“Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you became believers?” (Acts 19:2)
Paul is a visiting preacher in Ephesus there he meets twelve religious men called “believers.” It is obvious that these men heard about the Messiah through John’s followers, since they were baptized according to John’s baptism (Acts 19:3). When Paul arrived in that town, these men were drawn to him, the same way we find other Christians in highways and byways of life.
Though these twelve men were believers, Paul noticed something missing in them. They had knowledge but without zeal. They lacked the power of the Spirit. In fact, they had “never ever heard that there was a Holy Spirit” (Acts 19:2). Yes, there is a Holy Spirit! It’s not mentioned how Paul explained the existence of the Holy Spirit to those twelve, because each one of us has a different encounter with the Third Person of the Holy Trinity. This Spirit of God dwells in us (1 Corinthians 6:19). He is our Comforter in times of trouble. He is our Helper who helps us cope with trying days. He is the Spirit of Truth that motivates us to keep our conscience clear before God. In short, He is the Coach who trains us and stands by us, whether we win or lose life’s battles. The Holy Spirit is the source of our faith, hope, love, peace and joy.
When Paul laid hands on the twelve the Holy Spirit came upon them. The laying of hands is recorded seven times in the Bible. This ritual was used to impart a special blessing by God’s recognized spokesperson, to impart blessings (Genesis 48:14-16, Leviticus 9:22, Deuteronomy 34:9) and for healing ((Matthew 9:18; Mark 5:23, 6:5, 8:22-25; Luke 4:40, 13:13; Acts 28:8). The special gifts of the spirit were conferred through the laying on of the hands. Through touch, Paul opened for them the door to greater blessings.
Every Christian is called to be the light of the world, to touch and heal someone else’s life. Our presence should be a blessing and not a curse. We are ambassadors of Christ only when we follow that gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit that says, “Reach out and Touch, Don’t Be Afraid, for I have conquered the world.”
“Heavenly Father send forth the power of your Holy Spirit upon us that we may remain faithful and do your will in our daily lives.”