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Sermon #3159

Spirit Baptism and Fullness

A Sermon on Romans 8:15


Romans 8:15 ESV KJV
For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” (ESV)

Sermon Description

Since Christians do not actively “take” the Spirit, but passively receive the sovereign Spirit, what are they to do? As Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones pursues this question in this sermon on Romans 8:15 titled “Spirit Baptism and Fullness,” he sets the context of the passage. He notes that Spirit baptism is an extra – a plus. It is an additional assurance children of God experience. In other words, it is not something every believer who has the Spirit of adoption experiences. Nevertheless, it is something all should desire. In Romans 8:15, the apostle Paul elaborates on Spirit baptism, or being filled with the Spirit. Dr. Lloyd-Jones encourages all Christians to genuinely seek the fullness of the Spirit, but not by trying to “seize” the Spirit. Furthermore, Christians cannot pretend they can take it by someone laying hands on them. How does one get it then? Dr. Lloyd-Jones teaches that it is through obedience and prayer. In the end, however, Christians rest knowing the Holy Spirit is sovereign. If indeed the Spirit does grant this assurance, the Christian will surely know it. Let them not, however, pretend to have it, warns Dr. Lloyd-Jones, unless they actually do. Listen as he teaches on the joys, and potential pitfalls, of Spirit baptism.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The sermon is expounding Romans 8:15 which provides assurance of salvation. This assurance is not essential for salvation but provides comfort.
  2. The sermon is not giving an overview of the Holy Spirit's operations but focused on this one verse.
  3. Verse 15 refers to receiving the Spirit of adoption which allows us to cry "Abba, Father". This is a profound experience that provides deep assurance.
  4. This experience is given by God, not something we can claim or take. We receive it passively.
  5. The sermon warns against the teaching that we can "take it by faith" or claim this experience. This teaching relies on psychology, not Scripture, and can provide a false sense of peace or experience.
  6. Many Christians are unhappy because they have tried to take this experience by faith but know they lack it. This teaching hinders truly receiving this experience.
  7. To receive this experience, recognize its profound nature. Realize it is given by God, not taken by us. Do not agonize or attend "tarrying meetings". Do not expect it through the laying on of hands.
  8. Live in obedience and pray, expressing your longing for this experience. Read hymns expressing this longing like "O Love Divine, How Sweet Thou Art". Pray for God to send His Spirit to rest upon you.
  9. Do not claim to have this experience until you truly know you have received the Spirit of adoption. When you receive it, you will know with deep joy and cry "Abba, Father".
  10. The sermon closes with a prayer for listeners to receive the Spirit of adoption and know God deeply.

The Book of Romans

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.