8.3.5 Further attestations of Holy Sealing in the New Testament

According to the testimony of Scripture, Holy Sealing is bound to the Apostle ministry. Philip had preached in Samaria and baptised those who believed in the gospel: "Now when the Apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them, who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit. For as yet He had fallen upon none of them. They had only been baptised in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then they laid hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit" (Acts 8: 12 et seq.). Simon the sorcerer "saw that through the laying on of the Apostles' hands the Holy Spirit was given" (Acts 8: 18). In this incident, the sacraments of Holy Baptism with water and Holy Sealing–that is the receiving of the gift of the Holy Spirit–are clearly distinguished from one another.

There is another event that serves to substantiate the distinction between baptism with water and the receiving of the Holy Spirit. In Ephesus there were disciples who, having only received the baptism of John, were then baptised in the name of the Lord Jesus: "And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them" (Acts 19: 1-6).

These accounts indicate that, apart from the exceptions mentioned, the gift of the Holy Spirit was solely administered by Apostles. Furthermore, it becomes clear that the gift of the Holy Spirit was dispensed only after baptism with water had been administered.

See also