Baptism in the Holy Spirit

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Baptism in the Holy Spirit is a Christian experience that follows regeneration and baptism with water. Some denominations, such as the Church of the Nazarene, emphasize the importance of sanctification after conversion and regeneration, going so far as to require that clergy have this experience.

All four Gospels agree that John the Baptist, who would use water to perform his baptisms, foretold that Jesus would experience this non-physical reception of the Holy Ghost. These passages are called the expectation of John the Baptist and can be found in Matthew 3:11, Mark 1:8, Luke 3:16, and John 1:33. The Gospels of Matthew and Luke also mention baptism of fire, indicating that baptism is not confined to sacramental, water baptism. In Acts 1:5 Jesus recalls these words of John the Baptist, which unfold in Acts 2:1-47.

The Book of Acts relates the baptism of the Holy Spirit as being received "through the laying on of the hands of the apostles": Acts 8:14-22; 19:1-7; 1 Timothy 4:14; 2 Timothy 1:6; Hebrews 6:1-2.

Those major Christian Churches which confer the sanctification of Confirmation on baptized believers by the laying on of the hands of a Bishop teach that Confirmation is the normal means of baptizing with the Holy Spirit, to impart the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit (Isaiah 11:2-3) and that the gifts and fruit of the Spirit are active and evident to varying degrees in those who devoutly seek to serve God in the Spirit of the Lord. 1 Corinthians 12–14.

In the Orthodox Church, Confirmation is a sacrament called Chrismation, and is conferred on infants immediately after Baptism and Communion. In the Catholic Church, the Sacrament of Confirmation is delayed until the age of reason, usually 8 to 12 years of age, when the candidates are free to personally commit their lives to the service of Christ.

Within the Protestant churches, Pentecostals and charismatics are the prominent teachers of the view that baptism of the Holy Spirit is a subsequent experience to salvation and baptism; some (a very small minority) go so far as to teach that one is not saved if one is not baptized in the Holy Spirit. On the other hand, Evangelicals and Fundamentalists believe that the Holy Spirit comes to a person upon salvation and that no subsequent "experience" is necessary, either for salvation or effective Christian living.