Thursday, September 29, 2011


Acts 19:1-5 ESV

1 And it happened that while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul passed through the inland country and came to Ephesus. There he found some disciples. 2 And he said to them, Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed? And they said, No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit. 3 And he said, Into what then were you baptized? They said, Into John's baptism. 4 And Paul said, John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus. 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

The Thayer definition below for the Greek word translated here as "heard" implies a hearing that is beyond the natural understanding of our English meaning.  These disciples had responded to the word spoken by Apollos and were washed in the water of repentance, but words not united with the presence of the Holy Spirit can only bring us near to the life of God.  That water had not been turned to wine as happens when the Holy Spirit descends on the believer.

Like the blind man partially receiving his sight, they could dimly see into the kingdom of God, but vision was not totally restored.  They had not received life which only comes with the baptism into the very life of God.  

It is the Holy Spirit who enables us to see as best we can into the kingdom of God, and to experience the grace, peace, and power given to all who call on the name of Jesus with a humble heart.  Baptism in the Spirit brings the wine that fills the cup to overflowing.  We are able to experience the peace, power, and truth which comes from God.

     And it came to pass,that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coastscame to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples, He said unto them, Have yereceived the Holy Ghostsince ye believed? Andthey said unto him, We have not so much as[+]heard whether there be anyHoly Ghost.  And he said unto them, Unto what thenwere ye baptized? Andthey said, Unto John’s baptism.  Then said Paul,John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance,saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.  When they heard[apta G191 ἀκούω * akouō * ak-oo'-o * A primary verb; to hear (in various senses): - give (in the) audience (of), come (to the ears), ([shall]) hear (-er, -ken), be noised, be reported, understand. [LEX][TGDἀκούω
Thayer Definition:
1) to be endowed with the faculty of hearing, not deaf
2) to hear
2b) to attend to, consider what is or has been said
2c) to understand, perceive the sense of what is said
3) to hear something

Monday, September 19, 2011

Wisdom And Knowledge

Ecclesiastes 1:18 ESV
18 For in much wisdom is much vexation,
and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.

Vexation includes includes the meanings of frustration, anger, and grief. Sorrow is the distress from loss or disappointment. These are the fruit of wisdom and knowledge apart from God. This is the fruit that became appealing by the deception of the serpent in the Garden.
Peace and joy are only found in the wisdom and knowledge of God.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

For A Sign

Luke 11:29 ESV
29 When the crowds were increasing, he began to say, This generation is an evil generation. It seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.

Does it make sense or is it logical to accept the resurrection of Christ by the Holy Spirit, but deny that same power of God in his birth?
Is this compatible with belief in a risen Son of the living God, confirmed by many miracles and signs?
Are there some parts of gospel which are too hard to believe? Our acceptance or denial of God has no bearing on the truth of God.
Jesus said one sign would be given to unbelievers, the sign of Jonah.
What would be the sign for believers?

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Sea Was No More

Genesis 1:9-10 ESV
9 And God said, Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear. And it was so. 10 God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good.

Revelation 21:1
1 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more.

We pass through the sea of mankind when reborn into a new creation. Through that water, we are lifted by the grace of God by the power of the Holy Spirit, and our feet placed on the solid ground of the kingdom of God.
The same word that separated earth from the waters at creation imparts the righteousness of God to those who accept it from those who do not.
The end is foreshadowed from the beginning.