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Rodman Williams: The Gift of the Holy Spirit Today: Effects, Part 1

9. The joy of Jesus may be observed, for example, upon the return of seventy disciples from a successful missionary journey: “In that same hour he rejoiced [‘rejoiced greatly’ or ‘exulted’—egalliasato] in the Holy Spirit” (Luke 10:21). Here is fullness of joy in (or “by”) the Holy Spirit—which the disciples also were to experience later.

10. E.g., the women, told that Jesus was risen, “departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy (charas megales) …” (Matthew 28:8). Later Jesus appeared to the larger group who experienced “joy and …marveling” (charas kai thaumazonton) (Luke 24:41 NAS).

11. The Greek term is egalliasato, the same as in Luke 10:41 (supra).

12. We may recall (see chapter 6, fn. 9, in the Fall 2003 [6:4] issue of the Pneuma Review, p. 22) that the Acts 8:39 passage in a number of early manuscripts reads: “And when they came up out of the water, the Holy Spirit fell upon the eunuch and an angel of the Lord caught up Philip …” The point of this reading, as we before observed, is undoubtedly to emphasize that the eunuch’s believing and baptism were followed by the gift of the Spirit. Accordingly, the rejoicing of the eunuch springs out of his experience of the Holy Spirit. In regard to the Acts 16:34 passage, nothing is said directly about the Holy Spirit. However, since once again the rejoicing—or great rejoicing—is closely connected with faith and baptism, the implication of the text is quite likely that of the reception of the gift of the Holy Spirit.

13. Earlier we quoted the words of Larry Tomczak about his baptism in the Holy Spirit: “I felt the rapturous and exultant joy of the Lord surging through me. … Then, just at the right moment words began to flow from my heart” (supra. chap. 3, fn. 4, in the Fall 2002 [5:4] issue of the Pneuma Review, p. 9). Then Tomczak adds: “At the same time, like a mountain stream—pure, sparkling, cool, crystal clear—living joy began to flow upward and outward through my entire being.” His concluding words: “Jesus Christ touched me that night, and, oh, the joy that filled my soul. … I opened the door and seemed to float through it. Looking up at the cool, crisp, early morning sky, I grinned foolishly, drunk for joy” (Clap Your Hand, pp. 112-13). Also see the moving life story by Sister Mary Bernard, I Leap for Joy (Plainfield, NJ: Logos, 1974).

Unless otherwise indicated, all scriptural quotations are from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible.

The Gift of the Holy Spirit Today: Effects, Part 2 (Chapter 8)

The Gift of the Holy Spirit Today by J. Rodman Williams, was published in 1980 by Logos International. Used by permission of the author. Reprinted in Pneuma Review with minor updates from the author.

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Category: Spirit, Spring 2004

About the Author: J. Rodman Williams (1918-2008), Ph.D., is considered to be the father of renewal theology. He served as a chaplain in the Second World War, he was a church pastor, college professor, and key figure in the charismatic movement of the 1960s. Beginning in 1982, he taught theology at Regent University School of Divinity in Virginia Beach, Virginia, and became Professor of Renewal Theology Emeritus there in 2002. Author of numerous books, he is perhaps best known for his three volume Renewal Theology (Zondervan, 1996).

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