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Title:Holy Spirit Comforter passages of John 14-15-16
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Body:Comforter passages of John 14-15-16

The Gift of the Holy Spirit

Comforter Passages

Holy Spirit Comforter passages of John 14-15-16


1. Apostles had no unique supernatural power that ordinary Christians did not in the first century.

a. Apart from the authority to transmit spiritual gifts through the laying on of their hands, the apostles did not have any special or unique supernatural powers that the ordinary Christian lacked.

b. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit promised to all Christians of the first century not just the apostles.

c. The four "comforter Passages" of John 14, 15 & 16 were made to all first century Christians not just the apostles.

d. Spiritual gifts were regulated and controlled directly by the apostles and were only imparted through the laying on of their hands.

2. The following phrases are equal and interchangeable:

a. Filled with HS

b. Receive the HS

c. Baptism of HS

d. HS poured forth

e. HS came upon

f. Gift of HS

g. Indwelling of HS

3. This study will seek to prove three things:

a. That more than just the apostles were promised the "baptism of the HS" within the very passages that have traditionally only been applied to the apostles. In other words, the passages don't teach what people say they teach!

b. That the apostles were given no special powers that other Christians with spiritual gifts possessed.

c. The apostles did not receive the ability to transmit spiritual gifts because they were "baptized with the HS.

I. In AD 26 John promised the baptism of the Holy Spirit to his entire general audience: Mt 3:11

1. "He Himself will baptize YOU with the Holy Spirit and fire."

2. Not every Christian will be baptized (receive spiritual gifts) but whoever the HS chooses to receive them:

a. apostles

b. Christians who they lay their hands upon.

3. There is no definite way to limit Mt 3:11 to the apostles only because none of them had been called yet!

II. In 588 BC Joel promised supernatural power to all mankind on Pentecost AD 33:

1. Joel 2/ Acts 2 "I will pour forth My Spirit UPON ALL MANKIND. And your SONS AND YOUR DAUGHTERS shall prophesy, and your YOUNG MEN shall see visions, and your OLD MEN shall dream dreams. Even upon My bondslaves BOTH MEN AND WOMEN, I will in those days pour forth of My Spirit and they shall prophesy."

2. Promise includes:

a. All Mankind [Jew and Gentile]:

b. sons and daughters

c. young and old

d. men and women

4. Peter said "This [tongues, miracle] is that, which was spoken through Joel" Acts 2:16

a. The prophecy of Joel began to be fulfilled on the day of Pentecost in AD 33.

b. The gift of the Holy Spirit, obviously miraculous to the Jews on Pentecost, was promised to them, in addition to the Apostles.

c. Notice Joel's prophecy included their sons and daughters, both men and women.

5. Obviously, there is no way to limit the fulfillment of Joel 2 to the apostles only since there were no children or women present who had the supernatural power Joel prophesied.

III. In AD 33 Jesus promised the miraculous Holy Spirit to anyone who believes: Jn 7:38-39

1. "He who BELIEVES IN ME, as the Scripture said, 'From his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water.' But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom THOSE WHO BELIEVED IN HIM were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified."

a. Isa 44:3 "For I will pour out water on the thirst land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out My Spirit ON YOUR OFFSPRING."

2. There is no question this passage refers to the Pentecost outpouring:

a. Notice HS not given because Jesus was not yet Glorified

b. Fulfillment in Acts 2:33

i. Jesus was now glorified (exalted to right hand)

ii. He therefore gave the HS

iii. proof: "this which you see and hear"

c. this passage does not teach personal indwelling as some try to!

3. Jesus said this at a public feast before many: Jn 7:37

a. Why would Jesus say, "whoever believes" when he only meant apostles?

b. There is no way to limit this to the apostles.

4. Personal indwelling advocates often quote Acts 5:32 or Jn 7:39 as proof texts. The argument goes like this: God promised to give the Holy Spirit to all who believed and obeyed. There are three serious problems with this interpretation:

a. The Holy Spirit was given miraculously in the text, a non-miraculous indwelling doesn't even fit.

b. We have two witnesses:

i. The apostles witnessed verbally

ii. The HS witnessed miraculously through miracles: Acts 14:3; Acts 15:8; Heb 2:4; Heb 10:15; 1 Jn 5:7

c. The Holy Spirit was also promised miraculously to anyone who believes (Jn 7:39; Mk 16:17; Gal 3:2; Acts 19:2) or asks (Lk 11:13).

5. Personal indwelling advocates make the same mistake that Calvinists make when they argue that baptism isn't part of salvation because Jn 3:16 mentions only faith.

a. Just as baptism is included in Jn 3:16, so too is the laying on of the apostles hands included in Lk 7:39 or Acts 5:32.

b. Notice how this chart is identical in logic to the "How to be saved" chart that includes, a list of conversion examples from Acts and faith, repentance, confession and baptism.

c. Personal indwelling advocates who MISUSE Jn 7:39 as a proof text that EVERYONE who believes gets the personal indwelling should be spanked because they know better than to use such bad logic they refute when they study with those who teach salvation by faith only.

How do you receive the Holy Spirit miraculously? 1 Cor 12:11







Elder's hands

Apostle's hands

Jn 7:39

Mk 16:17

Gal 3:2

Acts 19:2

Lk 11:13

Acts 5:32

Acts 8:15

1 Ti 4:14

1 Ti 4:14

Acts 8:18

Acts 10:45







Jn 7:39 includes apostle's hands like Jn 3:16 includes baptism

(Exception: Cornelius received H.S. by faith only)

6. How to receive the Holy Spirit Miraculously:

a. Notice how you receive the Holy Spirit by faith but other conditions are needed.

b. Paul asks them if they relieved the Holy Spirit when they believed meaning, at the time of their conversion which would have included the laying on of an apostle's hands to impart the spiritual gift.

How to receive the Holy Spirit miraculously:

God's own commentary


initial condition

commentary adding further conditions

Acts 19:2+6

Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?

when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking with tongues and prophesying

Gal 3:2+5

did you receive the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith?

Does He then, who provides you with the Spirit and works miracles among you, do it by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith?

Acts 8:15+18

Apostles came down and prayed that they might receive the H.S.

Then they began laying their hands on them, and they were receiving the Holy Spirit

What Must I do to be saved?

Act 16:31 + 33

Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you shall be saved

Same hour of night, immediately he was baptized, he and all his household.

IV. Jesus promised the Holy Spirit miraculously to all disciples on Pentecost:

1. Jn 20:22 "He breathed on THEM and said to them, 'RECEIVE THE HS."'

2. Lk 24:49 "And behold I am sending forth the promise of My Father UPON YOUI But you are to stay in the city until you are CLOTHED WITH POWER from on high."

3. Acts 1:4,5 "And gathering them together, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, 'Which you have heard of from Me; for John baptized with water, but YOU shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now. "

a. Lk 24:49 was spoken in the audience of more than twelve:

i. Lk 24:33 "the eleven and those who were with them

ii. Jn 20:22 notice "disciples" rather than "the eleven"

iii. Acts 1:15 "120 disciples

b. However, it is evident that Jesus directed His statement to the 12 only: Acts 1:2-8

c. Only the twelve were "filled with HS":

i. They of 2:1 refers back to "11 apostles" in 1:26 even though 10 days separate the chapters "And when the day of Pentecost had come"

ii. The ones filled were Galileans: 2:7

iii. Peter took his stand "with the 11" 2:14

V. Jesus promised the Holy Spirit as the miraculous "comforter" to the apostles on Pentecost: John 14,15,16

A. Jn 14:16 "And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever."

1. PROMISE: Abide with you forever

2. The Holy Spirit also abided with Stephen and Philip who also had Spiritual gifts!

B. Jn 14:26 & 16:13 "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you." ... "I have many more things to say to you but you cannot bear them now. But when He, the spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth."


a. teach you all things

b. bring to remembrance

c. guide you into all truth

2. This promise was also made to Christians in I Jn 2:20,27

3. What it cannot mean:

a. Only apostles were INSPIRED to write Bible or reveal gospel: -Books of James, Jude, Luke, Acts written by non-apostles

b. Only Apostles remembered things Jesus said in their presence: -Jesus had hundreds of followers

c. Joseph Barsabbas was with Jesus from beginning Acts 1:21-23 -Luke's gospel tells us many things Mt, Mk & Jn don't

d. Only they were led into all truth: Eph 3:5 "apostles and prophets"

C. Jn 15:26-27 "When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, that is the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, He will bear witness of Me."

1. PROMISE: HS bear witness of Christ

2. This means the HS performed miracles to confirm the gospel

3. HS did this through many non-apostles: Stephen & Philip

4. This was the general purpose of spiritual gifts: Heb 2:3,4; Jn 5:36

D. The four "Advocate" passages cannot be limited to the apostles only:

1. These passages were spoken only to the apostles:

a. Doesn't necessarily mean they don't apply to Christians in general

b. Many things Jesus said only to His apostles apply to all

c. How about the great commission: Mt 28 & Lk 24

d. The great commission and promise of HS were said at exactly the same time. Compare Mk 16:14-20 & Lk 24:33-49

2. Although Jesus was only speaking to His apostles, the promises cannot be limited to them alone because we see fulfillment equally in apostles and non-apostles alike:

a. The Samaritans "RECEIVED THE HS" Acts 8:15

b. Were Stephen and Philip not "CLOTHED WITH POWER"?

c. Were Stephen and Philip not "IMMERSED" or baptized with power of HS'?

d. Was the HS not "ABIDING" in Stephen and Philip with spiritual gifts?

e. both apostles and prophets were "LED INTO ALL TRUTH": Eph 3:5

f. Luke, James and Jude were "INSPIRED" to write Bible books

g. Luke had Jesus' sayings brought to his "REMEMBRANCE".

h. Christians were "TAUGHT ALL THINGS" by HS 1 Jn 2:20,27

i. HS "BORE WITNESS" of Gospel through Stephen and Philip

3. There is not one distinct promise connected with the HS made to apostles that fulfillment can be seen in non-apostles

4. These promises applied to all Christians throughout the miraculous age.

VI. Apostles promised the miraculous Baptism of the Holy to all mankind: Acts 2:38-39

"And you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit; For the promise is for you and your children, and for who are far off, as many as the Lord our God shall call."

A. This is where all the promises Jesus made to the apostles concerning the HS were transmitted to common Christians.

1. Only the twelve were filled in Acts 2:1-4

2. They received it directly: What man would lay hands on them?

3. They were passed on by laying their hands on others

B. Context:

1. They were in awe because of outpouring

2. Peter says "this is that spoken by Joel"

3. Joel said, "sons, daughters, young old etc."

4. Peter told then through Joel that the outpouring was for all!

5. Peter said in other words in Acts 2:38,39, "the promise of the HS which we have received, (the promise you both see and hear) is not for us only, but is for you, your children and the gentiles... just as Joel said!"

VII. The case of cornelius

A. Cornelius was baptized in the HS: Acts 11:15-17

1. Just like upon the apostles (directly) Acts 11:15

2. Peter was amazed:

a. not because the Holy Spirit had fallen directly

b. but rather that He HAD FALLEN AT ALL.

c. Acts 10:45 "amazed, because the gift of the HS had been poured out upon the Gentiles also."

d. Acts 15:7-9 "God gave them the spirit, just as he gave to us"

3. 3. He remembered the word of the Lord: "You will be baptized in HS"

a. Peter now understands this expression in a new way

b. Peter never dreamed that the Gentiles were included as well

B. Two views of HS baptism and Acts 2 & 10:

1. Both 12 and Cornelius were baptized in HS

a. arguments for:

i. the text says he was: Acts 11:15,16

ii. both received it directly

b. arguments against:

i. How then can we say that it was only promised to apostles? -Was Cornelius equally empowered as the apostles?

2. Only apostles and not Cornelius received HS baptism:

a. argument for: Only the apostles were promised baptism of HS

b. argument against: reception of spiritual gifts without apostles hands

3. Both views are part wrong and part right

a. Both apostles and Cornelius were "baptized with HS"

b. More than the apostles were promised "HS baptism"

c. HS baptism and common spiritual gifts is same thing.

C. Cornelius was an exception:

1. Cornelius not only received the baptism of the Holy Spirit, he received it directly and apart from the laying on of the apostle's hands.

2. Wrong way to prove spiritual gifts have ceased:

a. Only the apostles were promised the baptism... with the exception of Cornelius.

b. Spiritual gifts were only transmitted through the laying on of an apostles hands... with the exception of Cornelius.

3. Right way to prove spiritual gives have ceased:

a. Ask to see a miracle

b. quote 1 Cor 13:8-13 gifts have ceased.

4. The reason God directly imparted common spiritual gifts to the household of Cornelius is because if Peter had layed his hands upon them, the Jews would have thought that it was Peter's mistaken will that the gentiles be saved and not God's.

a. The fact that God bypassed His usual method of laying on of hands was to impress upon the Jewish mind that Peter had nothing to do with it, only Bod's will alone.

b. This way if they charged Peter saying, "If you hadn't ate with them in the first place, they never would have received the HS Acts 11:2,311 Peter could reply, I had nothing to with it, as I began to speak, the HS fell upon them directly as He fell upon us at the beginning."

c. Imagine how much more difficult a time peter would have had convincing them in light of the possible fact that he not only ate with them, but also laid his hands on them!

D. Cornelius received the Miraculous baptism of the Holy Spirit directly from God BEFORE he had faith in Christ:

1. There are two versions of the conversion of Cornelius in Acts 10 and Acts 11

a. Acts 10 is the general story that seems to indicate that the Holy Spirit fell after Peter had been preaching a while, allowing the gentiles to have faith, which triggered the baptism of the Holy Spirit from God. This is false!

b. Acts 11 is the precise chronological order of events: "But Peter began speaking and proceeded to explain to them in orderly sequence, saying," (Acts 11:4)

2. The critical text is:

a. ""And he reported to us how he had seen the angel standing in his house, and saying, 'Send to Joppa and have Simon, who is also called Peter, brought here; and he will speak words to you by which you will be saved, you and all your household.' "And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them just as He did upon us at the beginning." (Acts 11:13-15)

b. The Holy Spirit fell upon Cornelius at the beginning of Peter's sermon before the message of the gospel was spoken.

c. This proves the gentiles had the holy spirit not only before water baptism but also before faith itself!

3. Here we have the uncircumcised gentiles being baptized directly in the Holy Spirit to speak in tongues before they were saved as a sign to Peter, the Jew, that they were fit candidates of water baptism just as they are!


1. The Holy Spirit promised to:

a. Apostles: Acts 1:4,5

b. Disciples of John: Mt 3:11

c. Jewish offspring: Isa 44:3

d. Whoever believes in Christ: Jn 7:39

e. All mankind [Jew and Gentile3: Joel 2

i. sons and daughters

ii. young and old

iii. men and women

2. The only difference between the apostles receiving the HS and other Christians, was that they received the SAME THING directly.

a. Common Christians had to have the Apostles hands laid on them.

b. Cornelius was an exception for very important and obvious reasons as a sign to the Jews they could be baptized and saved.

3. The only difference between the apostles and non-apostle Christians was not in the miraculous power each possessed, but the authority of the apostles over the church.

a. Only the apostles had the ability to impart Spiritual gifts

b. This was not a unique power, but a unique authority because of their office

c. The ability to transmit spirit gifts was not a result of the Acts 2 outpouring but a choice made by God.

d. Cornelius was baptized in Holy Spirit directly just like the apostles but he could not transmit the spirit gifts like the apostles could.

4. This supports the premise that the following expressions are equal and totally interchangeable:

a. Filled with HS

b. Receive the HS

c. Baptism with HS

d. HS poured forth

e. HS came upon

f. Gift of HS

g. Indwelling of HS

5. FALSE DOCTRINE: "Measures of the Holy Spirit"

a. This false doctrine was taught for over 100 years in the churches and has done great damage by falsely differentiating the baptism of the Holy Spirit as a special class of miraculous endowment limited to the apostles, when it really applies to any Christian who has any of the 9 supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit.

i. The false doctrine of the "measures of the Holy Spirit" is also the foundation upon which the false personal non-miraculous indwelling of the Holy Spirit rests.

ii. This notion of limiting the "Baptism of the Holy Spirit" to the apostles ONLY was a false theology developed last century to refute modern day Pentecostals and Charismatics who claim to have miraculous power of the Holy Spirit like the first century church. It was never successful in countering charismatics, but it distorted the theology of the brethren in its wake and mislead hundreds of thousands into error.

b. It is widely known as the "Measures of the Holy Spirit" theology popularized into countless handout and overhead charts to create a nice neat sermon for Sunday morning since the mid 1800's:

i. Jesus had the Holy Spirit without measure based upon John 3:34 of the KJV

ii. the Apostles had the Baptismal measure

iii. the Corinthians had the spiritual gifts miraculous measure

iv. and finally, the non-miraculous personal indwelling ordinary measure.

c. The entire structure is based upon a false reading of italicised words in the KJV of John 3:34 to wrongly imply that the Holy Spirit was given TO JESUS without measure. "God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him" (KJV). The key words UNTO HIM are lacking in the Greek.

i. The verse actually says that God gives the spirit without measure TO EVERYONE. "for He gives the Spirit without measure." (NASB)

ii. Brethren continue to use this chart not even understanding the entire theological framework rests upon a single bible verse (John 3:34) that says EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE to what the chart suggests.

6. The evidence is overwhelming in favor of discarding the long-embraced teaching of a "special baptismal measure of the HS" given only to the apostles.

a. All first century Christians were promised the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the promise of the comforter in John 14,15,16.

b. The apostles possessed no unique and special supernatural power than non-apostles also possessed.

i. Non-apostles were inspired, wrote scripture, had Jesus' words "brought to remembrance" fulfilling the comforter promises of John 14,15,16.

ii. Apostles possessed a unique AUTHORITY (but not supernatural power) to lay their hands on non-apostles and transmit spiritual gifts.

7. The Charismatics and Pentecostals had it right all along and we got it wrong:

a. The supernatural promise of the comforter, as recorded in the gospel of John in chapters 14 to 16 was for all Christians, not just the apostles.

b. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit was not limited to the apostles but also for any Christians the apostles laid their hands on as well. The church at Corinth had many non-apostle Christians who possessed one of the nine spiritual gifts and therefore were "baptized in the Holy Spirit"

c. If you had a supernatural gift of the Holy Spirit, you had the comforter AND were baptized in the Holy Spirit.

8. The Charismatics and Pentecostals are still wrong that they possess the same supernatural powers of the apostolic age. There are two ways of refuting modern-day Pentecostals and charismatics who claim to have miraculous power:

a. Ask them to demonstrate their power and to show you a miracle:

i. "But I will come to you soon, if the Lord wills, and I shall find out, not the words of those who are arrogant [in claim inspirational equality with Paul] but their power. For the kingdom of God does not consist in words but in power." (1 Corinthians 4:19-20)

ii. "and my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power," (1 Corinthians 2:4)

b. Quote 1 Cor 13:8-13 as scriptural proof that prophecy, tongues would cease upon the completion of the scriptural canon: "Love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part; but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love." (1 Corinthians 13:8-13)

Holy Spirit outlines:

Holy Spirit in the Old Testament

Holy Spirit in the New Testament

Gift of the Holy Spirit

Indwelling of the Holy Spirit

Tongues have Ceased

By Steve Rudd: Contact the author for comments, input or corrections.

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