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One of Many Digressions (Close)

You and I must be baptized/immersed into Christ (Acts 2:38, Gal. 2:27, Mark 16:16, Acts 22:16, etc. etc.). We must “put on Christ.” Once that is accomplished, Christ promised that all will receive “the gift of the Holy Spirit” (which is what was promised to ALL disciples), but that has nothing to do with what many think is a baptism, an envelopment, an overwhelming, an immersion or any other gifts or some internal personal possession of the Holy Spirit. It has to do with being a recipient to the greatest gift of all, given to all who choose to accept it: Salvation. Salvation is what was promised to all in every age “in Christ.” Salvation is what the Holy Spirit acted to confirm through the hands of the chosen apostles and disciples and in the completion and giving to the world the written Word of God. Not in this passage, nor in any other, does the Word teach or enjoin that ALL Christians in every age, will possess a personal indwelling of the Holy Spirit. And though you may believe otherwise and seek to try, you cannot, and will not be able to provide any proof for such a doctrine or notion using the Word of God. Nor can you offer any evidence of such things by any other means. If we are honest, even the disciples today who believe in such things know in their heart that it is not true.

The Holy Spirit’s work in securing for all of humanity the Gospel Plan of Salvation was fully accomplished and satisfied a long, long, time ago. The work of The Lord God Almighty, the death and resurrection of the Messiah; combined with confirmation of it all to all ages through the direct supervision of the Holy Spirit, is on display throughout the Word of God. That is how the work of the apostles and prophets was completed by the time they all had passed away. And as such, God’s work on earth was complete and finished, and all the prophesy fulfilled. The book is closed. We today have “the engrafted word which is able to save your soul.” (James 1:21). Is there something missing or something else that you need? It is also clearly stated:

According as his divine power hath given unto us, all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue.”

(1 Peter 1:3).

Exactly how much, or how many are “all things?”

The Word of God was written specifically about those who were the participants in the recorded events and who comprised its original audience. But it is not written to us – it was written for us. It was recorded and preserved for all who have come after those events. “…that all might be saved.”

Words do mean something. And, so does what we teach and what we are taught, what we receive and what we should understand as the truth. If it was true then, it is true now. The twelve disciples in Ephesus were put straight by the Apostle Paul, and the miraculous signs of prophesy and unknown languages spoken by them  witnessed by Paul and his companions, were identical to the signs performed by the Twelve Apostles on Pentecost, and the signs displayed by the members of Cornelius’ household before Peter and his companions. God’s approval was with all that had taken place in those momentous situations. These particular signs are listed this way in only three events, and all three were recorded in the Scriptures – to show that God was in full agreement with the deeds and actions taken by the Apostles in each case. The signs were performed to get the attention of the disciples present – that they should pay attention to the outcomes and note the importance of the events. And they were written down to get our attention as disciples now. God’s will had been correctly applied and fitly finished.