It’s birthday time. Happy birthday to us. In just a few weeks, May 24th to be exact, we will be celebrating the birthday of the church. Not our church specifically but the birthday of the Christian church. That day is more commonly referred to as Pentecost. Pentecost was the day that the Holy Spirit descended upon the believers bringing about the birth of the church.
It is my observation that people respond to talk of the Holy Spirit in a variety of ways. Some respond with excitement and joy. Others have questions while some are uncertain. I would like to introduce you to the Holy Spirit with three descriptions. Is the Holy Spirit limited to my three descriptions? Hardly. For today, I will limit it to three.
First, the Holy Spirit is also the Lord. Paul in 2 Corinthians 3:8 states this fact rather directly when he writes, “Now the Lord is the Spirit...” To say that you are filled with the Holy Spirit is to say that you are filled with Jesus the Lord. Jesus had the authority (along with the Father) to send His Holy Spirit in a new and powerful way upon the church. Jesus says to his followers, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you...” (Acts 1:8)
The second and third descriptions are Joy and Strength. Theologian R.C. Sproul describes it this way;
“Two remarkable things happened to the disciples after Jesus departed. The
first is that they "returned to Jerusalem with great joy" (Luke 24:52). They were
not despondent over the departure of Jesus. Obviously they finally understood
why He was leaving. They understood what, for the most part, the church since
then has failed to understand. We live as if it would not have been better for Jesus to leave.
The second obvious change in the lives of the disciples was in their spiritual strength. After Pentecost, they were different people. No longer did they flee like sheep without a shepherd. Instead, they turned the world upside down. They turned the world upside down because they fully understood two simple things: the "where" and the "why" of Jesus' departure.”
Great joy and spiritual strength are two of the benefits of the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Let Him release these benefits in your life today.
Happy Birthday to Us!