You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him (Rom. 8:9 ESV).
The question of how to receive the Holy Spirit has been a source of contention amongst believers since Jesus’ day. At what point does the believer receive the Holy Spirit? Is it when they are saved, or is it when they are endued with power, manifested by the gifts (charisma) of the Spirit?
Contrary to my initial belief as a young Christian, after extensively studying the scriptures, I realized that the believer receives the Holy Spirit the moment of their salvation, when they receive Jesus as their Savior. The scripture above says we belong to God if His Spirit dwells in us. This crucial truth will extinguish many of the tensions amidst Christian denominations. No matter your denominational background, you received the Holy Spirit the moment you accepted Christ as your Savior!
The confusion stems from our interpretation of references to the Holy Spirit in scripture. In scripture, the name “Holy Spirit” refers both to the Person of the Holy Spirit, as well as to the gifts, manifestations, and power of the Holy Spirit. We receive the Person of the Holy Spirit at salvation. Subsequently, we receive the power when His gifts are imparted to us, typically with the laying on of hands. We continue to receive the Holy Spirit every day, as He nourishes our soul with all the fullness of God (Eph.3:16-19)!
Ponder the truth that you received the Holy Spirit at conversion. Declare that “I have the Spirit of God and I belong to Him”.
APPLY THE WORD
Be conscious of what you are in Christ. You have God’s Spirit. Go further, desire the gifts, and continue to be filled each day!
Thank the Lord for the gift of His Spirit.
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