9 June 2019
Jesus told his disciples:
“…the Counsellor, the Holy Spirit, whom my Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you” (John 14:26).
On the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came upon the gathered believers. The house where they were gathered was filled with a violent wind, frightening and startling. They saw what appeared like tongues of fire come down on each person. Then an extraordinary thing happened. The gathered believers were speaking in the languages of many different nationalities.
Pentecost is a Jewish festival; it is ranked up there with Passover and the Feast of the Tabernacles. A major event in the Jewish calendar. And obviously many other neighbouring nations came to this Feast of Weeks. It must have been like a festival with food, trading, celebrations, meeting so many other peoples. These international visitors heard their languages spoken.
The day of Pentecost is viewed as the birthday of Christianity, the faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour. The Holy Spirit had come upon the believers. Their speaking in many foreign languages was with messages of “declaring the wonders of God”. How powerful, how poignant, how significant. For the message of Jesus Christ as Lord is taken and spread to others, first in your own language, then in another.
Faith communities across New Zealand have similar experiences. The Holy Spirit came upon them and moved and inspired them. The resulting Church communities, schools, universities, hospitals, towns were formed and build on such manifestations of the Holy Spirit.
The Spirit is still hovering over God’s people, regardless of numbers or nationalities, regardless of believers or non-believers. Like the sun that rises each day, shining its light and warmth on all people.
The Spirit of God moves over all of creation, day after day, season after season, year after year.
It is exceptional, wonderful and very profound when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, on your family or on your community. Give adoration to God, give thanks daily, acknowledge and praise Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. Be still for the Holy Spirit is here. Have a blessed Pentecost.
Come Holy Spirit, hear us calling…
Rt Rev Fakaofo Kaio
Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand
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