Our Final Authority
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
April 17, 2014, 07:45:26 AM

Login with username, password and session length
Search:     Advanced search
17244 Posts in 3791 Topics by 118 Members
Latest Member: ma11459
* Home Help Search Login Register
+  Our Final Authority
|-+  Theology
| |-+  The Holy Spirit
| | |-+  CHAPTER SEVENTEEN - THE SPIRIT UNKNOWN TO MANY
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
Pages: [1] Go Down Print
Author Topic: CHAPTER SEVENTEEN - THE SPIRIT UNKNOWN TO MANY  (Read 4788 times)
BaptistBibleBeliever
Preacher
Crucified
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4877



View Profile WWW
« on: February 07, 2010, 07:06:31 AM »

THE HOLY SPIRIT AT WORK

by

S. Franklin Logsdon

"It is expedient for you that I go away . . . I will send him unto you"

Copyright @ 1960

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

THE SPIRIT UNKNOWN TO MANY

"We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost"

Twelve men—all in one place and on one occasion—were puzzled when the Holy Spirit was mentioned. They had never heard of Him. Their kind today is legion.
Remember, however, these were religious men. They had been baptized. They knew John but did not know Jesus. One only knows the Saviour who has come into contact with the Spirit. These men were in the dark on the matter. When they met Paul they met one who knew the Spirit. He, knowing the Spirit, was able to introduce them to One greater than John, and a dozen men walked out of darkness into light.

It all happened on this wise. Paul was an itinerant preacher. Wherever he went, "as his custom was," he preached Christ. Some listened; others turned away. Some showed respect; others disdain. At Ephesus, he discovered twelve men referred to as disciples. At once he detected a missing essential. This gave rise to his question and to their confession.

"Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed?" he inquired.

"We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost," was their blunt reply.
Logged

BaptistBibleBeliever
Preacher
Crucified
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4877



View Profile WWW
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2010, 07:07:28 AM »

A Fisher of Men

Twelve men proved themselves to be in the dark on the most profound of all matters. They needed spiritual enlightenment, and who better than Paul could furnish it? We are particularly impressed with his alertness, directness and interest in their case.

The apostle was in a magnificent manner a fisher of men. A lady selling purple by the way, a jailer in mental distress, a king in his abounding luxury—such elicited compassion from the heart of this faithful witness. But, speaking of fishing for men, here was a school of twelve. Nor was it difficult for a discerning one such as he to discover their need. They displayed earnestness, but men may be earnest and still be lost. They were solicitous of the welfare of others, but one may be considerate of others and still miss Heaven. They were gracious in their attitudes, but one may have the finest of traits and be without the grace of God that bringeth salvation.

People are either saved or lost. The twelve disciples at Ephesus labored the fact that they were believers. (This proves that the term "believers" may suffer sadly from too wide an application.) Here was Paul's opportunity. He grasped it at once. "Have ye receive the Holy Spirit since [when] ye believed?" he asked. Their answer confirmed Paul's assumption. They knew neither the truth of the Gospel nor the Teacher of its message.

The Immediate Acknowledgment

Without argument or apology, the twelve frankly stated they had not so much as heard of the Holy Spirit. They might have explained that they had never taken such a course at the seminary. They might have related how they had had a bright-light vision one day and that they based their hope upon this phenomenon. No, they were truthful in their answer and humble in their admission. They had never heard about the Holy Spirit.

Such honesty today would be a hopeful sign. Altogether too many think so, guess so, hope so, betraying a pitiful indefiniteness. With no assurance of the presence and power of the Holy Spirit, and little or no knowledge of His person and work, many cling to fragments of a hopeless tradition as they drift toward eternal calamity.

- Give us people who, instead of claiming they are Christians because they are not Jews, will humbly confess that they do not know Jesus as Lord and Saviour.
- Give us people who, instead of hoping for a better "hereafter" because of good conduct, will acknowledge that they have not God.
- Give us people who, instead of making excuses for lack of spiritual fruit, will say that they know not the Holy Spirit.

Immediately upon such a confession from the twelve, the apostle was in a position to help them.
Logged

BaptistBibleBeliever
Preacher
Crucified
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4877



View Profile WWW
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2010, 07:08:45 AM »

No Objection Registered

These men at Ephesus registered no objection when Paul intruded himself upon them.

- It was sudden but not disturbing.
- It was different but not resented.
- It was revealing and welcomed.

They admitted that they had not gotten beyond John's baptism. Apparently they had not learned that John was but the fading voice of a dying age.

They obviously did not understand that John himself said that One greater than he must increase and that he must decrease. It is evident they had not followed the finger of John in pointing to the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world. Then, admittedly, they were not advised of the fact that a Member of the Godhead was to come to apply the merits of Christ's cross work to believing men. They did not know that this divine Administrator was the Holy Spirit. But they were willing both to hear and to learn.

The Truth Welcomed

Like the Ethiopian on the way to Gaza, these men needed only a helping hand from someone who knew. Thus it did not require preparatory work on the part of Paul. Here is one of the wonderful features about the ministry of the Holy Spirit. He works at both ends. He can get a sinner ready for the message if He has a messenger ready for the contact.

"We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost," the men unitedly confessed. They had not even picked up a rumor to this effect. Yet almost a score of years had passed into history since the great Day of Pentecost on which the Holy Spirit made His debut for His present ministry. It is conjectured that these men lived a distance from Jerusalem; that poor communications of that ancient day prevented them from hearing; that their associations were outside the Christian realm. Whatever the true reason, these men had not so much as heard of the Holy Spirit.
Logged

BaptistBibleBeliever
Preacher
Crucified
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4877



View Profile WWW
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2010, 07:09:40 AM »

The Destitute Directed

Now what can all this mean? What would one lack who had not heard of the Holy Spirit? Could these have been Christian? Some say "yes." Some say "no." A Christian is a follower of Christ. Christ said much about the Holy Spirit. Had these men been following Him, they would have heard His references to the Spirit. Had they been post-Pentecostal converts, they would have heard the apostles talking about the Spirit. They would have known, at some time, of the Holy Spirit performing His work in those who believed in Christ. They were in no wise reluctant or embarrassed to announce that they had not gone beyond John's baptism.

Not having heard of the Person of the Holy Spirit, how could these men be aware of His presence? Without an awareness of His presence, how could they know about His power? Yes, they were in the dark. Anyone is in the dark who has not heard of the Holy Spirit. Since they had not so much as heard of Him, they did not know that He had come. They did not know why He came. They were not born again because to be born again is to be born of the Spirit. They had no witness that they belonged to God because the Holy Spirit is the witness (Romans 8:16). They could not have been of Christ, for "if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his" (Romans 8:9).

But whatever neglect there had been is now to be corrected. Paul wisely led these disciples of John back to the words of the baptizer who told his followers they must believe on Him who should come, that is, the Lord Jesus Christ. These disciples of John, however, were still adherents to the old order. Had they been properly informed, they would have known that "Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth" (Romans 10:4).
Logged

BaptistBibleBeliever
Preacher
Crucified
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4877



View Profile WWW
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2010, 07:10:18 AM »

A New Baptism

A whole new area of divine Truth was being opened to their ready minds and receptive hearts. Their actual introduction to the Saviour and their reception of Him by faith are not recorded. This is implied, of course, in their baptism. And here, let us observe that when people were led to the Lord by Paul and given instruction in the new life, they invariably were baptized, and that immediately. This was true with Lydia (Acts 16:14, 15), with the Philippian jailer and his household (Acts 16:32, 33), with Crispus and his house (Acts 18:8), and with the twelve Jews of Ephesus (Acts 19:5).

When they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus, they came into a new position. As Paul laid his hands upon them and the Holy Ghost came upon them, there was left no room whatever for doubt in their minds. Had it developed in any other manner, these erstwhile Jewish disciples of John the Baptist might have developed some troublesome questions like the converted Jews who witnessed the Gentile Cornelius and his household receiving the Holy Spirit coincident with their act of faith in the Son of God (Acts 10:45). These Jews were something of the "gleanings" from the Pentecost harvest.

These Ephesian disciples, so much in the dark, represent any whose hearts have not thrilled to the gentle touch and mighty movements of the Spirit of God.

- The dozen in the dark speak of those whose spirits have not cried, "Abba Father"!
- The dozen in the dark symbolize those who have never been escorted through the portals of sacred Truth to revel in the beauty and meaning of heavenly revelation.
- The dozen in the dark typify any whose hearts lack the security of that Heaven-sent Seal who keeps amid earth's frustrations until the day of redemption.
- The dozen in the dark characterize those whose dim eyes have not been opened to contemplate with inexpressible joy the glories which lie beyond the sunset of life's little day.

To meet the Holy Spirit, as these men did, is:

- To learn the meaning of His ministry in the practical experience of everyday living;
- To measure His movements upon the soul;
- To feel His promptings in the heart;
- To sense His presence in the life.

To meet the Spirit is:

- To yearn for the peaceable fruits of righteousness;
- To yield our members in obedience to His gracious directions;
- To wait with patience for His renewal of strength;
- To hope unto the end with steadfastness.

The whole moral of this lesson and of this entire volume can be summed up tersely: Do not remain in the dark concerning the Holy Spirit. When the Light comes, accept it. When He guides, follow.

~ end of book  ~

CHAPTER 16. THE SPIRIT AND THE ONE BAPTISM

RETURN TO MAIN INDEX

http://ourfinalauthority.com/index.php

***
Logged

Pages: [1] Go Up Print 
« previous next »
Jump to:  

What's the Big Deal About the KJV Bible? free counters
Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.19 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Forum hosting