May 17, 2020 ~ The Holy Spirit

Readings for Sunday, May 17, 2020

 

Acts 17:22-31

Psalm 66:8-20

1 Peter 3:13-22

John 14:15-21

 

The Holy Spirit:

In John’s gospel, the Holy Spirit is called the Paraclete, which means Advocate or Counsellor. Advocate is a term for someone who is called to one’s side as a source of help. We  may think of an advocate as someone who helps on behalf of a person or cause. We may even understand the Spirit as the Advocate who brings our case up before God in the hope that God will do something merciful for us.

But the direction is opposite. God has already given the gift of love and mercy in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. The Spirit is the Advocate who brings the truth of that love and life to people, which makes faith possible. The work of the Spirit makes the presence of the living Jesus and the Father known.

Professor Craig Koester puts it this way: “Coming to faith is analogous to falling in love. One cannot fall in love in the abstract. Love comes through an encounter with another person. The same is true of faith. If faith is a relationship with the living Christ and the living God who sent him, then faith can only come through an encounter with them. And the Spirit is the one who makes this presence known.”

Source:       Craig R. Koester, Professor of New Testament, Luther Seminary, Saint Paul, Minnesota

 
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