Literature Ministries International
- By Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
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Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
We are told that our Lord was, as it were, anointed and set apart for His Messianic and saving work when the Holy Spirit came upon Him in Jordan when He was baptized by John the Baptist; and in a sense, the same thing is true of the individual Christian. “Ye have an unction from the Holy One,” says John (1 John 2:20). Who is that? The context makes it quite plain—He is none other than our Lord Himself; and in verse 27 the reference is still to the Lord Jesus Christ.
This is an interesting point that can be looked at in two ways. We are told by the apostle Paul in Ephesians 4:8 that “when he ascended up on high, he....gave gifts unto men” (Ephesians 4:8). It was the Lord Jesus Christ who sent the Holy Spirit upon the infant Christian Church. The Holy Spirit did not come until Christ had ascended into heaven; then the Spirit came. He comes from the Father and the Son, or from the Father through the Son; it is as a result of the perfect work of the Son that the Father gives the Holy Spirit to all who belong to Him. That is one way of looking at it.
But there is another way of looking at it. Because we are incorporated into Christ and into the life of Christ, we partake of what is true of Him. Therefore, as He has been anointed and has received the Holy Spirit without measure, all of us who are in Him receive the gift of the Holy Spirit because we are in Him. That is why any kind of teaching that would ever suggest that you can be a Christian without receiving the Holy Spirit is unscriptural. It is impossible for one to be a Christian and then later on receive the Holy Spirit. To be in Christ means that you are receiving the Spirit.
A Thought to Ponder
Any kind of teaching that would ever suggest that you can be a Christian without receiving the Holy Spirit is unscriptural.
From Walking with God, pp. 119-120.
Today’s devo is taken from Walking with God Day by Day © 2003 by Good News Publishers. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
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