Holy Spirit – Introduction
“Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you first believed ?” Acts 19:2
In recent years, God has appeared to numerous people particularly to those who hunger for the presence of God, and who have lived with holy discontent regarding their limited knowledge of Him. They have desired the full revelation of God and have refused to submit to a mere cognitive conception of God. Such is the state of the Church today, that intimate encounters with God involving our physical senses are considered rare even delusional. Church leaders who do not enter into imminent encounters with God prevent others from doing so by declaring that we will only “see God face to face” in the “new kingdom”. Yet, Paul taught that part of our love relationship with God is seeing Him face-to-face.
“we see (God) face to face…” 1 Corinthians 13:12
We can begin to know fully who God is and to be known by Him. Church leaders direct their flock towards the pursuit of wealth or signs and wonders supposing these are the ultimate goals of God’s grace. Consequently, many see the pursuit of God as a means to fulfill their carnal desires rather than to attain His likeness and glory. Many are like sheep without a shepherd devoid of the grand vision of God’s Kingdom and glory. At the same time, there are those who claim to have seen Him and experienced His constant presence but lack emotional stability and maturity. They display an inconsistency in their walk with God, their interpretation of the Word is shallow. Hence, many become skeptical of the manifestation of the Spirit.
Nevertheless, God is raising up a people who are skilled in the Word, mature in understanding of God’s will, and working miracles and possessing insights into the Spirit realm (visions and revelations). They show the world who Emmanuel is really like. Their abundance is not the life derived from worldly gains, they are consumed by the vision of His Kingdom. They are willing to lay down their very lives. We can experience the imminent God through the Holy Spirit every day. God is restoring us for His presence in the midst of His people so that our joy may be full.
Below are some excerpts from my journal in my journey with the Emmanuel…
See Him, Feel Him, Touch Him
In July 2007, I fasted for 20 days, only this time I did not pursue the spiritual gifts as I did on previous occasions; I only asked for the Holy Spirit to be very real to me. I waited in silence, battling the initial urges of my mind – I read, meditated, and worshipped…. this daily cycle continued for 20 days. Occasionally during the 20-day fasting, and especially on the 21st day, I started feeling sensations that I never had before. Electric charges were dancing on my palms, fire and energy were all over my body. I wondered what was happening to my body. I then realized that the Holy Spirit was opening my senses to feel His presence more keenly and intimately. After this experience, I also noticed that more people (whom I prayed for and ministered to) were being healed from their diseases. Though I did not ask for the healing gift, I was pleasantly surprised to receive it together with the other spiritual gifts. God opened my eyes to understand that power comes not from the gifts themselves; but is the presence of God. – Emmanuel made the difference.
In November 2010, about 500 people from a village in Myanmar gathered in a large hall; they were Buddhists, Muslims, and traditional Baptist Christians. They were familiar with visiting Evangelists, Pastors and Prophets from all over the world. This time, they were attracted by the bold banner that was printed on it: “Miracle Healing Crusade”. Seated before me were many tired and exhausted faces (battered with agricultural toil). I did not think they would be able to sit through another hour of biblical teachings. I asked them to raise their hands so that God might just lift up their spirits and strengthen their bodies. Just then, a wave of warm air swept through the hall, touching every raised hand, and soothing every tired soul. The presence of the Holy Spirit was very tangible and the atmosphere was charged with the glory of God. Diseases were healed, and mourning was turned into dancing. For the first time, these people felt that Jesus was really walking among them.
As usual, in the mornings, I was awakened by my alarm clock at 6.30am. I was determined to keep my time with God. I pulled myself into the trusty old couch that had served as my “soaking” chair. I read for a while thereafter laying down my Bible to connect with God. The Holy Spirit felt gentle on my skin, with sensations of water flowing down the back of my neck accompanied by feelings of lightness and peace. Electric current flowed intermittently, overlapping with the sensations of water. I bathed in the pleasure of the Holy Spirit’s touch – which brought peace and refreshment to my soul. Then came a distinct surge of energy and light. I heard the familiar voice I had been waiting for, “Here I Am!”
In June 2011, an AIDS patient was carried in, slumped on the floor hardly noticed by anyone. He did not come forward for healing when the call was made simply because he could not stand nor sit nor walk by himself. The man contracted the disease when he lived with a woman. He was losing weight fast and had gotten weaker by the day. He went to the monastery and became a monk hoping it would solve his problem. but there was no change, so he went to the hospital and was tested HIV positive. Having no money and no friends, he gave up being a monk and went to live in his brother’s house waiting to die. He came to the healing rally hoping to receive a miracle. I went to him and placed my hand on his shoulder. The power of God wasn’t extraordinarily strong when I touched him. 15 seconds passed. He said he felt the pain leave his body the moment I prayed for him. He stood up and ran up and down the hallway like a man freed from death row!
In November 2012, in the city of Kalaymyo, West of Myanmar, we were conducting a healing seminar. About 600 people from the city and the villages had come. As usual, after the teaching session, we entered into ministry and prayer for the sick. I noticed a woman in her 40’s pushing her way into the crowd. She was wearing something that covered her head. I later realized that she actually had no hair. She told me (through an interpreter) that she had cancer and parts of her organs were removed. The doctors told her that she had less than 6 months to live. She was in constant pain and could not sleep without painkillers. Then, the interpreter said that she is in fact the wife of the district pastor. Upon hearing that, my heart melted. As I laid my hand on her stomach, heat pulsated into her body. I put my hands on her back believing that the Spirit has already healed her of her cancer.
After five months, I received news that she had returned to worshiping God in her church and has since been healed of cancer. She was no longer experiencing pain and her energy returned. She went back into the harvest field and ministered with her husband.
I believe many have been greatly blessed by the “Regeneration” – the first book of the 5-Fold Gospel series. In the book, “Regeneration”, the steps to enter God’s Kingdom are explained. It is through repentance and faith that one is justified, becoming a member of God’s Kingdom. Justification means being appointed and adopted as God’s children despite being unworthy. Justification is the first step as well as the foundation of experiencing abundant life in the Kingdom. The requirement to obtain entrance into God’s Kingdom is a one-time act of repentance and faith (figure A). We also see in figure A, that in order to experience abundant life to the full and to attain to the glory of God, one has to sanctify himself to walk in God’s ways. Attaining the glory of God is the ultimate aim of the Christian life, but believers have to be baptized in the Spirit.
Baptism in Jesus’ name is the seal of the covenant of justification for God’s child. After believers are baptized in Jesus’ name, they will be taught the things of the Holy Spirit and receive the Spirit’s baptism. In Figure B, we see the man moving from justification towards sanctification. Sanctification is the process of becoming like God in His nature and experiencing abundant life. While baptism in Jesus’ name is the seal of one’s commitment to the ways of God, baptism of the Holy Spirit empowers the believer to fulfill this commitment, to experience His love and to break the bondage of sin. The believer will then work miracles and experience the gifts of the Spirit. According to Apostle Paul, the Kingdom of God is not in word but in power (1 Corinthians 4:20). This book “Holy Spirit” will take the readers forward to an exciting and miraculous journey of breakthrough and glory.
been Christians for many years, and yet still are not functioning in the gifts of the Spirit nor experienced the miraculous. Why? Foundations leading to the baptism of the Spirit are not properly built! God has revealed Himself to humanity in stages from which we understand the foundations that God had laid through the centuries and build aright.
The stages of revelation begins with the Law that was given to Moses, followed by the coming of Jesus in the flesh and finally the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Each phase of God’s revelation introduces a new stage and foundation that is built on former foundations. There are three foundations: the law, of Jesus in the flesh and the Holy Spirit.
Each phase of revelation requires us to engage God with new paradigms involving more dimensions of his being. For example, when the law was given, the people encountered God using the mind. However, when Jesus came in the flesh, people encountered God in person, using their emotions and natural senses. Jewish people of the time could not accept this new revelation, God being present in the flesh, because they were so used to knowing God as incomprehensible and inaccessible. Now, many are unable to grow in fellowship with the Holy Spirit because they have not understood the foundations of law and Christ in the flesh.
What about the Holy Spirit? He is called the Spirit of Christ (Romans 1:4), and the Spirit of truth (John 14:17, 1 John 4:6). The first few chapters of this book lay the foundations of Law and Christ incarnate. We will also explore how to be baptized in the Spirit and walk with Him.
After reading this book you will know the following:
1. How Christians grow and what are the foundations of growth.
2. Daily disciplines needed to grow personally and experience life.
3. Sensing the love of God and the real presence of the Spirit.
4. Speaking in tongues – its importance and reception?
5. Preparations to receive the Spirit’s baptism.
6. Evidences of a Spirit-filled life.
7. Receiving and using the gifts of the Spirit.
Chapter 1 – The Power to Change the World
Chapter 2 – God’s Revelations in Progress
Chapter 3 – The Revelation of God’s Law
Chapter 4 – God fully revealed – Jesus, the Man Incarnate
Chapter 5 – The Holy Spirit – The Personal Presence of Christ
Chapter 6 – The Baptism of the Holy Spirit
Chapter 7 – Flowing with the Spirit