My paternal grandmother came into Pentecost at the old Southside Assembly of God in Springfield, Missouri when my father was just a young child. My maternal grandparents came into Pentecost while pastoring a Methodist church in Kansas. As Spirit-filled Pentecostals they joined the Kansas District Council of the Assemblies of God and served in pastoral and evangelistic ministry for over fifty years.
I guess that makes me what you call a third-generation Pentecostal. I believe in it as much today (if not more) as when I first received the baptism as a child. I value the person and work of the Holy Spirit in my life and in the church, and I firmly believe that the events described in the book of Acts are meant for Christians today.
The Baptism in the Holy Spirit made a difference in the lives of the first century believers. It still makes a difference. What effect does the Baptism in the Holy Spirit have in the life of a Christian?
1. It Energizes Our Life
Jesus said, "But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you…” (Acts 1:8a). The most notable result of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit is power. At the baptism our lives are energized with the dynamic, supernatural power of the Holy Spirit.
2. It Enhances Our Convictions
Holiness is the outstanding characteristic of the third person of the triune Godhead. He is the Holy Spirit. In Romans l:4 Paul used the phrase, "the Spirit of holiness." The Holy Spirit confronts sin in our lives and enables us to live in obedience to God.
3. It Empowers Our Witness
Pentecostal power is given to us for a reason - to empower us to be effective witnesses. Jesus went on to say in Acts 1:8b, "And you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
As Paul asked the Ephesian disciples, I ask you, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” (Acts 19:2) If you have not yet received this Pentecostal blessing, then I encourage you with Paul’s words to the church in Ephesus, “Be filled with the Spirit” (Eph. 5:18). Seek and you shall receive, “For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call” (Acts 2:39).
Pastor Todd Weston