READING: Job 6-7, Acts 19:1-20
They had been baptized by John, and they apparently made a commitment to turn from their sins in preparation for a coming Messiah. It appears, though, that they never gained a complete understanding that Jesus was the Messiah to whom John pointed. We do know for certain that they had “not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit” (Acts 19:2). Somehow, they had missed the events of Pentecost in Acts 2.
Paul challenged them “to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus” (Acts 19:4). Upon hearing the news, they were baptized in the name of Jesus and received the Holy Spirit. God’s power was then most evident in their lives as they “spoke in tongues and prophesied” (Acts 19:6).
I am burdened today by the number of people around the world who have not heard of Jesus or the Holy Spirit. Some are going through religious rituals to try to gain the favor of some other god, but they’ve not learned about the Messiah. Frankly, I’m also burdened by the number of people who call themselves Christians but live as if they’ve never heard of the Holy Spirit; that is, they are neither amazed by the truth that God lives in them nor dependent on the Spirit’s presence in their lives. It’s not even obvious that they’re Christians.
May God help us to be filled with wonder over the Father, Son, and the Spirit.
May we do everything in the power of the Spirit!
PRAYER: “God, use me to get the gospel to my neighbors and the nations. Help me to do all I do in the power of the Spirit.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Job 8-10, Acts 19:21-20:6