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Sermon #1104

Receive the Holy Ghost

A Sermon on John 1:26-33


John 1:26-33 ESV KJV
John answered them, “I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know, even he who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.” These things took place in Bethany across the Jordan, where John was baptizing. The next day he …

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Sermon Description

Can Christians receive more power from the Holy Ghost for the work of the Kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ? In this sermon on John 1:26-33, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones describes the baptism of the Holy Spirit. He argues that the giving of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost is not the first giving of the Spirit, but rather a second anointing of power. He argues this by pointing out that Jesus says to “receive the Holy Spirit” when He reveals Himself to them in the upper room before Pentecost. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains that this means that the giving of the Spirit at Pentecost was not the regeneration of the disciples or the indwelling of the Holy Spirit; rather, it was a unique empowerment of the Spirit for the work of the kingdom. A Christian’s view of the work of the Holy Spirit in the New Testament directly informs what they pray for and how they approach Spirit-led revival. Dr. Lloyd-Jones points out that Christians who don’t understand Pentecost correctly will be unable to seek after, or accept, revival and awakening.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The sermon examines John 1:26-33 which discusses Jesus baptizing with the Holy Spirit.
  2. The sermon has been examining the baptism of the Holy Spirit for many months. They have discussed how to seek the blessing and what to expect.
  3. The sermon now wants to examine the timing and relationship between the baptism of the Holy Spirit and other events like the resurrection and ascension.
  4. The popular modern teaching is that Pentecost constituted the Christian church. The church began at Pentecost. The purpose of the Holy Spirit was to form the church.
  5. At regeneration, all believers receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. The baptism places us in the body of Christ, which is the church.
  6. This teaching excludes the doctrine of revivals. It says the Holy Spirit is non-experiential.
  7. The sermon argues this teaching is incorrect. Acts 2 does not mention constituting the church or forming an organism.
  8. John 20:19-23 shows Jesus constituting the church on the evening of his resurrection, not at Pentecost.
  9. Jesus breathed on the disciples and said "Receive the Holy Spirit." This was not prophetic but actually happened then.
  10. The Greek word for "receive" is in the imperative mood, meaning it refers to an actual event, not a future possibility.
  11. The word "breathed" is the same as Genesis 2:7 where God breathed life into Adam. It shows Jesus giving life to the church.
  12. Jesus then gives the disciples authority to forgive sins, showing the church's commission.
  13. The church did not begin at Pentecost. The disciples were already "of one accord" in Acts 1, before Pentecost.
  14. At Pentecost, the disciples received power, not a new constitution. Power was the purpose of the Holy Spirit.
  15. The Feast of Pentecost celebrated the harvest's end, not its beginning. Pentecost shows the enjoyment and power following Jesus' completed work.
  16. John 7:39 says the Spirit was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified. But Jesus was glorified in his death, resurrection, and ascension.
  17. The disciples had to wait in Jerusalem because Old Testament prophecy required it, not because the Holy Spirit could not have come sooner. Prophecy foreshadows God's plan; it does not restrict it.
  18. Christians can be part of the body of Christ without the power and assurance of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. But we should seek that power and assurance.
  19. We need the Pentecostal power of the Holy Spirit for effective witness and ministry.

The Book of John

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.