This will be the last message of the series. This has been quite a spiritual journey that we have undertaken from Easter. I will adapt this series into a publication for which can be acquired through our online store.
Today is Pentecost Sunday a day to celebrate the birth of the Church. And this series has had one motivation, that is study the Word to see revealed keys to acquire the fullness of both Passover and that which lead us to Pentecost. Embracing them in their multifaceted applications brings a rich understanding to the life God is calling us to follow Him into. I believe the Word and the Church that seeks to apply the Word in a community setting, will see a rich leading from the Holy Spirit and will testify to signs of spiritual awakening not only in their midst but it spilling out into a secular world.
Acts 2 is the foundation to what happened when the Church came to be. In the beginning it says the following:
When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place.
The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Ac 2:1.
In the Greek it gives you that the Feast of Pentecost had come to the very day, the height of the Feast, the fullness of the Feast. It seems God waited to the Feast being full to send His Spirit in fullness on the Disciples and the women, all 120 in that Upper Room. The fulness of time phrase that sometimes appears in Scripture gives the impression that God judges time not just by its literal application, hours, days, weeks and years. That is by the Greek word kronos, rather in His workings He uses kairos meaning that certain conditions and positions need to be in place before He acts. In this case of Pentecost both the Kronos and Kairos come together. When this happens there is many layers of significance, in that Pentecost is the firstfruits feast of a harvest. The firstfruits of harvests applied here in the New Covenant, is the firstfruits of souls reaching their full redemption. Now with the coming of the Holy Spirit being a prophetic word from Joel, and pendent on Jesus’ glorification and exaltation of Psalm 110, which Peter focusses on, in his message after the Spirit is poured out, gives us a perfect picture of who Jesus is, what He came to do, what He is doing now, and what the Outpouring of the Holy Spirit was significant of in those days, and how we should begin to understand it now.
Nazarite Unto GodNow through His Holy Spirit we become separated from the world by divine enabling so we may be separated to Him
The old Nazarite vow has all the elements of what the Holy Spirit brings to us as a constant living dimension. In Judges 13, the angel explains to the parents of Samson, who was to be a lifelong Nazarite, what his separation would mean for the nation of Israel. In 1 Samuel 1, it is Hannah who prays the Nazarite promise of a man child to be separated unto God from birth also. Then we get John the Baptist who was also a Nazarite, with the Holy Spirit filling him from birth. In each example we get revolution spiritually. From Samson the Philistines are broken in their oppression of Israel, with Samuel the corrupt priesthood and corrupt kingship are confronted in their time, he leads them in the fear of the Lord in Holiness. John the Baptist prepares the way in the nation of Israel to receive the new thing God was about to unveil through His Son. John is the greatest prophet through the old covenant, because he came to end the old and prepare for the New. The Coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost must tie this particular vow unto the Lord, to bring the spiritual separation to the believer, enabling him to access grace in time of need. Also to access a specific spirit of sonship, of relationship to God. What is marked in the narrative of Acts 2, the reaction of all those who heard the message in their own language, their commitment to receive and accept Jesus as their Messiah, brings a new dimension of separation and relationship to God. The whole area of personal separation has largely been left out of late, meaning that the Baptism of the Holy Spirit can be perceived from a experiential perspective, and a aid to get one’s mental, emotional, physical needs met. The specific coming of the Holy Spirit to the believer has an aspect of mission to it. It means the power sanctifies the believer, convicts him of sin and the world, and imparts a sense of vocation to mission.
It is apparent in some quarters for lack of balanced theology, teaching and understanding that the full implication of living in the Spirit is far more than its experiential aspects. It brings us into a dimension of holiness. It is this word that is being more and more forgotten because when the Holy Spirit comes to us, He makes us Holy in Jesus, but He prepares us for being without blame and blemish when Jesus presents us before the Father. This is specified in the last words in Jude’s letter. This process of preparation is known as sanctification. The process for the believer is this way:
Justification leads us into sanctification which leads us into glorification.
And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.
The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles, 2016), Ro 8:30.
And so when the Holy Spirit came at Pentecost He begins the process of preparing us for eternity, so that the image being created in us is that of His Son. For this to take place the whole importance of separation is vital, because what is being moulded in us cannot have aspects of Jesus and that of the world, which has no part in God’s Kingdom, nor heaven. The image that the Holy Spirit must create in us according to grace must be “on that day” be that without spot or blemish. “On that day” is the Lord’s Day. It is the Day which the Father reserved for Jesus, the Judge to judge all according to their state, and for the believer for his works. The Father knows the day, and it is a day sometime in the future. For us to be presented without spot or blemish, counted amongst the redeemed we must welcome the fulness of the significance of Pentecost. Our separation, our inner Nazarite spirit, must accompany us throughout our lives. There is grace for every fall, yet we must retain our comprehension of our separation from the world first, and most of all, which is paramount is our separation UNTO God. This separation UNTO God is not just to be servants, but as Jesus said to be friends and sons. How we live out this separation IN THE HOLY SPIRIT determines how we will be presented on “that day”.
A Levite to the MinistryThe spirit of the Levite, is the spirit of “joining”, where our devotion to Him through our “Nazarite spirit” unto God causes us to separate ourselves for the vocation He prepared us to walk in.
The term “Levi” means “joined”, and has all the meaning of intimacy to it. The ministry can become a pursuit of preaching, teaching, prophesying, worshipping, and administering can become seen as ministry, but unless there is an aspect of “joining” one’s heart to Jesus, then true ministry is not at work. There is a heavenly esteem that takes place when that is evident in a person’s life. In the Old Testament, we read when God sent Samuel into the Tabernacle, that the priests, those who were supposed to be joined, were corrupt, greedy, and prostituted to their flesh. Hophni and Phineas angered God so much that He desired to kill them. The people began to abhor their hypocrisy. Such is the value God puts on those in ministry. Their vocation is Levitical in nature, not in the virtue of their laws, nor their activity, but the dimension of joining unto the Lord. The language God uses when He separated out Levi as a tithe of service for the nation, is the same language Paul uses in Ephesians 4:11-15. And when the Holy Spirit came at Pentecost so these “Levitical gifts” were not joined to God’s heart alone, but Jesus’ own heart. Jesus was prophet, priest and king. He was also the Shepherd, and also the Evangelist of sheep. He was a teacher well versed in the pure application of Scripture. Paul says these 5 gifts were thrown down in the Ascension, being that in connection to Jesus’ glorification comes these ministry gifts, given to those who have cultivated with understanding the spirit of “joining to Jesus’ heart”.
In a day of confusion and calamity, that we are living in in more ways than we acknowledge, the false prophets and teachers are seen for who they are. When you see the emphasis on money for themselves, their own ego displayed, their preaching only based on people’s needs of the hour, rather than forming Nazarites, Levites and people of an holy Ecclesia, lifting their eyes from themselves, lifting their own eyes from their own lostness, to finding purpose and relationship with Christ, this is the mark of true ministry. This is the true manifestation of the Joining spirit of the ministry, the Levi. The Spirit can lead us into a true renewal in this level.
An ecclesia in the worldYou are IN the world but NOT of it
The Church, named “Ecclesia” is a group called out from the world community to form a divine community where God inspires and teaches how a Kingdom community lives and has its being.
In the Old Testament we get the sensation that the forerunner to this “Ecclesia” is found in Noah and his family. He is commanded to build an ark, so that in the impending judgment they would be separated and safe. The people did not hear the warnings of Noah, and when God assembled the animals and the family inside the Ark so He Himself closed the door, and they were kept safe in the judgment of the Flood.
The modern “Ecclesia” knows that the Final Judgment is on the way, and is being formed as the family, so that in the “Ark” of their fellowship, in the day of Calamity they shall be kept safe. The power of the Church is in the measure of her separation from the world. However as you look in Church history, instead of focussing on separation from the world she has focussed on separating from each other. I was mentioning to a brother today, there are 44000 denominations across the world, what an indictment of our disunity, and our incapacity to find a way to tap into the Spirit of Unity. God will transform this reality as the judgments across the world are felt. When the Bride will truly assume her identity. The Holy Spirit has come to separate the Ecclesia from the world, and separate her unto God, because she is the Bride of Christ, and shall play a pivotal role in preparing for the return of Jesus.
The timing and purpose of the Spirit at Pentecost is connected to Jesus’ glorification so that in a Nazarite spirit, a Levitical ministry, a Ecclesia community we prepare for the full manifestation of the Eternal Kingdom. Pentecost is a marker for this eternal plan, may we embrace it, in the spirit for which it was given through His Word.
Maranatha! Come quickly Lord.