Beginning in Luke 11 verse 9: "So, I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened."
Verse 11: "Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ASK HIM!"
Jesus tells the disciples to ask the Father for the Holy Spirit.
What I want to make clear is that Jesus was not telling the disciples to ask for the Holy Spirit for the purpose of salvation. There is no scripture which tells us to ask the Father for the Holy Spirit unto salvation because salvation is God's free gift to everyone who invites Jesus in their hearts and is freely offered to us.
First of all it is God who chooses us . . . we do not choose Him. He knocks on the door of our heart and we must decide whether to receive God's gift of salvation or not. The scripture is clear that in order to be saved we must believe with our heart and confess with our mouth in the Lord Jesus and we shall be saved. It is when we decide to accept the gift of salvation that the Holy Spirit takes His residence in us and we become a child of God causing us to cry out "Abba Father".
Prior to the cross and prior to Jesus paying for our sin, all of the Old Testament sacrifices of the blood of bulls and goats were only a shadow of something better to come; and that something better was Jesus. The tabernacle, the temple, the Ark of the Covenant, the priesthood, the elaborate rituals, and temple articles were only a shadow of something better to come.
Therefore in the Old Testament times the Holy Spirit could only point the Old Testament saint towards that better sacrifice, but when that something better came, then God the Father by His Holy Spirit offers it to us . . . and our choice is to accept Jesus' sacrifice or not.
We call that experience the "born again" experience which is a sovereign act of God. You do not have to ask the Father for the Holy Spirit. Being born again is our new position in Christ.
Therefore, if salvation isn't the issue, why does Jesus tell the disciples to ask the Father for the Holy Spirit? Looking back at Luke 11, we see that the context of passage is . . . to ask, to seek and to knock to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Look at verse 11: "If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!"
The context is not to receive the Holy Spirit for salvation . . . because God freely does that, but it is to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. It is for the purpose of power; power to be witnesses for God, and power to live a world-overcoming life . . . which means walking in victory when we are challenged by the lusts of the flesh and by life's many trials
It wasn't until Jesus was 30 years old that he came to the Jordan to be baptized by John and it was at this event where John saw heaven open and saw what looked like a dove come down upon Jesus . . . this was NOT the sending of the Holy Spirit upon Jesus for salvation. Jesus always had the Holy Spirit living in Him since birth . . . because He had been conceived by the Holy Spirit, but it was at the Jordan River that the Holy Spirit came upon Him. . . and the purpose of the Holy Spirit coming upon Him was for power.
Before Jesus ascended into heaven He told His disciples to wait in Jerusalem: Acts 1 verse 5: "John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized by the Holy Spirit." In Luke 34:49 Jesus said: "I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high."
What I want you to take special note of is Jesus' words: Jesus did not say you will receive "within you" power from on high . . . but . . . "You will be clothed with power from on high." The key words are "clothed" and "power".
Let me help you understand exactly what Jesus is saying:
The Greek Word for clothed is "enduo" meaning sinking into a garment, to invest with clothing, to array, to clothe (with), endue, to have or put on.
- Array means to dress.
- Clothe means to cover with clothes or to wrap.
- Endue means to provide with a quality or trait - To put on a piece of clothing.
- Invest mean to endow with authority or power.
- Enduo is a covering, a saturation . . . an engulfing
The Greek word for power is "dunamis" and means force; special miraculous power - ability, abundance, might or mighty deed, (worker of) miracles, power, strength, violence, a mighty wonderful work.
This clothing of power is a separate event from that of salvation. And, the purpose for the clothing of God's power is for service, for the work of the ministry, for witnessing, for operating in the gifts of the Holy Spirit, for the manifestation of the fruit of the Holy Spirit. It is for doing the work of Jesus. Jesus said that without Him we can do nothing . . . without the power of the Holy Spirit the church of Jesus Christ can do very little. That is why Jesus told the disciples not to leave Jerusalem until they had received power from on high.
The dispensation that we are now living in is that of the Holy Spirit. It is the age of The Church. And the chief reason for "The Church Age" is to prepare a bride for Jesus. Today Jesus is not on earth . . . He is seated at the right hand of God the Father in His office of High Priest and Mediator between man and God.
The apostle Paul admonishes us in Ephesians 5:18 "Be filled with the Holy Spirit."
This gift of power should never be for our selfish needs . . . it is for service, for the building of the kingdom of God...it is to fulfill the 'Bridal Call', and in doing so Jesus will be glorified.
Blessings in Christ: Pastor Roman & Pat Kozak