The baptism of the Holy Spirit can be a weird idea especially if you’re new to the faith, but it is nonetheless an important aspect of Christian living. It is by and through the in-filling of the Holy Spirit that we can live godly lives and carry out the great commission laid out for us.
Baptism means to be completely immersed, so in a sense the baptism of the Holy Spirit involves being completely immersed in the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is God made tangible and real to us. He is also a person whom we can grow in a relationship with and know more and more. Consequently, to be baptised in the Holy Spirit means to be immersed into a growing and thriving relationship with God.
Why does the baptism of the Holy Spirit matter? To know its significance, we are to look at the first time it was promised to come. When Jesus commissioned His disciples to make other disciples without His physical presence, He assured them that they would not be going alone. In Acts 1:8, Jesus promised them, saying, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
That power that comes from the Holy Spirit is what enables us to be witnesses—to be a testimony, to be living proof, to be fully effective workers for God’s kingdom. It is only through the power of the Holy Spirit that we can live the way God would have us live.
Galatians 5:22-23 tells us that the fruit that brings love, joy, peace, patience and every necessary virtue to win in life comes only through the Holy Spirit. If we try to be Christ-like by our own strength and discipline, there’s a 100 percent chance that we’re going to fail.
But the good news is that we don’t have to rely solely on our ability because the Holy Spirit is more than willing and more than ready to empower us to live godly lives if only we trust Him to do so.
The Holy Spirit is also the only way by which we can be empowered with skills, gifts, provision and everything we need to carry out God’s purpose for us. God calls us to make disciples and to impact people around us and promises that the Holy Spirit will be with us doing all the work through us.
But to work in and through the Spirit of God, we need to be immersed in Him. We cannot work with the Holy Spirit and not be fully overtaken by His presence to the point of full surrender. It’s either God’s Spirit has all of us or none of us.