There are many Christians who are alcoholics, workaholics, shop-a-holics, smoke-a-holics, lie-a-holics, sex-a-holics, and so forth. These are hurting people seeking to ease their pains of life with habits and activities that they believe will feed their own “hungry” spirit. They are addicted to habits and activities that, on the surface, appear to enliven them. In actuality, these Christian addicts are nothing more than the walking dead—their spirits are alive but their bodies and minds are still enslaved by the world’s systems. They are dead to a Holy Spirit-filled life—a life in which believers not only are living in close fellowship with God but also are living as overcomers with Christ Jesus, while trusting God for more supernatural endowments (gifts) and a deeper empowerment than most believers ever experience.
Then there are many Christians who live miserable, defeated, and/or walking dead lives, all because they stray off the path that leads to righteousness and do not return to the Lord’s way. Furthermore, while traveling down the wrong path, most of them become utterly deceived. Their ignorance about what truly is in the Holy Bible also causes them to operate or function outside of the full power of God. Because they put their faith in their own strength, intelligence, wisdom, fame, money, and/or possessions—instead of living a Christ-centered life that yields to (submits to) the supernatural workings of the Holy Spirit—like the abovementioned Christian addicts, these believers also end up trying to ease their hurts and pains with their own methods, which are in accordance with their own understandings.
Jesus the Christ wants hurting, addicted, and defeated people, non-Christians and believers, to live lives that are in harmony with His Word. However, before they can live the God-kind of Christian lifestyle, these hurting, addicted, and defeated people first must realize that they only can come alive in Jesus Christ once they are baptized in the Holy Spirit and in Fire.
Living a life without having Jesus the Christ as the source of their help and healing, especially in these times of need, will cause these hurting, addicted, and defeated individuals to continue to be the walking dead. The Lord, however, wants their lives to be LIVING testimonies of the goodness, mercy, grace, and love of God. For this reason, these walking dead also must give Jesus the Christ all of their hurts and pains so that He can let the Holy Spirit give them the peace of God.
Christ invites every hurting, addicted, and/or defeated person to come alive in Him by being baptized in the Holy Spirit and Fire (cf. Matthew 3:11, KJV). Both baptisms refer to making a permanent change. Being baptized in the Holy Spirit is being filled or flooded with supernatural power and gifts. Being baptized in the Holy Spirit also means being saturated with zeal—to be fired up for Jesus Christ and for the sake of the Gospel (change number 1). Being baptized in Fire is becoming sanctified (purified)—becoming a spiritually mature fruit producer (change number 2).
The Holy Spirit is God’s fiery Spirit who baptizes, floods/fills, God’s children by endowing and empowering them so that they fervently can work as One Body in Christ toward fulfilling the purpose of making disciples of mankind (the Great Commission). He also fills their hearts/spirits with the LIGHT of Jesus the Christ so that they can shine in this dark world. Next, the Holy Spirit fire baptizes God’s children by thoroughly cleansing (burning off the impurities of sin) so as to make God’s children holy/pure. Baptism in fire, thus, symbolizes the transforming energy of the Holy Spirit’s sanctification actions. Therefore, both baptisms are needed in the sanctification process, for they work together to shine/burn in humans, to fuse believers into one Body in Christ, to lead, to guide, to teach, to reveal, to heal, to mature, to make spiritually productive, and to refine or purify the body and soul/mind so that they (the body and soul) can be glorified.
The bottom line is that it is not enough to have the Holy Spirit living on the inside of believers. Every justified believer receives (possesses) the Holy Spirit. However, the Holy Bible has Scriptures that prove that the baptism of the Holy Spirit is a separate event. Therefore, the Holy Spirit also must fill/flood and fire-purify believers so that He can transform them into the image of Jesus the Christ! AMEN.
“God is not the God of the dead, but of the living” (Matthew 22:32b, KJV).