On this page we present a description of a personal encounter of Dr. Peter V. Homeier with God, in his own words.
I would like to describe how I met God, a remarkable occurrence.
It gives me a sense of fulfilment to lay my story out here.
I do know that most people do not like being preached at,
so I would like to avoid this. Instead,
I would like to simply place before you, with as little interpretation
as possible, just what happened to me. This is not meant as a theological
treatise; it is merely my experience. So without more ado, let me begin.
A Knock at the Door
The year was 1975. I was 19 years old, an undergraduate student at
CalTech in Pasadena, California, and had just begun my sophmore year
there, intending to major in Mathematics. I was living in the
student house on campus called Ruddock House, rooming with one other
guy named Larry. One evening in September, I was alone in my room,
studying at my desk for a midterm the next day. I was just minding
my own business, not bothering anyone, when there came a knock at the
My roommate Larry and another guy, John, came in. Both these guys were
part of the group of "born-again" Christians on campus. I regarded this
group with a certain kind of wary skepticism. Personally, I felt that
I had a sincere faith in God, but there was something about their way
of being more fervent or excited about it that didn't match where I was.
For one thing, sometimes these people would actually carry Bibles
around, like it was just any kind of book. I never did that. So while
I liked many of them, I kind of kept my distance, observing them but
thinking that perhaps they were a little "fanatical."
For myself, I had believed in God for as long as I could remember,
respecting Him and loving Him as a quiet, personal matter, but not
having any real sense of contact or involvement with Him. It was
as if He was way far away, behind a cloud, thinking kindly towards
me, but completely apart and uninvolved. I greatly respected Him,
though, and felt that if ever it was possible for God to let me know
of something that He wanted me to do, then I would certainly try
everything in my power to do it.
I would probably have called myself a Christian at this time, although
I was greatly puzzled by who Jesus really was, what the Cross was all
about, and what on earth some people meant about having a "personal
relationship" with Jesus. I thought, how could you have a personal
relationship with an historical figure? But basically, I respected
God and felt very glad for the relationship I felt I had with Him.
So as I said, I had kept a skeptical eye toward these "born-again" types
at CalTech. But over the past few weeks since the start of the quarter,
something had been happening to softly change my attitude. I tended to
watch others, although I rarely said anything. I noticed that there was
a difference between the "born-again" Christians and the other students
in the house. For the most part, generalizing, I saw the Christians at
least trying to be kind to people, to reach out and help them. I don't
mean to say that I saw them being effective in this, but I could see that
they were at least trying; and for the most part, the non-Christians seemed
to act as if they didn't care. I mulled this over in the back of my
Stepping Outside Time
So when I greeted Larry and John that night, there was perhaps
something special in the air. Something must have
been different, because we started getting into the most exciting
conversation. It went on for hours and hours. It was one of those
magical moments when time seems to pause and extend into timelessness.
We started talking about galaxies, and molecules, and everything in
between. We started talking about God, and miracles. We even talked about
miracles happening not only two thousand years ago, but today. I was
amazed, as the guys told me stories of people speaking in languages
they did not know and had never humanly learned, and even about
people being physically healed miraculously of all kinds of illnesses!
This blew my mind. I was astounded. I knew that if even one time
there could be one subatomic particle that did not operate according
to the laws of physics, those laws would have to be significantly
extended. So I watched these guys as they talked. If they were
lying or putting me on, I would have known. But because I knew them,
it was obvious to me that they were telling me the clear truth.
While we were talking, a thought gradually came into my mind. As I have
said, I was very pleased with my relationship with God. But as I was
listening to them, the thought came, "Perhaps there's something more."
As I continued to listen and talk with them, another thought gradually
came to my mind. It was, "If there is something more, then I want it."
In the midst of this, and wrapped up with many of these miraculous
events they were describing, was something they called "the baptism of
the Holy Spirit." It seemed that it was through this baptism that people
began to speak in these new languages. I had never heard any of this
before, this was totally new to me.
Eventually the talk wore down, and we came to the end. At this point
Larry and John asked me if I wanted them to pray for me for this gift
of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Not knowing what I was getting myself
into, I said, simply, "Sure!"
So we sat down on the bed (the dorm room was so small, there was nowhere
else to sit). Larry and John put their hands on my shoulders, and we all
began to pray, asking for this baptism of the Holy Spirit. I was praying
with them for a few minutes when I heard John begin to speak in another
language! I tell you, a chill went down my spine! It was so strange. It
was clearly a language, with words and phrases and intonation, but I was
pretty sure it was no language that I had ever heard before, and I had
never heard John speak in any foreign tongue at all.
I didn't know what to expect. I was kind of wondering if perhaps my own
mouth would start opening and closing on its own, flapping around with
sounds coming out of it. Well, that didn't happen. But something else did.
I gradually became aware of a physical warmth in my chest, like heat.
It was a very distinct feeling, like a glowing inside.
I thought, "This is weird! Nobody told me anything about feeling
a physical warmth." But we all kept praying, and I felt the warmth
increasing and growing stronger. It grew stronger and stronger, and
it kept on growing stronger, and then it continued to grow, mounting
up with terrific force and intensity until it was like I was sitting
underneath an invisible waterfall, that was coming down and crashing
on top of my head, going inside my head, flowing down through my torso,
down my legs and out my feet! It was rushing, and pouring, and gushing,
and flowing! It was the most terrific flood pouring down tumultously
all through me!
If you have ever seen one of those travel posters from Hawaii, showing
a couple in bathing suits underneath a fern-draped waterfall, that's how
Except that it didn't feel exactly like water, but more like a mixture
of love, acceptance, laughter, peace, security, joy, giggles, snuggling under
the covers at night, being held and cared for, and just being completely
and totally loved. It was like a stream of molten fiery liquid glowing
gold. If there was any single word to describe it, it would have to be
I was laughing, and I was crying, and I didn't have the slightest idea
what on earth was going on! I have never in my life taken drugs, but I
cannot imagine anything else comparing to this! I never realized it before,
but for the very first time in my whole life I felt really and truly loved,
unconditionally, fully, to the core of my being. And I knew it was God.
This lasted for perhaps about fifteen minutes, and then it gradually
started lessening, and slowly faded away. But I was still completely
dazzled. In fact, my roommate Larry can vouch for the fact that I was
walking around CalTech for the next three days in a haze, with a silly
dazed grin on my face! I was still just glowing inside from what had
happened to me.
Bobbing in the Wake
After three days, I came out of this daze, and I said to myself, "Oh
my goodness! This is for REAL!!! I have to find out about this!"
So for the first time in my life, I started going to church and Bible
studies and other meetings with these guys.
One of the first places I went was a weekend retreat away from CalTech,
where we began going through the Gospel of Mark, to read about Jesus's
life. I had never read the Gospel of Mark before. To everyone else it
was old hat, but to me it was all incredibly new. At one point they
got to the story about the Transfiguration. (Mark 9:1-13)
This was where Jesus took a few of his disciples up on a mountain and
He was transfigured before them, glowing white with glory. During this
there comes a cloud overhead from which a Voice speaks, saying "This is
My beloved Son; listen to Him!"
This was absolutely astounding to me! One of the big questions I had in
my mind was who Jesus was. Suddenly I realized the answer. This cloud
and the voice, it had to be God. And if that's God, then Jesus
must be His Son. That's the answer! Jesus is God's Son! I never
knew that before. I was astounded!
I didn't realize this until now, as I am writing here, that maybe one
reason this scripture impacted me so directly was because it was so
similar to what had happened to me in my dorm room. It was the glory
and the presence of Jesus that had shone down on me, not visibly,
but overwhelmingly in my heart and mind.
Well, things went on getting even more amazing and wonderful, with all
kinds of adventures and ups and downs. But to sum it all up, that night
when the two guys prayed for me was the fulcrum of my life. Everything
changed, pivoting on that night. Before, it was like I was living my
life in black and white; and suddenly it was like someone turned on
the color. I never knew life could be so beautiful. It was heartbreakingly
wonderful, because I knew I was loved by God. He had reached down and
touched me, Himself, personally, when I had no idea that He even could
do something like that. He had mercy on me, seeing me in my broken and
lonely neediness, despite my mental walls of defense, and sought me out
and poured out His Holy Spirit on me. Although He used those two guys
to pray for me, He called me and showed me the way to find Him by His
Since those days, He has taught me many more things, and I have seen
both miracles and trials. But through it all, I have come to know the
Lord whose Presence I felt that night more and more closely, as we
have grown together in an intimate, personal relationship--another thing
I never knew was possible. Whatever happens from here, I know I will be
forever with my Jesus, my God, and this is a happiness greater than
everything else combined.
Many intelligent people are surprised to see an educated person profess faith in Christ. For a reasonable explanation
of the essense of Christianity, I suggest the book
English: Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis
German: Pardon, ich bin Christ von Clive St. Lewis
C. S. Lewis was a professor at Oxford University in the twentieth century. He was a decided athiest who became convinced
of the validity of the Christian faith, as he described in
Surprised by Joy by C. S. Lewis
Überrascht von Freude von Clive St. Lewis, Christian Rendel
It has occurred to me that some people reading this page might need
to know more about Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and how to be born again
and filled with the Holy Spirit. In the spirit of serving,
I am providing the following information.
The good news, or "gospel," can be summarized in a few simple concepts:
1. God loves you, and has a beautiful plan for your life.
God desires to protect, care, provide, guide, and relate warmly and
intimately with you, forever. He made you, gave you the life you
live today, and wants you to live with Him forever.
He knows every detail of your life, and cares for you more fervently, richly, and tenderly than anyone you have ever met in
all your life, more than parents, children, or spouses. Encountering God means meeting the greatest Friend and Lover you
could ever have in all your life.
2. Sin has separated each of us from the bounty of God's wonderful love.
All of us have sinned, but God is holy, and cannot ignore sin. (Romans 3:23)
Most people admit they have sinned, but they do not realize the
drastic and deadly consequences of what they have done.
The fit and appropriate punishment for our sins is death,
both physical death here and eternal separation from God in the world
to come. (Romans 6:23) And the eternal separation is not some kind
of mindless sleep, but an unending roasting torment in the
literal fires of Hell. (Luke 16:19-31)
God does not wish for anyone to perish, but His absolute holiness cannot abide sin,
and His justice requires that we reap what we have sown.
It grieves God's tender heart to see any of his creations condemned to
such a horror for eternity, so He has provided a way of escape for those who choose it.
3. No amount of good deeds, philosophy, or religious activities can
cross the gulf that sin has created. No one can be "good enough."
There is nothing we can offer in our own behalf, other than our very lives,
that is, to literally die. There is no protection from this, and no
escape, none at all, except the one way He has provided.
There is a great and terrible Day appointed when God will judge us all. It is reckless presumption
to assume that the standard of goodness we use for justifying ourselves is what God will use to
evaluate us. This attitude is no less reckless for it being so popular these days.
If we are judged, He will use our own inner consciences as the standard, testifying for or against us, as we know in our hearts.
(Romans 2:15-16) Sadly, none of us have a conscience which is clean, knowing all too well those things we have done that
And God is absolutely holy, like a burning fire. (Hebrews 12:29)
4. The only way of escape is Jesus Christ. Jesus has bridged the gulf between us and God through His Cross.
He suffered and died in our place, completely absorbing the just punishment
for our sins, destroying their power over us. The blood Jesus shed on
the Cross cleanses us from all sin.
As God's mercy, this opens the way for us to return to God's loving arms.
We escape the judgement we deserve, just as if we had never sinned. Jesus is the only way, as He himself said, "I
am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." [John 14:6]
What God has done
For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that
whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Jesus has paid the price for our sin, which we could never do. He who
had never sinned, willingly suffered and died for those who had sinned.
God affirmed all Jesus taught and confirmed Him as His Son by raising
Jesus from the dead. This factual, historical miracle is the core evidence that Jesus was who he said he was, and that all
we have written here is true. Jesus at the Cross has done all the "heavy lifting"
here to restore us to God. But there is a part reserved for us.
What we must do
We must on our part accept the free gift of salvation offered by God.
It's freely offered, but it must be accepted, just like a Christmas
present from a friend, or it doesn't get delivered.
Accepting salvation means admitting that we have sinned,
that we need forgiveness, and receiving the forgiveness of God through
the price that Jesus paid on the Cross. This is called "accepting
Jesus as Savior." Accepting salvation also means taking Jesus as
our authority, and making a committment to honor and obey Him.
This is called "accepting Jesus as Lord." This is what is meant
by the scripture in Romans 10:9:
... that if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your
heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified,
and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.
As the Scripture says, "Anyone who trusts in him will never be
put to shame."
This must include obedience to the will of God, or the repentance
means nothing. We must be willing to change what we do, say, and think,
to live loving, holy, and righteous before Him.
If we become His child, we must reflect His nature.
This is essential. It is not simply saying a set of words that saves us,
but a change of heart, reflected in deeds.
If this is what you wish to do, of your own free will, then pray the
Lord God, I admit to you that I have sinned, that I have done wrong
things that have hurt myself, others, and You. I am sorry for this, and
I need Your forgiveness for these things. I understand that Jesus died
on the Cross for my sins. I choose to take Jesus as my Savior and Lord,
and to trust and obey Him in all things. Please accept His sacrifice in
my place, and forgive me for all my sins. Please accept me into Your family,
and show me how to live from here on. Change me so that I can live
the life you want me to live for You. I love You, Lord, and I want to
know You more.
Now that you're saved
If you have prayed this prayer, and meant it, you are now saved, and
restored to relationship with God. Jesus called this being "born again."
(John 3:3,7) As a new Christian, here are some suggestions to help you
in your new life:
1. Start reading the Bible every day. The best place to start is in
the Gospel of John, one of the books in the New Testament, the second half
of the Bible.
2. Pray, all the time, about everything. God loves to hear you pray, and
He will answer you.
3. Find a good, Bible-believing church and attend regularly, and become
truly involved with the other Christians there. You are now part of the
family of all believers, and we were never meant to be isolated from each
other, but to love each other in warm fellowship.
4. Be baptised in water at your church, as Jesus commands. This will
confirm you in your new faith, making a public declaration of your
salvation and your trust in Jesus. The Bible also describes how water
baptism cuts us off from our prior life of sin, and sets us free to live
dedicated to God. (Romans 6:3-4)
The Baptism of the Holy Spirit
If you have prayed the prayer above, or if you are already a Christian,
you may not have heard about the "baptism of the Holy Spirit." This is
an additional experience, separate from salvation.
When one is saved, you do have the Holy Spirit within you, but that is not
the same as being baptised in the Holy Spirit.
Being saved is like finding a well within yourself of eternal life where
you can drink and find satisfaction and peace.
Being baptised in the Holy Spirit is
like having that well burst forth as a geyser with tremendous power,
flowing outward in many rivers which can satisfy others around you.
This is what happened to me in the story above.
John the Baptist was a very holy man who in the years before Jesus
became known prepared people to follow Jesus by calling them to
repent, and baptising them as a sign of repentance. John said,
"I baptise you with water. But one more powerful than I will come, the
thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. He will baptise you
with the Holy Spirit and with fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand
to clear his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his barn, but
he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire." (Luke 3:16-17)
The wheat are the born-again Christians who will be gathered into
Heaven, but the chaff are the unrepentant who will be cast into a
literal, horrible, fiery Hell, forever. This is the most terrible
fact of all.
But for us who are Christ's, we are safely protected in God's love
(Romans 8:38-39), destined for eternal life with God in Heaven. In
addition, while we are still here on earth, He has prepared an equipping
to enable us to live the way He wants, effectively. After Jesus'
resurrection, He was with his disciples, and said,
"Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which
you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a
few days you will be baptised with the Holy Spirit. ... you will
receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my
witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of
the earth." (Acts 1:4-5,8)
The First Outpouring
What Jesus described here actually happened a few days later:
When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.
Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven
and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what
seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of
them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak
in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them. (Acts 2:1-4)
Each of the disciples spoke in a language they did not know personally,
but which was understood as a real language by others there in the city
from different parts of the Roman Empire.
This dramatic event was seen and heard by many, and three thousand people
were saved that day, making this the birth of the Christian church.
What is "speaking in tongues?"
This "speaking in tongues" is a miraculous sign of the presence and power
of the Holy Spirit. It is speaking in a real language that you have never
learned naturally, and do not understand mentally, yet you are able to
speak with the words being formed on your tongue by the Holy Spirit.
Once, in a class on tongues at church, I was speaking quietly in tongues,
and the man next to me asked me if I knew Italian. Confused, I said no,
but he said I had been speaking Italian! Amazed, I asked him what I had
been saying, and he replied that I had been saying phrases about loving
God and praising Him.
Speaking in tongues is impossible by human means, but God shows his awesome
power through this enabling, among others. It is not a surrender of your
will, mind, or personhood, but a cooperating with the Spirit. It is a
wonderful tool for praise and worship, and for private prayer to God, for
the Scriptures say that this kind of prayer is perfectly according to God's
will (Romans 8:27).
I did not experience speaking in tongues that night I was baptised in
the Holy Spirit, but I did a few months thereafter, and have continued
to this day. It is a daily reminder of His miracle-working power, and
an effective tool for intercession. It is a wonderful gift, and it is
available to all who receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Receiving the Baptism of the Holy Spirit
The baptism of the Holy Spirit is received the same way as salvation,
by asking for it in faith. It cannot be earned or deserved, it is
simply freely poured out on those who ask. Jesus said,
"Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a
snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?
If 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!" (Luke 11:11-13)
If you would like this baptism of the Holy Spirit, pray the following
Dear Jesus, I ask You to baptise me in Your Holy Spirit.
I want to be filled with Your power. Let the rivers of Your Spirit flow
through me. Please give me everything of the fullness of Your Spirit,
so I can accomplish all things that You want me to do.
If you have prayed this, believe now that you have received the Holy
Spirit, and give Him place to express His power through your life. You
may feel words coming to your tongue in another language you do not know.
This is fine, let them come out, this is the Holy Spirit. If you don't
feel such words, don't worry about it, they will appear later if you wish.
Please note that everyone I have spoken to that has received the baptism
of the Holy Spirit has had a different set of feelings and experiences.
The experience I described above was rather on the dramatic end of the
spectrum, but that in no way makes it more valid or real or
significant than other people's experiences which were much more quiet.
This is important, and it is common to wrongly judge validity by intensity.
God gives each person what they need.
Don't judge the validity of this event through the strength
of the feelings, but through the security of God's Word, as in
the Scriptures above. The real test of the validity of this experience
is in the fruit of a changed life. (Galatians 5:22-23)
Now that you're filled
Now that you have been filled with the Spirit, here are two suggestions
to grow in this:
1. Read in the book of Acts in the Bible about others who were filled
with the Spirit. Also, 1 Corinthians 12 and 14 give good advice about
various spiritual gifts. The best rule is to always exercise such gifts
in love, as described in 1 Corinthians 13.
2. If you have spoken in another tongue, continue in that daily. It
will edify you and build you up. You do not need a great sense of
emotion or power in order to speak, just start. Like exercising a
muscle, it strengthens with use.
Your brother in Christ Jesus,