The impact of baptism with the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues on counselling

Dr Dennis Erasmus addressed the SAAP seminar on 22 November 2008.

Dr Dennis Erasmus is Pastor of Pastors of the Apostolic Faith Mission of SA.  He described his personal experience of salvation and the baptism with the Holy Spirit as the most powerful experience of his life. 

It is accepted that all the born-again children of God has the Holy Spirit within them.  The initial evidence theory holds that speaking in tongues is evidence of the baptism with the Holy Spirit. The Pentecostal movement worldwide has always seen this blessing as an action of God in addition to regenaration, after conversion.

It is based on Acts 2:4 where tongues of fire descended on the apostles and they began speaking in other tongues.  Later Paul used the word glossolalia to signify the gift of the tongues where the believer opens up to the Holy Spirit and speaks words without the mind.

One danger is that the over-emphasis of tongues can lead to spiritual pride.  The second blessing and gift of tongues are not a cure for psychological disorders. One should guard against fake experiences, but not throw away the real thing because of some counterfeit manifestations.

It is good to be reminded of Ephesians 2 where Paul states that our faith is a gift given by the grace of God.

The value of baptism with the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues lie in empowerment for the Great Commandment and the Great Commission, as found in Luke 10:27 and Matt. 28:19,20.

Paul describes in 1 Cor. 14 the gift of tongues as not speaking to men but to God. It is a type of prayer rather than the gift of a foreign language. Dr Erasmus believes that it may be a miracle of hearing rather than of speech. It edifies the person in prayer. Paul therefore prefers the gift of prophecy rather than the gift of tongues for teaching.

Both the gifts and the fruit of the Spirit play a role in counselling.  The Lord said in John 7:38: “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.”  

The baptism with the Holy Spirit may bring the counsellor closer to the flow of the Holy Spirit, with a life-long overflow of love, peace and joy.

Dr Erasmus quoted examples of people that were healed after earnest prayer, through the abundance of the Holy Spirit.

In the counselling situation tongues may be of limited benefit to the counsellee, but the silent prayer may benefit the counsellor much.

Get in touch with dr Erasmus at (011) 205-9682 or 082 523 4633 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


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