We are going to be studying the doctrine of the Baptism of the Spirit in our Sunday School class in a couple of weeks. So I have been digging into the Word today (we had a snow day so I took a few hours) :-D
I ended up studying the laying on of hands, giving and authority. The Lord amazed me when I realized the simple (not much meditated upon before by me) truth that the hands have everything to do with giving and recieving. And that those in authority have responsibility and privelege of recieving from God and then giving what has been given.
Hand: to signify the agency of (a source); adv. Near (at hand); To apprehend (grab) Hand off or Hand over. To put or place.
Give: to grant, assign, distribute. To impart, or pass on. Hmm, the Christian life is all about passing on the gift...
Authority: the right to excercise power; the power to rule or govern; power of one whose will and commands are to be obeyed.
Notice that Moses and Jesus always went to God to be instructed and filled before they went out to minister. Moses to the mountain or tent. Jesus to the mountain, hillside or garden.
Of course the biggest and best ever gift of all was given to us by the hand of God. He who did not spare His own Son, but gave him up for us all-how will he not also, along with Him graciously give us all things? Romans 8:32 This gift we must recieve before we have anything to give. (without Him we can do nothing)
Numbers 27:23 Then he laid his hands on (Joshua) and commissioned him, as the Lord instructed Moses. This signifies that the gift (authority and leadership) that had been given to Moses was imparted to Joshua through the laying on of his hands.
Acts 19:6 When Paul placed his hands on them the Holy spirit came on them and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. Again, the Spirit was imparted by the laying on of hands. The gift was given by the one who was filled. Several other locations give account of this throughout scripture. Acts 8:18; Acts 13:3; 1 Tim 1:6; 1 Tim 4:14.
Continually I see that those in authority are giving the gift through the laying on of hands. All authority begins with God. He gave it to Moses who in turn imparted it to Joshua. He gave it to Jesus who then imparts it to His servants who impart it to other servants and so on...
Remember Elisha asking for a double portion of Elijah's spirit? Remember Luke 11:9-13 talking about how much more will our Father in Heaven give you the Holy Spirit when you ask? We need to be asking!! Fill us Lord, we want more of you!!
Noticably, the gift of a mighty outpouring of the Spirit came when there were Spirit-filled believers together, praying, sometimes fasting, and UNIFIED. It resulted in God being glorified and many being healed, saved and sent out. No wonder the enemy works so hard to get us in discord and jealousy and competition!! He hinders us from having the power to do the work of God.
"United we stand, divided we fall"-I don't know where that is from, but how true!! O Lord, I pray that we may be one as You are One!! (John 17)Help us to continually come to the Spring of Living Water. Fill us and pour us out that you will be glorified and exalted by our offering of ourselves as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to you! (Romans 12:1,2) Use our hands to bless others, to impart your gifts. We stand amazed at your Power and your Glory!! Give us more understanding of our authority in Christ and our weapons of warfare that are mighty through God for the pulling down of strongholds! Thank you for choosing us to be vessels of this amazing power that is at work within us. That mighty power that raised Christ from the dead! Thank you that you love to show yourself strong on behalf of your people!! Halleluiah!