The thread on the baptism in the spirit prompted me to begin this thread, and also the thread started by the guy sharing his testimony of the same. Many years ago, I attended a charismatic church briefly. It changed my life -- but not in a good way; I won't go into that, however. How do we interpret the experiences of those who claimed to have undergone a spirit baptism subsequent to conversion and spoken in tongues as evidence of same? In reading some histories of the Pentecostal movement, I remember statements of some of the pioneers of the movement saying that they did not try to verify an already-held belief in these doctrines by seeking an experience to confirm that, but that they had the experience first and then sought a scriptural justification and verification of same which they found in Paul's writings. Now it has been pointed out in other threads just how diverse the teachings of Pentecostals and Charismatics are, but on this point there is mostly unanimity. So, how do we explain this experience that Pentecostals have had and that they say should be the normative experience for all Christians? I know what I believe, but I want to see what others believe. Also, there seem to be a lack of NT experiences in contemporary non-pentecostal churches. Jesus said that of the works He did, that His followers would do even greater works. Why then do we not see that? Why do we not see an abundance of supernatural healings, deliverances, and other miraculous events in our churches? Why are not all the gifts of the Spirit in operation -- the ones that are listed in Paul's writings? Why are these things missing and absent in our churches? There is a lot of phoniness in the Charismatic movement, but, apart from that, I would like us to address the experience that Pentecostals and Charismatics claim to have had, and then the lack of operation of all the spiritual gifts in our churches, as well as the lack of miraculous healings and other miracles, signs, and wonders that were present in the NT church. For churches such as the Baptists and many others who are attempting to emulate the NT church, this a serious and relevant issue.