JOHN 14:16-17a (CSB): “I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever. He is the spirit of truth.”
JOHN 15:26-27a (NET): “When the Advocate comes, whom I will send you from the Father — the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father — he will testify about me, and you also will testify.”
GUIDED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT
IMAGINE FOR A MOMENT that you were standing on the Mount of Olives as Jesus blesses His apostles and then — gasp! — ascends into the clouds.
Dumbstruck, you stand there looking up, when two angels suddenly appear and ask Peter, John, James, Andrew, and the rest, “Why are you looking up?”
You think to yourself, “Hmm, kinda obvious, if you saw what we just saw,” but the angels continue, telling the apostles and other disciples “this same Jesus” will return “in like manner” and then reminds them — and you — of what Jesus had just told them:
“[Y]ou shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.” – Acts 1:8a (NKJV)
The key takeaway is this: While the apostles were asking Jesus if He was going to restore Israel to its former greatness, Jesus was commissioning them to join Him in a bigger story: He was calling them to become world-changing evangelists. [You can read the whole story in Acts 1.]
IF I WERE THERE, I’d leave the mountaintop as soon as the apostles left, following them downward to Jerusalem and then I’d probably spin off to my house, where I would sit and wonder what this “power” was that Jesus mentioned.
I would recall something He said about the “Holy Spirit,” but, like the apostles, I would have no clue what that meant — at least, not until a week or so later at Pentecost, when the apostles and disciples were blessed with a remarkable gift that allowed them to preach the Gospel in multiple languages.
If I were listening carefully, I would hear the apostle Peter give a stirring sermon, quoting the prophet Joel, that “whoever calls on the name of the Lord Shall be saved (Acts 2:21 NKJV).” Then, I would join 3,000 of my fellow countrymen and be baptized into the community of believers.
That would be, as the saying goes, “a game changer.”
POWER FROM THE SPIRIT
WHEN THE HOLY SPIRIT is received into our hearts, He goes to work immediately to transform us (2 Cor. 5:17). The apostle Paul said we immediately become “a new creation” (ESV).
The old things, our old self with its worldly ambitions, is gone, replaced by a new self that responds to the Holy Spirit’s leading.
He becomes God in us, replacing our purpose and goals with His own. The Spirit reminds us of what God the Father declares and God the Son taught.
“He will teach you all things, and remind you of all that I said to you.” — John 14:26 (NASB20)
We will have turned our lives over to the Creator, and He will begin working in us and through us, not just to transform our lives, but to testify about Him to the world around us. (Acts 1:8; Acts 4:20)
Our testimony will not be just our spoken words but also our actions, as we show the world Christian love, compassion, and forgiveness. (Matt. 5:16; John 10:10; Eph. 4:32; Col. 3:13)
GOD STILL DOES MIRACLES
WE CAN PULL back a bit from the Mount of Olives 2,000 years ago to our hometowns today.
That powerful moment when Jesus blessed His followers and ascended into Heaven, followed close by the imparting of the Holy Spirit, occurs daily in some form as new converts respond to the Father’s call.
He still performs miracles, swapping out the garbage of our sin-filled selves and replacing the gunk with fresh water and rose petals.
All it takes is a willing heart, a repentant mind, and a humble spirit, approaching the Throne of Grace and asking the Creator to forgive us, to help us turn from sin, and to thank Him for His gift of atonement on the Cross, and to seek …
… the power of the Holy Spirit living in our hearts, guiding our way, and sealing us for the day of redemption.
ABBA, FATHER, we thank You for the gift of salvation through Your Son’s work on the Cross, the forgiveness of our sins, and for the redemption of our souls. Fill our hearts with the Holy Spirit, O Lord, and lead us into all righteousness in this life and be the guarantor of our salvation in the next life. In the mighty name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus the Christ, we pray. AMEN