The empowering of Pentecost 8

Acts 19:1-6

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Sticking points (1 of 3)

v.6 When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied.

Key teaching: The experience and infilling of the Holy Spirit can be imparted by the laying on of hands.

This is one example in the Bible where the Holy Spirit is imparted by the laying on of hands. The other side of “imparted” is “received” which raises the question of whether we are genuinely open to being prayed with in this way. That can be a sticking point for some. Pride is always a barrier!

If I ask someone to pray and lay hands on me, they do something, but so do I. They pray with an anointing, with a sense of being a channel of the grace of God, trying to be that channel without getting in the way of what God has purposed to do. So humility and sensitivity to the leading of the Spirit is needed there.

And there’s my part. I need to be in ‘receiving mode’, admitting my need and making myself vulnerable to someone else. I am presenting myself as the ‘needy’ person to someone else who is in the psychologically superior position of being the provider – or at least, the channel for God.

Am I free to do this?

That’s one sticking point. There are two more we’ll look at over the next couple of days.


How much do you welcome (be honest now!) the idea of a trusted person praying and laying hands on you for a further impartation of the Holy Spirit? Why is this closer to God’s order than the thought that came: “Why, when I can ask this for myself…”?


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