Who cannot receive the Baptism of the Holy Spirit?
A) The Fleshly Man
Simon the Sorcerer
Simon the Sorcerer, as he was called, heard the Gospel and was baptized, but because his understanding was limited, he acted in a very fleshly manner.
Acts 8:9 -21 says, “But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one...
12But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.
13Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done...
18And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money,
19Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.
20But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. 21Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.”
So we see that Simon was inhibited by his immature understanding, which resulted in a fleshly or carnal approach.
B) The Natural Man (not born again)
I Corinthians 2:14 says, “But the natural man receives not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”
Jesus said in John 14:17, “Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it sees him not, neither knows him: but ye know him; for he dwells with you, and shall be in you
C) The Stiff-necked (prideful)
Acts 7:51says, "Ye stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, you do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do you."
D) The Unlearned
Acts 8:15-17 says, "Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:(16) (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) (17) Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost."
Acts 19:1-2, “While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples and asked them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?" They answered, "No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”
E) The Self Righteous
Galatians 3: 2-5 says, "You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. (2)I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by observing the law, or by believing what you heard? (3)Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort? (4)Have you suffered so much for nothing–if it really was for nothing? (5)Does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you because you observe the law, or because you believe what you heard?"
F) Those who won't ask (or have been taught to be afraid)
Luke 11:9-11 says, "So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 10For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. 11“Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? 12Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”
F) The Faithless
Matthew 13:58 says, "Now He did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief."
G) The Hard-hearted
Hebrews 3:8, "The Holy Spirit says, 'If you hear His Voice, do not harden your hearts."