The outpouring of the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost signaled the arrival of the “last days” – Joel 2:28-32, Acts 2:17-21.
The application of the prophecy from Joel in Acts links the outpouring of the Spirit to the commencement of the “last days.” For the book, the Spirit’s activity and presence in the church are programmatic and foundational for its existence, from the Day of Pentecost until the return of Jesus.
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There is no life without the Spirit of God, for it is His Spirit that creates, animates, sustains, and restores all life, and now, only through Jesus.
To his disciples, Jesus declared that “the spirit makes alive [‘quickens’]… The words which I have spoken to you are spirit, and they are life.” Here, his words echo the scriptural principle that life and the “spirit” are inextricably linked. The “flesh” is not inherently evil, but it has no life without the spirit. And the words of Christ are added into the mix, for there is no “life” found apart from them.
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The gift of the Spirit is the “first-fruits” and foretaste of the future resurrection and the coming New Creation.
Paul presents Abraham as the great exemplar of faith. God counted his faith as “righteousness” even when he was uncircumcised. This means He justified him apart from the “works of the Law.” Therefore, he became the father of all men who are also “from faith.” Circumcision was added later as the “seal” of his justifying faith.
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The spiritually-minded man understands that Christ Crucified is God’s true power and wisdom – 1 Corinthians 2:14.
Overused today, the English term ‘spiritual’ is virtually meaningless. To some, it is synonymous with religion. To be religious is to be spiritual. To others, it refers to things that are not of this physical universe, to things and beings that are supernatural, otherworldly, immaterial, invisible, and timeless.
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Jesus is the Messiah, the anointed Son of God. From the start, his life was characterized by the empowering presence of the Spirit – Matthew 1:20.
In Matthew, an angel informed Joseph that the child carried by Mary was “conceived of the Holy Spirit.” This indicated more than just the miraculous birth of the child or the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy. From start to finish, the activity of the life-giving Spirit characterized the life and ministry of Jesus. He was “Jesus, who is called Christ,” the long-awaited Messiah.
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OVERVIEW – The “promise of the Spirit” is part of the “blessing of Abraham” promised to the nations, and those who receive it become the “children of Abraham.”
In his letter to the Galatians, the Apostle Paul referred to the “promise of the Spirit,” which he identified with the “blessing of Abraham.” Jesus came under the “curse” of the Law to redeem believers from it, so that, the “blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”
Continue reading PROMISE OF THE SPIRIT – GALATIA