Daily Devotion 15 June 2020
Acts 19:1-7 ‘Receiving the Holy Spirit’
1 While Apollos was in Corinth, Paul passed through the inland regions and came to Ephesus, where he found some disciples. 2 He said to them, ‘Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you became believers?’ They replied, ‘No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.’ 3 Then he said, ‘Into what then were you baptized?’ They answered, ‘Into John’s baptism.’ 4 Paul said, ‘John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, in Jesus.’ 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 When Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied – 7 altogether there were about twelve of them.
My dear brothers and sisters good morning and hopefully you are doing well and trying your best to cope with this difficult situation. Just want to share that as we celebrated Ascension Sunday, Pentecost Sunday and Trinity Sunday. Today just for the short time we will see the ministry and attributes of the Holy Spirit in the Old and New Testament.
The scriptures are full of the Holy Spirit of God at work in God’s creation. Beautifully, at the beginning of the Bible in the Creation story, we read: ‘In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters’ (Genesis 1:1-2). (The Hebrew word for Wind and Spirit are interchangeable here). As the Bible unfolds, the Spirit came upon judges, prophets and people and gave them extraordinary power, strength and wisdom. Think of Joshua (Numbers 27:18), Gideon (Judges 6:34) and Samson (Judges 13-14). Psalmists and Prophets are inspired by God’s Spirit, and see God’s power at work.
The Gospel writers emphasies the divinity of Jesus by association with the Spirit of God, from conception (Luke 1:35) to baptism (Mark 1:10) and in the daily ministry of Jesus (Matthew 12:28). Jesus promises that God’s Spirit will equip the disciples and be with them forever. We can see the Holy Spirit in the life of every believer in Acts – as the passage above shows – and in the life of Early Church and the letters that follow.
My dear friend we have read from the Scripture the importance of the Holy Spirit in the life of a believer. Being a believer it is our responsibility to be God’s witness. Every day we need to spend some time in Bible reading and offering prayers, and we need to follow the Great Commission of our Lord Jesus Christ. God’s Spirit is always there to help us to understand and speak truth, to testify about Jesus, to be His witness, speaking on behalf of Jesus, to convince the world of sin, and God’s righteousness and judgement. God’s Spirit enables us to glorify God in all we think and say and do.
Let us read out loud the word from the letter of Jude verses 20-21 together as a prayer:
But you, beloved, build yourselves up on your most holy faith;
pray in the Holy Spirit;
keep yourselves in the love of God;
look forward to the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. Amen.
Reflection © 2020 Memona Shahbaz.
Image: Stained glass window at Catedral Metropolitana del Divino Salvador del Mundo photographed by M.Torres.
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