A Holy Spirit Question

Q. I have question involving the receiving the Holy Spirit. In John 20:22 it is said Jesus breathed on them and said “Receive the Holy Spirit” How is this different the the coming of the Holy Spirit in Acts 2? Thank you for your insight.

A. In John 20:22 the disciples became the first to receive the Holy Spirit who Paul said would be given to all believers as a deposit guaranteeing their inheritance (Ephesians 1:13-14). Earlier, John had explained that this would begin to happen following the Lord’s death and resurrection (John 7:37-39).

In Acts 2 the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples in power, enabling them to speak to the crowd assembled there in a way that allowed everyone to understand them in his own language.

Some scholars call this an “epi” experience after the Greek word that means “to come upon”. It’s a temporary manifestation of the Holy Spirit that enables the recipient to perform a supernatural act, often as a sign to others. Similar “epi” experiences are mentioned in Acts 10:44-46 and Acts 19:6.

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