The God I Never Knew

Dear Neighbour,

There are many reasons why I love the month of May. On a personal level, my husband and I celebrate our 32nd anniversary on the 28th May. On a spiritual level, we celebrate Pentecost (7×7 weeks after Jesus’ crucifixion = 49 days). On the seventh Sunday after Easter (the 50th day), the Holy Spirit came to earth. For many people, including many Christians, the Holy Spirit seems to be the least understood person of the Godhead. I recently watched an excellent series by Pastor Robert Morris (Gateway Church, USA) entitled, ‘The God I never knew’.  Robert is refreshingly honest, and he readily admits that for many years during his ministry, he did not know the Holy Spirit personally. My prayer is that my letter this month will introduce many of you to this wonderful person of the trinity.

The Holy Spirit is obviously unseen with the human eye. He has a worldwide ministry and is not limited by a human body. It was for this reason that Jesus told His bewildered disciples that it would be better for them if He returned to heaven. For forty days after his death he appeared to them many times in ways that proved beyond doubt that he was alive. They saw him, and he talked with them about the Kingdom of God. And when they came together, he gave them this order: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift I told you about, the gift my Father promised. John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:3-5 Good News Bible). On the day of Pentecost, the disciples were praying in an upper room in Jerusalem, when they were miraculously filled with the Holy Spirit. When the day of Pentecost came, all the believers were gathered together in one place. Suddenly there was a noise from the sky which sounded like a strong wind blowing, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then they saw what looked like tongues of fire which spread out and touched each person there. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to talk in other languages, as the Spirit enabled them to speak (Acts 2:1-4). The arrival of the Holy Spirit on earth was as significant an event as the birth of Jesus Christ. Jesus could only be in one place at a time, but the Holy Spirit is able to reach everyone – even you!  Jesus did not come just to save the Jews. He is the Saviour of the WORLD.  How amazing that you have been remembered whether you live in Eshowe, Melmoth, Ging …or China!

Just like Jesus, the Holy Spirit is loving, and approaches each person individually to draw them to Jesus Christ. He reveals our sin and need of a Saviour. He tells us that Jesus is the only God-given way to heaven. He warns us of the dire consequences of paying for our own sins and that we have already been judged by God to be guilty (John 16:7-11). In short, the Holy Spirit points you to Jesus Christ.

The moment that you respond to Jesus Christ and acknowledge Him as the Son of God who died for your sins, the Holy Spirit causes you to be born again (like a spiritual midwife!) and instantly you become a child of God – one who is forgiven, in right standing with God and holy enough for heaven.

The Holy Spirit is responsible for your baptism into Christ and His ‘body’ (the church). This is ALL for your personal benefit. Now you can be baptised in water (in a pool/river) as an outward sign of your complete identification with Jesus as your Saviour.

Jesus desires for you to be baptised in the Holy Spirit. Only Jesus can give you this wonderful gift from God. Miraculously, your body becomes the home of the Holy Spirit. Like a gentle dove, He comes to you and resides within you – leading, guiding, helping, comforting, teaching and working through you to reach other people for the kingdom of God. The Holy Spirit is my best friend. I love Him. I talk to Him and I ask Him to help me write these letters for you.

Pentecost Sunday falls on 19th May this year, but I encourage you not to wait another moment. Ask Jesus to be your Saviour and to fill you with His Spirit. Experience a personal Pentecost today.  He is waiting to blow into your life and transform you and the world around you. Don’t let it be said of you that the Holy Spirit was the God you never knew!

x Libby