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Wednesday, May 22, 2002

Charismatic Things-Baptism of the Holy Spirit-(part 1)-Marc Velazquez had a good post earlier this evening that addresses some of the fears David Heddle expressed about being looked upon as a second-class Christian because of his non-charismatic status. Turns out Marc's not a tongue-talker yet, either. He is operating in the Holy Spirit but is still seeking what the AoG people refer to as the Baptism of the Holy Spirit as a action secondary to salvation that equips the believer to be able to receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The AoG also believes that speaking in tongues is required evidence of that baptism. This causes a lot of angst amongst believers in Pentecostal churches who strive to have that experience and be in that apparent higher class of believers. I have yet to have a tongue-talking experience and yet I have acted in some of the areas listed in 1 Corinthians 12. One area I have had some gifting is knowledge (verse 8). Back at a Vineyard youth retreat I was helping chaperone last fall, I was praying with another adult guy I had never met before in my life. We were asked to wait for a word that God had for our prayer partner. The message that came to me was that the guy had been very lonely as a teen and was in ministry to teens in order that they would have a better young adulthood than he had. God also said that He would be honoring that desire. I held back for a moment, since that word seemed to be for me, not him, since I was a rather depressed teen myself. After further prayer, it was clear that it was for him, not I, and told the guy what God had placed on my heart. I had nailed it. The closest I have come to tongues is the babbling I will do when I am praying and don't have the words. It seems to point to Romans 8:26-27
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will.
It seems more of a babble than an actual language, yet it is a Spirit-led response. I can think of either one of two possibilities. Either my babbling qualifies as a tongue and I have had a AoG style Baptism of the Holy Spirit or their theology is off-base. I didn't buy the AoG doctrine of evidential tongues while a member at Midland's Christian Celebration Center, and felt relieved to find the Vineyard who was charismatic without having that theological quirk. Marc-allow the Holy Spirit to do whatever He wants to do in the order He wants you to do it. Don't wait for a tongue-talking experience to get your spiritual union card. That goes for the rest of y'all too. I'm hoping to take a better, more systematic rundown on the Baptism of the Holy Spirit tomorrow.

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