This Pentecost Sunday will include believer’s baptism. Preaching from Rev. Nathan Gordon and our service led by Beverley Sills.
1 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.
4 Paul 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.” 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. 7 There were about twelve men in all.Acts 19:1-7
Are you ready for more? – v1-2
Key verse – 2 he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” …
- Paul understood the disciples of John despite receiving a good foundation, they needed to receive the full picture of God’s redemptive plan through Christ.
- These men had been baptized into the baptism of John the Baptist, but they had never heard about the Holy Spirit
- V2 (They owned their lack of knowledge) John’s disciples were not defensive or intimated by Paul’s question, which is a testament to the humility of John the Baptist who ensured his disciples understood the messiah was greater than himself.
Challenge –We mustn’t allow longevity as Christians to disturb our appetite to learn more about God. Remember we could live 1000 lifetimes and still not know everything there is to know about God. God’s greatness is infinite! There is so much more He wants us to receive if we are willing to ask for more.
Are you baptised into Christ? – v3-5
- John’s baptism was preparation for the greater baptism to come through Jesus Christ
- John’s disciples would not have understood the full picture of the death, burial, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ.
- After hearing about Jesus, they were baptised in the name of the Lord Jesus = by the authority of Jesus Christ the same one John was talking about during his ministry.
Challenge – Are you baptized according to the scriptures? This morning we celebrate believers’ baptism which is one of the two ordinances of the church. (The other being Communion)
Were you baptised within a different religious tradition? Like John’s disciples Christ must be central to our baptism, so we can receive the holy spirit promised to all believers.
What about speaking tongues today? – v6-7
- After the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in Acts chapter 2, Luke records a variety of ways people received the Holy Spirit. (On this occasion Paul laid his hands on them to receive the Holy Spirit)
- Usually, the Holy Spirit fills a person as soon as he or she believes in Jesus Christ and His gospel.
- Luke also records accounts whereby a visible experience followed a person’s infilling of the Holy Spirit such as speaking in tongues.
Just because a person does not speak in tongues It does not mean He or She is not a Christian. (See 1 Cor 13:1 & 1 Cor 12:1-11) However Paul does state in 1 Cor 14:5 “I would like every one of you to speak in tongues, but I would rather have you prophesy. The one who prophesies is greater than the one who speaks in tongues, unless someone interprets, so that the church may be edified.”
Speaking in tongues, however, is part of the biblical gifts of the Holy Spirit and may be part of one’s devotional life of worship and prayer. Paul further gives instructions concerning the operation of tongues within the church. (See 1 Cor 14:2-19)
- As disciples of John, what things would they have possessed and what things were missing in their faith? Discuss the role of John the Baptist and his baptism.
- Do you sense the role of the Holy Spirit in your life? How does the Holy Spirit help you to live out your faith in Christ each day?
- What has been your experience of speaking in tongues and what have you thought about this gift in the past?
- If speaking in tongues is one of the main signs of being filled with the Spirit in the book of Acts, why is it an uncomfortable subject in churches?
- Do you feel there is enough teaching or understanding of the Holy Spirit in balance with God revealed as Father and Son? If not, why do you think this is?
- Read the following passage (1 Cor 14:2-19) and share how this could be applied to the church today.
Sermon Title: Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?
Bible Reading: Acts 19:1-7
Preacher: Nathan Gordon
Worship Leader: Beverley Sills
Download Service Audio here