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Wednesday: Preparing for Pentecost — 10 Comments

  1. Preparing for Pentecost began with the calling of the disciples and their willingness to be obedient to that calling.
    Willing to walk with him 3 1/2 years.
    Jesus feeds five thousand men
    Jesus has just fed five thousand men and the crowd is chasing after him.
    He begins to teach them about I am the bread of life.
    Just give us food and shelter don't talk about the spiritual food.
    Many leave him and Jesus asks the following question
    “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve.
    Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.”
    The death of Lazarus
    in the story of Lazarus as Jesus goes to Bethany, the disciples knew Jesus will be killed.
    Then Thomas (also known as Didymus[a]) said to the rest of the disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”
    They were willing to lay down their with him.
    Peter disowns Jesus
    Peter replied, “Man, I don’t know what you’re talking about!” Just as he was speaking, the rooster crowed. The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word the Lord had spoken to him: “Before the rooster crows today, you will disown me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.
    Willing to turn back to the Lord. Remorse for his sin.
    Our preparation for the outpouring of Holy Spirit
    It has to be a daily walk with the Lord
    We have to be willing to walk the high and low of our faith experience.
    As long as we do not turn our back from the Lord, He is able to fulfill his promise.
    Pentecost is an everyday experience.

  2. Accepting that we are sinners with nothing to present to the Lord in exchange of grace is the first step to prepare for Pentecost. It is a daily struggle to remind ourselves of this truth even when we feel we are not badly off compared to other people. It is only until we have let go of ourselves that the spirit of God shall fill us and make us witnesses of Christ to all around us and beyond.

  3. The little group in that upper room was the "church/congregation" of God on earth, and though only a nucleus of what was to come, and exists even today, their example should alert us to our present condition and effect upon those around us.

    Is the Spirit manifest with great power today in ways that all can see the power of God? Are we in one accord? The example is there to understand if we will. The True church today is in one accord with the Lord, and follow all that He has commanded, and teach others to do the same. Jesus taught that many, professing to be His followers would find out too late that He never knew them.

    There is reason for fervent prayer and supplication today isn't there? Today, with our many factions and their continuing arguments. God is not the author of this, which is a reflection of Babel.

    This lesson must be more than a casual review of history for us, and close examination of our daily choices(or the lack thereof) will affect our eternal destiny one of only two possible ways. While that small group in the upper room may have believed Jesus' return to be close in their day, today it IS very close. Does our accord, zeal, and urgency match theirs? Our daily lives will tell us.

  4. It is interesting to see the progressive revelation of the truth. First they walked and talked with Jesus, then after His resurrection he explained the Gospel from the Old Testament, then they received the Holy Spirit (whom Jesus would lead them into all the truth, then as we will discover their knowledge developed when they encountered issues which had to be decided by them as a group and/or revelation directly from the LORD.
    I am sure we will continue individually and as a group to understand the true meaning of the Everlasting Covenant.

  5. "...or, more likely (emphasis mine), sons of Joseph’s first marriage, in which case Joseph would be widowed when he took Mary for his wife." I am sorry but statement like this has always bothered me. I have been researching where is the biblical base for this kind of assumption and there is none. My research led me to the doctrine originated by the Catholic Church because the CC wanted to promote and to maintain the holiness of Mary (remember the Immaculate Conception doctrine which is for Mary not Jesus). The CC thus teaches that Mary would not and should not bear additional children from Joseph because she should remain a virgin. This teaching began in the 3rd century AD and has been widely followed by the whole Christendom, Catholic and Protestant (including the SDA Church). Is there something biblically wrong in saying that Jesus' brothers and sisters were born of Mary, and so were younger than Jesus? Why do we always try come up with the explanation or assumption that sounds like forcing it to fit the mold?

    • I can understand your concern about the use of these words. The doctrine of the immaculate conception was developed primarily around the 12-13th centuries (there were earlier precedents) and many of the concepts it embodies are not Biblical. However, it is clear that Jesus did have brothers and sisters (that is Biblical) and they could have come from either Joseph's previous marriage or from later children of Joseph and Mary. That is the point of this part of the lesson study.

  6. Preparation:

    "And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him." Acts 5:32

  7. The question of preparation. The disciples prepared through supplication and prayer. Our dialy lives are filled with so much pain, heartache, death, and worldly destruction. Therefore, in order to prepare ourselves for the 2nd coming, we must first seek Gods guidance, pray,increased faith, and ask for forgiveness. But the one thing I feel is important is meditation in Christ. The devil seeks to destroy us and the best way to do it is to attack the mind. So, let's ask God for total control of our minds through his grace. Once we put these attributes together, we are well on our way. Amen.

  8. A bit of clarification seems to be needed in that Seventh-day Adventists do not believe that Peter was ever the head of the church:
    "Peter was not honored as the head of the church. The favor which Christ had shown him in forgiving his apostasy, and entrusting him with the feeding of the flock, and Peter's own faithfulness in following Christ, won for him the confidence of his brethren. He had much influence in the church. But the lesson which Christ had taught him by the Sea of Galilee Peter carried with him throughout his life." DA 817.1
    There is a church that believes this however:
    "[W]e have a refutation of the doctrine held by the Roman Catholic Church that Peter was the head of the church. Those who, as popes, have claimed to be his successors, have no Scriptural foundation for their pretensions. Nothing in the life of Peter gives sanction to the claim that he was elevated above his brethren as the vicegerent of the Most High. If those who are declared to be the successors of Peter had followed his example, they would always have been content to remain on an equality with their brethren." {AA 194.4}

  9. Back to the question:
    In our daily choices, what are ways we help prepare the way for the work of the Spirit in our lives?

    Revelation 14:4 identifies the ultimate objective of the Christian: It is the habit of following the Lamb wherever he goes. The ones who have this habit have made it through great tribulation, choosing to let the Love of God as displayed on the cross work its change in their characters. Revelation 7:14. The habit of following the Lamb has come from their decided focus on the One who begins and continually perfects their faith through the great love he has for them regardless of what Satan does to them. Hebrews 11; 12:1-2.

    It is this intimate relationship of love that empowers those who believe in God to keep his word and do his works. John 14:15; 14:11-14. It is in love that the Father and Son gladly give the Spirit of Truth, the Helper, to those who believe, forever. John 14:16-17. It is in this love that the Father and Son take up residence with those who believe, starting now and for eternity. John 14: 25.

    Happy, happy home!



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