Thursday, May 16, 2013

Visions of the Spirit

This Sunday is The Day of Pentecost, when we celebrate the gift of the Holy Spirit to God's people and the birth of the Church.  Our texts for this Sunday are Genesis 11:1-9 and Acts 2:1-21, which can be found here.

This week, I invite you to consider how you imagine God's Spirit.  In his commentary on Luke’s Gospel, Fred Craddock points out that the narrative work of Luke-Acts has distinct things to say about the Holy Spirit. In addition to the author of Luke-Acts, Paul and the author of John's Gospel each have a great deal to say about the Spirit.  It is interesting to see, however, that each of these three voices emphasizes something different.  

Take time to meditate and reflect on the images of the Spirit given in words and art below…which ones resonate with you?  Which ones surprise you? How do you envision the presence of the Holy Spirit and the work it does in the world?

John 14: 16-17, 25-27  “I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. 17 This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you. 25 “I have said these things to you while I am still with you. 26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.

Acts 2:1-4
When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3 Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.

1 Corinthians 12:3-13
3 Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking by the Spirit of God ever says “Let Jesus be cursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except by the Holy Spirit. 4 Now there are varieties of gifts, but
the same Spirit; 5 and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; 6 and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. 7 To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8 To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses. 12 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

No comments: