Today is Pentecost Sunday – the day in which we celebrate the birth of the Church. Though it is not as widely celebrated as Christmas or Easter, Pentecost Sunday is at least as significant to us as the other two. You see, God created us to be in relationship with Him, and gave us dominion over all of creation. His intent, from the beginning, was that we would walk with Him and partner with Him in the realm that He gave us. All of this was broken by sin. But God didn’t leave us on our own. He is the relentless God who goes to great lengths to redeem and restore all that has been broken.
How far did He go? He became one with His creation. The birth of Jesus (the incarnation of God) is the most stunning act of God – beyond our human comprehension. The Creator God became one with His creation. He chose to be united with humanity forever. So, Jesus walked on the earth for 33 years, and gave His life for us. But that wasn’t all. After He died, He rose again from the dead, guaranteeing that we, too, will rise again in glorious resurrection life! But there was still more.
Before His crucifixion, Jesus told His disciples, “It is good for you that I go away…” What? Good for us that He go away? No way! It seems that things would be so much simpler if Jesus was still walking among us. But He tells us why. “It is good for you that I go away, because I will ask the Father, and He will send you the Holy Spirit, who won’t just be with you; but will be in you” (John 14:16-17; 16:7).
After His resurrection, Jesus told the disciples to stay in Jerusalem and wait for the promise of the Father (Acts 1:4). And 50 days after the resurrection, on the Day of Pentecost, the promise was fulfilled. The Father poured out the Holy Spirit “upon all flesh” (also fulfilling what Joel had prophesied – Joel 2:28-29), that we might once again fully partake of the life of God.
Pentecost could not have happened without Easter (the resurrection); and Easter could not have happened without Christmas (the incarnation). But these two alone would not have been enough for us to experience the fullness of life that God wants to give us.
When God promised us eternal life, He wasn’t just talking about spending eternity in Heaven (though that is certainly something we can look forward to). He was talking about enjoying fullness of life in the here and now, as He had intended from the start. How do we receive that? By the Holy Spirit. And this was inaugurated on the Day of Pentecost. To make sure that we would have all that we need, our loving Father poured out His Spirit.
Among many other things…
* The Holy Spirit mediates the love and presence of God
* The Holy Spirit convinces us that we are sons (and daughters) of God
* The Holy Spirit is the down-payment (guarantee) of things to come
* The Holy Spirit is the agent of our transformation
* The Holy Spirit teaches us and leads us into all truth
* The Holy Spirit gives us power to know God’s plans
* The Holy Spirit gives us power to know God’s will
* The Holy Spirit gives us power to obey the Lord
* The Holy Spirit gives us power to rest in God
* The Holy Spirit gives us power to proclaim Christ
* The Holy Spirit prays with us according to God’s perfect will
* The Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness
* The Holy Spirit produces His fruit in our lives
* The Holy Spirit manifests God’s presence and love through supernatural gifts
We are called to live in His fullness. This promise of the Father “s for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself” (Acts 2:39).
Are you living in the fullness of Pentecost? Don’t try to live your life on your own strength. Receive the Holy Spirit. Be continually filled with Him, that you may enjoy eternal life.
Dr. Chiqui Polo-Wood | All Rights Reserved 2016