These are notes on the sermon, Baptism Of The Holy Spirit, preached by Pastor Joseph Prince on Sunday, 24 October 2021, at The Star Performing Arts Centre, Singapore. We hope these sermon notes will be an encouragement to you!
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Beloved, you don’t need to wish that you had more faith or stronger faith. The Bible says that when you don’t have faith, faith simply comes by hearing the Word of God.
“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
— Romans 10:17 KJV
“faith cometh by hearing” — Faith comes by continuously hearing and receiving the Word of God. If you are strong in your faith already, you can always become even stronger. It is so important that we are always growing in faith (2 Thess. 1:3)!
When you have faith, you attract God's attention. In the case of the woman with the issue of blood in the Bible, though there was a large crowd pressing on Jesus, the woman’s touch of faith on the hem of His garment caused Him to stop and seek her out. He told this woman, “Your faith has made you well.”
It was because this woman had heard about Jesus (Mark 5:27 KJV) that she had faith that He could heal her and decided to draw close to Him to touch Him (Mark 5:28 KJV). Every time we come to receive the Word of God, let's believe that we are receiving from Jesus in His Word. The Holy Spirit loves to expound in all the Scriptures the things concerning the Lord Jesus (Luke 24:27b).
“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (‘rhématos Christou’).”
— Romans 10:17 KJV
“word of God” — This is the Greek phrase “rhématos Christou” which means the “word of Christ” or the “word concerning Christ.”
If you want faith to come to a loved one's heart or someone you're ministering to, don't just rush to pray for them. Share the Word of Christ with them—faith will come to their hearts and they will receive from the Lord.
“how shall they hear without a preacher?” — The context of faith coming by hearing the Word is through hearing a preacher (Rom. 10:14). We need to listen to the Word of God through the mouths of preachers who are anointed of the Holy Spirit.
As you hear the Word of God through the mouth of a preacher, tell the Lord, “Lord Jesus, let me hear Your word in season for me.” Pastor Prince shares how there are times he did not plan to share something while preparing his sermon but as he was preaching, the Lord caused him to say certain things. Invariably after such sermons, the church would receive a testimony thanking Pastor Prince for that unplanned word that had blessed them.
Don't put your trust in any preacher, but put your trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. He can speak to the preacher and put His prophecy in the preacher’s mouth. God even put His word of prophecy in the mouths of evil people in the Bible like Caiaphas the high priest (John 11:51b) and Balaam (Num. 23:5). What more anointed preachers who are baptized in the Holy Spirit? As we listen to such preachers who speak not with enticing words of man's wisdom but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, let’s remember to look beyond the preacher to Jesus.
Pastor Prince shares how we are in times of darkness at the moment and this refers not only to the COVID-19 pandemic but also to attacks in our family life. The enemy seems to be attacking to destroy family relationships.
Marriage is a gift from God. God has ordained marriage to be between one man and one woman and as they come together, the Bible says they become one flesh (Gen 2:24 NIV). From that union come children that God has blessed.
“For I will pour water on the thirsty land,
and streams on the dry ground;
I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring,
and my blessing on your descendants.
They will spring up like grass in a meadow,
like poplar trees by flowing streams.”
— Isaiah 44:3–4 NIV
“pour out my Spirit on your offspring . . . They will spring up . . . like poplar trees by flowing streams” — When God’s Spirit comes upon your children, they will be greatly blessed and spring up like poplar trees by flowing streams. This calls to mind the trees planted by the rivers of water in Psalm 1:3 (KJV), which comes with the promise that whatever they (your children) do will prosper.
For your light has come!
And the glory of the LORD is risen upon you.
For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,
And deep darkness the people;
But the LORD will arise over you,
And His glory will be seen upon you.
The Gentiles shall come to your light,
And kings to the brightness of your rising.”
— Isaiah 60:1–5 NKJV
“deep darkness . . . His glory will be seen upon you.” — When there is deep darkness upon all people, the Bible says the Lord will arise over you and His glory will be seen upon you. We are living in these times.
“The Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.” — This refers to important people who will be saved in the last days because they are coming toward the light that is shining from believers like you.
We can refer to the verse before Isaiah 60:1 to find out the reason we can arise and shine during this time of darkness.
“As for Me,” says the LORD, “this is My covenant with them: My Spirit who is upon you, and My words which I have put in your mouth, shall not depart from your mouth, nor from the mouth of your descendants, nor from the mouth of your descendants’ descendants,” says the LORD, “from this time and forevermore.”
— Isaiah 59:21 NKJV
“My covenant” — God is saying that we can arise because of the covenant He has made with us. This covenant is His promise to:
In Acts 10, Peter was summoned to the house of Cornelius, a Roman centurion and Gentile, to preach the gospel.
“To him all the prophets bear witness that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.” While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell (embraced) upon all those who heard the word.”
— Acts 10:43–44 ESV, NKJV
“everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name” — The Holy Spirit was so pleased when Peter preached that the people could receive the forgiveness of sins through Jesus Christ that He didn’t wait for Peter to give an altar call for salvation, but fell on Cornelius’ household.
“the Holy Spirit fell (embraced)” — The word “fell” here is the same Greek word used for the father “embracing” his prodigal son (Luke 15:20 NLT). It was as though the Holy Spirit embraced each person in Cornelius’ house with love.
“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.”
— Acts 10:44–45 NKJV
Up to this point, the Jews had always felt that the things of God were only for them. The Gentiles were outside of the nation of Israel and were therefore considered to be excluded from the promise of God. The Jews had themselves experienced the baptism of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1, 4) and were shocked that the Gentiles were receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit as well.
But how did the Jews know that the Gentiles (Cornelius’ household) had received the Holy Spirit?
Cornelius and his household spoke in tongues and magnified God (Acts 10:46), and this was the evidence that they were filled with the Holy Spirit.
Many people have compromised on this today and say that people can receive the Holy Spirit but don’t need to speak in tongues.
“And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father,”
— Acts 1:4 NKJV
“the Promise of the Father” — “The Promise” is a definite article, referring to a specific promise. God had given many promises to Israel in the Old Testament, but they all knew about the promise of God, which is the gift of the Holy Spirit (Joel 2:28).
“Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”
— Galatians 3:13-14 KJV
“the promise of the Spirit” — Here the apostle Paul says that the reason Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law and became a curse for us is so that we might receive the promise of the Holy Spirit. All the blessings of God culminate in this promise of the Father.
“which,” He said, “you have heard from Me for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with (in) the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
— Acts 1:5 NKJV
Some people believe that once a person is saved, they are already baptized in the Holy Spirit. Pastor Prince clarifies that once you are saved, you have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit because you are born of the Holy Spirit. But it is one thing to have the Holy Spirit dwelling in you and another to be baptized in the Holy Spirit.
“for John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized (‘baptizó’) in the Holy Spirit…”
— Acts 1:5 ASV
“baptized” — This is the Greek word ‘baptizó’ which means to be “immersed.” While it is one thing to be born of the Holy Spirit, it is another thing for you to be baptized, or immersed, in the Holy Spirit—just as drinking a glass of water and jumping into a swimming pool are completely different things. To be baptized in the Holy Spirit is a subsequent experience from salvation that God wants all of us to have.
“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
— Acts 1:8 NKJV
There are two effects you will experience when you receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit:
In and of ourselves, we have no glory or light to give. It is the glory of the Lord shed by the Holy Spirit that people see. In these dark days, people need to see the glory of the Lord upon us. This happens when the Holy Spirit puts words in our mouth, which we call “tongues.”
The devil may try to convince you that speaking in tongues is weird because he wants you to stop speaking in tongues as he can't decipher it. This is because you are speaking in the tongues of angels (1 Cor. 13:1 KJV), a heavenly language from the Lord.
“For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue . . . howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.”
— 1 Corinthians 14:2 KJV
“in the spirit he speaketh mysteries” — There are mysteries that the apostle Paul was appointed by God to unveil. These mysteries refer to things that were once hidden in the Old Testament but have now been revealed.
Pastor Prince shares that sometimes he feels lukewarm spiritually and needs a fresh baptism of the Holy Spirit. In such situations, he’ll pray often in the Spirit. Many times as he is doing this, he doesn’t feel anything in his emotions. Although praying in tongues can produce emotions that are peaceful, he encourages us not to look for these feelings as praying in the Spirit is not something of the emotions but of the spirit.
During the time when Pastor Prince is praying in the Spirit, it can be a long season of praying and feeling nothing. But all of a sudden, he finds that when he prays for people who are sick, they are healed. And when he opens the Bible, the Word does not appear veiled but jumps out at him. This is the experience of many others as well. As they pray in the Spirit, they are able to decipher the Word and receive revelation through their spirit instead of their mind.
“For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful.”
— 1 Corinthians 14:14 KJV
“my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful” — When we pray in tongues, we are praying with our spirit instead of our mind. Don’t allow your mind to disrupt your praying in the Spirit.
There is a big difference between praying in the Spirit and praying in a known tongue, e.g. English. When we pray in English with comprehension, we only know how to pray about things within our understanding of the situation and we can end up praying about things that are not the real problem or the true heart of the matter. There’s nothing wrong with praying in your mother tongue, but it’s better to pray in the Spirit because then the Holy Spirit is praying through you—and He, with His perfect knowledge, is praying accurately for all the things you might not understand or know how to articulate.
For example, if you are praying in tongues for your 15-year-old son who has gone wayward, the Holy Spirit knows exactly what is troubling him, the full situation he is facing, and He knows the best prayer to pray. But if you pray in English (or your known language) alone, your knowledge is limited and your prayer is limited.
This doesn’t mean that we stop praying in English. We need to pray both in English and in the Spirit (1 Cor. 14:15 KJV)! Often, praying in the Spirit will cause our prayers in English to be even more accurate.
Pastor Prince shares that most of the messages he preaches don’t come from a time of studying the Word alone. He prays in the Spirit, and often, the Holy Spirit often brings up the word in season that Pastor Prince needs for that week. This rhema word is full of life and brings him great excitement to receive and share.
Some people believe that the apostle Paul encouraged us not to pray in tongues publicly in church. However, Pastor Prince urges us not to interpret this scripture out of context.
“I thank my God I speak with tongues more than you all; yet in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may teach others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue.”
— 1 Corinthians 14:18–19 NKJV
“yet in the church” — Here, Paul is saying that he would rather speak five words with understanding (in a known language) than 10,000 words in tongues when he stands before the church, otherwise no one would understand him (imagine a preacher going up to the pulpit and preaching his entire sermon in tongues).
“I thank my God I speak with tongues more than you all” — We can see here that Paul was probably radical about praying in tongues and edifying himself in his daily life. He prayed in tongues so often and so much that when he came into the church to preach, he only had to speak five words with his understanding and the power of God was released.
Your children are never too young to be introduced to the Holy Spirit! Pastor Prince shares how both his children, Jessica and Justin, received the gift of the Holy Spirit when they were around four to five years old. He shared with them that the Holy Spirit is the gift from Jesus to them and asked if they wanted to receive it. Once in a while, when they were small, he would catch them muttering in tongues in day-to-day life. Justin even shared that he prayed in tongues under his breath during a stressful situation in school, it caused him to feel strong and less troubled.
You can release your children to the Holy Spirit because you can be assured that He will teach them all things and guide them into all truths (John 14:26, 16:13). As parents, you can speak to your children, but it is the Holy Spirit who inspires and teaches them from within. Isaiah 54:13 (KJV) says that “all your children shall be taught of the Lord” and great shall be their peace. This doesn’t mean they will be taught about the Lord, but rather that they will be taught by the Lord. God Himself will teach your children through the Holy Spirit!
In the book of Ephesians, Paul unveils to us the wealth of the church and the riches of God’s grace. Ephesians is also where Paul teaches the most about family relationships (chapter 5). However, before we get to chapter 5, Paul first established our identity in Christ. He speaks not only of how we died with Christ when He died on the cross, but also that we were raised from the dead with Christ and now sit with Him in the heavenly places (Eph. 2:6).
The Christian approach to having a flourishing family life is not like the world's teachings on marriage and parenting which are based on techniques and methods.
As a believer, the fruit of a thriving family life and relationships is a result of being established in the truth that you are a heavenly being seated beside Christ. From this heavenly position, you are able to be the best partner to your spouse and parent for your children. This does not mean we carry a “holier than thou” attitude, but rather we carry the dignity, glory, and moral excellence of Christ.
Only when you know you have the wealth (“the riches of His grace”) of Ephesians 1:7 can you walk worthy of the calling with which you were called (Eph. 4:1). You cannot have the walk (e.g. the daily walk of being a good spouse or parent) without first understanding what you have and who you are (Eph 1:7).
We can see Jesus exemplifying this in John 13. Jesus, who knew that the Father had given all things to Him, where He came from, and where He was going, washed His disciples’ feet (John 13:3–5). Although this act seemed lowly and servile, when Jesus did it, it was an act of glory. This is the kind of glory that God wants you to bring into your marriage, parenting, and family life!
Though it may seem like living under the law is easier (just knowing what to do and what not to do), living as a heavenly being under the new covenant transcends the morality of the law in the Old Testament. Instead of not committing adultery because it is against the law, you now steer clear of it because you feel put off by it as it is not your nature. The thought of stealing doesn't even cross your mind because you are fully supplied by the Lord, and instead, you desire to give to others and be a blessing to them. This is what the Lord wants us to experience—that the law is fulfilled in us as we walk after the Spirit (Rom 8:4 KJV).
The key to walking after the Spirit is being baptized in the Holy Spirit. This is what Paul talks about right before he addresses family relationships in Ephesians 5.
Though the disciples followed Jesus, it was only on the eve of His resurrection when Jesus breathed on them and said, “Receive ye the Holy Spirit” (John 20:19 KJV, 20:22 ASV) that they were saved. At this point, they had the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, but it was only on the Day of Pentecost that they received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. How do we know this?
“And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”
— Acts 2:4 NKJV
“They . . . began to speak with other tongues” — We know the disciples received the baptism of the Holy Spirit because they began to speak in tongues. Many people have the misconception that they are waiting for the Holy Spirit to pray through them when it comes to speaking in tongues. But here, we see that “they” (the disciples) began to speak. The Holy Spirit gives you utterance (the words to say) but you need to speak and let those words come out of your mouth. God doesn’t want you to be passive.
The way of an evil spirit is to control and drive a person, making them say, do, and feel things they don’t want to. However, the Bible says that as sons and daughters of God, we are led (not controlled or driven) by the Spirit of God (Rom 8:14 KJV).
The Holy Spirit leads you by the heart, just as a child is led by the hand. He leads you with peace or the absence of peace, never driving you or pushing you against your will. God respects your freedom of choice. If He didn’t respect it, the whole world would be saved today!
When you pray for the gift of the Holy Spirit, take a step of faith to start speaking first and then the Holy Spirit will give you the utterance. This is how you flow in the language of the Holy Spirit.
At the end of the service, Pastor Prince will pray for those who want to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Pastor Prince encourages everyone to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. If you have experienced this in the past, all you need to do is to start praying in the Spirit again.
“And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord,”
— Ephesians 5:18–19 NKJV
“be filled with the Spirit” — In the Greek translation, this is in the present passive voice, indicating that we should allow ourselves to be in a state of being filled with the Holy Spirit constantly. How do we do that?
“speaking” — Here, the Greek word for “speaking” is in the present active voice. This shows us that our part is to speak actively. Whenever you feel down or that you need God's intervention in a situation, you can begin to pray or speak in psalms and hymns (Eph 5:19a) which will give you a cheerful heart as it releases the Holy Spirit’s power in you.
Paul once passed through the city of Ephesus and found some disciples. He suspected that they had not yet received the gift of the Holy Spirit and when he asked them about it, they said they had not (Acts 19:2 CSB). There was something about them that made Paul sense that they had not yet been baptized by the Spirit—they were likely depressed, defeated, and lacking joy. While they were saved, they were not victorious. As Paul prayed for the disciples to receive the Holy Spirit, they began to speak in tongues and prophesy (Acts 19:6 CSB).
Let’s live out each day filled with the Holy Spirit’s divinely inspired utterance and power as well!
In the book of Ephesians, Paul talks about family relationships the most exhaustively out of all his writings. You need the constant infilling of the Holy Spirit in order to flow successfully in family relationships. How do we receive this infilling?
“Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift (‘charisma’) of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.”
— 2 Timothy 1:6 NKJV
“gift of God” — The word “gift” here is the Greek word “charisma” which is also used in 1 Corinthians 12:4 and refers to the gifts of the Holy Spirit. It means a “grace gift” which is given through no merit of your own, but paid for by Jesus (John 7:37–39 KJV). This word “gift” is different from the “gift” in Acts 10:45, which is the Greek word ‘dórea’ and refers to the person of the Holy Spirit, who is Himself the gift.
“stir up the gift of God” — The phrase “stir up” means to “fan into flames”—from a little kindling into large flames. Perhaps the gifts of the Holy Spirit are lying dormant within you at the moment. Paul is encouraging you to fan those gifts into flames.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
— 2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV
“of power and of love and of a sound mind” — The way to stir up the spirit of power, love, and a sound mind is to stir up the gift of God by praying in tongues.
The gift of tongues is also the only gift of the Holy Spirit that can start initiating the other gifts. Pastor Prince believes that this nine-branched menorah represents the nine gifts of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 12:4–11) and the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22–23). The center shaft is always used to light the other eight branches. This speaks of using praying in tongues to light up the other gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Pastor Prince shares an excerpt of an article from the November 7, 2006 issue of the New York Times titled ‘A Neuroscientific Look at Speaking in Tongues.’ It states that studies suggest that people who speak in tongues rarely suffer from mental problems and are found to be more emotionally stable than those who don’t. This is a testimony of how stirring up the gifts of the Holy Spirit through praying in tongues causes the spirit of fear to leave and causes rivers of power, love, and a sound mind to flow within us.
Pastor Prince prays for those who have yet to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit to receive it. You do not need to be afraid of receiving any other spirit when you ask God for the baptism of the Holy Spirit (Luke 11:13b) because if earthly fathers know how to give good gifts to their children, how much more your heavenly Father?
Pastor Prince tells those who want to receive the baptism of the Spirit to lift their hands and repeat after him:
“Lord Jesus, I thank You for Your promise that You will baptize me with the Holy Spirit and with power. So right now in the name of the Lord Jesus, Father God, baptize me, with the Holy Spirit till overflowing.”
Pastor Prince continues to pray: “In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, be filled with the Holy Spirit right now! Friend, He is upon you right now. Praise the Lord. Don't struggle. Relax. And start to speak by faith.”
The Holy Spirit does not “possess” you to the point where He makes you do anything. He won’t make you do anything. You’ve got to cooperate with Him by first opening your mouth and speaking. Start speaking in tongues.
Pastor Prince demonstrates how we can start and stop praying in tongues any time, at our own will.
As you pray in tongues, the Holy Spirit is making intercession on your behalf, praying to God for things you don’t even know about. The Holy Spirit knows exactly what you need and He knows exactly how to pray.
Heavenly Father, I thank You that Christ died on the cross for my sins and you raised Him from the dead. And I thank You that right now, I am the righteousness of God in Christ because Jesus Christ is my Lord. All my sins are forgiven, remitted from my life. Thank You, Father. And right now, fill me and baptize me with Your Holy Spirit till overflowing. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
This coming week, may the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. And all the people said, Amen.
God has given you a gift that will cause you to live victoriously in these dark times. To experience the fruits of the Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit manifest in your life and relationships. To be filled with power, love, and enjoy a sound mind despite the uncertainty around you. It is the gift of the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
This week, stir up this gift by praying in tongues often. You can do it in the mornings as you are getting ready for work, under your breath on your commute, or any time you find yourself worried about any situation.
As you pray in tongues, the Holy Spirit is interceding on your behalf and praying perfect prayers to God. He is supplying the words you don’t know how to say and covering different aspects of your life and future!
The more you pray in the Spirit, the more you will find yourself walking in partnership with Him in all you do—whether it is in parenting, in loving your spouse, or in getting a task done at work—and you will experience His power, anointing, and success like never before.
We hope these sermon notes blessed you! If they did, we encourage you to get the sermon and allow the Lord to speak to you personally as you watch or listen to it.
© Copyright JosephPrince.com 2021
These sermon notes were taken by volunteers during the service. They are not a verbatim representation of the sermon.
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