Billy Joe Daugherty
This book has been prepared to give you a basic scriptural foundation in seven important Bible truths. It is by no means a complete study in these areas, but rather an introduction to them.
You will find it helpful in personal devotional reading, Bible study, and as a reference book. The simple format will also make it useful as a group Bible study book, Sunday School supplement, and teaching aid for young converts.
I believe God will richly bless your life as you seek Him first through the study of His Word.
Sixteenth Printing, 1994
Chapter One -- You Must Be Born Again
Chapter Two -- You Are the Righteousness of God in Christ
Chapter Three -- Your Faith Has Made You Whole
Chapter Four -- Healing for the Christian
Chapter Five -- Baptism of the Holy Spirit
Chapter Six -- Victorious Abundant Life
Chapter Seven -- Confessing God's Word
Scripture references are taken from the New King James Version of the Bible. Certain words and portions of the verses have been capitalized and printed in bold print for emphasis by the author. However, the content of the verses remains unchanged. It may be helpful to read the entire passage of the Scriptures from your own Bible.
Scriptural links to the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible have been added to the original text to ease Bible-reference lookup. Wording of the scriptural text will differ slightly between the two versions. Even though the wording of scriptures is slightly different between the King James and New King James Versions, the meaning of the two versions is the same. The New King James Version simply modernizes the Old English King James Version by replacing outdated words such as "Ye" with "You" and sometimes restructuring sentences to have clearer meanings.
These were the words Jesus spoke
to one of the most religious men of his day (John 3:1-8).
Nicodemus had come to Jesus one night to inquire about His new doctrine.
Nicodemus was a Pharisee and a ruler of the Jews. He believed in God, he
prayed, fasted, tithed, attended worship services, read the Scriptures, and
tried to keep high moral standards. Yet, with all these credentials, Jesus told
him he had to be born again in order to enter the
"...Unless one is born again, he
cannot see the
Not only must you have God's Word in order to be born again, but you must have God's Spirit. It is "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the HOLY SPIRIT" (Titus 3:5).
There are several ingredients needed in making concrete. You need sand, cement, and water primarily. There is plenty of sand in the desert, but concrete doesn't appear just because it is there. There is an abundance of water in the ocean and plenty of sand, but the ocean is not full of concrete. Likewise, in order for you to be saved, the Word and the Spirit must be mixed with repentance and faith in your heart.
"... The word is near you, even in your mouth and in your heart (that is,the word of faith which we preach): that if you CONFESS with your mouth the Lord Jesus and BELIEVE in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one BELIEVES to righteousness, and with the mouth CONFESSION is made to salvation" (Romans 10:8-10).
Your faith in God's Word is expressed with your heart (believe) and with your mouth (confess). If you truly believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead, there is no reason you should not be willing to confess Him as Lord. The moment you believe in your heart upon Jesus and confess Him as your Lord and Saviour, you are born again.
"But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name" John 1:12).
There is a mixture of God's grace and power with your will and faith. It is not just all of God, and certainly it is not just all up to you. It takes both GOD'S ABILITY and YOUR WILLINGNESS to bring about the new birth.
"For by grace you have been SAVED through FAITH, and that NOT OF YOURSELVES; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast" (Ephesians 2:8-9).
We could never be saved except by the pure grace of God. Man is certainly undeserving according to his own merits. It is God's power working through His Word and Spirit that brings about the new birth. Yet without an attitude of repentance and faith, God's power will not work in a man's heart. Man's will must be obedient to God's will before he can receive God's blessings.
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new" (II Corinthians 5:17).
The new birth makes you a brand new creation. You are created after the image of Jesus Christ (Colossians 3:10). In your heart you are made to be like Christ.
In order to live like Christ you must "...put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him" (Colossians 3:10). This is done by RENEWING THE MIND WITH GOD'S WORD, and submitting your body to the authority of that word (Romans 12:2, Ephesians 4:23-24).
"Giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. HE HAS DELIVERED US FROM THE POWER OF DARKNESS AND TRANSLATED US INTO THE KINGDOM OF THE SON OF HIS LOVE, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins" (Colossians 1:12-14).
When you are born again,
you are taken out of Satan's kingdom of darkness, and you are placed into the
This new kingdom is a spiritual kingdom; but just because salvation is basically a spiritual rebirth does not mean that it has no effect on your body, mind, or everyday living. It can and should have a great impact on every part of your life.
In every society, there are certain laws that govern the actions of the inhabitants of that area. It is the same in spiritual life. There are laws for those in Satan's kingdom, and there are laws for those in God's kingdom. The new birth gives you a new law. "FOR THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS has made me free from the law of sin and death" (Romans 8:2).
The law of life includes love, joy, peace, happiness, prosperity, abundance, health, contentment, and blessings. These provisions are made for the Christian in the New Covenant. It is law -- spiritual law. You must enforce it in your life. God will back you. His Word is true and unchanging.
The day you make Jesus your Lord and Saviour you are forgiven of all your sins; in fact, you were legally forgiven when Jesus gave His life as a ransom for you. But you do not experience that forgiveness until you receive it by faith.
Although a person may have committed many sins, the chief sin of the unsaved is NOT BELIEVING ON CHRIST (John 16:9). When a person gets that straightened out, the root of the problem is solved. The blood of Christ cleanses the heart the moment a person believes and confesses Him as Saviour. Thus all past sins are remitted or taken away by the powerful cleansing work of His blood (I John 1:7). "...We have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace" (Ephesians 1:7).
It is clear
from the Scriptures that water baptism is important to the believer. In the
Great Commission Jesus told His disciples, "...Go
into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and
is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned"
Matthew records these words of Jesus in the 28th chapter and the
19th verse: "Go therefore and
make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and
of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." Jesus Himself was
baptized by John in the
At the close of his message on the day of Pentecost, Peter told the Jews, "...Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit" (Acts 2:38). Luke records, "Then those who gladly received his word were baptized..." (Acts 2:41).
Paul was baptized after his
9:18). He later baptized the believers at
"And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. HE WHO HAS THE SON HAS LIFE; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, THAT YOU MAY KNOW that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to BELIEVE IN THE NAME of the Son of God" (I John 5-13).
If you meet the conditions given in God's Word for salvation, you can know you are saved. God's Word says that you can know. That is what you must stand on--His Word--not your feelings, emotions, church membership, high morals, or sincerity.
Righteousness simply defined is RIGHT STANDING WITH GOD. It gives you the ability to be free of guilt, condemnation, fear, and inferiority. These four problems rob many Christians of God's blessings. It is easy to see why an understanding of righteousness could transform your life. Imagine: no guilt, no fear, no condemnation, no inferiority. What a blessed life that would be!
There is a world of difference in a man's self righteousness and the gift of righteousness from God. Self righteousness boasts in itself, but the gift of righteousness can boast only in the finished work of Christ. "For if by the one man's offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the GIFT OF RIGHTEOUSNESS will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ" (Romans 5:17).
The human race owed a tremendous debt of sin. Because mankind was unable to pay its debt, God sent His own Son to pay for it (I Peter 2:24). Jesus was your substitute. He took your place. He paid the awful price for your sin. He did it because He loved you (John 3:16-17).
Now that the debt is paid, you are given a right standing with God. It is actually the right standing that Jesus earned as a result of His obedience unto death. You receive His righteousness the moment you take Him as your Lord and Saviour. "For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him" (II Corinthians 5:21).
If Christ dwells in your heart, you have the righteousness of God. You are made to be the righteousness of God in Him.
I had a struggle with the idea of being righteous because I was well acquainted with the Scriptures declaring man's sinfulness. What I did not realize was these Scriptures refer to men who do not receive Christ. Since all men are sinners, the gift of righteousness is available to all who believe on Jesus Christ.
"But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD WHICH IS THROUGH FAITH in Jesus Christ to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus" (Romans 3:21-24).
Righteousness is actually received at salvation. Because many have not understood the righteousness of God which is by faith, they have failed to experience the full joy of God's Gift.
The message of righteousness is good news. The moment you hear this word, it should cause faith to rise up in your heart. You want to receive. It is yours--a gift from God. You must BELIEVE and CONFESS. "For with the heart one believes to RIGHTEOUSNESS, and with the mouth confession is made to salvation" (Romans 10:10).
A sense of righteousness gives you confidence that God has truly forgiven you of your sins. You begin to see that the judgment and condemnation that you deserved fell on Jesus. You have been justified (declared not guilty) because of the blood of Christ that was shed for you (Romans 5:9).
"There is therefore now NO CONDEMNATION to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit" (Romans 8:1). You are freed from sin, with all its guilt and condemnation, so that you may become the SERVANTS OF RIGHTEOUSNESS (Romans 6:18). By an act of faith, you begin to think not of your sins and shortcomings, but of your righteousness in Christ. Why should you continue to think and talk about your unworthiness? You have been made worthy by Jesus Christ. He has qualified you to "...be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light" (Colossians 1:12). It is not your works but your faith in His works.
Righteousness is right standing with God. If you are in right standing with God, then He is not fighting against you. He is on your side. He is for you. He desires your best.
What joy will fill your heart the day you realize "...if God is for us, who can be against us?" (Romans 8:31). You have nothing to fear. David said, "The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?" (Psalm 27:1).
God has given you the gift of righteousness because of His love for you. "There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love" (I John 4:18).
A loving father does not want his children to be so fearful of him that they are afraid to talk to him. He desires their respect, reverence, and obedience, but he wants them to feel comfortable in coming to him. God invites you to "...come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need" (Hebrews 4:16). "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind" (II Timothy 1:7).
Occasionally when someone is asked how they are doing, we hear them respond with these words: "Under the circumstances, I think I'll make it." As a Christian, thank God, you do not have to be under the circumstances; in fact, after you receive the abundance of God's grace and His gift of righteousness, you are to reign in this life by Jesus Christ.
Because you have a right standing with God, you do not have to feel inferior to the powers of Satan. You are an heir of God and a joint-heir with Christ (Romans 8:17). As you receive the righteousness of God, you become partakers of the divine nature of God (II Peter 1:4). His strength has become your strength. His ability is your ability. His life is your life.
"I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but CHRIST LIVES IN ME; and the life which I now live in the flesh I LIVE BY FAITH IN THE SON OF GOD, who loved me and gave Himself for me" (Galatians 2:20).
As a Christian, you may miss the mark and sin. Sin is unrighteousness. It is not pleasing to God. It must be dealt with. The best time to do this is immediately if not sooner. Do not wait to repent.
The promise of God is "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to FORGIVE US OUR SINS and to CLEANSE US FROM ALL UNRIGHTEOUSNESS" (I John 1:9). "...the BLOOD OF Jesus Christ His Son CLEANSES us from all sin" (I John 1:7).
With a right standing with God, you can come boldly into His presence with your praises and petitions (Hebrews 4:16). One of the most important things you must do as you enter into God's presence is to be sure your heart is cleansed from all sin. This comes by faith in the cleansing power of the blood of Christ. After you know you are cleansed, you can have confidence in your prayers. "Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God" (I John 3:21).
God delights in hearing the prayers of His righteous children. "For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers; but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil" (I Peter 3:12). Evidently, if you are not righteous or if you are not seeking God's righteousness, your prayers will not be very effective.
Thank God, "...The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much" (James 5:16). God will hear and answer your prayers if you maintain your right standing (righteousness in Christ) by faith.
One of the best chapters in the entire Bible on the subject of faith is the 11th chapter of Hebrews. Any in-depth study of faith would include a study of the men listed in this chapter. I suggest the chapter be read while you read the words in this book on the subject of faith.
According to Paul, there abides now "...faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love" (I Corinthians 13:13). I definitely believe that all three of these are important. Without hope of eternal life, you would have no reason to live. Without love you could not experience the nature of God. These two are vital to the Christian. But in this chapter, we will deal primarily with faith.
"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1). Faith is in the present tense. It believes NOW. It receives NOW. It acts NOW. One of the great differences between faith and hope is in the tense. Hope is usually concerned with the future, whereas faith is most often concerned with the present.
Sometimes we hear someone say that they are stepping out in faith in a new venture. Generally, they mean they don't know what is going to happen or what the future holds. They feel an urge to try something new and take a stab at it.
The type of faith defined in Hebrews 11:1 does NOT operate this way. Instead, true faith in God has substance. When a person steps out in this type of faith, he will be standing on solid rock. THE SUBSTANCE IS FAITH IN GOD'S ETERNAL, UNCHANGING WORD.
You may hope for something for years. As long as you continue hoping, it will always be just beyond you. There are, on the other hand, many things you can bring into your life by faith. For instance, salvation is a good thing to hope for. But if you want to be saved, you need to put substance to your hope and receive Christ by faith right NOW. Although you do not see Him burst through the clouds or feel ninety-nine goose bumps, you are still saved if you have put your faith in Jesus Christ.
Although there may be no physical evidence for your faith, you do have sufficient evidence in God's Word. Your evidence for what you believe is your faith in God's Word. God is a witness. He will never lie. If you take God at his Word, that Word will stand good in the trial.
"So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Romans 10:17). The best way to get faith is to hear the Word of God. It is important for you not only to hear it with your ears but also with your heart. To hear God's Word in your heart requires openness and hunger for God's message.
I suggest reading the Bible aloud, particularly the New Testament. Say the Scriptures to yourself. Insert your own name where the message is personal. Make a list of the promises God's Word has for you. By faith, believe, receive, and confess them daily. Faith will grow as you are continually hearing God's Word.
"... God has
dealt to EACH ONE a measure of faith" (Romans 12:3).
Paul is writing to the Christians in
People who do not hear God's Word or will not obey it do not have the God-kind of faith. Faith requires hearing and obeying. "And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men; for NOT ALL HAVE FAITH" (II Thessalonians 3:2).
God has spread a table before you filled with bountiful blessings. Naturally speaking, if someone sets a beautiful table of food before you, you know what to do with it. You don't sit wishing and hoping that you could have some of that food. You don't complain to your host that you do not have enough. Neither do you get mad and upset if someone at the table gets a big helping of creamed potatoes. You begin to help yourself to the food. It has been set before you to eat and be filled. There is probably more in the kitchen if you empty the serving bowls. You know that everyone at the table has equal rights and privileges to get their portion of each dish.
Now, God's Word is the same. God has made ample provision for every need in your life. He promises a full, abundant supply. It is all yours for the asking. God just wants you to believe His Word and take what has been set before you. It does not offend God for you to take all you need. Any host is disappointed if she discovers one of her guests did not get enough. She wants each one to be satisfied. God is certainly the Almighty Creator, but He has chosen to set a table for you. What you receive from Him will come as a result of your actively reaching out and claiming His promises.
"And Jesus answered and said to him, 'What do you want Me to do for you?' The blind man said to Him, '(Rabboni) that I may receive my sight.' Then Jesus said to him, 'Go your way; your faith has made you well.' And immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus on the road" (Mark 10:51-52).
Sometimes people base their spiritual experiences on feelings and emotions. Problems arise when the feelings and emotions change. If they have not been grounded in the Word of God, doubt will arise as to whether or not the experience was genuine. For faith to be consistent, it must be based on something with more stability than your feelings.
You are not saved because you feel saved. You are saved because you have put your faith in God's Word and acted on it. You may feel great today, tired tomorrow, and lonely next week, but Hallelujah! God's Word is going to say the same thing yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).
Feelings are influenced by what you see, what you read, and what you hear. Everyone is exposed to things that are not consistent with God's Word. If these things control your feelings and your feelings control your faith, you can be a Christian yet controlled by Satan's devices.
Your faith must be controlled by God's Word, not by what you feel, not by what circumstances look like, and not by what others tell you. "For We walk by faith, not by sight" (II Corinthians 5:7). Your eyes, ears, heart, and mouth should be tuned to God's Word.
"While we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal" (II Corinthians 4:18).
God's Word is eternal. Your spiritual eyes must be focused on God (Who is unseen) by looking at His Word.
God revealed Himself to the
"...If you diligently heed the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the Lord who heals you" (Exodus 15:26).
God is a Father to His children. Because of His compassion for those He loves, He has made provision for their healing. This is one of the benefits of having a loving heavenly Father who cares for your every need.
"Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: who FORGIVES all your INIQUITIES, who HEALS all your DISEASES" (Psalm 103:2-3).
Notice that forgiveness is one of God's benefits. They are both placed together in this passage of Scripture. God is concerned about both your spiritual healing and your physical healing.
The prophet Isaiah wrote about God's suffering servant, the Messiah or Redeemer of Israel. He was writing about Jesus taking your punishment for your sins. Jesus suffered for you in every way you deserved to suffer: Physically, mentally, and spiritually. He did it in order that you might not have to suffer these things. He was your substitute, your Saviour.
The four Gospel writers tell you what they SAW and HEARD about the suffering of Christ. On the other hand, Isaiah tells you what was REVEALED to him by the Spirit of God concerning Christ's sufferings:
"Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by HIS STRIPES WE ARE HEALED. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all" (Isaiah 53:4-6).
The two words "griefs" and "sorrows" in the first phrase of the passage could equally be translated sicknesses and pains. *2 This will be clearer after reading Matthew 8:16-17. From these three verses you see the variety of things Jesus suffered as He took your place and God's judgment for sin fell on Him.
While Jesus walked the face of the earth, He ministered healing to every part of man. He cast out devils, healed the sick, forgave sins, and restored wholeness to those tormented by Satan. In recording these events, Matthew quoted from Isaiah 53:4 concerning the substitutionary work of Christ.
"When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed, And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying, 'HE HIMSELF TOOK OUR INFIRMITIES AND BORE OUR SICKNESSES'" (Matthew 8:16-17).
Not only did He take your infirmities and bear all your sicknesses on the cross, but also during His ministry, He relieved people of infirmities and sicknesses. He did this in relation to sins also. Not only did He take your sins on the cross, but He also forgave men of their sins before the crucifixion.
Peter was a man who
witnessed the mock trial of Jesus. He was well acquainted with the happenings
"Who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness -- BY WHOSE STRIPES YOU WERE HEALED" (I Peter 2:24).
The phrase "by whose stripes you were healed" is a direct reference to Isaiah 53:5. You remember that Jesus was scourged or whipped before His crucifixion (Mark 15:15). The physical punishment that He took was for your healing, for "...by His stripes we are healed" (Isaiah 53:5). All the punishment Jesus received before and during the crucifixion was for your healing--spirit, soul, and body.
Before Adam's sin in the garden, there was no sin or death in the earth. After his disobedience, sin and death with all of their evil companions (hatred, bitterness, jealousy, sickness, disease, torment) entered into the world (Romans 5:12).
Jesus was sent to reestablish the wholeness that man had before the fall. He was the Redeemer, the one sent to buy you back from the dominion of Satan. Jesus loosed the people who were captive to Satan's devices. He healed the sick, delivered the oppressed, opened prison doors, and preached the good news.
"How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him" (Acts 10:38).
This Scripture, as well as all four Gospels, clearly reveals that the devil oppresses people with sickness, and Jesus heals people who are sick. Never confuse these two. God desires an abundant life for you, and the devil wants to steal, to kill, and to destroy (John 10:10).
"Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers" (III John 2). God is interested in your health spiritually and physically. He wants your body to be just as free from Satan's influence as He does your heart.
"For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's" (I Corinthians 6:20). Not only are you to live holy and pure lives in your body, but also it is possible for you to live in health. You have been bought with the blood of Christ. The price has been paid for spiritual and physical health.
"Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, 'Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree'), that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith" (Galatians 3:13-14).
There was a curse pronounced upon those who would not keep God's laws (Deuteronomy 28:15-68). This curse generally included poverty, sickness, and death. *3 Since all men were sinners, there was no man who could fully keep all God's laws (Romans 3:23). Jesus entered the earth as a man and lived His life without sin. As He hung on the cross, He was actually made to be a curse for you as your substitute. He took the curse you deserved. He took your poverty, your sickness, and your death (sin), so that you might receive the blessings God had promised to Abraham and those keeping his law. These include an abundant supply for every need in your life (Deuteronomy 28:1-14).
"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever" (Hebrews 13:8). The reason Jesus healed people was because of His compassion. He saw their needs and met them. He is still the same. His compassion has not stopped. He loves you just as much as He did those in the time of His earthly ministry. His power is not stopped just because He is no longer visibly in our midst. His power and effectiveness are even greater today because He can be present in all places at all times by His Spirit. "For his mercy endures forever" (Psalm 136).
We know from the book of Acts that the healing ministry of Christ did not stop with His death and resurrection. It continued through the twelve disciples and the other believers (Mark 16:15-19).
There were numerous ways in which people received healing under Jesus' ministry. Today men can receive healing from the basis of numerous passages of scripture.These include: Mark 11:22-24, John 16:23-24, Matthew 18:18-20, Mark 16:18, James 5:14-15, Exodus 15:26, Psalm 103:3, I Peter 2:24, and Matthew 8:16-17.
One particularly important method is anointing with oil and praying the prayer of faith. It demonstrates to us that God's power can be ministered by believers and thus shows that healing did not end when Christ died or when the apostles died. Healing is still provided for you today.
"Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven" (James 5:14-15).
The term baptism of the
Holy Spirit comes from the prophecies made by John the Baptist and Jesus
concerning this experience. John said to those he baptized in the
Jesus spoke to the apostles just before He ascended back into heaven and "...He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father,'which,' He said,'you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be BAPTIZED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT not many days from now' "(Acts 1:4-5).
At the point of conversion, the Holy Spirit gives birth to a new creation in the believer (John 3:1-8), (II Corinthians 5:17). "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit" (Titus 3:5).
The basic work of the Holy Spirit in salvation is to impart a new life to a person thus making him a child of God (I John 5:12), (John 1:12). Through the operation of the Holy Spirit, you become a part of God's family--the body of Christ (I Corinthians 12:13). It is a fact "...no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit" (I Corinthians 12:3). All of us as believers know the Holy Spirit in the sense that, "The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God" (Romans 8:16).
However, God has more for you. In addition to blessing you, He wants to use you to bless others.
The Holy Spirit has been active in the earth since creation (Genesis 1:2). He moved upon shepherds, kings, and prophets, enabling them to accomplish various tasks. The prophet Joel spoke of a time when God's Spirit would be poured out upon all flesh.
"And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions; and also on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days" (Joel 2:28-29).
Men and women, young and old, would be a part of this great outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
After the resurrection Jesus told his disciples, "Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high" (Luke 24:49).
The baptism of the Holy Spirit was called the promise of the Father in this passage. Jesus said it would be an enduement with power from on high. These followers would be endowed with God's power to be witnesses of Jesus. According to His instruction, some one hundred and twenty followers of Jesus, including the disciples, met together to wait for the promise of the Father.
"Now when the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance" (Acts 2:1-4).
An important reason for the baptism of the Holy Spirit is power for witnessing of the living Christ. It could be termed enablement or ability from God.
you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall
be witnesses to Me in
And those one hundred and twenty went into the streets witnessing of Jesus. The Jews who were gathered in Jerusalem from all over the world, because of the feast of Pentecost, heard the wonderful works of God in their own languages (Acts 2:11). Finally Peter stood up and preached about Joel's prophecy and the resurrection of Christ. "Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about THREE THOUSAND SOULS were added to them" (Acts 2:41). The results were amazing as they witnessed in the power of the Holy Ghost. Soon another 5,000 believed the word and were added to the church (Acts 4:4).
Jesus described the Holy Spirit as rivers of living water that would flow out of the believer's innermost being.
"...Jesus stood and cried out, saying, 'If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.' But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified" (John 7:37-39).
The Holy Spirit produces rivers of life, love, joy, peace, and power to flow out of your spirit to meet the needs of others. Jesus said those that believe upon Him SHOULD RECEIVE THE HOLY SPIRIT.
Jesus taught His disciples concerning the ministry of the Holy Spirit in their lives. One of the names He used in speaking of the Holy Spirit was Comforter. The Greek word is Paraclete, meaning "one called alongside to help." *4 He also said the Holy Spirit would teach and guide the believers.
"And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you" (John 14:16-17).
The three-fold nature of the Trinity is revealed by this Scripture. Although Jesus and the Father and the Holy Spirit are One, Jesus prayed to the Father and the Father gave the Holy Spirit through Jesus.
An unbeliever cannot receive the Holy Spirit, for Jesus said the world cannot receive Him. The Holy Spirit had been with the disciples, but Jesus said He would be in them (John 14:17).
The Holy Spirit, at the time of need, brings to your remembrance the words of Jesus. He also teaches you how to apply God's Word in your life. "But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me" (John 15:26).
The ministry of the Holy Spirit is to testify of Jesus to the believer. He reveals the wealth and riches in Christ. He glorifies our exalted Lord and Saviour. He opens your eyes to what is promised to you in Christ.
"However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you" (John 16:13-14).
The truth is in God's Word. The Holy Spirit guides you into an understanding of the truth as revealed in the Scriptures. What He hears from God, He speaks to you. He will always glorify Jesus and be consistent with the Word of God.
"Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT" (Ephesians 5:17-18).
God's will is for every
believer to be filled with His Spirit. His desire is that you be continually
overflowing with His Spirit. Remember, Jesus COMMANDED the disciples not to
Knowing that it is God's will for you to be filled with the Holy Spirit gives you confidence in asking Him to baptize you with the Holy Spirit.
"Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him" (I John 5:14-15).
Jesus said your heavenly Father would give the Holy Spirit to those who would ask Him. You ask the Father to give you the Holy Spirit and have confidence you shall receive (Luke 11:9-13).
One of the signs Jesus said would follow those who believe was "...they will speak with new tongues" (Mark 16:17).
Isaiah prophesied about this. "For with stammering lips and another tongue He will speak to this people, to whom He said,'This is the rest with which you may cause the weary to rest,' and, 'This is the refreshing'; yet they would not hear" (Isaiah 28:11-12). It would be a rest and a refreshing to the believer.
The one hundred and twenty
believers (Jews) all spoke with other tongues on the day of Pentecost when they
received the baptism of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:4). The
Gentiles in the house of Cornelius spoke with tongues when the Holy Spirit came
on them (Acts
10:44-48). Likewise, the people at
Paul was filled with the
Holy Spirit when Ananias laid hands on him. He later told the Christians at
There are supernatural gifts of the Spirit given to believers to minister to one another. These are separate from man's natural abilities, talents, and education.
"But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills" (I Corinthians 12:7-11).
There is a variety of gifts that the Spirit gives to believers to build up the body of Christ. Each person may at different times minister with any number of the gifts as the Spirit wills.
"So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them; if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness" (Romans 12:5-8).
Of course, every believer does not operate in all the gifts all the time. The gifts of the Spirit are manifested to meet needs as they arise. Several gifts might come forth at one time to minister to an individual or to a body of believers. It is the Spirit who ministers as He wills. At the same time, the believer must allow himself to be used of the Spirit and yield as the Spirit directs (I Corinthians 14:32).
This word may be of great help. The Scripture plainly teaches the difference between the public ministry gift of tongues and personal prayer in the Spirit. While all may not have the ministry of tongues in the church for the whole body of believers (I Corinthians 12:28-30), all may speak with tongues in personal prayer for edification (I Corinthians 14:4-5). Remember, "Let all things be done decently and in order" (I Corinthians 14:40).
God has made provision for every Christian to live in victory and abundance. Just because others may not be experiencing victory in their lives does not mean that God has not provided it. He has done everything in His power to give His children the authority and provision needed to live triumphantly on this earth.
"For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world -- our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?" (I John 5:4-5).
God does not give victory over the world just to a select few. He has given overcoming victory to every person who is born again. It is a gift of God just as salvation is a gift from God. It cannot be earned or merited, only received by faith. This is why the verse says the victory is in our faith -- our believing, receiving, confessing, and doing the Word of victory in Christ.
"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ" (I Corinthians 15:57).
No man can glory in his victory in this life. All credit goes to God. He deserves our thanksgiving. He has given to us victory over Satan, sin, sickness, and fear. When Jesus arose triumphantly from the grave, He won a complete victory over all the forces of darkness. He did it for us. It was mankind that needed victory. So Jesus "...made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a servant, and coming in the likeness of men" (Philippians 2:7). He was your substitute. His victory was your victory.
"Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place" (II Corinthians 2:14).
Triumph in Christ does not have to be an occasional experience. God has made it possible for you to ALWAYS be triumphant in Him no matter what comes because He does not change.
"Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us" (Romans 8:37).
Amazing! Not just a conqueror, but MORE than a conqueror. That means more than a conqueror over every obstacle, every mountain, and every adversity the enemy would try and bring against you.
Notice again that it is "through Him" that you are more than a conqueror. There can be no victory, no conquering spirit, apart from a vital union with your Lord Jesus Christ. This comes through fellowship with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in prayer and meditation of the Word.
The apostle Paul was human just like anyone else. One reason he was able to accomplish all that he did was his understanding of God's ability inside him. He did not boast of his own strength and power, but he boasted of God's ability. He realized that true humility means total dependence upon God for everything. He believed the Word that had been revealed to him, and he acted upon it. Because of this, he was able to say, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" (Philippians 4:13).
The same Jesus who enabled Paul to do all things lives in every born-again believer. Each one has the privilege of boldly declaring, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." It is HIS strength, HIS power, HIS ability. All you have to do is rely upon Him, knowing that whatever He gives you to do, you can do through Jesus.
"You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world" (I John 4:4).
This message is to the child of God. Every born-again believer has the ability to overcome the spirits of antichrist that are in the world. As far as God is concerned, you will never have victory until you believe that victory was obtained through Christ. It is a past tense victory. John says that the believer "has overcome" them. The reason, he explains, is quite simple. The greater one, Jesus, lives in you, the believer. Jesus is greater than the devil, who is in the world. Nothing the devil might try to bring against you can be greater than Jesus. Therefore, you can reckon that you are an overcomer because the one who overcame lives inside you. Of course, you must overcome obstacles daily by acting on God's Word.
"Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with TRUTH, having put on the BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the GOSPEL OF PEACE; above all, taking the SHIELD OF FAITH with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the HELMET OF SALVATION, and the SWORD OF THE SPIRIT, which is the WORD OF GOD; praying always with all PRAYER and SUPPLICATION in the SPIRIT, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints" (Ephesians 6:13-18).
There is definitely a battle to wage with the evil powers. But, God has given you all the armor needed. He has given you weapons that no power of Satan can stop. Your command is to "put on the whole armor of God..." (Ephesians 6:11). Not even the gates of hell can stand against the fully armed church of the Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 16:18).
"For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ" (II Corinthians 10:4-5).
The weapons God has provided give you the authority to pull down every fortress that Satan would try to build against you. He is powerless in the face of God's armor and weapons.
Jesus came to restore the relationship and fellowship between God and man. His desire is for man to enjoy the full privileges of being part of God's family. The source of stealing, killing, and destruction is not God, but Satan. Jesus said,
"The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly" (John 10:10).
Abundant life! That is abundant life in every part of your existence-spiritual, mental, physical, financial. This includes the home, family, job, and school.
"The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs -- heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together" (Romans 8:16-17).
You can enjoy the blessings of being a joint-heir with Christ if you will steadfastly hold to the Word of God. Not only must you be true to the Word, but also gladly bear the reproaches of the ungodly that come as a result of living as a child of the King. It is a joy, not a burden!
"He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?" (Romans 8:32).
If God gave you the most priceless possession He had, why would He withhold from you anything of less value? It is His desire to give you everything you need (all things) in this life and the life to come. You will be involved in working and laboring in various ways. But it will be God who works through these different means to "freely give us all things."
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ" (Ephesians 1:3).
God has already blessed you with all the spiritual blessings you can handle on this earth. The blessings are available. Possibly "...you do not have because you do not ask," or "you ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures" (James 4:2-3).
The primary reason in asking for God's blessings should be to share them with others. When your needs are met you have an abundance to share with those around you.
God's will is for you to prosper in every way. A person could be a loyal and sincere Christian without prospering in all the areas of life. One could even be very successful in some areas without claiming all of God's promises. But why should any Christian not want all God has provided? All the provisions of God are needed in order to be "fruitful in every good work" (Colossians 1:10).
"Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers" (III John 2).
The first place you are to prosper is in your spiritual life. As the "law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus" begins to rule in your heart, it will "set us free from the law of sin and death" that would try to enslave you mentally, physically, spiritually, and financially (Romans 8:2).
"And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus"(Philippians 4:19).
God is your source. He
supplies your need. The basis for that supply is all of the riches in glory of
Christ Jesus. The supply is unlimited. As you seek first the
As you give your life totally to God and His kingdom, you know that God will gladly give you all of His life. The Christian who gives his best to God and expects God's best becomes extremely useful in the work of the kingdom.
"And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, have an abundance for every good work" (II Corinthians 9:8).
The most important thing to remember in living the abundant life is: BE A GIVER -- First to God, then to your fellow man. God will see to it that you abound in everything you do. He will supply all the needs and make His grace abound in you, so that you will never lack in any good work to which He calls you.
What a person says with his mouth can either release or negate what he believes in his heart. Not only does God desire His children to believe His Word, but also to speak and obey His Word. Jesus said, "...out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks" (Matthew 12:34). Your mouth actually reveals what is in your heart. Jesus explained the connection between the mouth and heart in this way:
"A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things. But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned" (Matthew 12:35-37).
It does not take long to realize that Jesus believes that what you say is important. Your words will either justify or condemn you. There will be an account given of the words spoken by your mouth. If they are not according to the truth of God's Word, they will be idle, meaningless, and oftentimes destructive.
"Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit" (Proverbs 18:21).
This is practically the same thing Jesus said. The tongue can either work for you or against you. It is never a neutral force because it is usually speaking words of life or words of death. The words a man speaks create the blessings or curses that come his way in life. It is definitely God's desire to bless His children. But you must believe, speak, and obey God's Word before you can receive God's blessings.
"You are snared by the words of your own mouth; you are taken by the words of your mouth" (Proverbs 6:2). The words you speak determine the life you enjoy. The reason is that your mouth is a revealer of the beliefs in your heart. If heart and mouth both get in accord with God's Word, then the blessings of God's Word begin to be tapped.
"A man's stomach shall be satisfied from the fruit of his mouth, and from the produce of his lips he shall be filled" (Proverbs 18:20).
Salvation, blessing, prosperity, victory, and joy are all promised in God's Word. The man who receives them is the one who believes the promise and begins to confess it with his mouth.
"But what does it say? 'The word is near you, even in your MOUTH and in your HEART' (that is, the WORD OF FAITH which we preach): that if you CONFESS WITH YOUR MOUTH the Lord Jesus and BELIEVE IN YOUR HEART that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the HEART one believes to righteousness, and with the MOUTH CONFESSION is made to salvation" (Romans 10:8-10).
Paul preached the word of
faith to the people in
Whenever you hear the good news of God's Word, it is up to you to believe and confess it personally. Thus you begin the important process of both hearing and doing the Word. Jesus equated this to a man building his house upon the rock (Matthew 7:24).
God has given you a plan
for success as you go about your daily routine of living. It is a message that He
spoke first to Joshua concerning his success as leader of
"This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success" (Joshua 1:8).
The plan for success that God gave to Joshua was:
Notice that God said Joshua would make his own way prosperous by doing these things. He would not only have success, but it would be "good success."
It is no wonder that David prayed to God, "Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my redeemer" (Psalm 19:14).
David knew that his own success greatly depended upon his meditation and confession. He had experienced a tremendous victory as a teenager because of meditating God's Word and boldly speaking it forth in the face of Goliath (I Samuel 17:45-50). Remember, he spoke words of faith BEFORE the giant fell. Anyone can shout after the victory is won, but it takes faith to shout BEFORE the walls fall (Joshua 6:16).
The important thing to remember in faith confession is that God's Word must be the foundation. You must know the truth and be convinced concerning God's will (II Timothy 2:15). Then God will back your confession, because he is faithful to keep His Word (Numbers 23:19).
Begin to speak forth God's Word believing He will bring it to pass. At the same time, stop speaking negative words that are contrary to the Word of God. In the beginning, this may seem a little strange but it will become a tremendous blessing. Make a decision to say as David, "Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips" (Psalm 141:3). Refrain from speaking anything evil, negative, critical, or idle. If you must say something, then think first and speak about "...whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report" (Philippians 4:8).
Generally, you cannot improve a situation by speaking negatively about it. Nor can you help someone by criticizing them without love. But if you speak God's Word over the situation or person, you have released your faith and brought the power of the Lord on the scene.
"Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers" (Ephesians 4:29).
Every time you speak, you hear yourself and God hears you. By speaking the Words of life, you can minister to yourself and to God, not to mention what it will do in the lives of others who hear your conversation.
Those who overcome Satan will be required to use the power of the spoken Word. It is the sword of the Spirit in the Christian's armor (Ephesians 6:17). Jesus spoke the Word aloud directly to Satan in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11), thus giving a battle plan to the Christian on how to defeat the devil. You can resist the devil with the Word and he will flee from you (James 4:7).
"And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death" (Revelation 12:11).
The blood of Jesus cleanses you from all sin and frees you of all condemnation from Satan (I John 1:7), (Romans 8:1 ). The word of your testimony is the sword that puts Satan to flight. It is the Word of God coming from your lips that produces an overcoming spirit in you.
Jesus said, "...Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be removed and be cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will come to pass, he will have whatever he says" (Mark 11:22-23).
Jesus said the person who believes in his heart what he says with his mouth, would have what he says. It is true we have the things we believe and speak. For instance, the person who believes he is going to get angry over a situation and then says, "I'm going to get mad," usually will get mad. This just seems to work in every area of life. The reason is that it is spiritual law. It works whether you understand it or not. It is the same as the physical law of gravity--it works regardless of our attitude towards it.
If you believe God's Word is true for you, then you can begin to claim its promises by confessing them in your life. Faith requires you to speak them before you feel or see them.
If there is a mountain of a problem in your life, family, body, or finances, you must speak directly to the problem. As you speak, you must believe that what you say will come to pass. God says that what you say will become a visible reality in the natural world if you steadfastly hold to your confession of faith.
There is power in your mouth. The belief in your heart is released by faith out of your mouth. By believing, confessing, and acting on God's Word, you can receive salvation, healing, the Holy Spirit, righteousness, and a victorious abundant life. All of these are promised to the Christian and are available by faith.
God Loves You
Sin Separates People From God
Jesus Died for Your Sins
You Can Receive Jesus Now and Know God's Love
"If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved" (Romans 10:9-10).
Heavenly Father, in Jesus' name I repent of my sins and open my heart to let Jesus come inside of me. Jesus, you are my Lord and Savior. I believe you died for my sins and you were raised from the dead. Fill me with your Holy Spirit. Thank You Father for saving me in Jesus' name. Amen
Absolute Victory, by Billy Joe Daugherty
Faith Power, by Billy Joe Daugherty
Death is Not the End, by Billy Joe Daugherty
Fruitful Life, by Sharon Daugherty
Called By His Side, by Sharon Daugherty
Stand Your Ground -- Cassette
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