Thursday, May 21, 2015

The Gifts of the Spirit and the Unity of the Church

There are two famous stories about language in the Bible.  The first, in Genesis 11, people speak a human language in order to build a big tower as a vanity project. As they do, their language becomes confused and people end up divided. The lesson: human language used for very human ends leaves people confused and divided.

The second story, in Acts 2, describes the effects of Godly language. God’s people gather in the upper room in anticipation of God fulfilling His promises. The Holy Spirit falls in power and God’s people speak in heavenly and foreign languages (tongues). Thousands of people, from all nations, come to faith in response. The lesson: God’s language used for God’s ends brings people together as God’s church.

The lesson of Pentecost is a lesson for all of us. The Spirit of God empowers His people with gifts and abilities in order to bring the church together and edify the church for God’s purposes. Jesus told His people to be together and wait in the upper room. They came together in obedience. The Holy Spirit fell in power and all nations were brought together by the miracle of heavenly tongues. Upshot: the gifts of the Spirit – like tongues – brings people together.

This Pentecost, if the Holy Spirit has given you a gift, ask how you might use that gift to bring the church together. If God hasn’t given you a gift like tongues or prophesy or administration, ask for the gift in earnest. Ask the Lord so that all nations might come to together around the Lordship of Jesus. As you do, you will enjoy a life lived in the Spirit. You will also see how the Holy Spirit works in a through individual gifts to build the church as a whole.

No comments:

Post a Comment