Today’s Reading: John 14:23-31
Â “These things I have spoken to you while being present with you.Â But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. (John 14:25-26)
In the Name of + Jesus. Amen. The waiting is finally over. The big day is here. We’ve been counting down the days from Easter until today: fifty days of rejoicing in Jesus’ resurrection. 7 days, 7 weeks, + 1 day for eternity; that makes 50. And 50 makes Pentecost. Jesus’ promise to die and rise came true; now the Holy Spirit comes just as He promised. You can see why many have called Pentecost the “birthday of the Church.” Waiting. Expectation. Rejoicing. And, of course, gifts. It’s all there to mark the occasion.
So, what kind of gifts does the Holy Spirit bring to the Pentecost festival? Lame party favors like gummi tongues of fire or holy-smoke BBQ lighters? No. Doctrine. Teaching. God’s Word. He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. The disciples heard Jesus’ teaching, saw the healing signs and miracles; they witnessed His transfiguration, suffering, death, and resurrection. Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would be with them as they proclaimed all these things with their lips and their quills. The Holy Spirit was sent to preserve Jesus’ Word for the Church, then and now. Jesus taught. The disciples witnessed and wrote. And we receive the gift of Jesus’ Word.
Like the disciples before us, the Holy Spirit points us to Jesus’ Word. So, the Holy Spirit is there in your Baptism, being poured out upon you in water and Word, giving you a new birth from above in Christ–your very own Pentecost. The Holy Spirit is there in the Absolution, as life-giving forgiveness is breathed into your ears. And the Holy Spirit is there in the Lord’s Supper, giving you faith in Jesus’ Word: This is my Body; this is my Blood for you. Happy Pentecost Day! In the Name of + Jesus. Amen.
O God our merciful Father, who taught the hearts of Your faithful people by sending to them the light of Your Holy Spirit, bring us by the same Spirit to have a right judgment in all things and evermore to rejoice in His holy comfort; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who with You and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and forever. Amen. (Collect of the Day for Pentecost)