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The meaning/purpose of the baptism of the Spirit

 

 Chuck Smith comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

In Matthew 3:11, John is prophesying the coming of Jesus, and declares, concerning Him, that He would baptize them with the Holy Spirit and fire. John was baptizing people in water. John was the baptizer, water was the element, and repentance of sin was the issue. In 1 Corinthians 12, the Holy Spirit is the baptizer and the issue is initiation into the body of Christ. The promise was that Jesus would be the baptizer, the Holy Spirit would be the element, and the issue would be power to witness. (Chuck Smith, Living Water, p.261.)

     The note “John was the baptizer, water was the element, and repentance of sin was the issue” is right and biblical. But consider, “In 1 Corinthians 12, the Holy Spirit is the baptizer and the issue is initiation into the body of Christ.” The note “the Holy Spirit is the baptizer” is right, but the note, “the issue is initiation into the body of Christ” is thoroughly inaccurate. It is based on the mistranslation of the Greek eis. This passage must be translated, “by one Spirit we were all baptized in one body.” It must be concluded that the Spirit baptized us because we are already in one body through the faith in Jesus.
     1 Cor. 12:13 does by no means describe the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit. Likewise, Matt. 3:11 also does not describe the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit. Instead Acts 1:4-5,8 describes the meaning and purpose: that is, to be baptized with/in the Spirit (and with/in fire) is to receive the power of the Spirit. In the note “the promise was that Jesus would be the baptizer” is correct, but “the Holy Spirit would be the element” is thoroughly inaccurate since the element in Matt. 3:11 and Luke 3:16 must be “the Holy Spirit’s fire.” The note “the issue would be power to witness” is right and biblical according to the record of Acts 1:4-5,8.

Rene Pache comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

The nature of the Holy Spirit’s baptism. Our definition will be drawn from the most lucid text which the New Testament contains on this subject (1 Cor. 12:13). “For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body.” From this we can infer that the Spirit’s baptism is the act whereby God makes us member of Christ’s Body. The baptism of the Spirit is the act whereby God gives to the believer his position in Jesus. (Rene Pache, The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit, p.70-71.)

     The note, “Our definition of the Holy Spirit’s baptism will be drawn from the most lucid text which the New Testament contains on this subject (1 Cor. 12:13),” is thoroughly inaccurate. It is based on the mistranslation and misinterpretation of “en” and “eis” in 1 Cor. 12:13. The definition of the Holy Spirit’s baptism can not be drawn from 1 Cor. 12:13 but only from Acts 1:5,8. The definition of “the Spirit’s baptism is the act whereby God makes us member of Christ’s Body” is quite incorrect and unbiblical. The Spirit’s baptism is not the act whereby God makes us member of Christ’s Body. The baptism of the Spirit imparts the power of the Spirit after one has become a member of Christ’s body through faith in Christ. Acts 1:5,8 affirms that to receive the baptism of the Spirit is to receive the power of the Spirit after becoming a Christian.

John F. MacArthur comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Spirit.

Spirit baptism brings the believer into a vital union with Christ. To be baptized with the Holy Spirit means that Christ immerses us in the Spirit, thereby giving us a common life principle. This spiritual baptism is what connects us with all other believers in Christ and makes us part of Christ’s own body. Baptism with the Spirit makes all believers one. It is a fact, not a feeling. Unfortunately, the tremendous truth of that verse has been greatly misunderstood. (John F. MacArthur, Charismatic Chaos, p.231.)

     The terminology “Spirit baptism” in the note is erroneous since the Spirit is treated as the element. So it should speak of “the Spirit’s baptism” or “the baptism of the Spirit.” The note, “Spirit baptism brings the believer into a vital union with Christ. To be baptized with the Holy Spirit means that Christ immerses us in the Spirit. This spiritual baptism makes us part of Christ’s own body. Baptism with the Spirit makes all believers one,” is thoroughly erroneous. Unfortunately, it is based on the mistranslation and misinterpretation of 1 Cor. 12:13.
     If the note, “To be baptized with the Holy Spirit means that Christ immerses us in the Spirit,” is said to correspond to, “To be baptized with water means that John the Baptist immerses us in water,” it is illogical. To be baptized with the Holy Spirit does not mean that Christ immerses us in the Holy Spirit. Neither does the Spirit’s baptism bring the believer into a vital union with Christ. This baptism does not make us part of Christ’s own body. The baptism of the Spirit does not make all believers one. Luke 3:16, Acts 1:5,8 and 2:2-4 confirm that to be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit and with/in fire is to receive the power of the Spirit, that is, to be filled with the power of the Spirit. John F. MacArthur continues:

Paul’s central point in 1 Corinthians 12:13 is that baptism with the one Spirit makes the church one body. He is using the doctrine of baptism with the Spirit to show the unity of all believers in the Body. (John F. MacArthur, The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: 1 Corinthians, p.312.)

     The note is from the mistranslation of 1 Cor. 12:13. MacArthur insists that the baptism with the one Spirit makes the church one body and the baptism is to show the unity of all believers in the Body. But it is thoroughly erroneous. It is not 1 Cor. 12:13 that records the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit, but Acts 1:5,8.

John F. Walvoord comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Spirit.

Through the baptism with the Spirit, the Christian has become as much an organic part of Christ as the branch of the vine, or the member is a part of the body. The power to witness, while not connected with the baptism of the Holy Spirit, was present on the day of Pentecost, and the disciples immediately began the work Christ specified as their program in Acts 1:8, and they no longer felt any necessity of remaining in Jerusalem awaiting a work of the Spirit. (John F. Walvoord, The Holy Spirit, p.143,144.)

     The note, “Through the baptism with the Spirit, the Christian has become as much an organic part of Christ as the branch of the vine, or the member is a part of the body,” is incorrect. The 120 disciples were already an organic part of Christ as the branch of the vine and as members of Christ before receiving the baptism of the Spirit. To speak of “The power to witness, while not connected with the baptism of the Holy Spirit, was present on the day of Pentecost” is quite inaccurate. (See the detailed discussion on the relation Jesus’ witness and the power of the Spirit. )

Charles C. Ryrie comments on the purpose of the baptism by water and by the Spirit.

Obviously water baptism could not accomplish this union with Christ in His death and resurrection, but equally obvious is the fact that there must be some connection between the baptism by the Spirit and baptism by water. The connection is simply that water baptism is the outward picturing of what the Spirit does in the heart. The baptism by the Spirit places us in a position in Christ which enables us to receive power, but the act of baptizing does not in itself guarantee that power will be experienced or displayed in the life. The baptism of the Spirit does not necessarily mean a special enduement with power. As far as the occurrences of the baptism with the Spirit in Acts are concerned, the power connected with them is that of bringing men to Christ (Acts 2:41; 10:47; 19:5). (Charles C. Ryrie, The Holy Spirit, p.79.)

     This note (“The baptism by the Spirit places us in a position in Christ which enables us to receive power, but the act of baptizing does not in itself guarantee that power will be experienced or displayed in the life. The baptism of the Spirit does not necessarily mean a special enduement with power”) is quite erroneous. The baptism by (of) the Spirit does not place us in a position in Christ but enables us to receive power. For instance, the 120 disciples were already in that position in Christ before the baptism of the Spirit at Pentecost. Because they were already in that position they received the power. The act of baptizing guarantees that power will be experienced or displayed in a believer since the baptism of the Spirit imparts the power. The baptism of the Spirit speaks of a special enduement with power to be witnesses after regeneration. The note, “As far as the occurrences of the baptism with the Spirit in Acts are concerned, the power connected with them is that of bringing men to Christ,” is correct. The power of the baptism of the Spirit in the NT, including Acts and the OT, does bring unbelievers to Christ, but the baptism of the Spirit does not place believers in Christ. Through the baptism of the Spirit the Spirit imparts power because we have become Christians.

Merrill F. Unger comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Spirit.

The baptism of the Spirit brings the believer into organic union with the body and under the imputed merits and power of Christ, the Head. Misunderstood the baptism of the Spirit invariably leads to misunderstanding the gifts of the Spirit. The Pentecostal interpretation of the baptism of the Spirit as an experience subsequent to conversion distorts the true biblical perspective of the gifts of the Spirit. It is precisely for this reason the apostle Paul presents the correct doctrine of Spirit baptism (1 Co 12:12-13) in his great passage on the gifts of the Spirit in 1 Corinthians 12-14. The apostle presents the baptism of the Spirit as a vital part of salvation and not an experience subsequent to salvation. Moreover, he reveals that this baptism is both the basis of the unity of all believers in the body and the ground of the exercise of spiritual gifts in the body (1 Co 12:14-31). (Merrill F. Unger, The Baptism & Gifts of the Holy Spirit, p.96,133.)

     The note “The baptism of the Spirit brings the believer into organic union with the body” is quite inaccurate and based on the mistranslation of 1 Cor. 12:13. The baptism of the Spirit does by no means bring the believer into organic union with the body. The note, “The Pentecostal interpretation of the baptism of the Spirit as an experience subsequent to conversion distorts the true biblical perspective of the gifts of the Spirit,” is quite erroneous, but “The Pentecostal interpretation of the baptism of the Spirit is an experience subsequent to conversion” is correct and biblical. There is no scriptural reference which would indicate that the baptism of the Holy Spirit is an experience at conversion.
     The note “the Pentecostal interpretation of the baptism of the Spirit is incorrect” is erroneous since it is from the mistranslation and misinterpretation. The note, “The apostle presents the baptism of the Spirit as a vital part of salvation and not an experience subsequent to salvation,” is quite erroneous because it is based on the mistranslation of 1 Cor. 12:13. Instead, we should write that the baptism of the Spirit is not a vital part of salvation but an experience subsequent to salvation. “To declare that he reveals that this baptism is the basis of the unity of all believers in the body” is quite erroneous. The baptism of the Spirit takes place subsequent to salvation and is to receive the gifts of the Spirit, that is, the nine gifts of the Spirit. Merrill F. Unger continues:

Scripture reveals that all believers are in the body of Christ by virtue of Spirit baptism and that all possess one or more gifts of the Spirit as a result. This, as already noted, is the clear declaration of the central passage on the baptism of the Spirit, 1 Cor. 12:13. (Merrill F. Unger, Ibid., p.137.)

     The note “Scripture reveals that all believers are in the body of Christ by virtue of Spirit baptism” is thoroughly inaccurate. The 120 disciples were already in the body of Christ before receiving the baptism of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. The note “all possess one or more gifts of the Spirit as a result” is also quite erroneous since after regeneration through faith in Jesus every believer must receive the baptism of the Spirit, that is, gifts of the Spirit. So the note should read, “All does by no means possess one or more gifts of the Spirit at conversion.” The note “This is the clear declaration of the central passage on the baptism of the Spirit, 1 Cor. 12:13” is thoroughly unscriptural. Instead, Acts 1:5,8 must be the central passage on the baptism of the Spirit. Merrill F. Unger continues:

Today in many Christian circles, charismatic as well as non-charismatic, the baptism of the Spirit is generally connected with the power of the Spirit for holy living and effective service. The believer’s position in Christ is the ground for his appropriation of power. The baptism with the Spirit is the basis of the appropriation of power. However, it in itself is not the reception of power. (Merrill F. Unger, Ibid., 147-9.)

     The note, “Today in many Christian circles, charismatic as well as non-charis- matic, the baptism of the Spirit is generally connected with the power of the Spirit for holy living and effective service,” is straight from the Bible record. But the note “The baptism with the Spirit in itself is not the reception of power” is from the misinterpretation of Acts 1:5,8. Merrill F. Unger continues.  

The baptism with the Holy Spirit is not a correct scriptural term for power. The much-used and much-abused term baptism of the Holy Spirit does not occur in Scripture. (Merrill F. Unger, Ibid., p.152.)

     The statement “The baptism with the Holy Spirit is not a correct scriptural term for power” is also from the misinterpretation of Acts 1:5,8. To be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:5) carries the same meaning as “to receive the power of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 1:8). Both verses indicate that the strict doctrine of the Holy Spirit is that to be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit (and with/in fire) is to receive the power of the Holy Spirit. The note “The much-used and much-abused term baptism of the Holy Spirit does not occur in Scripture” is thoroughly inaccurate because it is based on the misinterpretation of Luke 3:16, Acts 1:5,8 and 1 Cor. 12: 13. The Holy Spirit sent by Jesus after His ascension came on the 120 disciples of Jesus. So they were actually baptized with/in fire on the day of Pentecost. That is, they were baptized with/in the fire by the Holy Spirit sent by Jesus. Therefore, this event can be called the baptism of the Holy Spirit or the baptism by the Holy Spirit. The term “baptism of the Holy Spirit” can be found in Luke 3:16, Acts 1:5-2:4 and 1 Cor. 12:13. Merrill F. Unger continues.

Regarding the power of Pentecost the divine word is not that “they were all baptized with the Holy Spirit,” but “they were all filled with the Holy Spirit” (Ac 2:4). By far the most important term for the power of the Spirit in the Acts (2:4; 4:8, 31; 9:17; 13:9, 52) and in the epistles is the expression filled with the Spirit (Eph 5:18). It is the correct doctrinal term to be employed during this age. It is not scriptural correct to use any of the other terms for power. (Merrill F. Unger, Ibid Ibid., p.153,162.)

     The note “Regarding the power of Pentecost the divine word is not that they were all baptized with the Holy Spirit, but they were all filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:4) is unscriptural. The promise in Acts 1:5 that you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit was fulfilled at Pentecost according to the phrase “they were all filled with the Holy Spirit.” So the phrase “they were all filled with the Holy Spirit” is used of the same as “they were all baptized with the Holy Spirit.” Both are synonyms even though both phrases are literally different. The phrase “they were all filled with the Holy Spirit” is an erroneous translation. It must be “they were all filled with (the power) of the Holy Spirit.” The correct term should be “the filling of the power of the Holy Spirit, and the term “the baptism with the Holy Spirit” is erroneous because the Holy Spirit is not treated as God. It should be “the baptism of the Holy Spirit” or “the baptism with the Spirit’s fire” because “fire” must be the element of the baptism of the Spirit.

Robert Gromacki comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Spirit.

Paul clearly referred to the baptism in the Holy Spirit once (1 Cor.12:13). What does the baptism in the Holy Spirit accomplish in each believer? It identifies every believer with Jesus Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection. Every believer is in Christ, and Christ is in every believer. We are in Him, one in Him, united in Him forever. When we were in the Holy Spirit at the moment of our conversion, we were placed into Christ. (Robert Gromacki, The Holy Spirit, p.491.)

     The note “The baptism in the Holy Spirit identifies every believer with Jesus Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection” is inaccurate. It is water baptism that identifies every believer with Jesus Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is to receive the power of the Holy Spirit subsequent to conversion for service and for the preaching of the gospel of Jesus.

John Calvin comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Spirit.

Paul says, “All of you who have been baptized...have put on Christ” (Gal. 3:27). Again: “All of us who have been baptized in Christ are one body and one spirit” (1 Cor. 12:12-13). “We have been engrafted into the body of Christ through baptism” (1 Cor. 12:13). (John Calvin, Ibid., IV, 14, 7; IV, 16, 22)

     John Calvin identifies Gal. 3:27 with 1 Cor. 12:13. But Gal. 3:27 speaks of only water baptism and 1 Cor. 12:13 does not mean water baptism but only the baptism of the Spirit. Calvin insists that 1 Cor. 12:12-13 records, “All of us who have been baptized in Christ are one body and one spirit.” But 1 Cor. 12:12-13 does not record so. Calvin’s note is quite incorrect since it is based on the mistranslation and misunderstanding of 1 Cor. 12:13, which records “We were all baptized by one Spirit in one body.” The note “We have been engrafted into the body of Christ through baptism” (1 Cor. 12:13) is thoroughly inaccurate since believers are not engrafted into the body of Christ through the baptism of the Spirit. We have not been engrafted into the body of Christ through the baptism of the Holy Spirit but through faith in Christ before receiving water baptism and before the baptism of the Holy Spirit. John Calvin continues:

“He who follows me, is he who baptizes in the Holy Spirit and in fire” (Matt. 3:11; Luke 3:16; cf. John 1:26,33). Therefore, just as to baptize by the Holy Spirit and by fire is to confer the Holy Spirit, who in regeneration has the function and nature of fire, so to be born of water and the Spirit is but to receive that power of the Spirit, which does in the soul what water does in the body. (John Calvin, Ibid., IV, 16, 22.)

     The note, “just as to baptize by the Holy Spirit and by fire is to confer the Holy Spirit, who in regeneration has the function and nature of fire,” is quite erroneous since to baptize by the Holy Spirit and by fire is not to confer the Holy Spirit in regeneration. To receive Jesus is to receive the Holy Spirit. For instance, the 120 disciples had already received the Holy Spirit before being baptized with/in the Holy Spirit and with/in fire on the day of Pentecost. The note “to be born of water and the Spirit is to receive that power of the Spirit” is thoroughly inaccurate. If anyone receives Jesus as Savior and Lord, he is born of water and the Spirit. To receive Jesus is to be born of water and the Spirit. The 120 disciples had already received Jesus as Savior and Lord before receiving the baptism of the Spirit, that is, before receiving the power of the Spirit. Therefore, it is confirmed that the note “to be born of water and the Spirit is to receive that power of the Spirit” is thoroughly inaccurate. John Calvin continues:

I know that others interpret it differently, but I do not doubt that this is the real meaning. Baptism is a sign of our forgiveness, of our participation in Christ’s death and resurrection and also in his blessing. Baptism is the sign of the initiation by which we are received into the society of the church, in order that, engrafted in Christ, we may be reckoned among God’s children. (John Calvin, Ibid., IV, 16, 25, 15,1.)

     The baptism in this note is not the baptism of the Spirit but only water baptism. It should be “only water baptism is a sign of our forgiveness, of our participation in Christ’s death and resurrection and also in his blessing...the sign of the initiation by which we are received into the society of the church.”

Stanley M. Horton comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Spirit.

Jesus himself connects the baptism in the Spirit with power for service rather than with purification of sanctification (Acts 1:8). Acts 1:4-8 also indicates that power (Greek, dynamis, mighty power) would come on them after the Pentecost baptism. In a sense, the power may have come with the Spirit and the Spirit might be considered the power. (Stanley M. Horton, What the Bible says about the Holy Spirit, p.87,160.)

     The note “Jesus himself connects the baptism in the Spirit with power for service rather than with purification of sanctification” is right. But the note to “the baptism in the Spirit” should read, “the baptism of the Spirit.” In the note regarding Acts 1:4-8, it is incorrect to say that the “power would come on them after the Pentecost baptism.” This should read, “the Pentecost baptism, that is, the baptism of the Spirit is to receive the power of the Spirit.” The note “the power may have come with the Spirit” is erroneous and unclear, and should read, “the Spirit is with every believer and is in him at the moment of regeneration. After regeneration every believer will receive the power of the Spirit when He comes on him.” The note “the Spirit might be considered the power” is thoroughly unscriptural because it fails to treat the Spirit as God the Spirit and a divine Person. The Spirit cannot be considered the power but the source of the power.

Guy P. Duffield/N.M. Van Cleave comment on the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit.

The chief purpose of the baptism with the Holy Spirit is that the believer might have power for Christian service. (Guy P. Duffield/N.M. Van Cleave, Foundations of Pentecostal Theology, p.308.)

     The note is right and biblical but it should be “to be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit (and with/in fire) is to receive the power of the Holy Spirit for service.”

John R. W. Stott comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Spirit.

All Christians receive the Spirit at the very beginning of their Christian life. This truth is confirmed by the New Testament use of the expression ‘baptism of the Spirit’ as an equivalent to ‘gift of the Spirit,’ or rather of the verb (for the expression is always verbal) to ‘baptize’ or ‘be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ The very concept of baptism is initiatory. Moreover, there can be no doubt that Cornelius’ baptism with the Spirit was initiation into Christ, his conversion. The purpose of the baptism of the Spirit is incorporation into (eis) one body, namely the body of Christ, the church. (John R. W. Stott, Baptism & Fullness, p.36-37,42.)

     The note can be simply summarized, “To receive the Spirit is to be baptized with the Holy Spirit, and the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit is incorporation into (eis) one body, namely the body of Christ, the church.” The note “To receive the Spirit is to be baptized with the Holy Spirit” is from the mistranslation of the Greek lambano in the NT, as already noted. The Bible confirms that to receive the Holy Spirit is not to be baptized with the Holy Spirit. To be filled with the power of the Holy Spirit is to be baptized with/in the fire of the Holy Spirit. The purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is by no means incorporation into (eis) one body. The purpose of this baptism is to receive the power of the Spirit for those in the body of Christ. John R. W. Stott continues:

Let me enlarge on my point in this way. In every kind of baptism (of water, blood, fire, Spirit, etc.) there are four parts. To begin with, there are the subject and the object namely the baptizer and the baptized. Thirdly, there is the element with or in (en) which, and fourth, there is the purpose for (eis) which, the baptism takes place. (John R. W. Stott, Ibid., p.42.)

     To speak of “In every kind of baptism (of water, blood, fire, Spirit, etc.)” is erroneous. The NT records only two kinds of baptism, namely water baptism and the fire baptism of the Spirit. Consider the note “there are four parts. To begin with, there are the subject and the object namely the baptizer and the baptized. Thirdly, there is the element with or in (en) which, and fourth, there is the purpose for (eis) which, the baptism takes place.” The note “there is the purpose for (eis) which, the baptism takes place” is thoroughly inaccurate. John R. W. Stott continues:

In John’s baptism, John the Baptist was the subject, while the objects were the people of ‘Jerusalem and all Judea and all the region about the Jordan’ (Mt. 3:5). The baptism took place in (en) the waters of the River Jordan and was for or unto (eis) repentance (Mt. 3:11) and therefore the remission of sins (Mk. 1:4; Lk. 3:3). (John R. W. Stott, Ibid., p.40-41.)

Matt. 3:11  I indeed baptize you with water unto (eis) repentance. (KJV)
NIV            I baptize you with water for (eis) repentance.

     Stott’s note “There is the purpose for (eis) which, the baptism takes place. The baptism took place in (en) the waters of the River Jordan and was for or unto (eis) repentance (Mt. 3:11)” is right and biblical only in reference to Matt. 3:11, Mark 1:4, Luke 3:3 and Acts 2:38. The baptized must accept God and Jesus as Savior and repent original and actual sins before being baptized with/in water. Subse- quently the baptized is forgiven repentance before being baptized with/in water. Water baptism can be called an outward symbol of washing sins away and the for- giveness of sins. John R. W. Stott continues:

Christian baptism is similar. The minister baptizes the professing believer with or in (en) water. And the baptism is into (eis) the one name of the Trinity (Mt. 28:19), or more precisely into the name of the Lord Jesus (Acts 8:16; 19:5), that is, into the Christ crucified and risen (Rom. 6:3,4). (John R. W. Stott, Ibid., p.40-41.)

     Stott’s note mentioned above “there is the element with or in (en) which, and fourth, there is the purpose for (eis) which, the baptism takes place” must be applied to his note “the baptism is into (eis) the one name of the Trinity (Mt. 28:19), or more precisely into (eis) the name of the Lord Jesus (Acts 8:16; 19:5), that is, into (eis) the Christ crucified and risen (Rom. 6:3,4)” since he accepts it as the principle of interpretation of “baptize eis.” Now, let’s apply his principle to “baptize eis” in Matt. 28:19.
 
Matt. 28:19   Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in (eis) the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, (NKJ)

     If Stott’s note “The baptism took place in (en) the waters of the Jordan and was for or unto (eis) repentance (Mt. 3:11)” applies to his note “the baptism is into (eis) the one name of the Trinity (Mt. 28:19),” it should read, “the baptism in Matt. 28: 19 is for the one name of the Trinity.” Here, “water baptism in Matt. 3:11 which is for (eis) repentance” makes sense. But if the baptism in Matt. 28:19 which is for (eis) the one name of the Trinity is accepted, it is quite inaccurate because it is based on this erroneous principle (“There is the purpose for (eis) which, the baptism takes place”). The Greek eis in Matt. 28:19 must not be translated as “into” but “in” as in the NKJ, “baptizing them in (eis) the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Matt. 28:19 does not record the purpose of the bap- tism, but commands “baptizing” in the name of the Trinity. The purpose of the baptism in Matt. 28:19 is recorded elsewhere.
     The principle “There is the purpose for (eis) which, the baptism takes place” can be applied to only Matt. 3:11 and Acts 2:38. If applied to Matt. 28:19, Acts 8:16, 19:5, Rom. 6:3,4 and 1 Cor. 12:13 it makes no sense. John R. W. Stott applies this erroneous principle to “eis” in 1 Cor. 12:13. Through this erroneous principle he insists that the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit is incorporation into (eis) one body, namely the body of Christ, the church. 1 Cor. 12:13 does not record the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit. Acts 1:5,8 records it. When the Greek eis in 1 Cor. 12:13 is translated as “in,” controversial debate on the meaning/purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is removed.  

R. A. Torrey comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Spirit.

A man may be regenerated by the Holy Spirit and still not be baptized with the Holy Spirit. In regeneration there is the impartation of life by the Spirit’s power, and the one who receives it is saved; in baptism with the Holy Spirit, there is the impartation of power, and the one who receives it is fitted for service. It is only by the baptism with the Holy Spirit that one becomes in the fullest sense a member of the body of Christ, because it is only by the baptism with the Spirit that he receives power to perform those functions which God has appointed him as a part of the body. (R. A. Torrey, The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit, p.150,152.)

     It is correct to write, “A man may be regenerated by the Holy Spirit and still not be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” However, it is inaccurate to speak of “in regeneration there is the impartation of life by the Spirit’s power.” This is without any supporting scriptural references. Jesus said (John 3:5-8), “…unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit…So is everyone who is born of the Spirit” (NKJ). Everyone can be born of the Spirit, but Jesus does not say that everyone can be born of the Spirit’s power. So Torrey’s argument “in regeneration there is the impartation of life by the Spirit’s power” is not based upon the Bible but upon his own assumption. It is correct to say “in regeneration there is the impartation of life by the Spirit and that a man may be regenerated by the Holy Spirit.” However, to argue that a man may be regenerated by the Holy Spirit’s power is inaccurate. The argument of Torrey, “in baptism with the Holy Spirit, there is the impartation of power, and the one who receives it is fitted for service. It is only by the baptism with the Holy Spirit that one becomes in the fullest sense a member of the body of Christ, because it is only by the baptism with the Spirit that he receives power to perform those functions which God has appointed him as a part of the body,” is quite biblical since it is based squarely on the Word.
     However, the terminology “the baptism with the Holy Spirit” is quite inaccurate and should speak of “the baptism of the Holy Spirit.” The Holy Spirit must be always treated as God the Holy Spirit and a divine Person. Consequently, in his note Torrey correctly insists that the meaning and purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is to receive the power of the Holy Spirit for service. This conclusion is based upon the correct interpretation of Acts 1:5,8.

Billy Graham comments on the meaning of the baptism of the Spirit.

For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body (I Cor. 12:13). Two things stand out in that verse: first, the baptism with the Spirit is a collective operation of the Spirit; second, it includes every believer. All believers are baptized with the Holy Spirit. For example, some Christians hold that the Spirit’s baptism only comes at some time subsequent to conversion. The biblical truth, it seems to me, is that we are baptized into the body of Christ by the Spirit at conversion. Thus, the purpose of the baptism with the Holy Spirit is to bring the new Christian into the body of Christ. (Billy Graham, The Holy Spirit, p.67-68,79.)
    
     By the use of 1 Cor. 12:13, Graham insists that the purpose of the baptism with the Holy Spirit is to bring the new Christian into the body of Christ. This is an in- accuracy based on the mistranslation of the Greek eis of 1 Cor. 12:13. The purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is not to bring the new Christian into the body of Christ but to impart the power of the Holy Spirit at some time subsequent to conversion, as in the experience of the 120 disciples. So his statement “The biblical truth, it seems to me, is that we are baptized into the body of Christ by the Spirit at conversion” is an inaccurate assumption based on the mistranslation and misinterpretation of 1 Cor. 12:13. Most scholars insist that this passage defines the meaning and the purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. But this argument is based on the mistranslation of the Greek preposition eis in 1 Cor. 12:13. It does by no means describe the meaning and the purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

Gerhard Kittel comments on the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

In the Christian community baptism was undoubtedly practiced from the very first (Ac. 2:38,41; 8:12 etc.; R. 6:3; 1 C. 12:13). (Gerhard Kittel, Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, p.539.)

     With his references (Ac. 2:38,41; 8:12 etc.; R. 6:3; 1 C. 12:13) Kittel insists that all passages are treated as the same baptism. But the baptisms in Ac. 2:38,41, 8:12, and Rom. 6:3 speak of water baptism. Only 1 Cor. 12:13 speaks of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Both baptisms are quite different. Gerhard Kittel continues:

Elsewhere εἰς is mostly used finely to denote the aim sought and accomplished by baptism: εἰς μετάνοιαν, Mt.3:11; εἰς ἄφεσιν τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν, Ac.2:38; εἰς ἓν σῶμα,
1 C. 12:13. (Gerhard Kittel, Ibid., p.539.)

     The eis (εἰς) in eis metanoian (εἰς μετάνοιαν Mt. 3:11) and eis aphesin ton hamartion (εἰς ἄφεσιν τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν Ac. 2:38) is used to denote the aim accomplished by water baptism, but eis in eis hen soma (εἰς ἓν σῶμα 1 Co.12:13) is by no means used to denote the aim accomplished by the baptism of the Spirit. Kittel’s note is based upon the misunderstanding of the Greek preposition eis.

1 Cor. 12:13 does by no means indicate the meaning/purpose of the baptism of the Spirit.

Mark 1:9        Jesus was baptized by John in (eis) the Jordan.
Acts 8:16       They were baptized by Philip in (eis) the name of the Lord Jesus.
Acts 19:5       They were baptized by Paul in (eis) the name of the Lord Jesus.
Gal. 3:27        All of you who have been baptized in (eis) Christ,
Matt. 28:19     baptizing them in (eis) the name of the Father and Jesus,
1 Cor. 12:13   We were all baptized with/in/by one Spirit in (eis) one body. (Author)

     The Greek eis in all these passages must be consistently translated as “in” since these are in all the same grammatical constructions.

Mark 1:9  Ἰησοῦς ἐβαπτίσθη εἰς τὸν Ἰορδάνην ὑπὸ Ἰωάννου. (BNT)
                 Jesus was baptized by John in (eis) the Jordan. (All versions)

Mark 1:5   ἐβαπτίζοντο ὑπ᾽ αὐτοῦ ἐν τῷ Ἰορδάνῃ ποταμῷ (BNT)
                  They were baptized by him in (en) the Jordan River.

Matt. 3:6   ἐβαπτίζοντο ἐν τῷ Ἰορδάνῃ ποταμῷ ὑπ᾽ αὐτοῦ (BNT)
                 They were baptized by him in (en) the Jordan River.

     All English versions consistently translate the Greek eis in Mark 1:9 as “in.” If the preposition “eis” in Mark 1:9 is translated as “into,” it will be “Jesus was baptized by John into (eis) the Jordan River.” This is quite distinct from “Jesus was baptized by him in (en) the Jordan River. Likewise, “We were all baptized by one Spirit into (eis) one body” is quite distinct from “We were all baptized by one Spirit in (eis) one body.” It can be found that the strict principle of translation of [baptize + eis] in the NT, without a single exception, must be [baptize + in].
 
Mark 1:4-5   And so John came, baptizing in (en) the desert region and preaching a baptism of repentance for (eis) the forgiveness of sins. The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in (en) the Jordan River. (NIV)

     The Greek text in Mark 1:9 and 1 Cor. 12:13 must be translated consistently. Both contain the same grammatical construction. The preposition “eis” in Mark 1:9 does not indicate the purpose of water baptism of John, but the purpose is recorded in Mark 1:4-5. Likewise, the preposition “eis” in 1 Cor. 12:13 does not indicate the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit. If this is not accepted, it becomes impossible to understand the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit. 1 Cor. 12:13 must be trans- lated consistently with six other references to the baptism of the Spirit along with references to water baptism (Mark 1:9; Acts 8:16; 19:5; Gal. 3:27). The Greek eis in these passages including 1 Cor. 12:13 must be translated as “in.”

We were all baptized with/in/by one Spirit in (eis) one body.
We were all baptized with/in one Spirit (and with/in fire) in (eis) one body.
We were all baptized with/in the fire of one Spirit in (eis) one body.

     All Modern English versions translate the Greek eis in 1 Cor. 12:13 as “into,” but it must be translated as “in” to be consistent with other passages.

John R. W. Stott insists, “The baptism took place in (en) the waters of the River Jordan and was for or unto (eis) repentance (Mt. 3:11) and therefore the remission of sins (Mk. 1:4; Lk. 3:3).” (John R. W. Stott, Baptism & Fullness, p.40-41.)

     It is correct to say, “The baptism was for (eis) repentance and the remission of sins written in Mt. 3:11, Mk. 1:4 and Lk. 3:3.” Through these passages, it can be concluded that the purpose of water baptism was for (eis) repentance and the remission of sins. Stott applied the same principle of “eis” in Mt. 3:11, Mk. 1:4 and Lk. 3:3 to “eis” in 1 Cor. 12:13. But that leads to a great misunderstanding since 1 Cor. 12:13 does not record the purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Stott’s note “the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit is incorporation ‘into one body,’ namely the body of Christ, the church” is based on the mistranslation and mis- interpretation of the Greek eis.
     Before being baptized with/in water in the Jordan River, the baptized were already in the name of God and Jesus Christ through faith in God and Jesus. To receive God and Jesus is to be in God and Jesus. Likewise, believers were already in one body, namely the body of Christ before being baptized with/in the Spirit and with/in fire. If Stott’s interpretation of 1 Cor. 12:13 is accepted, Mark 1:9 must be re-examined! This verse has the same grammatical construction as 1 Cor. 12:13, so Mark 1:9 must mean that the purpose of John’s baptism was incorporation “into (eis) the Jordan River.” Obviously, this makes no sense. But if Mark 1:9 were translated as, “Jesus was baptized by John in (eis) the Jordan,” and 1 Cor. 12:13 were translated, “We were all baptized by one Spirit in (eis) one body,” it is clear. The purpose of the water baptism of John is not found in Mark 1:9. Likewise, the purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is not found in 1 Cor. 12:13. To discover the purpose of the water baptism of John mentioned in Mark 1:9 we must read Mark 1:4-5. Likewise, to discover the purpose of the baptism of the Spirit mentioned in 1 Cor. 12:13 we must read Acts 1:5,8. These two passages concisely demonstrate the meaning/the purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. When Acts 1:5 and Acts 1:8 are carefully examined, the meaning/the purpose of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is discovered to be concisely stated.

Acts 1:5,8 reveals the purpose of “to be baptized with/in the Spirit (and with/in fire).”

Acts 1:5   You will be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit (and with/in fire).
Acts 1:8   You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you.

     Though these two passages are quite different, they carry the same meaning. Both are in the future tense and speak of something to be fulfilled soon, that is, on the day of Pentecost. To claim these two passages have different meanings makes no sense at all. Since both these promises of Jesus were literally fulfilled at Pentecost, it should be inferred that both passages must have the same meaning. They are synonymous and can be altered as follows without changing their core meaning.

Acts 1:5:  “to be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit”
Acts 1:8:  “to receive the power of the Holy Spirit”

     Since Acts 1:8 conveys the same meaning of the baptism of the Holy Spirit (to be baptized with/in/ the Holy Spirit and with/in fire) as found in Acts 1:5, a strict rule of doctrine can be fashioned. It must be concluded that the word “fire” in Matt. 3:11 and Luke 3:16 is omitted in Acts 1:5. Through Acts 1:5,8, one can conclude:

To be baptized with/in the Spirit is to receive the power of the Spirit.
The purpose of the baptism of the Spirit is to receive the power of the Spirit.
The purpose of the baptism of the Spirit is not to receive the Spirit.
The purpose of the baptism is not incorporation into one body.
The baptism of the Spirit takes place in one body of Christ.
The baptized has already been in one body before receiving the baptism.

John R. Rice comments on the meaning of the baptism in the Holy Spirit.

One of the things the Lord Jesus clearly promised to the disciples who were waiting to be endued with power from on high was, “For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence” (Acts 1:5). It was in explanation of this same statement that He said, But ye shall receive power, after the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and you shall be unto me…(Acts 1:8). The enduement of power and the baptism in the Holy Ghost were the same thing. They are different terms for the same blessing. To be baptized in the Holy Ghost means to be endued with power from on high. If we wants to understand the meaning of “baptized with the Holy Ghost,” we must remember that Jesus used this term in Acts 1:5 as a synonym for being endued with power from on high, as He Himself explained in Acts 1:8. (John R. Rice, The power of Pentecost, Wheaton: Sword of the Lord Publishers, 1962, p.147.)

     Acts 1:5,8 confirms that this note is biblical, but it should be observed that the meaning and purpose of Acts 1:5 is explained in Acts 1:8. To be baptized with/in the Spirit (and with/in fire) means to receive the power of the Holy Spirit. John Rice identifies “baptism with the Spirit” with “baptism in the Spirit,” but it is quite inaccurate.

To be baptized with/in the Spirit (and with/in fire) is to receive the fire of the Spirit.

     The Bible confirms that the fire is used of the symbol of power in the case of Matt. 3:11 and Luke 3:16. It is obvious that the word “fire” mentioned in Matt. 3: 11 and Luke 3:16 is omitted in other references (Mark 1:8; John 1:33; Acts 1:5; 11:16; 1 Cor. 12:13). Luke 3:16 can be changed as follows:

He will baptize you with/in the Holy Spirit and with/in fire.
Jesus will baptize you with/in the fire of the Holy Spirit.
You will be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit and with/in fire.
You will be baptized with/in the fire of the Holy Spirit.

     These verses contain different wording, but the meaning is the same.

Matt. 3:11  I indeed baptize you with/in water to repentance. He will baptize you with/in the Holy Spirit and with/in fire.

     In the case of “I baptize you with/in water,” the baptized is actually immersed in or sprinkled with water. The body of the baptized is actually wetted with water. To be wetted with water requires receiving water. So it can be said that the baptized is figuratively, actually receiving water when he is baptized with/in water. It is the same in the case of “Jesus will baptize you with/in the Holy Spirit and with/in fire.” The baptized is actually immersed in or sprinkled with fire when baptized with/in the fire of the Holy Spirit. It can be said that the baptized is figuratively wetted with fire just as one who is baptized in/with water is wetted with water. Similarly, it can be said that the baptized actually received the fire of the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:3-4 confirms this interpretation. “They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them” (Acts  2:3). It can be said that the 120 fires came on the 120 disciples since “tongues of fire came to rest on  each of them. The 120 disciples were actually immersed in or sprinkled with the fire of the Holy Spirit when the 120 fires came on them. There are the three modes of water baptism: immerse, sprinkle, and pour out. Just like water baptism, the bap- tism of the Holy Spirit also has three modes.

You will be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit. (Acts 1:5)
You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. (Acts 1:8)

     The texts can be changed as follows:

You will be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit and with/in fire.
You will receive the power of the Spirit when the Spirit comes upon you.
You will be filled with the power of the Spirit when He comes upon you.

     These three wordings are synonymous. These three were to be fulfilled on the day of Pentecost since each was written in the future tense. So Acts 1:8 and Acts 2:3-4 can be inferred to mean the 120 disciples were all filled with the power of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. According to the promise of John the Baptist (Matt. 3:11; Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16; John 1:33) and Jesus (Acts 1:5), the 120 disciples were all baptized with/in the Holy Spirit and with/in fire on the day of Pentecost. Through Acts 1:4-8 and Acts 2:3-4, it can be concluded that the baptism of the Holy Spirit is synonymous with the filling of the power of the Holy Spirit. So it can be said as follows:

The fire baptism of the Spirit is to be baptized with/in the Spirit’s fire.
The fire baptism of the Spirit is to receive the Spirit’s fire.
The fire baptism of the Spirit is to be filled with the power of the Spirit.
To receive the Spirit’s power is to be filled with the Spirit’s power.
To receive the Spirit’s power is to receive the Spirit’s fire.

     Here, it should be concluded that the power of the Spirit (Acts 1:8) is the same as the fire of the Spirit (Acts 2:3). The “fire” has the meaning of the power. The Scripture often considers the fire as the power. (See the detailed discussion on “the Holy Spirit is in and comes on you.”)

Acts 2:1      When the day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. (NKJ)
Acts 2:3-4  Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. (NKJ)
Author        They were all filled with (the power) of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2:4)

     The “fire” in Acts 2:3 is not an actual fire but a supernatural fire. Both Acts 1:15 and 2:1 teach that the 120 disciples were all in one place. Acts 2:3 indicates “there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.” This fire (divided tongues, as of fire) sat upon each of the 120 disciples, that is, the 120 fires came on them or one fire of the 120 fires sat upon each individual. “Fires sat upon them” means they were sprinkled with fires. They were all sprinkled with the fires of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. It can be said that the 120 fires were poured out on them. It means that the Holy Spirit sent by Jesus poured out the 120 fires on them. It also means that they were immersed in the fire of the Holy Spirit. In summary, it can be said as follows:

The baptized were immersed in water at water baptism.
The baptized were sprinkled with water at water baptism.
The baptized were wetted with water at water baptism.
The baptized were in fires when the 120 fires came on them.
The baptized were immersed in the 120 fires sent by the Spirit.
The baptized were sprinkled with the 120 fires of the Spirit.
Each of them was sprinkled with fire because fire came on each of them.
The baptized were wetted with fire at the baptism of the Spirit.
The baptized were filled with the fire (power) of the Holy Spirit.

     It can be said that figuratively the baptized received water when they were baptized with/in water. Through this examination, it could be concluded that figu- ratively the 120 disciples received the fire (power) of the Holy Spirit when they were baptized with/in the fire (power) of the Holy Spirit. The following observations regarding the doctrine of the Holy Spirit can be established:

To be baptized with/in the Spirit is to receive the power of the Spirit.
To be baptized with/in the Spirit is not to receive the Spirit.
To be baptized with/in the Spirit is to be filled with the Spirit’s power.
To be filled with the Spirit is not to be controlled by the Spirit.
To be filled with the Spirit is from the mistranslation of the Greek text.
To receive the Spirit’s power is to be filled with the power of the Spirit.
To be filled with the Spirit’s power is to be controlled by the Spirit’s power.

To be baptized with/in the Spirit and with/in fire is to be clothed with the power.

Luke 24:49    I 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. (NIV)
Acts 1:4-5     And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; “for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” (NKJ)
Acts 1:8        you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you (NKJ).

     The wording of Luke 24:49 is quite different from that of Acts 1:4-8, but both carry the same meaning and record the promise of Jesus before He ascended. The phrase “stay (tarry) in the city of Jerusalem” (Luke 24:49) is just a rewording of “do not depart from Jerusalem” (Acts 1:4). The words “with power from on high” (Luke 24:49) carry the same meaning as “with the power of the Holy Spirit sent by Jesus” (Acts 1:8). Jesus’ command, “stay (tarry) in the city until you have been clo- thed with power from on high,” means they were to receive the Spirit’s power. So the following doctrine of the Spirit can be made:

To receive the power of the Spirit is to be clothed with power of the Spirit.
The fire baptism of Spirit is to be clothed with the Spirit’s power.

Merrill F. Unger comments on the relation between the baptism of the Spirit and power.

The baptism with the Holy Spirit is not a correct scriptural term for power. The phrase “baptism with the Spirit” and other similar terminology have no concrete scriptural support as designations for the power of the Holy Spirit. (Merrill F. Unger, The Baptism and Gifts of the Holy Spirit, p.152,166.)

     This inaccurate note is based on the misinterpretation of Acts 1:5,8. Acts 1:5 can be simply summarized “to be baptized with/in/by (en) the Holy Spirit,” and Acts 1:8 also can be simply summarized “to receive the power of the Holy Spirit,” as noted above. The promise of Jesus in both passages was to be fulfilled on the day of Pentecost. The 120 disciples were baptized with/in/by the Holy Spirit (and with/in fire) on that day. The 120 disciples received the power of the Holy Spirit on that day.
     Therefore, both promises should be considered to have the same meaning: that is, to be baptized with/in/by the Holy Spirit (and with/in fire) is to receive the power of the Holy Spirit. The words “to be baptized with/in/by the Holy Spirit (and with/in fire)” can be abbreviated as “the fire baptism of the Holy Spirit.” Here, it is confirmed that the baptism of the Holy Spirit imparts the power (fire) of the Holy Spirit to the believer. The inaccurate note (“The baptism with the Holy Spirit is not a correct scriptural term for power”) is based on the misunderstandings of Acts 1:5,8 and 2:3-4.

John F. MacArthur comments on the term “power.”

They had already experienced His saving, guiding, teaching, and miracle-working power. Soon they would receive the power they needed for ministry after the Holy Spirit fell on them. Power translates dunamis, from which the English word “dynamite” derives. All believers have in them spiritual dynamite for use of gift, service, fellowship, and witness. The baptism with the Spirit grants the power that the filling with the Spirit unleashes. (John F. MacArthur, The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: Acts, p.19,42.)

     The note, “All believers have in them spiritual dynamite for use of gift, service, fellowship, and witness,” is quite erroneous, but to speak of “the baptism with the Spirit grants the power” is correct. The best terminology speaks of the baptism of the Spirit. Not all believers have spiritual dynamite within them. This comes when a believer is baptized with/in the Spirit and with/in fire after regeneration. If a believer is not baptized with/in the Spirit and with/in fire after accepting Jesus, by no means does he have the power of the Holy Spirit mentioned in Luke 24:49 and Acts 1:8. The note “the baptism with the Spirit grants the power that the filling with the Spirit unleashes” is quite erroneous for two reasons: (1) the baptism of the Spirit is synonymous with the filling of the power of the Spirit. (2) the belie- vers are not filled with the Spirit but filled with the power of the Spirit.

Frederick D. Bruner comments on the power of the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

The power of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is first and foremost a power which joins to Christ. The result of the power of the baptism of the Holy Spirit according to Acts 1:8 is first of all not what men do but what they become. To be baptized in the Spirit is to become Christ’s. The baptism of the Holy Spirit joins to Christ in such a way that the recipients become his, i.e. Christians. The power of the Holy Spirit is his ability to join men to the risen Christ so that they are able to represent him. There is no higher blessing. (Frederick D. Bruner, A Theology of the Holy Spirit, p.160.)

     All these notes are from a misinterpretation. The power of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is by no means a power that joins anyone to Christ. To be baptized in the Spirit is not to become Christ’s. The 120 disciples of Jesus were already joined to Christ before being baptized with/in the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. It can be concluded that to believe in Jesus is to join to Christ and to become Christ’s. The power of the baptism of the Holy Spirit empowers witness for Christ. Bruner’s incorrect notes are from the mistranslation of 1 Cor. 12:13.

The Wycliffe Bible Commentary comments on “the power.”

The Holy Spirit was to come upon them and to give them supernatural power, in the strength of which they would be witnesses of Christ throughout all the world. This verse in Acts 1:8 is a table of contents of the book of Acts. (The Wycliffe Bible Commentary, p.1125.)

     The term “supernatural power, in the strength” in Acts 1:8 should speak instead of “the power is the supernatural power, that is, the supernatural authority” given by the Holy Spirit sent by Jesus. According to the promise of Jesus, the 120 disci- ples received the power when the Spirit came on them. The note “This verse in Acts 1:8 is a table of contents of the book of Acts” is ambiguous. It would be more profitable to say, “The four verses” (Acts 1:5,8; 2:3,4) are key to properly construct the doctrine of the baptism of the Holy Spirit in the OT and NT.

Stanley M. Horton comments on “the power.”

Acts 1:4-8 also indicates that power (Greek, dynamis, mighty power) would come on them after the Pentecost baptism. The emphasis in John 20:21-23 is on authority, rather than active power. Obviously, what the disciples received on that first Easter was not the baptism in the Holy Spirit, nor the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, but it was the Holy Spirit. The emphasis of Acts 1:8 is also power for service, not rege- neration. (Stanley M. Horton, What the Bible says about the Holy Spirit, p.131.)

     Horton’s statements are mixtures of correct and incorrect elements. The note “power would come on them after the Pentecost baptism” is erroneous. It should read, “The power would come on them not after the Pentecost baptism but with the Pentecost baptism. As noted above, to be baptized with/in the Holy Spirit’s fire is to receive the power of the Holy Spirit. The 120 disciples received this baptism, that is, the power on the day of Pentecost. The note, “what the disciples received was the Holy Spirit” is from the mistranslation and misinterpretation of the Greek lambano in John 7:39 and 20:22. According to the doctrine of the Holy Spirit, “to receive Jesus is to receive the Holy Spirit,” they had already received the Holy Spirit before crucifixion and resurrection of Christ and before Pentecost. They did not receive the Holy Spirit but the power of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. The note “the emphasis in John 20:21-23 is on authority, rather than active power” is erroneous because in the Bible “authority” is synonymous with “power.” We must conclude what the disciples received on that first Easter was neither the Holy Spirit nor the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

Martyn Lloyd-Jones insists that baptism with the Spirit is a baptism with power.

But he goes on and says, ‘And, behold, I send the promise of the Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.’ They have the facts, they know and believe them, but before they can be effective witness they must receive this baptism with the Holy Spirit. Then, of course, you find virtually the same thing stated again in Acts 1: ‘And, being assembled together with them, [he] commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.’ Then, verse 8: ‘But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you.’ Power! What for? Well, ‘and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.’ That is the main purpose of the baptism with the Spirit, to make us powerful witnesses to the Lord Jesus Christ and his salvation. Baptism with the Holy Spirit is primarily and essentially a baptism with power. (Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Joy Unspeakable, p.82,137.)

     The note, “That is the main purpose of the baptism with the Spirit, to make us powerful witnesses to the Lord Jesus Christ and his salvation,” is unclear. It could better be written, “The purpose of the baptism of the Spirit is to receive the power of the Spirit to be witness.” The note, “Baptism with the Holy Spirit is primarily and essentially a baptism with power,” is correct, but the term “the baptism with the Holy Spirit” should be “the baptism with/in fire of the Holy Spirit” or “the fire baptism of the Holy Spirit or the baptism of the Holy Spirit.”

John 1:33 shows two kinds of manuscript, “the one who baptizes with Spirit” and “the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.” Which is right?

John 1:33 κἀγὼ οὐκ ᾔδειν αὐτόν, ἀλλ᾽ ὁ πέμψας με βαπτίζειν ἐν ὕδατι ἐκεῖνός μοι εἶπεν·
                ἐφ᾽ ὃν ἂν ἴδῃς τὸ πνεῦμα καταβαῖνον καὶ μένον ἐπ᾽ αὐτόν, οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ βαπτίζων
                ἐν πνεύματι ἁγίῳ. (BNT)
KJV        I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me,
               upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he
               which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.
NIV        he who will baptize with the Holy Spirit
TNIV      the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.
NAB       he is the one who will baptize with the holy Spirit
KJV        the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost
CSB        he is the One who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.
DBY       he it is who baptises with the Holy Spirit
DRA       he it is that baptizeth with the Holy Ghost
ESV        his is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit
GNV       that is he which baptizeth with the holy Ghost
GWN      the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.
NAS        this is the one who baptizes in the Holy Spirit
NAU       this is the one who baptizes in the Holy Spirit
NJB        the one who is to baptise with the Holy Spirit
NKJ        his is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit
NLT        He is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit
NRS        is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit
RSV        this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit
NET        this is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.
YLT        This is he who is baptizing with the Holy Spirit

     The Greek text records that baptizon (βαπτίζων) in John 1:33 is in a present tense verb. In Matt. 3:11, Luke 3:16 and Mark 1:8 the Greek baptisei (βαπτίσει ) is in a future tense. Which is from the original manuscripts? All English versions, except the NIV and NAB, choose a present tense, but it should be a future tense because John the Baptist says, “I baptize you with 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 the Holy Spirit and with fire.” According to the promise of John the Baptist, the Holy Spirit sent by Jesus baptized with/in the Spirit (with/ in fire) on the day of Pentecost, about three years later. John 1:33 must be con- sistent with Matt. 3:11, Luke 3:16 and Mark 1:8 since these are four references by John the Baptist to the baptism of the Holy Spirit that will be administered by Jesus. It would be illogical for John the Baptist to speak of the baptism of the Spirit in the future tense in Matthew, Mark and Luke, but use the present tense in the Gospel of John. All references of John the Baptist must be the same future construction, “He is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.”

Merrill F. Unger insists that there is no the baptism of the Spirit in OT days.

The baptism of the Holy Spirit would be inaugurated by Messiah. Pentecost marks the first historical occurrence of the baptism of the Spirit and the consequent formation of the church of Jesus Christ. (Merrill F. Unger, The Baptism & the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, p.59,71.)

     To write the baptism of the Holy Spirit would be “inaugurated” by Messiah is quite inaccurate.  The NT term “baptize” was written in Greek and there is no term for “baptize” in the Hebrew OT. However, baptism can be inferred in the OT. In fact both apostles Paul and Peter did so. Let’s examine the following passages.

1 Cor. 10:1-4   Moreover, brethren, I do not want you to be unaware that all our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea, all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ. (NKJ)    * It should be “all were baptized in (eis) Moses.” (Author)

     Paul speaks of “all our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea, all were baptized in Moses…” Paul explained the OT story of Moses with the NT term “baptize.” Likewise, the Hebrew OT can assume “baptize” in the NT.

1 Pet. 3:20-21 who disobeyed long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also–not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ. (NIV)

     Peter explained the OT story of Noah with the NT term “baptism,” so the He- brew OT presupposes the Greek baptism. Unfortunately, most scholars do not accept the baptism of the Holy Spirit as synonymous with the fullness of the power of the Holy Spirit, or that being baptized of the Holy Spirit is to receive the power of the Holy Spirit. The terminology “the fullness of the power of the Holy Spirit and the coming of the Holy Spirit” refers to the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
     If this doctrine of the Holy Spirit is not accepted, it becomes impossible to understand the Holy Spirit of the Bible. Unger insists “the baptism of the Holy Spirit would be inaugurated by Messiah. Pentecost marks the first historical occurrence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit,” but this is definitely based on a mis- interpretation. Messiah did not inaugurate the baptism of the Holy Spirit. For instance, Moses received the power of the Spirit (God) at the mountain of Horeb (Ex. 3:1-4:9) just as the 120 disciples of Jesus did on the day of Pentecost. The OT shows that Pentecost does by no means mark the first historical occurrence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. The terminology “the fullness of the power of the Holy Spirit” written in the OT refers to the baptism of the Holy Spirit and receiving the power of the Holy Spirit. The OT doctrine of the Holy Spirit must be just the same as that of the NT since they speak of one God.

If you do not receive the power of the Spirit, you are not qualified as a servant of Jesus.

Luke 9:1-2   He called His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all demons, and to cure diseases. He sent them to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. (NKJ)

     Luke 9:1-2 says that Jesus gave His twelve disciples power and authority to preach the gospel, to heal the sick, and cast out the devil before the day of Pen- tecost. Then, He sent them to do these works. Without this power and authority, they were not qualified as servants to do these works. It would make no sense if Jesus were to send them out to preach the kingdom of God without his power and authority. Every servant must receive the power of the Holy Spirit, that is, the baptism of the Holy Spirit to do the Christ’s work as did the twelve disciples of Jesus.
 
Luke 10:17-20 Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.” And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Never- theless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” (NKJ)

     The seventy disciples of Jesus returned with joy from preaching and casting out demons through the authority and power given by Jesus. From this record, it can be concluded that it would be senseless to go preach the kingdom of God without the power and authority given by Jesus. Then, it can be concluded that if one does not receive the power of the Spirit,  that person is not qualified as a servant of Jesus.

Matt. 10:1-8  And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease. These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as you go, preach, saying, the king- dom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.” (NKJ)

     The twelve disciples received the power given by Jesus in order to preach and cast out the demons and heal the sick. Here, it can be said that every disciple must receive the power of the Holy Spirit to preach and heal the sick. Without the receiving of the power of the Spirit, the one who preaches is not qualified.

Luke 24:47-49 and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And you are witnesses of these things. Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high. (NKJ)

     The disciples were witnesses of Jesus both before and after the resurrection, but they are not yet endued (clothed) with the power of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, Jesus commanded that they must tarry in Jerusalem until they were endued (clothed) with power from on high. They were not yet the regular, normal prea- cher or servant because they had not yet received the power of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 1:4-5   And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, you have heard from Me; “for John truly  baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” (NKJ)
Acts 1:8      But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you. (NKJ)

     The disciples of Jesus were not yet baptized with/in the Holy Spirit, that is, the power of the Holy Spirit after His resurrection. Therefore, Jesus commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem. He commanded them to preach after they were bap- tized with/in the Holy Spirit beginning at Jerusalem. To preach without receiving the power of the Spirit makes no sense at all. Though the twelve were the disciples of Jesus, they began to preach the gospel with the power of the Holy Spirit, that is, the baptism of the Holy Spirit. In present days, most preachers are preaching the gospel without receiving the power of the Holy Spirit. It makes no sense all. If one does not receive the power of the Spirit, that is, the baptism of the Spirit, that person is disqualified as a servant or a witness of Jesus. The distinction of the power given to the disciples before Pentecost and after Pentecost will be explained in the discussion on the chapter of the meaning of the Greek dunamis.

Let’s examine the case of Jesus Christ.

Luke  4:1  Then Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness. (NKJ)
Luke 4:14-15 Then Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee, and news of Him went out through all the surrounding region. And He taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all. (NKJ)

     According to this record, Jesus received the power of the Holy Spirit, that is, He was filled with the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus did not begin to teach until He first received the power of the Holy Spirit. Likewise, the disciples of Jesus preached the gospel after the receiving of the power of the Holy Spirit. From Genesis to Revelation all the Scriptures confirm that every servant of God received the power of the Holy Spirit for God’s assigned work. Today many disci- ples of Jesus attempt to preach the gospel of Jesus without receiving the power of the Holy Spirit. This makes no sense at all. All faithful servants of Jesus must receive the power of the Holy Spirit for their God-given assignments. To receive the baptism of the Spirit is to receive the power of the Spirit. So if any Christian does not receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit, he is not yet qualified as a legitimate servant of Jesus.

Merrill F. Unger comments on the relation between anointing and baptism of the Spirit.

However, a common mistake is to identify the baptizer with the Holy Spirit as also the one baptized by the Holy Spirit. Some Bible teachers assert that Jesus was baptized with the Holy Spirit at His baptism by John in the Jordan. Torrey says that Jesus never entered His public ministry until He was baptized with the Holy Spirit. That our Lord was anointed by the Holy Spirit and divinely filled without measure (cf. Jn 3:34) is certain. But to confuse his anointing with the baptizing work of the Spirit displays serious misunderstanding of the essential nature of Spirit baptism. At His baptism Christ received His anointing with the Holy Spirit (Mt 3:16). (Merrill F. Unger, The Baptism and Gifts of the Holy Spirit, p.49-50,51.)

     The note (“a common mistake is to identify the baptizer with the Holy Spirit as also the one baptized by the Holy Spirit”) is based upon the misunderstanding of the Greek en in Luke 3:16, Acts 1:5 and 1 Cor. 12:13. The statement “Jesus was not baptized with the Holy Spirit” is from the mistranslation of 1 Cor. 12:13, the mis- interpretation of Acts 1:4-5,8 and misunderstanding of the relation between the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the fullness of the power of the Holy Spirit. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is to receive the power of the Holy Spirit when the Holy Spirit comes on the believer. This doctrine of the Holy Spirit must be applied to all believers both in OT days and NT. The erroneous note, “At His baptism Christ received His anointing with the Holy Spirit,” should rather read, “after His baptism (water baptism) Christ received His anointing with the Spirit and the power, that is, anointing with the Spirit’s power.”

The apostle Paul was baptized with/in the Holy Spirit (and with/in fire).

     The command “Be filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 9:17) is based upon the mistranslation. It should read, “Be filled with of the Holy Spirit” or “Be filled with the power of the Holy Spirit.” Paul was filled with the power of the Holy Spirit when a disciple named Ananias placed his hands on him (Acts 9:17). Here, the word “filled with the power of the Holy Spirit” is used synonymously with “bap- tized with/in the Holy Spirit.” He began immediately to start his ministry from the city of Damascus (Acts 9:19-22) after receiving the power of the Holy Spirit (the baptism of the Holy Spirit), that is, after being filled with the power of the Holy Spirit. In Rom. 15:18-19, Paul says that he had fully preached the gospel of Jesus in word and deed, to make the Gentiles obedient in mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit. In Eph. 3:7, Paul says, “I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God’s grace given me through the working of his power.”

Paul says he preached the gospel: not with wisdom of words but with the power of God.

1 Cor. 1:17   For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. (KJV)
1 Cor. 2:4-5 And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. (NKJ)
 
     “The apostle Paul preached the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.” If he preached the gospel with wis- dom of words, with persuasive words of human wisdom and without receiving the baptism of the Holy Spirit, that is, without receiving the filling of the power of the Holy Spirit, the cross of Christ would be made of none effect. Every preacher of the gospel must preach the gospel of Jesus Christ with the power of the Holy Spirit, that is, with receiving the baptism of the Holy Spirit just as the apostle Paul and Peter did.

Paul says, “I am rude in speech” but he shows “the things that mark an apostle.”

2 Cor. 10:9-10 I do not want to seem to be trying to frighten you with my letters. For some say, “His letters are weighty and forceful, but in person he is unimpressive and his speaking amounts to nothing.” (NIV)
NKJ        lest I seem to terrify you by letters. “For his letters,” they say, “are weighty and powerful, but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech contemptible.”

2 Cor. 11:6 But though I be rude in speech, yet not in knowledge. (KJV)
NKJ         Even though I am untrained in speech, yet I am not in knowledge.
NIV         I may not be a trained speaker, but I do have knowledge.

2 Cor. 12:12 The things that mark an apostle–signs, wonders and miracles–were done among you with great perseverance. (NIV)

Luke 9:1-2  When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. (NIV)

     If the disciples of Jesus preached with persuasive words of human wisdom and without receiving power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, they were not the preachers sent by Jesus. Paul became a preacher of the gospel of Jesus through receiving the power of the Holy Spirit, that is, the filling of the power of the Holy Spirit through Ananias. He received the authority and power to be a preacher.
     Here, it can be concluded that every preacher must receive the power of the Holy Spirit, that is, the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Too frequently many preach the gospel with persuasive words of human wisdom, but without the power of the Holy Spirit to drive out demons and to heal the sick. This makes no sense at all. In 2 Cor. 12:11-12 Paul says, “I have made a fool of myself, but you drove me to it. I ought to have been commended by you, for I am not in the least inferior to the ‘super-apostles,’ even though I am nothing. The things that mark an apostle–signs, wonders and miracles–were done among you with great perseverance” (NIV). Consider “I am rude in speech (2 Cor. 11:6) and the things that mark an apostle.” The apostle Paul confessed that he is nothing and he is rude in speech but showed the things that mark an apostle.
     It must be concluded that if Paul did not show the things that mark an apostle, that is, signs, wonders and miracles, he was not qualified to be an apostle of Jesus. This confession of Paul should be applied to all disciples of Jesus today and tomorrow and until His second coming.