Throughout the Old Testament, God’s Spirit would come upon special leaders or agents of God’s will to do his work. Most of the time, the Spirit’s presence would be temporary to help with a pressing issue, need, problem, or battle. In a few cases, like David, God’s Spirit never departed from God’s servant. But the presence of the Spirit living permanently in all of God’s people was a promise associated with the coming of the Messiah and the formation of God’s new people. This promise from Joel 2 was the first of several key scriptures Peter quoted in his sermon during Pentecost. That day brought the dawn of the church and the coming of the Holy Spirit, as promised by Joel’s prophecy. The Spirit first came to those who proclaimed the story of Jesus on Pentecost, but then to all who hear the message, believe, and respond by being baptized, on that day and all the days of conversion to follow (Acts 2:38-39). We live in the age of the Spirit!
Thank you! Thank you, O God, for allowing me to live in the time of your church. Forgive me when I discount your power released in and through your church by the Holy Spirit. Forgive me for not responding to the promptings of the Holy Spirit to be conformed to the character and compassion of Jesus. Forgive me for the times I’ve grieved the Spirit by saying unkind things about others, especially those in whom the Spirit lives. I ask, dear Father, in the name of Jesus, that your Holy Spirit will have the controlling influence on my heart and in shaping my life. Amen.