6. May, 2016

Preparation for the Holy Spirit.

“On the 14th day of Nissan you will take a lamb and you will sacrifice it and place the blood of the lamb on the door posts of your house.” [Exodus 12:22] Did the people at the time know what was about to happen? I doubt it. Yes Moses had been to talk to the Pharaoh about letting the people go [Exodus 8:1] but this was something different. That night so long ago they huddled in their homes waiting to see what was going to happen as death swept over the land. [Exodus 12:29]

 During the night death came to every home that did not have the blood of the lamb on the door, regardless of whom they were. In the morning they were told to pack and leave [Exodus 12:31] as they had a place to go, but where? They probably had no idea but they had to leave in a hurry. They had their freedom from the repression of the Egyptian authorities and they were on their way. They had crossed the Red Sea and now they were heading into the wilderness.

 From day one they had trouble, or was it that they gave God trouble? As they did not know what God was doing and rebelled. They had seen miracle after miracle and yet still they did not understand. God gave them water but they wanted bread. [Exodus 16:1-7] God gave them bread and they wanted meat. [Exodus 16: 8-13] Then they wanted to return to Egypt, made their own god [Exodus 32:1] and in general disobeyed God who had rescued them from the evil they had left behind in a time gone by.

 As time passed, the Jewish leaders came up with a system, which is called counting the Omer; an Omer is a measure of approximately two litres the same measure as the people were to use in the gathering of the food while in the wilderness. Each day between Passover and the next Biblical feast Shavuot, or as the Church calls it, Pentecost, each day another day is counted off until the feast of Shavuot is reached. Shavuot is the time the teachings of the Lord were given to the people.

 This process was started after the events of Passover and Shavuot (Pentecost) had occurred. Each year as the Jewish people celebrate Passover they ready themselves for the celebration to come, the giving of the law at Mt. Sinai, which comes fifty days after Passover.

 One such teaching for this time is to do a good deed or act for someone or something. It is a time full of expectations for the coming celebrations of what they received that taught them how to act towards God and how to act towards people. [Leviticus 19:18]

 In all of my research I could not find any scriptures that had been laid out for the people to read over this period of the fifty days as they prepared for the next feast to celebrate, this one feast when they received the knowledge of how to live after being slaves in Egypt.

We know what is coming after Passover and that is the Holy Spirit, we know because the word tells us this did happen. We have celebrated Passover and fifty days later the scriptures tell us the power from on high came upon the people. [Luke 24:49]

 I would suggest this event we celebrate called Pentecost, is not a time to just turn up to, but something to prepare for. This is the reason I put together fifty days of scriptures from both the First and Second Testaments for each day of the week. Each week has a different theme to prepare us to receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit afresh in our lives, but first must come the Fruits of the Spirit. How can there be any gifts without the fruit?

 We like the Israelites, have experienced the Passover lamb and been set free from the concerns of this world. Like the Israelites we too had no idea on that day where all this was leading us after we confessed Yeshua as Lord. The day after the cross the Disciples were in hiding, scared and confused. [John 20:19] We have been to the services and once more recalled how our saviour died for the sins of the world but for the new Believer what comes next?

 We have taken our first step in this new life unsure of where it is leading, but follow we do. There are many times the Lord has to part those waters ahead of us, the waters that make it look like the end of the road. Troubles come but we have no strength to overcome them. However after the events we can read about in the scriptures, we know there is help ahead in the power of the Holy Spirit. So again the Day of the coming of the Holy Spirit is and will never be a one-day event, it goes on for a lifetime, our lifetime. Therefore we should be preparing for this day with all of our heart, mind and spirit.

 We should prepare by taking note of the type of life the Lord wants us to live. Something we had no idea about that first day we cried out “Yeshua is Lord.”

 We are to have love, love for our neighbours. [Romans 13:10]

We are to have joy, the joy that fills our hearts plans peace. [Proverbs 12:20]

We are to have the peace that passes all understanding. [Philippians 4:7]

We are to have patience, and then we will have perfect work. [James 1:4]

We are to show kindness, for the glory of God. [2 Samuel 9:1]

We are to show goodness, to be good examples. Titus 2:3]

We are to have faithfulness, in all things. [1 Timothy 3:11]

We are to let our gentleness, be evident to all. [Philippians 4:5]

We are to have self-control because without it we are weak. [Proverbs 25:28]

 Because against such things there is no law [Galatians 5:23]

 Can we get these fruits in one day? Yes we may be able to when the power from on high falls upon us, but would it not be better, knowing what God requires of us, to prepare for that day ahead of time? Prepare our hearts to become hearts of flesh [Ezekiel 36:26] that God can take and mould into His likeness so that we are prepared before time for the things that we might encounter as we walk through the wilderness to the foot of His mountain and receive that special touch from the Lord. You know, that touch from the Lord that declares us to be a child of God. [John 1:12]

 How lovely are your dwelling places, LORD of the Heavenly Armies.I desire and longfor the Temple courts of the LORD. My heart and body sing for joy to the living God. Even the sparrow found a house for herself and the swallow a nest to lay her young at your altar, LORD of the Heavenly Armies, my king and God. How happy are those who live in your Temple, for they can praise you continuously. Psalm 84:1-4