Today is Pentecost Sunday. It is the day when we remember the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the church. It is the fulfillment of what Jeremiah prophesied many years earlier. Jer 31:33-34 “This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time,” declares the LORD. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. No longer will a man teach his neighbour, or a man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest,” declares the LORD.”
It is also a fulfillment what Jesus promised He would do. We read in John’s gospel, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counsellor to be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.”(John 14:16-18).
I have said it before and will say it again, we do not give nearly enough attention or credit to the role of the Holy Spirit. Where would we be without Him? He has been involved in the history of the universe and the salvation of God’s people from the beginning. Already at creation we read that the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters (Gen 1:2).
The Holy Spirit is vital in our conversion and instrumental in our ongoing sanctification. So often I hear Christians emphasize what we need to do, whether it be more bible reading or prayer or some other Christian work without the mention of the Holy Spirit. I realise they wish to see Christian action and we do have a ‘duty’ to do the things God has prepared for us to do. But Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.” (John 15:5-6).
So, when understood correctly, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in our hearts means that as Christians we need to be careful how we live and ensure that we do not grieve the ‘Holy’ Spirit within us. He, along with the ‘Holy’ Father and the ‘Holy’ Son, are forever to be praised!
I emphasize ‘Holy’ because, like God the Father and God the Son, the Holy Spirit hates continuing sin and disobedience in our lives. Hence the goal of the Holy Spirit’s work in our lives is to increasingly make us more Christ-like to the glory of the Father. He does this by convicting us of our sin and highlighting the righteousness of Christ that we all so desperately need for forgiveness, so that we can avoid the terrible judgement of an unrepentant heart and be condemned along with the father of lies who stands condemned already (John 16:8-11).
Now please do not just dismiss this, rather, pray that the Holy Spirit may apply His presence and work in our lives in increasing measure, so that we may sin less and as a result grieve the Holy Spirit less, and live lives that are more Christ-like and more pleasing to the Father in heaven. So, before you say, write, text, or communicate in any other way to anyone, ask yourself, “Will this please the Holy Spirit within me?”
Prayer: Holy Father, thank you for the gift of life. Holy Son, thank you for salvation accomplished. Holy Spirit, thank you for presence with in us. Please help us to love you more, also as we love each other. Amen. JZ.