As Regular Baptists we unashamedly embrace cessationism—the view that some of the spiritual gifts (namely, the revelatory and sign gifts) ceased to be operative early in the history of the Christian church. This cessation occurred because God gave us everything we need pertaining to life and godliness through His inerrant and sufficient Word in the completed canon of Scripture (2 Pet. 1:3–4; cf. 1 Cor. 13:8–13; Heb. 2:3–4).
In the face of widespread confusion concerning the person and work of the Holy Spirit and the means by which God speaks to and leads His people, we endeavor to proclaim an understanding of the Holy Spirit’s work in this age that is deeply rooted in Scripture.
God’s Word teaches that the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Triune Godhead (Acts 5:3–4; 16:7; 1 Cor. 6:11), is working powerfully in and through individual believers and local churches in the following ways:
- He convicts us concerning sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16:8–11).
- He regenerates us, imputing spiritual life to the spiritually dead at the moment of salvation (John 3:6; Titus 3:5–7).
- He adopts us (Rom. 8:15).
- He baptizes us into the Body of Christ (1 Cor. 12:13).
- He permanently indwells us (Rom. 8:9–11; 1 Cor. 3:16; 6:19).
- He seals us, securing our permanent salvation and inheritance forever (2 Cor. 1:22, Eph. 1:13–14).
- He fills us (Eph. 5:18).
- He intercedes on our behalf (Rom. 8:26–27).
- He is our “Helper” (Paraclete) who comforts, encourages, and assists us as we seek to live for Christ (John 14:26).
- He illuminates Biblical truth (1 Cor. 2:10).
- He produces spiritual fruit in our lives (Gal. 5:22–23).
- He creates unity among believers of all different backgrounds, ethnicities, cultures, and locations (Eph. 2:18; 4:3–4).
- He empowers us for gospel ministry (Acts 1:8).
- He bestows spiritual gifts upon us for the purpose of building up the Body of Christ until it is conformed to Christ’s image (Rom. 12:6–8; 1 Cor. 12:4–11).
- He glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ (John 16:14).
As a fellowship of churches, we desire to be controlled by the Spirit; to walk in the Spirit; to submit to the Spirit; to be led by the Spirit through the Scriptures; to be empowered by the Spirit for gospel proclamation to a lost and dying world; to exercise our spiritual gifts as we edify fellow believers; and to trust steadfastly in the Holy Spirit to be our comforter, guide, and ever-present helper.
It is only through the power of the Holy Spirit that churches will be planted and revitalized and will flourish for the glory of God. May our fellowship of churches be a testimony to the mighty power of the Holy Spirit’s work in this age until our Savior returns to rapture us home to Glory.
Resolved by the messengers of the General Association of Regular Baptist Churches, meeting together in regular conference June 28 to July 1, 2021, at Bethel Baptist Church in Schaumburg, Illinois.