Saturday, December 19, 2009

Born Again

What does it really mean to be born again? Why must we be born again in order to enter the kingdom of God? Is there a clear understanding of this truth in the bible?

In this bible study we will take a fresh look at being born again, and what Jesus said we must all do in order to enter the kingdom of God.

I will start this study by quoting 1st Timothy 3:16-17
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine (teaching), for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

If you believe this scripture to be true then you believe that every scripture from Genesis to Revelation was given to the writer by inspiration of God and the teachings that are contained in the bible will profit you. You will be open and willing to be reproved, corrected, and instructed, by the Word of God. You may disagree with the interpretation of the scripture, but to disagree with the scriptures would mean you don’t believe 1st Timothy 3:16-17.

John 3:1-8

“There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, 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. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

First we see the Pharisee Nicodemus coming to Jesus in the night, afraid to be seen talking to Jesus openly for fear of his religious peers. We also learn that the Pharisee’s knew that Jesus was a teacher who was sent by God because they could not deny the miracles that God did through Him to confirm His ministry and to show the world that He was approved of God.

Notice that Jesus didn’t speak about the miracles that were being done; He instead chose to tell Nicodemus what was more important than the signs and wonders. Jesus was concerned about the soul of Nicodemus and every other soul that would desire to enter into the kingdom of God. He said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God”. Jesus was so adamant about this He said it three times! He told Nicodemus, and He tells us today we MUST be born again.

Do you believe the words of Jesus? Do you think He was just saying that to Nicodemus?

We can also see from the scriptures that Nicodemus did not understand the words of Jesus because his mind was not spiritual, but carnal, and of course Jesus knew that. The words Jesus spoke were spiritual, as given from above by the Father, and He only spoke what He heard from heaven. (John 12:48-50)
Jesus tells Nicodemus you need two things in order to be born again; water AND Spirit. You cannot have one without the other; you must have both to enter into the kingdom of God. How was Jesus able to tell this truth to Nicodemus? Because He did it Himself and knew exactly what one had to do in order to please the Father.

Look at Matthew 3:13-17

“Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. And John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?” But Jesus answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed Him. When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”

Jesus was immersed in the Jordan River by John the Baptist and when He came up from the water the Spirit of God came upon Him. This righteous act pleased the Father and Jesus went on to start His ministry now empowered by the Holy Spirit. This was the precursor for the day of Pentecost when the Spirit would be poured out upon the apostles and disciples in the upper room.

God also gave this vision and physical manifestation of the Spirit to John so that He would know that Jesus was the Son of God. He set the example that we are to follow today in order to be born again.

John 1:32-34

“And John bore witness, saying, “I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and He remained upon Him. I did not know Him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, this is He who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God.”

Jesus also spoke to His apostles about this after His resurrection from the dead. The apostles and disciples had already been baptized in water by John but they were missing the baptism 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.”

Then we see the fulfillment of this prophetic word days later in Acts 2:1-4
“When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 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.”

Like John saw the physical manifestation of the Holy Spirit descending upon Jesus, so did all the believer’s on the day of Pentecost. How else would they have known they were being baptized with the Holy Spirit if they did not have any evidence?

It is no different for us today, we will KNOW that we have received the Holy Spirit of God because there will be some kind of physical manifestation. Whether it’s tongues, prophesying, or magnifying God; when the Spirit of God is poured out upon our flesh there will be evidence that we have been clothed with power from on high.

This is how the apostles themselves were able to know if a believer received the Holy Spirit. Look at Acts 10:44-47
“While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word. And those of the circumcision who believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out on the Gentiles also. For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God. Then Peter answered, “Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” (Day of Pentecost)

Now we know what it means to be born of water and Spirit! Now we know what it means to be Born Again!

Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed? (Acts 19:1-7) If not, ask the Lord to baptize you with the Holy Spirit and He will.

God Bless You,
Tyrone D Palmer, your servant and apostle of Christ

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Cultural Christianity Vs Biblical Christianity

Was Jesus culturally relevant to the 1st century world? Did He teach His disciples to fit in with the world? Was Jesus concerned about what the world thought of Him? Did the 1st century apostles and believer’s compromise their faith and the gospel message to save the lost?

In this bible study we will take a look at the teachings of Christ and the inspired scriptures to answer these questions. If we are to be the bride of Christ, who will be spotless and unblemished; made ready for the Bridegroom, we need to know exactly what God says we must do to enter His kingdom.

Jesus said to His disciples in John 15:18-19
“If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.”

If Jesus was culturally relevant to the 1st century world wouldn’t they have loved Him and accepted Him as their own? Yet we know He was hated and crucified by those He came to save.

Look at what John 1:10 says:

He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him.

To say that Jesus was culturally relevant in His time is saying that He was in agreement with religious pride, unbelief, and idol worship. All of which were very prevalent in the culture during the ministry of Christ. Many talk about how loving and tolerant Jesus was and how He didn’t condemn anybody. It’s true He did not condemn, He didn’t come to condemn the world but to save it, He didn’t condemn the woman caught in adultery, but He did speak out against sin.

John 15:22
“If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.”

If Jesus was relevant to the culture of the 1st century world, He would not have been crucified and He would have failed in the work that God sent Him to do. Because He would have been more concerned about what people thought about Him, and not offending anyone. He would have been trying to fit in with the world and please people instead of pleasing the Father. He would have tried to be friends with the world and compromise His faith. In fact Jesus was so un-relevant and separated from the culture of His day even many of His disciples who followed Him left Him.

John 6:60-66
“Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this, said, “This is a hard saying; who can understand it?” When Jesus knew in Himself that His disciples complained about this, He said to them, “Does this offend you? What then if you should see the Son of Man ascend where He was before? It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who would betray Him. And He said, “Therefore I have said to you that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted to him by My Father.” From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more.”

Jesus said plainly that He was not of this world and neither were His disciples because He had chosen them out of the world.

John 17:14-16
“I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.”

If Jesus came back to earth right now and wanted to become relevant to this American culture today, what would He be doing?

The truth is that the gospel message of the kingdom of God and how to enter in will never change regardless of the culture, or the century. Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today, and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)
Here is what Paul told the Roman believer’s:

Romans 12:1-2
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

How many professing Christians look and act-like those in the world? Where is the holiness? Where are the fruits of the Spirit? What is the difference between sinners and saints today?

We know that the 1st century church never compromised their faith to fit in with the world or to please man. In fact they suffered persecution and death for their belief in Christ, if Christians today would start to stand up for righteousness and holiness in this culture today, they would face the same thing!

Hebrews 11:37-38
“They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented— of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth.”

Paul also told the Ephesian church:

Ephesians 5:8-11
“For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.

How many professing Christians are speaking out and exposing works of darkness?

Sin, repentance, holiness, righteousness and the coming judgment are not being addressed much in the body of Christ today, and the church has become lukewarm and Laodicean. Some say I am so blessed because I have a nice house, a nice car, a big screen T.V., all the food I can eat, I don’t need anything. Yet their soul is naked, blind, poor, and wretched. (Revelation 3:15-19)
Are you a cultural Christian or are you a biblical Christian? Are you holding to the teachings of Christ, or are you just hearing and not doing? There is a BIG difference between the two, and the Judge Jesus Christ Himself will make this clear on Judgment day.

Matthew 7:21-23
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’

Today is the day of your salvation, the Lord is standing at the door and time is short. I pray that these words of God will spur you on towards a sincere devotion to bible study, prayer, and obedience.

Love In Christ,
Tyrone D Palmer, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Kingdom of God

Have you ever asked yourself if this world was all there was to life? Have you ever wondered what will happen to me when I die?

In this bible study we will take a look at the promise of God for those who believe in His Son Jesus Christ, and accept the testimony that God gave to us about Jesus in the scriptures. We will also look at the fate of those who reject the gospel of God and His kingdom.

There are two kingdoms in this world: The kingdom of God, and the kingdom of Satan. One is full of light, love, truth, power, grace, and salvation, the other is full of darkness, lies, evil, torment, wickedness, and death. (Luke 11:14-20)
God desires all mankind to come into His kingdom through His Son and to experience the joy of His salvation, love, peace, and eternal life. Satan desires to destroy our souls and keep us away from the truth. He wants us to live our lives upon this earth, depressed, blind, angry, greedy, lustful, hating one another, and committing sinful acts, which will ultimately lead us to hell and eternal separation from God.

Question: How can we enter into the kingdom of God?

1) Repent (think differently) & believe the gospel (a good message)
Mark 1:14-15
Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel (a good message) of the kingdom of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.”

2) Believe in Jesus Christ
John 3:16-17,36

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.36 He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

Acts 16:25-34
But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed. And the keeper of the prison, awaking from sleep and seeing the prison doors open, supposing the prisoners had fled, drew his sword and was about to kill himself. But Paul called with a loud voice, saying, “Do yourself no harm, for we are all here.” Then he called for a light, ran in, and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. 30 And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.” Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized. Now when he had brought them into his house, he set food before them; and he rejoiced, having believed in God with all his household.

3) We must be born again
John 3:1-3,5
There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.”Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” 5Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.

Acts 2:38
Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized (water) in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (Evidenced by speaking other languages, prophesying, or magnifying God) (Acts 2:4, 10:46, 19:6)
God made salvation so simple for us today; it is truly a free gift. Why do so many reject the message of the kingdom and do not receive the testimony of Jesus Christ? God is our Creator and He wants us all to have everlasting life and to live with Him in heaven, Paul said, “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” (1st Cor. 2:9)
On the contrary, those who do not believe the testimony God gave about His Son, and who do not obey the gospel of Jesus Christ will face judgment and wrath when they stand before Him on judgment day.

2nd Thessalonians 1:6-10
since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.

1st Corinthians 6:9-10
Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.

Revelation 21:5-8
Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.” And He said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts. He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son. But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, fornicators, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

Will you join God’s kingdom? Or will you stay in Satan’s kingdom?

The choice is yours.

God Bless You,
Tyrone D. Palmer, servant and apostle of Jesus Christ

The Gospel of Christ (good news for your soul)

The good news is that God so loved the world that the Word was manifested in the flesh and was born of the Virgin Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit and was given the name Jesus. And Jesus is the only begotten Son of the Father.

John 1:1 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

John 1:14 “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”

1 John 1:1 “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.”

God sent Jesus to be the propitiation for your sins, for my sins, and for the sins of the whole world.

1 John 2:2 “And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.”

Propitiation - To conciliate – to gain (as goodwill) by pleasing acts (an offended power); appease: propitiate the gods with a sacrifice.

Jesus appeased or satisfied the wrath of God by willingly going to the cross as a sinless, perfect, and unblemished sacrificial lamb paying the penalty of sin that was due, so that we could be reconciled to the holy and righteous God. Jesus didn’t go to the cross as a substitute for us, but as a propitiatory sacrifice to God because we could never satisfy the requirements of God.

Substitute – To put (a person or thing) in the place of another. To take the place of; replace.

If Jesus was a substitute for us, that would mean we were equal to Him, like a substitute teacher at a school. They have the same qualifications as the teacher, but they’re not the teacher. When the teacher gets sick they call in a substitute to replace the teacher, and Jesus certainly was NOT a substitute or replacement for us.

Hebrews 10:4-7 “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins. Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God.”

Hebrews 10-12 “By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;”

This is good news for the whole world because the wages of sin is death!

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Paul explained to the Ephesian saints what some of the works of the flesh are:

Galatians 5:19-21 “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”

When Jesus Christ went to the cross as a propitiatory sacrifice He not only paid the penalty of death for our sins but he also:

1. Redeemed us: 1 a : to buy back : repurchase b : to get or win back

Jesus bought us back with His own blood, freeing us from the law of sin and death.

1st Corinthians 6:20 “For ye are bought with a price:”

Hebrews 9:11-15 “But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.”

2. Made Atonement for us: satisfaction or reparation for a wrong or injury; amends.

Jesus satisfied God and paid the cost for all sin with His sacrifice on the cross and God reconciled us to Himself through the death of His Son.

Romans 5:10-11 “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.”

3. Reconciled us: To re-establish a close relationship between.

When Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden the covenant relationship that God had with man was broken because of that sin and since that day every soul born is spiritually dead or disconnected from God and is in need of reconciliation and salvation. By the death of Jesus Christ on the cross our relationship with God has been re-established.

Colossians 1:21-22 “And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight:”

Ephesians 2:13 “But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.”

2nd Corinthians 5:18 “And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;”

4. Cleansed us: to remove by or as if by cleaning: to cleanse sin from the soul.

Through the shedding of the blood of Jesus we are cleansed of our sin if we repent (to think differently) and accept His testimony and the gift of salvation that God offers us through the sacrifice of Christ.

1 John 1:7 “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”

5. Purchased A New Covenant for us: the conditional promises made to humanity by God, as revealed in Scripture.

Literally, a contract. In the Bible, an agreement between God and his people, in which God makes promises to his people and, usually, requires certain conduct from them. In the Old Testament, God made agreements with Noah, Abraham, and Moses. To Noah, he promised that he would never again destroy the Earth with a flood. He promised Abraham that he would become the ancestor of a great nation, provided Abraham went to the place God showed him and sealed the covenant by circumcision of all the males of the nation. To Moses, God said that the Israelites would reach the Promised Land but must obey the Mosaic law. In the New Testament, God promised salvation of the soul to those who believe in Jesus and keep His commandments.

Matthew 26:28 For this is My blood of the New Covenant, which concerning many is being poured out for forgiveness of sins.

Hebrews 8:6-10 “But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second. For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord. For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:”

6. Took away our sins:

John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.

Colossians 2:11-14 “In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;”

1 Peter 2:24 “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.”

We have learned so far in this message many of the things that Jesus did for us on the cross, but the acceptance of His death, burial, & resurrection is just the beginning of the salvation of our soul.

In Acts 2 we read the gospel message Peter preached to those in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost. He told them how Christ was crucified by them and was raised up from the dead by God and ascended into heaven sending the promised Holy Spirit to indwell those who believed in Him.

Acts 2:36-39, 41 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ. Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized (water) every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost (Spirit). For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call. Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.”

Many professing Christians believe that you don’t have to be baptized in water at all for the salvation of the soul, and many don’t believe in the Lord’s baptism (baptism in the Holy Spirit) (Matthew 3:11) but this baptism is a part of God’s plan of salvation. Jesus Himself was baptized in water by John and anointed with the Holy Spirit (Matthew 3:16). He told His apostles to baptize those who believed in Him (Matthew 28:19), and that is what the apostles did in the 1st century. We can contrast the message Peter spoke to the people in Jerusalem to the message he spoke to Cornelius the centurion and his household.

Acts 10:36-48 “That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached; How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him. And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree: Him God raised up the third day, and shewed him openly; Not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before God, even to us, who did eat and drink with him after he rose from the dead. And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead. To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins. While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost. For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter, Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.”

The gift of the Holy Ghost in Acts 2:38 and Acts 10:45 is the baptism of the Holy Spirit, (evidenced by speaking in tongues), the initial outward sign of tongues is a physical manifestation of the inward engrafting of the Spirit of God.

Matthew 3:11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance. but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:

Acts 1:5 “For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.”

Acts 2:1-4 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

We see more examples of the baptism in water and of the Spirit when Paul comes across some disciples who had received John’s baptism, but had not yet heard the message the apostles were preaching.

Acts 19:1-6 “And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples, He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they 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 this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.”

The sinner must not only accept the testimony of Christ, which is His death, burial, and resurrection, believing in the heart that He is the Son of the living God, and repent of their sins, but they must also be baptized in water and baptized with the Holy Spirit (born again), then they are sealed to the New Covenant of God and are able to serve Him daily by offering up spiritual sacrifices of praise as His priests.

Ephesians 1:13-14 “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, 14Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

John 3:5-7 “Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.”

1 Peter 3:21 “The like figure whereunto even (water) baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:”

Romans 6:4-5 “Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:”

1st Corinthians 12:13 “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.”

It’s by the baptism of Holy Spirit that we are placed into the body of Christ.

Mark 16:15-18 “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”

When we speak in unknown tongues we edify ourselves and speak mysteries unto God, this is a spiritual act of worship in the New Covenant.

1st Corinthians 14:2,4 “For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries. He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself;”

John 4:23-24 “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”

1. The sinner must hear the gospel message of the kingdom of God preached
2. Believe this message in their heart
3. Repent
4. Be baptized in water and the Holy Spirit
5. Serve the living God in the New Covenant until death or the Second Coming of Christ.

This is God’s plan of salvation for the soul and can happen to a repentant sinner all in one day.

I pray that this message has given you a better understanding of the good news of Christ, and that the grace of God will be poured out abundantly upon you in these last days as we prepare ourselves for the return of the Bridegroom.

With Love In Christ,
Your Servant, Tyrone D Palmer