Today on the 6th Sunday of Easter, Jesus is clearly revealing to us that He is as the Father is, that He and the Father are one, that if we know Him, we know the Father and the Father reveals Himself to us.
Today though, I would like to take a different tack and look at the 1st readings of the last couple of weeks, the accounts from the Act of the Apostles where the disciples were operating in ministry after Pentecost. The disciples then seemed at 6’s and 7’s in their understanding, in this new relationship, in faith, but they are ‘just going ahead’ with ministry, with what was being revealed to them in the power of the Holy Spirit.
This is important, because we are on our own journey and preparing again for a new top up of the Holy Spirit in a few weeks’ time, at Pentecost.
Last week we had the that famous occurrence of Stephen and his companions who were chosen to become the first ‘deacons’, especially chosen to serve the disaffected, the widows and the children. The main requirement was they were ‘full of the Holy Spirit’. Here we start to see the uptake of new ministries, a practical uptake in the different giftings of people. They didn’t just minister, appropriately in these days, they ministered in power in a time of rapid growth. This week we hear about the Samaritan believers that were baptised in the name of John the Baptist and later on Peter and John, the disciple Jesus loved, travelled up there to ‘lay hands’ on them to receiving the Holy spirit as they themselves had received at Pentecost.
Now this is significant, because we have the pre-eminence of baptism and the introduction of confirmation written into this story of the scriptures. One thing is for sure, even at this early stage, the disciples were doing a ‘greater work ’ in their ministry.
For us and our journey to Pentecost in 2020, and under the cloud of the Corona virus, more than ever we have to hold on to our baptism and our confirmation and ‘just go ahead’ with what is being revealed to us by our Father in Heaven through the Holy Spirit. With the Holy Spirit empowering us, we have all that we need to support, to relate, to minister, and to upbuild in this time.
More than ever we will need to reach out, to hold up, all who are suffering in pain and who are in difficulty.
Our call as missionary disciples is to lead the way in service, just as Stephen and his companions did in those early days. The body of Christ was building at such a rapid rate and those times too, were very turbulent.
Today in our time, just as those days of old, let us be quick to ‘just get on with it’ knowing we have all that we need in the person of the Holy Spirit to get every good work completed.