~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ABOUT ME:
I am a scribe and prophetic intercessor ministering on-line since 2008.
In 2015, the Lord radically shifted me to the task of calling the bride of Christ to her proper position at the right hand of Christ. The book “My God and Yours, Jesus Christ” is my first book and it is a very important message from the Lord for those who are called and chosen and have ears to hear that time is almost up, and NOW is the time to make ourselves ready! (2 Cor 11:2, Rev 19:7, Col 3:1, Eph 1:3, 20, Eph 2:6)
Jesus already paid the price and established the victory. It is His will that we walk in that victory and overcome this world! My heart is to see Gods people come to know Him in a deeper way and be the overcomers that He intensely desires us to be. That is my goal as well, since I make no claim to be perfect, I am running the race set before me to win the prize! I am a friend of Jesus…and I just believe God! Maranatha!
Below is an excellent short teaching on the seven sensations of the spirit man written by Pastor Neville Johnson. These sensations are experienced when the Holy Spirit communicates to our spirit the need to respond appropriately. As an intercessor I have experienced all of these, but had never really understood it in this detail. This is very helpful to understand yet another aspect of how God communicates to us and through us to accomplish His will.
May this help you and bless you!
In Christ, Sarah
Seven Sensations of the Spirit Man
By Pastor Neville Johnson
The Holy Spirit often speaks to us using feelings or sensations. These perceptions are often missed because we do not recognise them as originating from the Holy Spirit.
1) TO SIGH
When Jesus prayed for a blind man, the scripture said that He sighed:
And looking up to heaven, He sighed and saith unto him, Ephphatha, that is, Be opened. Mark 7:34
Jesus sighed. The Greek word for sigh here is: “STENAZO” which means “to sigh or groan with a prayer burden”. This is a sensation that appears in your spirit generated by the Holy Spirit and essentially is a signal or a burden to pray. Often a burden comes this way when you find yourself sighing.
NOTE MARK 8:11-12…
And he sighed deeply in his spirit, and saith, Why doth this generation seek after a sign? Verily I say unto you, There shall no sign be given unto this generation.
To sigh deeply is a particular spirit sensation that needs to be learned, recognised, and responded to. When it is easy to pray, you have a “Stenazo”. Did you ever wake at night with this sensation or maybe during the day? This sensation is God knocking on your door to try to get you to turn aside and pray. The “Stenazo” is not the prayer, it is the urge to pray.
And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. Romans 8:23
The word “groan” here is the Greek word “STENAZO”.
For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: (GK Stenazo) not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life. II Corinthians 5:4
The Hebrew equivalent of “stenazo” is the word “anach” which means the same as “stenazo’”
Sigh therefore, thou son of man, with the breaking of thy loins; and with bitterness sigh before their eyes. Ezekiel 21:6
We must learn to sense this spirit sensation and respond to it – learning to respond to the movements of the Holy Spirit within us is important if we are to walk in the Spirit. Responding to this alert from the Holy Spirit can save your life or someone else’s life.
2) TO GROAN
When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled, John 11:33
Jesus therefore again groaning in himself cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it. John 11:38
The Greek word for groan here is … “EMBRIMAOMAI” …. (Embri maomi), which has the meaning of “an infusion of indignation, with sense of authority coupled with indignation”.
It is a sensation expressed in an inward groaning, with a sense of indignation. A mix of anger and authority, I am sure many of you have experienced this but did you recognise it as a spiritual sensation?
This sensation can trigger the gift of faith and can trigger great miracles. In this case Jesus raised the dead.
3) TO BE TROUBLED IN SPIRIT
When Jesus had thus said, he was troubled in spirit, and testified, and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me. John 13:21
Troubled in Spirit: The Greek word for troubled here is “TARRASO”, and it means to stir, to agitate; it is a sense that something is wrong. This sensation can be so strong that it can impact on you physically, whereby you feel sick in the pit of your stomach, it is an inbuilt early warning system. This generally operates ahead of time, giving you time to pray. This is a very important sensation to learn. It can save you a lot of trouble. Many difficulties in your life can be avoided if you respond to the “Tarraso” in your spirit. Remember it is too late to close the stable door after the horse has bolted.
And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. Luke 22:31-32
Here Jesus moved in a “Tarraso” in the Holy Spirit and avoided a calamity in Peter’s life.
4) PROVOKED IN SPIRIT
Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry. Acts 17:16
The word “stirred” here is the Greek word “PAROXUNO”. This has the meaning: ‘You need to do something; to be stirred and provoked; a spirit sensation’. It is a sensation in your spirit which resembles a stirring, of being provoked bordering on zeal. We need to minister with “Paroxuno”, to have a godly zeal, a feeling, a spiritual sensation which eventually registers in your emotions.
5) TO BE PRESSED IN YOUR SPIRIT
And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ. Acts 18:5
The word pressed here is the Greek word “SUNECHO” … it has nothing to do with the lack of time. It has the meaning to hold or press together; to ‘become one with’. To be pressed in spirit is a spiritual sensation of becoming consciously one with the Holy Spirit. It carries the thought of being pressed into the Holy Spirit.
This is a very powerful manifestation of the Holy Spirit in your spirit.
For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead. II Corinthians 5:14
The word ‘constraineth’ here is the same Greek word “Sunecho”. The love of God ‘sunecho-ed’ him or pressed him into union with the Holy Spirit. When that happens love overcomes all fear and every sense or thought of failure. It makes one invincible.
In Acts 20:22 Paul said: I go bound in spirit;
The word bound is the Greek word “sunecho” – invincible, without any fear.
And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there: Save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me. Acts 20:22-23
When Paul said “I go bound in Spirit”, he was saying I go ‘sunechoed’ in spirit. He had no fear, he was lifted in spirit to another realm and taken over by the Holy Spirit, and nothing moved him, he was bound as one with the Holy Spirit. Martyrs testify of this sensation of the spirit, a condition which made them invincible. This produced a supernatural boldness.
The Greek word “KHARAH”, meaning: “a calm delight”. This is a sprit sensation that goes deeper than the emotions.
For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. Romans 14:17
Joy in the Holy Spirit is a spirit sensation
It is not dependent upon circumstances or emotions. It goes much deeper than happiness. Happiness is a sensation of one’s soul. Joy is a sensation of one’s spirit.
Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness. Colossians 1:11
Under adverse circumstances this brings great strength.
Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the Lord is your strength. Nehemiah 8:10
7) THE WITNESS OF THE SPIRIT
The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God. Romans 8:16
The Greek word for witness here is the word “SUMMARTUREO” which means to corroborate, to bear witness. This operates as an affirmation or a check. A green light or a red light, it is a feeling, a sensation in one’s spirit of right or wrong. It is of utmost importance that you learn this sensation or feeling, it will keep you from much heartache.
IF YOU ARE GOING TO DEVELOP A WALK WITH THE LORD YOU MUST LEARN THE VARIOUS SENSATIONS OR FEELINGS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT. AND YOU MUST LEARN TO RESPOND IN AN ADEQUATE WAY.
And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.Jeremiah 29:13
Source: Our Finest Hour Newsletter – Author Neville Johnson
I declare to you that Jesus is in the process of restoring what scripture teaches us about many doctrines, such as baptism’s and discipleship. In order to even begin the process of restoring, we must go back to the early church we read about in the book of Acts and re-learn what was established. Not only do we need to re-learn, but we also need to act on what we learn and become “doers of the word” (James 1:22). I once heard a man of God say “scripture we don’t practice is just theory to us.” I believe this is true!
The Lord has been dealing with me on the subject of “restoring the foundations” for a few years now. I have had many dreams about this and I believe the Lord has given me understanding and wisdom about His move to restore foundational truths. Primarily, Jesus wants me to pray into this “move of God”, but also document the process of uncovering these truths.
For several months I have been led by the Spirit to study scripture and pray about the subject of water baptism and Holy Spirit baptism. The Lord has given me dreams about this subject in order to bring clarity on what He wanted me to discover in my study and focus on in this article. The subject has many facets, and I kept asking the Lord, what do you want me to know? It is possible more will come later. I am sure there are many questions, like who is qualified to baptize a believer? My short answer is any Christian, not just a pastor. Scripture teaches that we are priests unto God and I feel very strongly that I will be baptizing many people in this coming harvest.
Hopefully what I am presenting here will help bring understanding to the importance of biblical New Testament water baptism and why it is crucial for believers to realize it was a decree made by Jesus Himself (Mat 28:19), as well as see its spiritual significance and that it is not just a ritual.
In this article I will attempt to accomplish three things:
I will show you in scripture that God is doing something spiritual in water baptism and it is not just a ritual of identifying with Christ. (Heb 6:1-2, Col 2:11-12, 1 Pet 3:21)
There is only ONE type of water baptism taught in scripture (Eph 4:5) and repentant believers should seek the scriptural water baptism immediately when they believe and repent (new birth) to gain the utmost benefit of what God does in baptism. (Acts 2:38-41, 8:36, 22:16.)
I believe the Lord Jesus desires us to understand the foundational truth of the importance of water and Spirit baptism and that these are connected to the whole salvation experience according to scripture. (Mark 16:16, Acts 2:38, Rom 6:4, Rom 10:9-10)
Biblical New Testament Water Baptism
Scripture teaches us these things about water baptism:
It is for those who believe in Jesus and trust and confess in Jesus as their Savior (born again) (Mark 16:15-16, Rom 10:8-10)
It is for those who repent and turn away from their sins (Acts 2:38-41)
It is for the forgiveness of sin (Acts 2:38)
It is for the cleansing of our conscience toward God (1 Pet 3:21)
It is for baptism “into Christ”; we died with Christ, buried our old man, and resurrected to new life by putting on Christ ((Rom 6:3-7, Rom 8:29, Rom 13:14, 2 Cor 3:18, Col 2:11-14, Gal 3:27)
It is for deliverance from evil (demons) (Acts 8:6-8, 12, 1 Pet 3:21)
It is for receiving the Holy Spirit baptism with the evidence of speaking in tongues (John 1:33, Acts 2;38, Gal 3:27, 1 Cor 12:13)
It is part of the whole salvation experience and scripture taken as a whole and in context absolutely teaches this
For the most part, churches today, which do emersion water baptism treat it as a symbol and a ritual of identifying with Christ’s death, burial and resurrection to new life. And this is a very important aspect of water baptism. But what I have observed is there are a few other facets to water baptism that are overlooked and misunderstood. Namely, that water baptism is for the “forgiveness of sin” (Acts 2:38), it is to cleanse us from the effects of sin on our mind and conscience, for deliverance from evil (demons) (Acts 8:5-8, 12, 1 Peter 3:21) for obtaining power over sin (Rom 6), and for receiving the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Although there are examples in scripture where believers received the Holy Spirit first and then were water baptized, and vice versa, the important thing to understand is that the early church performed water baptism on new believers immediately when they believed and repented.
The church was growing and it took time for them to understand how to do things properly, you can read about the various baptisms in these scriptures:
Acts 2:37-42 the upper room, the Apostles and the 3000 souls added to the church.
Acts 8:5-17 the baptism of the Samaritans.
Acts 8:27-40 the baptism of the Ethiopian eunuch.
Acts 10 Cornelius and his family.
Acts 16:25-40 the jailer and his family.
Acts 18 and 19 Apollos and the Ephesian disciples.
Acts 22:16 the baptism of Paul.
I believe the Lord is showing me the importance of new believers receiving water baptism immediately following their confession of faith in Christ and repentance of sin. (New birth.) This is especially important in this time when a great harvest of souls for the Kingdom of God is coming and has already started, and it is expedient that they be water baptized immediately.
The Romans Six Effect
I want to close this section with what the Apostle Paul told the Romans about water baptism, dying with Christ and power over sin. When you read these scriptures in context and mediate on what is really being said in all of Romans chapter 6, clearly the Holy Spirit was showing us the connection between water baptism and breaking the power of sin over our lives. I have heard Romans chapter 6 preached by different pastors and not once did I ever hear them really drive home the connection that the power over sin is through water baptism, which is clearly stated in verses 3-7. When I have read Romans 6 in the past, I completely missed the point and I always wondered, how do I really have power over sin? My prayer is that those of you who have been water baptized but never received this revelation, will get this down in your spirit man. My prayer is that those of you who still struggle with bondage to sin will finally be set free from the power of sin over your life by realizing what really took place when you were “baptized into Christ.” It was not an act of the flesh, God did something supernatural!
Romans 6:1-11 NLT
1 Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of his wonderful grace? 2 Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it? 3 Or have you forgotten that when we were joined with Christ Jesus in baptism, we joined him in his death? 4 For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives.
5 Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was. 6 We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ [in water baptism] so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. 7 For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. 8 And since we died with Christ, we know we will also live with him. 9 We are sure of this because Christ was raised from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. 10 When he died, he died once to break the power of sin. But now that he lives, he lives for the glory of God. 11 So you also should consider yourselves to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus.
What about Baptism by Sprinkling and Pouring of Water?
There are many denominations that baptize by sprinkling or pouring water on the head of a believer, as well as baptize infants and children. I was baptized by sprinkling of water in the Methodist church when I was a child. As a matter of fact my whole family was baptized together by sprinkling of water to signify our membership to the church we were attending. Since I was just a child, I have no recollection of my baptism, and certainly it was not connected to repentance. How can infants and children make a determination about their spiritual condition before God? I have since been baptized by full immersion, but I still did not have the full understanding I do now about why water baptism is so important, but I was baptized into Christ and there is no need to be re-baptized.
Sprinkling water baptism was a departure from the apostolic and early church method of immersion and became a common practice in the western church around the 12th – 13th century. Below are some quotes I found about sprinkle baptism that are pulled from various encyclopedias and resource materials.
“In the time of the apostles, the form of baptism was very simple. The person to be baptized was dipped in a river or a vessel, with the words which Christ had ordered, and to express more fully his change of character, generally adopted a new name. The Greek Church retained this custom; but the Western Church adopted in the 13th century the mode of baptism by sprinkling, which has been continued by the Protestants, the Baptists only excepted. The introduction of this mode of baptism was owing to the great inconvenience which arose from the
immersion of the whole body in the northern climates of Europe. (Zell’s Encyclopedia, Art. Baptism, Vol. I, p. 236).
“Sprinkling as a form of baptism took the place of immersion after a few centuries in the early Church, not from any established rule, but by common consent, and it has since been very generally practiced in all but the Greek and Baptist churches, which insist upon immersion.” (McClintock and Strong’s Cyclopedia, Art. Sprinkling, Vol. IX, p. 968).
“Sprinkling was still (in the period of 323 – 692) confined to Baptismus Clinicorum (clinical baptism) and was first generally used in the West in infant baptism in the 12th century, while the East still retained the custom of immersion.” (Kurts, a German Lutheran Historian, in Church History, Vol. I, p. 367).
”For several centuries after the establishment of Christianity, Baptism was usually conferred by immersion, but since the twelfth century, the practice of baptizing by infusion has prevailed in the Catholic Church, as this manner is attended with less inconvenience than Baptism by immersion.” (Cardinal Gibbons, Faith of Our Fathers, p. 318).
As you just read, sprinkle baptism was adopted as a matter of convenience. The problem is that it has no biblical basis in the New Testament. In the New Testament scriptures, in every sense of the word, “baptize” in the Greek language of the text clearly means “to immerse or submerge in water.”
Baptize / Baptized / Baptizing – G907 baptizō: to immerse, to submerge
Baptism – G908 baptisma: immersion, submersion
I believe the Lord desires to restore the proper understanding and practice of water baptism, and for His shepherd’s to open their eyes and ears and hear what the Spirit is saying to the church in his hour.
For those who have been sprinkle water baptized, I would seek the Lord about re-baptism. Scripture says in Ephesians 4:5 that there is ONE baptism. The word “one” in Greek G3391 means; “only one, a certain one”
There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 and one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all. Eph 4:5
The certain ONE baptism is the New Testament full immersion water baptism as found in scripture.
Water Baptism, Repentance and Forgiveness of Sin
The baptism of John the Baptist was for repentance and forgiveness of sin. (Mat 3:1-6, Luke 3:3, Acts 13:24, Acts 18:25 etc.) John told those he baptized that they were to believe in the One coming after him, and He (Christ) would baptize them with the Holy Spirit. The baptism of John was a sort of transitional bridge between the dispensation of the Law of Moses and the dispensation of Christ.
“John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. 5 And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins. Mark 1:4-5
“And he went into all the region around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins,” Luke 3:3
Water baptism in connection to repentance and forgiveness of sin did not change after the Lords resurrection and ascension. However, the baptism of John was not complete because it did not constitute baptism into the Lord Jesus Christ, who fulfills water baptism.
Scripture teaches us that when the church was born and began to grow, they still understood that water baptism involved repentance and forgiveness of sin. What was added to John’s baptism was the baptism into Christ and the baptism with the Holy Spirit.
Peter instructs the church about water baptism related to repentance and forgiveness of sin when he spoke these words as recorded in the book of Acts. He is clarifying that even though many had been baptized by John, they must now be baptized into Christ.
Peter replied, “Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:38 NLT
Acts chapter 22 records a scene that took place in Damascus after the conversion of the Apostle Paul.
Ananias speaking to Paul:
‘And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.’ Acts 22:16
I think it is worth mentioning here that it is important to understand the distinction between the blood of Jesus that “cleanses us of our sin” by atoning for our sin (1 John 1:7, 1 John 2:2) and water baptism that “washes away our sins” through our repentance and God’s forgiveness, therefore we receive a clean conscience toward God. (1 Pet 3:21)
I believe emphatically that there is something deeply spiritual that God is doing in water baptism. If we worship God in “Spirit and in Truth” (John 4:24) then why wouldn’t baptism also encompass this reality? Read on as I expand on this.
Water Baptism and the Flood of Noah
In 1 Peter chapter 3, Peter is teaching the church about water baptism when he points out that the flood in Noah’s day is foreshadow of water baptism for Christians.
Because Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, to bring you to God, by being put to death in the flesh but by being made alive in the spirit. 19 In it he went and preached to the spirits in prison, 20 after they were disobedient long ago when God patiently waited in the days of Noah as an ark was being constructed. In the ark a few, that is eight souls, were delivered through water. 21 And this prefigured baptism, which now saves you – not the washing off of physical dirt but the pledge of a good conscience to God – through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who went into heaven and is at the right hand of God with angels and authorities and powers subject to him. 1 Peter 3:18-22 NKJV
If you read that scripture in the Amplified version below, Peter says we are saved by baptism in that our minds are set free from inward fear and questioning by cleansing our guilty conscience. (Water baptism does not atone for sin like the blood of Jesus, but clearly it is part of the whole salvation experience.)
Peter also says the water is not washing physical dirt from the flesh. In other words, the act of baptism is not an act of the flesh. But rather, the water is washing away the sin that polluted our minds and is spiritually washing our conscience toward God, when we repent and put on Christ. Peter also says that water baptism delivers us from evil!
Let’s look at 1 Peter 3:20-21 in the Amplified version:
20 [The souls of those] who long before in the days of Noah had been disobedient, when God’s patience waited during the building of the ark in which a few [people], actually eight in number, were saved through water. And baptism, which is a figure [of their deliverance], does now also save you [from inward questionings and fears], not by the removing of outward body filth [bathing], but by [providing you with] the answer of a good and clear conscience (inward cleanness and peace) before God [because you are demonstrating what you believe to be yours] through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 3:20-21
If we look at the symbolism of foreshadow of baptism in the flood of Noah I see there is deliverance from evil. Noah and his family were not just delivered or saved by the ark from the flood, which is a type of Christ saving us from Gods wrath. But Noah was also delivered from wickedness and evil when they entered the ark. And the water of the flood destroyed the evil, ungodly and wicked by literally washing them away. I believe this is showing us that deliverance from demons is taking place in water baptism.
The pre-figure of the flood of Noah teaches us that God sent the flood, and the flood was the end of evil and the beginning of a new life. Do you see the connection to water baptism? It was God who sent the flood to cleanse the evil!
I believe it is VERY important to understand there is more taking place in water baptism than many of us have previously assumed. Any believer that has not been properly water baptized should be. This will set you on the proper foundation and deliver you from evil and cleanse your guilt concerning your sin and give you power over sin once and for all.
Water Baptism and Deliverance in the Book of Acts
In Acts chapter 8, Philip the deacon is preaching in Samaria.
5 Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them. 6 And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. 7 For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed. 8 And there was great joy in that city. Acts 8:5-8
12 But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized. Acts 8:12
I believe we can surmise from these scriptures that those who were baptized because of Philips preaching of Christ in verse 12 are the same Samaritans he preached to in verse 5-7 who had unclean spirits come out of them.
I believe the Lord is stressing this principle because He wants His people set free and delivered from demons just like they were in the book of Acts. The deliverance of evil can be accomplished in water baptism!
If the pastors and shepherds could see this, they can be a huge help in setting Gods people free.
During water baptism it is important to be led by the Holy Spirit to pray appropriately and tarry with the individual during their water baptism to ensure that all the Lord wants to occur in that water baptism is completed. Including, repentance and cleansing of the guilt of sin, deliverance from demons and Holy Spirit baptism.
Here is an image of the Tabernacle I made, click to enlarge:
What I see in scripture concerning water baptism and Holy Spirit baptism and the Tabernacle pattern is this. The human being is three parts; body, soul and spirit. This coincides with the tabernacle pattern as follows:
Outer Court= body
Sanctuary/Holy Place= soul
Most Holy Place= spirit
Scripture teaches us that the Lord is interacting with each part of us to sanctify our whole being. For example, here are a couple scriptures:
Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it. I Thes 5:23
We know that our old (unrenewed) self was nailed to the cross with Him in order that [our] body [which is the instrument] of sin might be made ineffective and inactive for evil, that we might no longer be the slaves of sin. Romans 6:6
Water baptism interacts with each part of an individual in this way:
Body: through water baptism we are set free from demons which reside in the flesh of man, our flesh is circumcised and put off as we put on Christ. (Rom 6:3-5, 1 Pet 3:21, Col 2:11-12, Gal 3:27)
Soul: the soul is comprised of the mind, will and emotions. In water baptism, after we have repented and been forgiven, our soul/mind is then cleansed from condemnation and a guilty conscience. We are given a clean conscience toward God and He does not want us to have shame for what has been forgiven. The soul is cleansed from the effects of sin on our mind and emotions. Therefore we have peace knowing we are forgiven. (Rom 8:1-2, 1 Pet 3:21)
Spirit: our spirit is called the “inner man” or “heart”, this is where the Holy Spirit resides in man. When we are water baptized and receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit, then Christ has come to make His home in our heart, our inner man. (Eph 3:16-17, John 14:23)
Water and Spirit Baptism is the Entrance to Sanctification
In the outer court of the Tabernacle is what is called the “bronze laver.” It was a basin, or large bowl filled with water located halfway between the brazen altar and the Holy Place. The priests were to wash their hands and their feet in it before entering the Holy Place.
Like everything in the Tabernacle it is symbolic and relevant to us as Christians. The symbolism and foreshadow is of water and Spirit baptism. It also symbolizes washing of the water of the word. (Eph 5:26)
The laver was located in the outer court to signify that Christians are to be cleansed of their old life through water baptism and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit for their new life. The entrance to the Holy Place is then steps away from the laver. Entering into the Holy place symbolizes the life long process of sanctification of a believer and follower of Christ.
Scripture is showing us there is something powerful and spiritually supernatural that occurs in water baptism. There is inward cleanness and peace toward God, as well as power over sin. This is not a ritualistic experience, it is a spiritual experience and God is definitely doing something in water baptism.
There is a string of events occurring just prior to and during water baptism that we need to break down and be aware of. This is important because it speaks to the whole salvation experience. Some of these things we do and some are what God does.
We believe by faith and call upon the name of Jesus and put our trust in Him as our Savior (We do this)
We repent and change our mind about our behavior, recognizing we have sinned and accept Gods will ( We do this)
Our sins are forgiven and washed away and we receive power over sin (God does this)
Our conscience is cleansed and we now have inward peace toward God (God does this)
We are delivered of evil, demons actually leave the body (God does this)
The Holy Spirit comes and “baptizes” the believer and there is the evidence of speaking in tongues (this is the sign given to know a person has received the baptism of the Holy Spirit, otherwise how would you know?) and now the believer is empowered to operate in the gifts of the Spirit (God does this)
Clearly God is performing a string of very spiritual events in water baptism, and it is much more than a ritual. It is a very essential component to salvation. The culmination of all these events is a strong Christian who has been set on a solid foundation that was established by Christ (Mat 28:18-20). They have truly been born of water and of Spirit.
“Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” John 3:5
They have repented, been cleansed of guilt, been delivered from evil, received the baptism of the Holy Spirit, made into a new creation, and now have everything needed to overcome sin, operate in the gifts of the Spirit, produce fruit of the Spirit and start a new life as a disciple of Jesus Christ.
The Lord has stressed to me that we are not to compare ourselves and our experiences to each other, but we are to measure ourselves and experiences according to the word of God. Again I want to emphasize the most important thing is to understand what the Bible teaches about water and Spirit baptism and not to use experience to validate truth. If Jesus is “restoring the foundations”, then obviously He does not want us to compare our experiences to each other but to measure all things according to the word of God.
If anyone has uncertainty about anything the best action to take is to pray and ask the Lord to guide you, and of course study this yourself as we are instructed. (2 Tim 2:15)
Much love to you all,
Additional Recommended Teachings about Water and Spirit Baptism:
The Doctrine of Imminence and the Spirit of Prophecy
By Sarah Beveridge
The doctrine of imminence or immanency as it is understood today, is the belief in the imminent or any moment return of Jesus to catch away His bride. It is taught in many evangelical churches and denominations. In this belief, it is currently taught that Jesus can come “at any moment” and there are no signs that need to occur and no prophecies that need to be fulfilled before the rapture/resurrection, and the claim is that the rapture is a “sign less event.” Although I find it rather ironic that many of the same Christians who espouse the doctrine of imminence are also watching and reporting the signs and speaking about bible prophecy.
About a year ago I started to research the “doctrine of imminence” and I am sharing my discoveries that led me to draw a different conclusion than the one I held previously. In my own journey to understand what true biblical imminence is and is not, what kept coming up in my spirit was this; if Jesus can come at any moment and His coming is “imminent”, then why is the Lord giving me dreams and visions where He is clearly showing me events in my future and the future of the church? This seemed to contradict the doctrine of imminence. Although I knew I was hearing from God, clearly something was not right about the “any moment” return of Jesus and I had to learn what it was. I don’t use personal experience to validate truth, I use the bible, so I knew the answer was in scripture and I set out to understand this paradox.
The Early Church and Imminence
One of the primary reasons given for belief in the doctrine of imminence is the belief that the early church believed and taught it. And the thinking goes that if the early church believed it, then it must be true. I find it sad and ironic how so many other things the early church believed and practiced are not taught and adhered to today.
There is no question the early church was looking for and expecting the Lord Jesus Christ to come in their lifetime. But after researching this I found that what the early church really believed was more accurately “expectancy” and not an “any moment, imminent” resurrection/rapture. They were expecting the Lord to come in their lifetime, and they lived their life as though He would, and they taught that Christians should be prepared at all times to meet the Lord. Paul said that “TODAY is the day of salvation.” (2 Cor 6:2) This dovetails into what Jesus really taught about the immanency of Christ, as you will read about further on in this article.
There is no question that scripture conveys Jesus promised that He would come back for His faithful followers and He taught to always be prepared to meet Him. (John 14:1-4, Mat 16:28, Mat 26:64, Mat 24:42-51.) But was Jesus really saying He was going to come back to rapture His church at any moment? After very close scrutiny of the scriptures, prayer and asking the Holy Spirit to teach me, I do not believe scripture supports that notion at all. To the contrary, there are many things Jesus said that absolutely show us there were things the church should be expecting to see before He came for them. There is only one place in scripture where Jesus speaks of coming to “receive” His people to Himself and take them to heaven, and that is John 14: 1-4. But He does not say this could occur at any time.
Jesus told His disciples they would see many events BEFORE His coming and these are just some examples:
The temple would be destroyed- fulfilled in 70 AD (Mat 24:2, Mark 13:2, and Luke 21:6)
The Holy Spirit would come in power (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:8)
There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars, and when we see these things we would know our redemption was near. Clearly this indicates “signs” we are to look for prior to the catching away. (Luke 21:25, Acts 2:16-21)
Jesus said that when we “see these things come to pass, then look up and lift up your heads for your redemption draws near.” (Luke21:28) Clearly Jesus was telling us we would see some things before our “redemption.” (Read Romans 8:23.)
Jesus told Peter that he would get old and die and his death would glorify God. Peter was absolutely part of the early church and a primary Apostle chosen by Jesus to “feed His sheep.” Since Peter knew the prophecy the Lord gave him about his own death, would he have also believed Jesus could come at any time? Of course not! (John 21:18-19)
Jesus said a specific generation would not pass away until all the things He was speaking of were fulfilled (Mat 24:32-34.) That generation are those who would be alive from the time Israel became a nation in 1948 (the fig tree puts forth leaves) and conclude sometime with-in that time frame, which is generally understood to be the life span of a man, which is about 70-80 years. (Psalm 90:10)
If the rapture is at any moment, then what about all the scriptures where we are instructed to watch and therefore know the time and season of His coming? Jesus said we would not know the day or hour, but He absolutely said that if we watched we would know the season. (Read Mat 16:3, Mat 24;42, Mat 25:13, Mark 13:33-37, Luke 12:38-40, Luke 21:36, 1 Thes 5:6, Rev 3:3)
These are just a sampling of prophecies that have either come to pass, are in the process of coming to pass or have not yet come to pass. In fact, in the Olivet discourse, when the disciples of Jesus asked this question in Matthew 24:3 “Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” Jesus went on to give many signs to look for and in no way did He ever insinuate His coming would be sign- less and imminent.
The Apostle Paul also clearly states there are specific and significant “signs” to look for prior to our “assembling to meet the Lord” (rapture). Namely a great falling away from the faith and the revealing of the “son of perdition” will occur FIRST according to Paul.
“Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our assembling to meet him, we beg you, brethren, not to be quickly shaken in mind or excited, either by spirit or by word, or by letter purporting to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come. Let no one deceive you in any way;for that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God.” (2 Thes 2:1-4)
The True Biblical Doctrine of Imminence
So why does Jesus instruct us to be prepared to meet Him at any time? This should be obvious, but to answer that from scripture we need to go to a parable in Luke 12:16-21. In these passages we learn what the TRUE doctrine of imminence is, as taught by Jesus Himself. In this parable of the rich man building two barns, Jesus indicates that at any moment a man’s soul may be required of by God, and therefore Jesus can come at any moment for any one of us. To quote a man of God that I have learned much from over the years; “the term ‘immanency’ is a term of discipleship and conduct as to how we ought to live our Christian lives and is not necessarily an eschatological term. Jesus may come at any instant for any believer at any time in history.”
I believe without a doubt that we are the last generation and that will see the rapture of the church and the second coming of Jesus to set up His Kingdom. And this is because we are absolutely seeing all the signs that Jesus said would be present, and if we are wise virgins let us heed the Lords command to be watchful, in prayer and prepared to meet Him. The Lord had me write a book on the subject of preparation, being a disciple and fulfilling our calling and destiny NOW, before He comes. So I am fully aware of the times and seasons. But if we are completely honest, we have no idea when the Lord may decide to take each of us home. The bible is clear that we should live our Christian life to the fullest, doing Gods will and obeying Him in all that we are commanded to be and do on this side of eternity.
“Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; 14 whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. 15 Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” (James 4:13-15)
Even still, with all this said, and the signs manifesting, The Lords coming to rapture His church is still NOT imminent or at any moment. James tells us to be patient as we see the nearing of that day, which we are seeing, but patient we must be because a harvest has to come first.
Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and latter rain. 8 You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand. James 5:7-8
Now let’s go deeper…
New Testament scriptures that are used to teach the “doctrine of Imminence”
Most Christians do not dig deep enough and only skim the surface in bible study and therefore miss very much truth that is waiting to be discovered. Also remember that we must consider the full picture, the whole context and the full council of scripture in order to draw our conclusions.
The word “imminent” or “immanency” is not found in scripture. There are four scriptures that use the term “at hand” or “nigh”. (Read James 5:8, Romans 13:11, Philippians 4:5 and 1 Peter 4:7) These are the words and primary scriptures used to teach the “doctrine of immanency” related to the rapture.
The same word “at hand” is also used to denote “nearness, closeness and access to God.” In some cases I believe those scriptures are really implying access to God because that is the primary meaning in the Greek. I believe this is true of Philippians 4:5 which you will read further down. Also think of the Lords promise to “never leave nor forsake us.” (Heb 13:5, Deut 31:6)
In Luke 21:31 Jesus tells His disciples that when you see all the signs coming to pass that He mentions in the preceding verses 5-30, know that the “Kingdom of God is at hand”. (G1451)
“So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.” (Luke 21:31)
Very clearly Jesus is giving an instruction to His disciples to watch for specific signs related to His coming. There is NOT ONE scripture where Jesus ever said not to watch for and recognize signs that would indicate the time and season of His return to catch away His church. The Apostle Paul echoes this same principle in scriptures such as 1 Thessalonians 4:1-4 where he outlines specific events to watch for that will occur prior to the resurrection/rapture.
Below I have listed many scriptures that are used by those who teach and believe in the doctrine of imminence as related to the rapture. I also give the dates that the scriptures were written. Please read the whole chapters in context and study the scriptures closely and notice the admonition to “watch and be prepared”. And also notice the “expectancy” that is conveyed. I perceive the expectancy the early church had that Jesus would come in their lifetime, and not this modern idea that Christ can come at any moment to rapture His church. Also pay attention because at the end of the list is a surprise.
James – WRITTEN BY JAMES, HALF BROTHER OF JESUS – APPROX AD 49-50 (Likely before the Jerusalem council meeting in Acts 15)
“Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. 8 Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh. (nigh= G1448) 9 Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door. (James 5:7-9).
NOTE: James 5:7-9 is clearly stating there is a harvest before the coming of the Lord. In verse 8 the word “nigh” is G1448 (Greek- eggizō) which means “drawing near, approaching.” This shows me that James was expecting Jesus to come in his lifetime, but what he never says is that Jesus can come at any moment.
1 Thessalonians – WRITTEN BY PAUL APPROX AD 50-52
“And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come” (1 Thes 1:10).
“Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober” (1 Thes 5:6).
NOTE: Take notice of the expectancy, the warning to be watchful and sober; in other words Paul is saying, pay attention to the signs! Clearly they were expecting the Lord to come in their life time, but not one word about Jesus coming at any moment. In his second letter to the Thessalonians (2 Thes 2:1-4) Paul clearly told them to watch for specific events to occur before the “gathering/assembling” of the Saints. Why would he contradict himself by even implying the Lord can come at any moment?
Mark –WRITTEN BY JOHN MARK APPROX AD 55-65
“Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is. 34 It is like a man going to a far country, who left his house and gave authority to his servants, and to each his work, and commanded the doorkeeper to watch. 35 Watch therefore, for you do not know when the master of the house is coming—in the evening, at midnight, at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning— 36 lest, coming suddenly, he find you sleeping. 37 And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!” (Mark 13:33-37).
NOTE: The words of Jesus reiterate the warning to His people to be watchful and in prayer. Certainly He would never tell His disciples don’t worry about anything because you have 2000 more years to go. Of course He wants every generation to be the best Christians and disciples they can be, never letting our guard down and allowing the world to ensnare us. These scriptures also confirm that no man knows the day or hour, but other scriptures warn us we should know the times and season.
1 Corinthians –WRITTEN BY PAUL APPROX AD 55
“so that you come short in no gift, eagerly waiting for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ, 8 who will also confirm you to the end, that you may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Cor 1:7).
NOTE: The expectation and eagerness to see the Lord is again highlighted in this verse. Does Paul say the Lord can come at any moment?
Romans –WRITTEN BY PAUL APPROX AD 56-58
“Knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. 12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand: (G1448) let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light” (Rom 13:11-12).
NOTE: This scripture, Romans 13:11 really goes with what Paul said in 2 Corinthians 6:2 … now is the day of salvation. In verse 12 “at hand” is G1448 (Greek- eggizō) which means “drawing near, approaching.” Again this is not implying Jesus is coming at “any moment” but “expectancy” that the day would come in their lifetime.
Philippians –WRITTEN BY PAUL APPROX AD 60-62
“For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Phil 3:20).
“Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand” (Phil 4:5).
Note: In context the word “at hand” in Philippians 4:5 is G1451 (Greek- eggys) and it means “nearness and access to God”. This verse is really saying “the Lord is close by, near” so watch your behavior.
1 Timothy –WRITTEN BY PAUL APPROX AD 61-65
I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession; 14 That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: 15 Which in his times (G2540) he shall shew, [who is] the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; (1 Tim 6:13-15).
NOTE: In 1 Timothy 6:15 Paul is saying Jesus will come in His times. The word “times” is G2540 (Greek- Kairos) which means:
A measure of time, a larger or smaller portion of time, hence:
a fixed and definite time, the time when things are brought to crisis, the decisive epoch waited for
opportune or seasonable time
the right time
a limited period of time
to what time brings, the state of the times, the things and events of time
This implies that there is a set time, a Kairos moment, an appointed time, the right time, but ABSOLUTELY DOES NOT indicate Jesus is coming at “any moment” or “imminently.”
1 Peter – WRITTEN BY PETER APPROX AD 62-65
“Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:13).
“But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer” (1 Peter 4:7).
Note: In 1 Peter 4:7 the word “at hand” in this verse is Strong’s G1448 (Greek- eggizō) and it has a different meaning than G1451 (Greek- eggys). G1448 means to bring near, to join one thing to another, to draw or come near to, to approach. Basically Peter is saying the end of the world is approaching, so be sober. Was the end of the world really near? No, but clearly this scripture shows us that the early church was expecting Jesus to come in their lifetime, but not at any moment.
Hebrews – WRITTEN BY PAUL (or Apollos or possibly Barnabas . . . ?) APPROX AD 60-62 or as late as AD 70 prior to the destruction of Jerusalem.
“So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation” (Heb 9:28).
“Let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the Day approaching” (Heb 10:24-25).
“For yet a little while, and He that shall come will come, and will not tarry” (Heb 10:37).
NOTE: The “expectancy” of the early church to see the Lords coming is apparent in these scriptures. Again, I am seeing “expectancy” and not the “any moment”, “imminent” coming of Christ that is taught in todays churches.
Revelation – WRITTEN BY JOHN APPROX AD 90-96
“Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown” (Rev 3:11).
“Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book” (Rev 22:7).
“He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus” (Rev 22:20).
NOTE: These scriptures are consistent with the teachings of Jesus to always be ready to meet Him, which is the true “doctrine of imminence.”
Did you notice something else?! All of the scriptures that are used by teachers of the “doctrine of imminence” were written anywhere from 26-47 years BEFORE John ever wrote the Revelation of Jesus Christ! What this means is that the most important and valuable prophetic book in the bible with a multitude of post-apostolic church era and end time prophecies was written AFTER all the other New Testament scriptures were written. And the prophecies for the seven churches that actually existed in Asia Minor at the time John wrote the book of Revelation, would shortly begin to experience those prophecies that were for them. Let’s read Revelation 1:1-3 and notice that Jesus tells John the words of the prophecy are about to come to pass.
The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants—things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John, 2 who bore witness to the word of God, and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, to all things that he saw. 3 Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near. (Rev 1:1-3)
In fact, the prophecies to the seven churches of Asia Minor did come to pass already. The seven churches is a HUGE and multi-layered topic and I won’t go further into it here. But the point I am making is that if the early church believed Jesus could come any moment, and there are no signs, and no prophecies that need to be fulfilled, then when John presented the seven letters to the seven churches around AD 96, they would have experienced quite a shock, when for example, the church at Smyrna was given a prophecy in Revelation 2:8-19 that some of them would be put in prison for ten days.
Therefore how could the early church have thought the coming of Jesus to rapture His church would be at any moment and without any signs or impending prophecies if the most prolific end time prophecies in the bible had not even been written yet?
With all this said, I believe the modern church has taken the true biblical doctrine of the imminence of Christ and applied human understanding and reasoning to it and made it into something that it was never intended to be. And I believed this teaching, not because I had studied it and came to my conclusion from study, but because I believed the men who taught it and I did not ask the Holy Spirit to teach me what truth is. That has all changed now.
The Testimony of Jesus Christ is the Spirit of Prophecy
The bible clearly tells us that God is pouring out His Spirit on ALL flesh.
“Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams, Your young men shall see visions. And also on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days.” (Joel 2:28-29, Acts 2:17-18)
As a maidservant of the Lord I have easily had hundreds of dreams (that I recall) since I started to experience dreams from the Lord in 2008. Many of those dreams have already come to pass; including dreams where the Lord showed me about new jobs, moving, end of relationships, new ministry, etc. Last year I had a dream from the Lord where He showed me I was going to Florida. I did not understand why or when this would occur. But this is now coming to pass!
The testimony of Jesus Christ is the Spirit of Prophecy (Rev 19:10) and He absolutely prophesies into our life and shows us things in advance so that we know He is sovereign over our lives. There is nothing that He does not know about us! Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever, so why wouldn’t He prophesy to us, just as He prophesied to the seven churches of Asia Minor? Jesus has ABSOLUTELY NOT stopped prophesying to His church.
To those who believe that the rapture is at any moment and therefore Jesus can’t prophesy into our life by giving a dream about the future I would say to you, ask and allow the Holy Spirit to be your teacher and lead you in all truth. That is really the issue at hand. Are we going to follow men and their doctrines and traditions, or are we going to follow Jesus? I made a course correction about 2 1/2 years ago that I was going to follow the Holy Spirit and let Him teach me and guide me. That includes who I should be listening to, because the Lord Himself does choose teachers for His people. (Eph 4:11-12).
Christianity is filled with man’s interpretation and opinion, and very little revelation from the Holy Spirit. Believe me when I say that I am not smart enough to come up with this information on my own. It came by revelation from the Holy Spirit. Since we truly are the last generation and we really do not know for certain how much time we have, don’t you think we had better start listening to the Holy Spirit and stop following the doctrines of men?