AND NOW IT BEGINS
"He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
“His winnowing fork is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clear His threshing floor; and He will gather His wheat into the barn,
"but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”
In these few Words, John takes us from Conversion to our Eternal Home with God. John describes what happens when you surrender your life to Christ and illustrates the violent act of separating unbelievers from His Own. He is fulfilling His Promise to take us to the Home He has prepared for us and describing the consequences for those who reject Him.
This is a Great Prophecy. Take Heed.
Many Christian friends are quick to point out that they were filled by the Holy Spirit at conversion which usually means the Holy Spirit convicts of sin, comfort, gives wisdom and guidance. And this is true. But, this verse means much more as it uses the dramatic words "Baptized with the Holy Spirit and fire".
So, I say, "OH? So you say you have been baptized with the Holy Spirit - and with fire? So, tell me about that...but, before you are too quick to answer, let's look at the record.
BAPTISM BY WATER AND THE HOLY SPIRIT
"Immediately after being baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and lighting on Him, and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.” (Matthew 3:16-17)
In a similar fashion, when you are saved and Baptized you will experience the Holy Spirit and fire. How is that possible? Read on (please, read on).
Scriptures tell us that we are to be like Jesus. We are to have the "mind of Christ" and to "do the Works that He does and even greater works". But, none of this is possible without the Baptism of The Holy Spirit.
Even Jesus said "Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner."
"I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.
Immediately after His baptism,
Matthew 4:1 "Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.