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 Were the disciples born again before or after Pentecost?

Yesterday at our church fellowship we studied the work and ministry of the Holy Spirit in respect to being born again.

If you recall Jesus after He rose from the dead, breathed on His disciples and said, "receive the Holy Spirit". Also in Acts 19 Paul came across some disciples in Ephesus and asked them if they had received the Holy Spirit when they believed, to which they said no, and then Paul prays for them and they received the Holy Spirit. This brings up several questions in my mind that I would appreciate help with:

1) Do you think the disciples became born again of the Spirit when Jesus breathed on them? Or were they already born again, or did this happen on the day of Pentecost?
2) Do you think the Ephesus disciples were born again before Paul prayed for them?
3) If the Ephesus believers had not yet received the Holy Spirit and if they were not in fact born again, what would have happened to them if they had died in that state?

Any and all points of view are welcome...I am seeking answers, thank you brothers and sisters for your thoughtful input.
Mark

 2012/10/22 17:10
twayneb
Member



Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 2007
Joplin, Missouri

 Re: Were the disciples born again before or after Pentecost?

I don't they could not be born again until after the crucifixion. However, we are born again through faith in what Jesus has done for us. I think we could probably read out of the record of the interim period between the crucifixion and Pentecost that the disciples believed on Christ and put faith in what He did on the cross. My guess is that it was not only the disciples that believed. There were 120 who gathered in the upper room.

I may be wrong, but to me it seems your line of questioning presupposes that the infilling of the Holy Spirit is synonymous with salvation. I do not believe that to be the case, and perhaps that colors my answer a bit. Or perhaps you do not make a distinction between the work of the Holy Spirit in salvation and the experience of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit that I believe is separate from and necessarily subsequent to salvation. Since I make that distinction, my answer will obviously be colored by that belief.

1) I would say they were born again at whatever time they put faith in the work of Christ and received His sacrifice for their sins. I cannot speak of the significance of Jesus breathing on them. I have never settled on exactly what happened in that moment. I guess you could be right and that could have been the moment of salvation, but I don't think it could be settled either way from scripture. What I do know is that we are born again when we put faith in Christ for our salvation.

2) I believe that the Ephesian believers were born again at the time of Paul's visit. Paul even says, "since you believed." If believing is the requirement for salvation, then surely they were saved. We don't typically refer to unsaved folk as believers.

3 To me, It appears clear from Acts 19 that they had not received the Holy Spirit prior to this time since they are recorded as having said, "We have never heard of any Holy Ghost", and summarily received the Holy Spirit.


_________________
Travis

 2012/10/22 17:55Profile









 Re:

Hi brother, thanks for the comments. I utterly reject the notion that one must be baptized in the Holy Spirit in order to be saved, we are saved by grace through faith in Christ alone.

Perhaps we will never really know the answer to when each of these groups was actually born again/saved. The Lord said that the wind blows where it wills and no one understands it, so it is with all those who are born again. It would appear that becoming born again is not something an outsider can easily discern. In fact if it was that easy, why did Paul even have to ask them, "have you yet received the Holy Spirit."

I appreciate your comments on the Ephesus believers, they are very helpful.

Mark

 2012/10/22 18:35
Croref
Member



Joined: 2008/3/18
Posts: 334


 Re: Were the disciples born again before or after Pentecost?

Hi folks. If I may add my .02:

Here Jesus speaks of all three manifestations of the Holy Spirit:

"And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter , that he may abide "with" you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for "he dwelleth with you", and shall be "in" you. John 14:16-17 (KJV)

1. Jesus was "with" the Disciples when speaking that.

2. Being in them, that speaks of being born again, was fulfilled in John 20:22: "And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost"

3. The enduement for power happened at the "coming upon" here: "And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat "upon" each of them. Acts 2:3 (KJV)

Luke 24 and Acts 1 speak of the instructions given the Disciples to not leave Jerusalem but to wait for the enduement before beginning their respective ministries and this was not unlike Jesus had to do before beginning His.

1. Jesus was born "indwelt" with the Word.
2. The Word was "with" Him for 30yrs.
3. The Holy Ghost came "upon" Him for His ministry; before being sent into the world.

I hope this will add something of worth to the discussion.





 2012/10/24 20:49Profile









 Re: Were the disciples born again before or after Pentecost?

This is a touchy subject. It can't be answered in a few words.

 2012/10/24 22:06
Croref
Member



Joined: 2008/3/18
Posts: 334


 Re:

Does that mean it shouldn't be discussed that one's thinking might be adjusted? For instance:

Acts 18;26 re Apollos and 19 the disciples of John with Paul, were not events that demonstrated the need of salvation or even indwelling but, the need for Pentecost in their ministry.

 2012/10/25 7:11Profile









 Re:

This is a great question. We need to have more discussions like this, instead of some of the ones we generally have here.

Born again? Well, let's keep in mind that Jesus said "Unless a man be born again he can not see the kingdom of God". (John 3:3) He then went on to explain what that meant. Therefore we can conclude that there was such a thing as being "born again" before Acts chapter 2. And John 3:3 is very early in Jesus ministry.

Being reborn is a spiritual thing that happens to a person when God moves upon them and awaken their dead spirit... brings it back to life... resurrection. This has been happening ever since the fall and mans spirit was declared DOA. We are dead in our sins. Thats a state that mankind has been in since Eden. God then moves upon a man to quicken his soul... bring to life that which was dead.

Thats "born again". This DID happen to the disciples while they walked with Christ. For most of them (Judas was the exception) this happened to them when He called them to follow Him. Then they began the walk of sanctification.

They did not need the Holy Spirit while they walked with Christ. Thats not to say the Spirit of God was not among them, but they were walking and talking with God in the flesh. When Christ left them He sent another... the Holy Spirit... who taught, empowered, etc.

This is a great question, and I am glad it was asked. Made me think. I'm sure there will be others who may give a slightly different answer, but I do believe the disciples were "born again" before Acts chapter 2.

Krispy

 2012/10/25 8:45
Croref
Member



Joined: 2008/3/18
Posts: 334


 Re:

The new birth could NOT have occurred before Jesus resurrected and was glorified. This is crucial for the understanding of it because the new birth of man was for the indwelling of His Life in___ whom He chooses. There is a cost associated with it. If John 20:22 wasn't for this then why would the Disciples need it and that it wasn't for power for ministry which came later in Acts 2? OMT, John 20:22 was NOT the promise of the Father which was also Acts 2 as Peter spoke of it in vs 38,39.

 2012/10/25 9:18Profile









 Re:

So God did not save anyone at all before the resurrection? Is that what you are saying?

Krispy

 2012/10/25 10:39
Croref
Member



Joined: 2008/3/18
Posts: 334


 Re:

Did they [the righteous] not die with only the promise of their redemption? Where did they go when they died? Why?

 2012/10/25 11:51Profile





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