Pour Out My Spirit
The greatest gift that anyone could ever receive is the
gift of God's Holy Spirit. With His Spirit comes the promise of
salvation and eternal life. "It shall come to pass in the last days,
saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your
sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see
visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: And on my servants and
on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and
they shall prophesy." (Acts 2:17-18)
The Bible records that the Feast of Pentecost has been a day of
incredible events and great miracles, both for the Old Testament
Church in the wilderness, and for the early New Testament Church.
The Ten Commandments were presented to the Israelites at Mount Sinai
amidst fearsome smoke, thunder, lightning, the sound of trumpets,
and the shaking of the mountain. All of the Israelites entered into
a covenant with God that day to live according to His law.
In 31 AD, Pentecost marked the beginning of the New Testament
Church. The apostles and brethren, who had gathered together to
observe the Feast day, heard a loud sound like a strong wind, and
then what appeared to be tongues of fire sat on each of them. At
that same moment they were given God's Holy Spirit. Approximately
three thousand saints were added to the Church of God on that day,
and the Church grew rapidly. The true Church, established by Jesus
Christ, was mighty and strong for a few decades, but then began to
weaken, and then decline to only a few scattered brethren.
"Stir up the gift of God, [the Holy Spirit], which you received by
the laying on of hands, for God has not given you the spirit of
fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." (2Timothy
1:7) This advice is as valid today as it was in the first century
Church. Now is the time that we must exercise God's Holy Spirit
within us. We must look past the troublesome times we are living in,
and draw closer to God in humility and faith. We must be living our
faith, i.e., serving God by serving our fellow man. Pentecost is a
picture of the Church growing into spiritual perfection.
Pentecost pictures us, the firstfruits, imbued with God's Holy
Spirit. We are the first spiritual harvest - those of the better
resurrection. Pentecost has a number of names - the Feast of Weeks,
the Feast of Firstfruits, and the Feast of Harvest. Pentecost
pictures the firstfruits who are being prepared for the Kingdom of
God. "The feast of harvest, the firstfruits of thy labors, which
thou hast sown in the field." (Exodus 23:16) "Now is Christ risen
from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept."
Jesus Christ is the first of the firstfruits. We, the called out
saints, are also to be firstfruits - represented by the smaller
spring grain harvest. Those who will be in the second resurrection
at the Great White Throne Judgment are represented by the larger
harvest of autumn - they are the latter-fruits. We, the elect of
this time, are to be the firstfruits of the first spiritual harvest
into the Kingdom of God. "Of his own will begat he us with the word
of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures."
(James 1:18) "Not only they, but ourselves also, which have the
firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves,
waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body."
"And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with
one accord in one place." (Acts 2:1) When we received the gift of
God's Spirit, we were placed into God's salvational process. Our
sins, in violation of God's holy law, had made us worthy of death.
But, upon our repentance and acceptance of Jesus as our personal
Savior, God gave us a part of His Life and Spirit, the gift of the
characteristics of His mind - hope, mercy, righteousness,
forgiveness, love, and power - to name but a few. "Repent, and be
baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the
remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy
Spirit." (Acts 2:38)
Only through God's Holy Spirit are we able to overcome sin. God's
Spirit in us sets us apart, that is, makes us holy, because by His
Spirit we have put on the righteousness of Jesus Christ. We have
received the ability to grow in wisdom and understanding. "We have
received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is of
God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of
God." (1Corinthians 2:12) When we received His Holy Spirit, with the
laying on of hands, God literally became our spiritual Father - a
state of existence more real than our physical being. Our Father has
given us His Name, and He has given us of His Spiritual Life.
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which
according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively
hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead...Beloved,
now are we the sons of God." (1Peter 1:3, 1John 3:2) This unique
spirituality makes possible our future resurrection to eternal
spiritual life in the very family of God - our ultimate salvation.
Jesus Christ has set in motion this salvational process. Our bodies
have become the dwelling place for God to live in us. God the Father
and Jesus Christ live in us in Spirit. Jesus said, "If a man love
me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will
come unto him, and make our abode with him." (John 14:23)
|| "Pour Out My Spirit"