of the Holy Spirit in applying the preaching of the gospel in regeneration of a sinner. Pentecostalism teaches that the Holy Spirit is given to Christians after they believe in Christ –as an additional or second blessing. This implies then that there is a split-level church.
On the lower level are the ordinary Christians who only have faith in Jesus, the forgiveness of sin, and everlasting life, while on the higher level are those ‘anointed ones’ who have the gift (and gifts) of the Holy Spirit.
Surely the day of Pentecost was unique (Acts 2) and can never be repeated. Just like the birth and ascension of Christ. Once alone did Jesus Christ send forth or pour out his Holy Spirit. Only once did the Holy Spirit come to dwell in Christ’s body –the church. And if we belong to Christ, we are baptised in to this body (the church) by one Spirit and become members of the body and have all been made to drink into one Spirit whether Jews or Greeks, slaves or free. (1 Cor 12:13)
Therefore all Christians (yes even the new ones in the faith and so called ‘lower level ones’) already have the Holy Spirit. If we (and they) did not have the Spirit, we would not belong to Christ.