Tag: 圣灵

Acts 13 and almost the entire city turned out to hear them preach the word of the Lord

preachToday we read all about PREACHING the words of God. The definition of preach: Proclaim, teach, spread, propagate, expound. Or Advocate, recommend, advise, urge, teach, counsel. Today we call the person standing on the pulpit a preacher when he or she speaks at length a message based on the words of God (the Christian Holy Bible). The Bible recorded some great sermons by the Apostles. We read below from Acts 13 the preaching of Paul. We note some key success factors of the preaching. 

Acts 13:1-4; 13-52 (Quoted from the Holy Bible New Living Translation. Some verses are added boldness by me. My notes are in bold letters and italics.)

First: The preachers are sent out by the Holy Spirit.  Fast and pray is a significant prerequisite in the calling, hearing God, and related sending out process. 

Acts 13:1-4 Among the prophets and teachers of the church at Antioch of Syria were Barnabas, Simeon (called “the black man”[a]), Lucius (from Cyrene), Manaen (the childhood companion of King Herod Antipas[b]), and Saul. One day as these men were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Appoint Barnabas and Saul for the special work to which I have called them.” So after more fasting and prayer, the men laid their hands on them and sent them on their way.So Barnabas and Saul were sent out by the Holy Spirit.

Acts 13:13-52

13 Paul and his companions then left Paphos by ship for Pamphylia, landing at the port town of Perga. There John Mark left them and returned to Jerusalem. 14 But Paul and Barnabas traveled inland to Antioch of Pisidia.[c]

Second: The preachers went to the right place at the right time. The Lord opened a way for them to speak. They were invited to speak by the host and authority of the particular venue. (In this case, those in charge of the synagogue service.)

On the Sabbath they went to the synagogue for the services. 15 After the usual readings from the books of Moses[d] and the prophets, those in charge of the service sent them this message: “Brothers, if you have any word of encouragement for the people, come and give it.”

Third: The preachers speak to specific audience. In this case Paul addresses the Jews, but he also takes note and makes special mention of the Gentiles. Why? It is a Jewish religious gathering (in the synagogue), so why Paul mentions the Gentiles?  Because of two things: First, he is led by the Holy Spirit. He obeys. Secondly, he preaches the Scripture (at that time, the Old Testament). The mention of both races depicts the confirmation of the prophecy of the earlier prophets before Jesus came. 

16 So Paul stood, lifted his hand to quiet them, and started speaking. “Men of Israel,” he said, “and you God-fearing Gentiles, listen to me.

Fourth: The preachers focus on God and not man. The entire preaching is God-focused. What God has done. God’s plan. God’s protection. God’s deliverance. God’s salvation. God’s choice. God’s words. God’s promises. God’s resurrection. God’s power. God’s prophecy. God’s will. God’s fullfilment. God’s message. The grace of God. The Good News of God. God The Father. The Son of God. Jesus-The Messiah from God. 

17 The God of this nation of Israel chose our ancestors and made them multiply and grow strong during their stay in Egypt. Then with a powerful arm He led them out of their slavery. 18 He put up with them[e] through forty years of wandering in the wilderness. 19 Then He destroyed seven nations in Canaan and gave their land to Israel as an inheritance. 20 All this took about 450 years.

After that, God gave them judges to rule until the time of Samuel the prophet.21 Then the people begged for a king, and God gave them Saul son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, who reigned for forty years. 22 But God removed Saul and replaced him with David, a man about whom God said, ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart. He will do everything I want him to do.’[f]

23 “And it is one of King David’s descendants, Jesus, who is God’s promised Savior of Israel! 24 Before he came, John the Baptist preached that all the people of Israel needed to repent of their sins and turn to God and be baptized. 25 As John was finishing his ministry he asked, ‘Do you think I am the Messiah? No, I am not! But he is coming soon—and I’m not even worthy to be his slave and untie the sandals on his feet.’

26 Brothers—you sons of Abraham, and also you God-fearing Gentiles—this message of salvation has been sent to us! 27 The people in Jerusalem and their leaders did not recognize Jesus as the one the prophets had spoken about. Instead, they condemned him, and in doing this they fulfilled the prophets’ words that are read every Sabbath. 28 They found no legal reason to execute him, but they asked Pilate to have him killed anyway.

29 When they had done all that the prophecies said about him, they took him down from the cross[g] and placed him in a tomb. 30 But God raised him from the dead! 31 And over a period of many days he appeared to those who had gone with him from Galilee to Jerusalem. They are now his witnesses to the people of Israel.

32 “And now we are here to bring you this Good News. The promise was made to our ancestors, 33 and God has now fulfilled it for us, their descendants, by raising Jesus. This is what the second psalm says about Jesus:

You are my Son.
    Today I have become your Father.[h]

34 For God had promised to raise him from the dead, not leaving him to rot in the grave. He said, ‘I will give you the sacred blessings I promised to David.’[i]35 Another psalm explains it more fully: ‘You will not allow your Holy One to rot in the grave.’[j] 36 This is not a reference to David, for after David had done the will of God in his own generation, he died and was buried with his ancestors, and his body decayed. 37 No, it was a reference to someone else—someone whom God raised and whose body did not decay.

38 [k]“Brothers, listen! We are here to proclaim that through this man Jesus there is forgiveness for your sins. 39 Everyone who believes in him is made right in God’s sight—something the law of Moses could never do. 40 Be careful! Don’t let the prophets’ words apply to you. For they said,

41 ‘Look, you mockers,
    be amazed and die!
For I am doing something in your own day,
    something you wouldn’t believe
    even if someone told you about it.’[l]

42 As Paul and Barnabas left the synagogue that day, the people begged them to speak about these things again the next week. 43 Many Jews and devout converts to Judaism followed Paul and Barnabas, and the two men urged them to continue to rely on the grace of God.

44 The following week almost the entire city turned out to hear them preach the word of the Lord. 45 But when some of the Jews saw the crowds, they were jealous; so they slandered Paul and argued against whatever he said.

46 Then Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly and declared, “It was necessary that we first preach the word of God to you Jews. But since you have rejected it and judged yourselves unworthy of eternal life, we will offer it to the Gentiles. 47 For the Lord gave us this command when he said,

I have made you a light to the Gentiles,
    to bring salvation to the farthest corners of the earth.[m]

48 When the Gentiles heard this, they were very glad and thanked the Lord for his message; and all who were chosen for eternal life became believers. 49 So the Lord’s message spread throughout that region.

50 Then the Jews stirred up the influential religious women and the leaders of the city, and they incited a mob against Paul and Barnabas and ran them out of town.51 So they shook the dust from their feet as a sign of rejection and went to the town of Iconium. 52 And the believers[n] were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.

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end times witnessing: always humble, gentle, patient, love.

be transformed
be transformed by the renewal of our mind

How shall we love one another in the body of Christ? Today’s prayer is taken from the book of Ephesians chapter four. Paul is in prison for his preaching and witnessing for the risen Jesus Christ. And he is led by the Holy Spirit to write this letter to the churches to fortify them and equip them to face the continuing persecutions from the enemy’s agents-Paul was once an enemy agent too. He hated Jesus and killed Christians. But Jesus has revealed Himself to Paul and Paul was totally transformed from that reality encounter with the risen Son of God, Jesus Christ.

Key message: Be like Christ. Be joined to the Lord Jesus, one Spirit with Him.

Summary of Paul’s letter (prayer for churches/Christians who are called by God)

Live a life worthy of our calling:

Keep united: in the Holy Spirit.

Be Christ-centered 

Let the Hole Spirit transform us: our attitude, behavior, actions. 

Ephesians 4 New Living Translation (NLT) Unity in the Body

Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future.

5 There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all, in all, and living through all.

However, he has given each one of us a special gift[a] through the generosity of Christ. That is why the Scriptures say,

“When he ascended to the heights, he led a crowd of captives and gave gifts to his people.”[b]

Notice that it says “he ascended.” This clearly means that Christ also descended to our lowly world.[c] 10 And the same one who descended is the one who ascended higher than all the heavens, so that he might fill the entire universe with himself.

11 Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. 12 Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. 13 This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ.

14 Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. 15 Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. 16 He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.

Living as Children of Light

17 With the Lord’s authority I say this: Live no longer as the Gentiles do, for they are hopelessly confused. 18 Their minds are full of darkness; they wander far from the life God gives because they have closed their minds and hardened their hearts against him. 19 They have no sense of shame. They live for lustful pleasure and eagerly practice every kind of impurity.

20 But that isn’t what you learned about Christ. 21 Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, 22 throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. 23 Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24 Put on your new nature, created to be like Godtruly righteous and holy.

25 So stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth, for we are all parts of the same body. 26 And “don’t sin by letting anger control you.”[d] Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 for anger gives a foothold to the devil.

28 If you are a thief, quit stealing. Instead, use your hands for good hard work, and then give generously to others in need. 29 Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.

30 And do not bring sorrow to God’s Holy Spirit by the way you live. Remember, he has identified you as his own,[e] guaranteeing that you will be saved on the day of redemption.

31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. 32 Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.

Footnotes:

  • 4:7 Greek a grace.
  • 4:8 Ps 68:18.
  • 4:9 Some manuscripts read to the lower parts of the earth.
  • 4:26 Ps 4:4.
  • 4:30 Or has put his seal on you.

end of footnotes

Receive from God: More good gifts!

sunset here in RenoThe verses came out this morning when the watchman used his phone to message his loved ones, sharing how he has received God’s super-abundant supernatural blessings to his prayers. He shares that they are to read James today. An hour later he opens the online Bible with the Lord’s prompting with the intention to to get the verses of James for this blog post, behold, the online Bible already shows a quote from James on the same subject. God is awesome and faithful and the watchman hears God.

Quotes from the watchman’s mobile phone chat (5am) with his loved ones (in a family chat group):

“God loves the unlovable. He has good gifts for them too. If they submit to God and resist the devil they will be able to enjoy the good gifts. Good to read James. God is so good to me. Prayers always answered. He does and accomplishes things for me more than I can ask or even dream of. Superabundantly. Like winning the one trillion dolloar heavenly super lottery and more. Nature listens to God. Give yields to the righteous man God has promised to bless richly.” (The watchman also gave a lengthy example of how Isaac sow and reaped rich harvests during a time of widespread famines experienced by others.)

How did Isaac become the righteous man? Was he righteous all the time? Was he human? When we read his history we realize that he has human flaws and weaknesses like his dad Abraham. God chose the meek to inherit the land. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were all the meek. They were given the super-abundant blessings of God. They were men of faith and they took action of faith to obey God regardless of what others said. By faith and faith in action they showed their belief in the unseen God.

Similarly Christians become righteous by faith. We have become the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. (2 Corinthians 5:21)

In the book of James the Holy Spirit further reminds Christians that faith can be seen in our daily living. Our living is before God and before others. Often this is where we fail to make the mark. Christians live in the world making a difference. That is our personal testimony that Jesus Christ lives in us today. He is alive. He lives. Our lives manifest that the Son of God lives in us and He destroys the work of the devil. God is the Father of lights. His light shines through the believers-the vessels He has chosen.

5 For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus’ sake. 6 For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. 8 We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed— 10 always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. (2 Corinthians 4:5-7 NKJV)

James 1 New King James Version (NKJV)  Greeting to the Twelve Tribes
1 James, a bondservant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad: Greetings.

Profiting from Trials
2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

The Perspective of Rich and Poor
9 Let the lowly brother glory in his exaltation, 10 but the rich in his humiliation, because as a flower of the field he will pass away. 11 For no sooner has the sun risen with a burning heat than it withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beautiful appearance perishes. So the rich man also will fade away in his pursuits.

Loving God Under Trials
12 Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. 14 But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. 15 Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.

16 Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. 17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. 18 Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures.

Qualities Needed in Trials
19 So then,[a] my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; 20 for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.

Doers—Not Hearers Only
21 Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.

22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; 24 for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. 25 But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.

26 If anyone among you[b] thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is useless. 27 Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.

Footnotes:

James 1:19 NU-Text reads Know this or This you know.
James 1:26 NU-Text omits among you.

a day to receive: just ask, seek, knock

Holy Spirit pours 2A day to receive Good Gifts even though this may not be your birthday. Someone who is able and willing to give you His best gift has made this generous offer. And He says He is your Father in heaven. He is God.

Matthew 7:7-12New King James Version (NKJV) Asking, Seeking, Knocking

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? 11 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! 12 Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.

Luke 11:9-13New King James Version (NKJV) Keep Asking, Seeking, Knocking

“So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. 11 If a son asks for bread[a] from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? 13 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Some may wonder why you need the Holy Spirit. Here are some of the many reasons:

He concerns your new birth into the Kingdom of God

Matthew 3:11 (witnessed by John the Baptist)
I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.
Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.

That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
He concerns your worship of God
But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.

God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
He concerns your knowing God and God’s truth – the Bible
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.

However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.
He concerns your effectiveness (power) in witnessing Jesus
[ The Holy Spirit Promised ] And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me;

for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

[ Coming of the Holy Spirit ] When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams.

And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.

And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him.”

But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God,

And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power,

Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.

These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
He concerns your true status
For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.

Journey to see God: God of details

Bible plumb-lineAre Bible details important in our lives? The Holy Spirit has revealed to us how particular is our God with Bible details.Here are some examples.

Jesus answered and said to them, “Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God?

And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.

[ The Scriptures Opened ] Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.”

These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.

For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.

and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

Then his disciples remembered this prophecy from the Scriptures: “Passion for God’s house will consume me.”

After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered he had said this, and they believed both the Scriptures and what Jesus had said.
And you know that the Scriptures cannot be altered.

During my time here, I protected them by the power of the name you gave me. I guarded them so that not one was lost, except the one headed for destruction, as the Scriptures foretold.

Luke 1:1-4 New Living Translation (NLT) Introduction (through a medical doctor’s detailed report after thorough investigations)

Many people have set out to write accounts about the events that have been fulfilled among us. They used the eyewitness reports circulating among us from the early disciples.[a] 3 Having carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I also have decided to write a careful account for you, most honorable Theophilus, so you can be certain of the truth of everything you were taught.

Acts 1:1-3 New Living Translation (NLT) The Promise of the Holy Spirit

In my first book[a] I told you, Theophilus, about everything Jesus began to do and teach until the day he was taken up to heaven after giving his chosen apostles further instructions through the Holy Spirit. During the forty days after he suffered and died, he appeared to the apostles from time to time, and he proved to them in many ways that he was actually alive. And he talked to them about the Kingdom of God.

Footnotes:

  1. 1:1 The reference is to the Gospel of Luke.

Luke 24:25-27 New Living Translation (NLT)

25 Then Jesus said to them, “You foolish people! You find it so hard to believe all that the prophets wrote in the Scriptures. 26 Wasn’t it clearly predicted that the Messiah would have to suffer all these things before entering his glory?” 27 Then Jesus took them through the writings of Moses and all the prophets, explaining from all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.

Luke 24:43-45 New Living Translation (NLT)

43 and he ate it as they watched.

44 Then he said, When I was with you before, I told you that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and in the Psalms must be fulfilled.” 45 Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.

Acts 26:21-23 New Living Translation (NLT)

21 Some Jews arrested me in the Temple for preaching this, and they tried to kill me. 22 But God has protected me right up to this present time so I can testify to everyone, from the least to the greatest. I teach nothing except what the prophets and Moses said would happen— 23 that the Messiah would suffer and be the first to rise from the dead, and in this way announce God’s light to Jews and Gentiles alike.”

Acts 28:22-24 New Living Translation (NLT)

22 But we want to hear what you believe, for the only thing we know about this movement is that it is denounced everywhere.” 23 So a time was set, and on that day a large number of people came to Paul’s lodging. He explained and testified about the Kingdom of God and tried to persuade them about Jesus from the Scriptures. Using the law of Moses and the books of the prophets, he spoke to them from morning until evening. 24 Some were persuaded by the things he said, but others did not believe.

Romans 15:3-4 New Living Translation (NLT)

For even Christ didn’t live to please himself. As the Scriptures say, “The insults of those who insult you, O God, have fallen on me.”[a] Such things were written in the Scriptures long ago to teach us. And the Scriptures give us hope and encouragement as we wait patiently for God’s promises to be fulfilled.

2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture (the Bible)

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,

All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.

Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, [and] for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God’s will in thought, purpose, and action),

a morning call: Come out into the fields

This morning this watchman recaps what has happened during the last three days. On June 4 he was led to read Matthew 24, all about end day: Earthquakes, famines, wars, people hating each other, cold love, falsehood and deceptions, and persecutions from haters of God against those who love Jesus. Jesus also speaks of how to be a good servant of God and what He describes as an evil servant. On June 5 the Sabah earthquake at the Mt Kinabalu happened. Up to this point 8 visiting pupils, and 2 teachers are still reported as missing.

On June 5 I was led to read the book on Martyrs and posted excerpts about a preacher who was persecuted and killed by the church because he believed in the full Gospel of the Bible and preached the words of God free of charge to the congregation every Sunday! In those days believers of the words of God were burned to death because of they were bold to share the Good News of the whole Bible.

Today is the third day. As I listened to Pastor Sandra Kennedy’s Whole Life Ministries’ worship service and her subsequent prayer, I realized that it matters how far each of us have walked on the spectrum of our relationship with God in Jesus. I have increasingly met more elderly and seasoned (senior but fit) ‘foot-soldiers’ of God in the mission fields. They stand out in one aspect: their age. Most are of 50s and above, 60s and 70s. I was told some are in their 80s and still standing and walking.

Recently I met a man and wife in their 50s preparing to come out into one of the poorest people groups to serve. The love of Christ has compelled them. When introduced I was not surprised that he is one of the top established educators in his country and even internationally. He holds the highest position in the corporate entity he has decided to relinquish. He is paying a great monetary and other price to follow Jesus to the field. The cost of following Jesus is high. I was not surprised of the increasingly high caliber of the individuals whom the Lord has called and who have responded to Him.

Why are the senior ‘elites’ being called? Why are they responding? I can only use one word to describe our God, ‘AWESOME’. We have found various professionals, former bankers, financiers, educators, lawyers, medical doctors, accountants, engineers, international award-winning artists, corporate executives, businessmen and business women, pastors and evangelists conglomerating with the poorest and uneducated in the Kingdom of God. Matthew 22 described the wedding (great feast) invitation and the crowd that gathered when the intended guests did not turn up. The King’s instructed:

“Now, go out to the street corners and invite everyone you see.” (22:9) “So the servants brought in everyone they could find, good and bad alike, and the banquet hall was filled with guests.” (22:10)

From experience we know that it is difficult for a poor and uneducated younger man to invite an older person from a higher social, economic, and political power strata to Jesus. It appears that the last frontier now is to gather chosen from ‘exclusive’ social people groups which hitherto has been left out from the Kingdom of God. The Lord said, “invite everyone.” Yes, everyone. That is why the old guards are emerging out of their churches’ closets now and marching into the streets.

What about the young in the streets? Who will invite them? That is for the younger generation of Christians to ask the Lord. My personal  observation is that the more you bring the world into your churches the less you will be able to march out there and bring the lost youth in. By the way they are not in your part of the cities. Unless you leave your comfort zones and venture into the poorest deep waters and live among them you will not reach them.

trees in the fieldGood News: The retired Christians are no longer retired. There is no retirement age in the fields. Come out to the fields.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Bible promises:

They shall still bear fruit in old age; They shall be fresh and flourishing,
He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.
And sow fields and plant vineyards, That they may yield a fruitful harvest.
Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine In the very heart of your house, Your children like olive plants All around your table.

Good News continues to advance

paul-thessalonica-bereaWe continue to walk with the disciples of Jesus. We have followed the journey of Paul and Silas to the point of revivals and persecutions in Acts 16-17.  We see how the disciples were led by the Holy Spirit, how they obeyed the Lord’s calling and found doors opened to the Gospel. We also witness how salvation and persecution came almost simultaneously. This is still applicable today. There are people who listen to the Gospel and joyously accept Jesus as their Savior and Lord. There are also those who listen with a further hardened heart against Jesus and His followers. Why? When we read the four Gospels we can see the answer everywhere. Jesus Himself encountered the same responses. Some listened and accepted His message of the Kingdom of God. Many rejected Him and thereby rejected the Kingdom of God. One thing that is key to the people’s believing is the words of God. Those who really honor God and His word receive the sharing and preaching of the word. They listen with respect and search the Scripture for the truth. Jesus has promised: Those who seek will find. Those who ask will receive. Those who knock, the door will be opened.

Acts 16 Persecution and Salvation: including successful and devout business woman and even a former enemy of Christ and his family. Honor for those who fear and worship the Lord and believe in Jesus. That night Paul had a vision: A man from Macedonia in northern Greece was standing there, pleading with him, “Come over to Macedonia and help us!” 10 So we[c] decided to leave for Macedonia at once, having concluded that God was calling us to preach the Good News there.

11 We boarded a boat at Troas and sailed straight across12 From there we reached Philippi, a major city of that district of Macedonia and a Roman colony. And we stayed there several days.

13 On the Sabbath… we sat down to speak with some women who had gathered there. 14 One of them was Lydia from Thyatira, a merchant of expensive purple cloth, who worshiped God. As she listened to us, the Lord opened her heart, and she accepted what Paul was saying. 15 She and her household were baptized, and she asked us to be her guests… 22 A mob quickly formed against Paul and Silas, and the city officials ordered them stripped and beaten with wooden rods. 23 They were severely beaten, and then they were thrown into prison… 25 Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening. 26 Suddenly, there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off!  29 The jailer called for lights and ran to the dungeon and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. 30 Then he brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” 31 They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved, along with everyone in your household.” 32 And they shared the word of the Lord with him and with all who lived in his household. 33 Even at that hour of the night, the jailer cared for them and washed their wounds. Then he and everyone in his household were immediately baptized. 34 He brought them into his house and set a meal before them, and he and his entire household rejoiced because they all believed in God. 35 The next morning the city officials sent the police to tell the jailer, “Let those men go!” 36 So the jailer told Paul, “The city officials have said you and Silas are free to leave. Go in peace.” 37 But Paul replied, “They have publicly beaten us without a trial and put us in prison—and we are Roman citizens. So now they want us to leave secretly? Certainly not! Let them come themselves to release us!” 38 When the police reported this, the city officials were alarmed to learn that Paul and Silas were Roman citizens. 39 So they came to the jail and apologized to them. Then they brought them out and begged them to leave the city… 

Acts 17 Those who listened were persuaded and joined the disciples and those who became jealous and caused persecution. The people of Berea were more open-minded and many believed. 1 Paul and Silas then traveled through the towns of Amphipolis and Apollonia and came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue. Some of the Jews who listened were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, along with many God-fearing Greek men and quite a few prominent women.[d] But some of the Jews were jealous, so they gathered some troublemakers from the marketplace to form a mob and start a riot. They attacked the home of Jason, searching for Paul and Silas so they could drag them out to the crowd…

10 That very night the believers sent Paul and Silas to Berea. When they arrived there, they went to the Jewish synagogue. 11 And the people of Berea were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, and they listened eagerly to Paul’s message. They searched the Scriptures day after day to see if Paul and Silas were teaching the truth. 12 As a result, many Jews believed, as did many of the prominent Greek women and men.

13 But when some Jews in Thessalonica learned that Paul was preaching the word of God in Berea, they went there and stirred up trouble…

true prophets: what Jesus has warned

Jesus is still speaking today. He has urged the people of God to repent or perish. Repentance means turning away from sin and turning to God, back to the best plan God has for your life. What Jesus has warned has come true in history after Jesus, is coming true today, and will complete in the reality of this world until the end.
Questions to ask:
Who is Jesus talking to today? Am I in this message from Jesus (God Himself)? What shall I do today about my own life? It is every man to himself now. No church or religious organization can save anyone. Everyone must face Jesus today and make each own decision on the way ahead.
“Today when you hear His voice, don’t harden your hearts.” (Hebrews 4:7)
List of headings and brief summary from chapter 13 from the book of Luke.
1. Repent or Perish: God wants to save. Jesus was speaking salvation to Jerusalem two thousand years ago. Many had perished since. What He had prophesied about the destruction of the city and the subsequent desolation, and the salvation of many gentiles, from the east and the west, from the north and the south, had come true. But His prophetic message is still ongoing as many are perishing and many are being saved.
2. Barren fig tree: God wants fruits that last. Jesus was speaking of living a productive lifestyle and bearing evidence of salvation. God is the planter. Jesus has spoken of a timeframe. Heed the time today.
3. A Spirit of Infirmity: God heals. Jesus has shown this by healing a woman and set her free from bondage. He has done this miracle on s Sabbath day (like our Lord’s day today). Sunday is a day we have set for God and do God’s will. God’s will in this incident was to destroy the bondage of the devil, set free and heal.
4. Jesus speaks of the kingdom of God. Like a tiny almost invisible unnoticeable mustard seed, it will grow and thrive until it is visible to all. Similarly like a little bit of unnoticeable leaven it will have multiplying effect until the evidence of it manifests to all. The positive outcome (new life) is evident to all and cannot be hidden.
5. Strive to enter through the narrow gate. Jesus way is the only way. Actually many try to seek and find salvation and eternal life in heaven. It means people do acknowledge an afterlife and wish that they can go to a place with no suffering. Heed what Jesus has said today if you are among the many who seek.
6. Jesus Laments over Jerusalem.

Luke 13 New King James Version (NKJV)
Warning: Repent or Perish
13 There were present at that season some who told Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And Jesus answered and said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? 3 I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish. 4 Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.”
Warning: be fruitful or be cut down -The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree
6 He also spoke this parable: “A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. 7 Then he said to the keeper of his vineyard, ‘Look, for three years I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree and find none. Cut it down; why does it use up the ground?’ 8 But he answered and said to him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. 9 And if it bears fruit, well. But if not, after that[a] you can cut it down.’”
God heals and sets free: woman healed of a spirit of infirmity
10 Now He was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. 11 And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. 12 But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.” 13 And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God.
14 But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, “There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day.”
15 The Lord then answered him and said, “Hypocrite![b] Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? 16 So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound—think of it—for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?” 17 And when He said these things, all His adversaries were put to shame; and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by Him.
Kingdom of God: The Parable of the Mustard Seed
18 Then He said, “What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it? 19 It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and put in his garden; and it grew and became a large[c]tree, and the birds of the air nested in its branches.”
Kingdom of God: The Parable of the Leaven
20 And again He said, “To what shall I liken the kingdom of God? 21 It is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures[d] of meal till it was all leavened.”
Who will be saved? Only through Jesus -The Narrow Way
22 And He went through the cities and villages, teaching, and journeying toward Jerusalem. 23 Then one said to Him, “Lord, are there few who are saved?”
And He said to them, 24 “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25 When once the Master of the house has risen up and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock at the door, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open for us,’ and He will answer and say to you, ‘I do not know you, where you are from,’ 26 then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets.’ 27 But He will say, ‘I tell you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity.’ 28 There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, and yourselves thrust out.29 They will come from the east and the west, from the north and the south, and sit down in the kingdom of God. 30 And indeed there are last who will be first, and there are first who will be last.”
31 On that very day[e] some Pharisees came, saying to Him, “Get out and depart from here, for Herod wants to kill You.”
32 And He said to them, “Go, tell that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.’ 33 Nevertheless I must journey today, tomorrow, and the day following; for it cannot be that a prophet should perish outside of Jerusalem.
Jesus Laments over Jerusalem
34 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were not willing! 35 See! Your house is left to you desolate; and assuredly,[f] I say to you, you shall not see Me until the time comes when you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’ ”[g]
Footnotes:
a. Luke 13:9 NU-Text reads And if it bears fruit after that, well. But if not, you can cut it down.
b. Luke 13:15 NU-Text and M-Text read Hypocrites.
c. Luke 13:19 NU-Text omits large.
d. Luke 13:21 Greek sata, approximately two pecks in all
e. Luke 13:31 NU-Text reads In that very hour.
f. Luke 13:35 NU-Text and M-Text omit assuredly.
g. Luke 13:35 Psalm 118:26

pray in the power of the Holy Spirit

20 But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit,

Jude 1:20 (KJV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

20 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost,

Maintain Your Life with God

20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit,

20 But you, beloved, build yourselves up [founded] on your most holy faith [make progress, rise like an edifice higher and higher], praying in the Holy Spirit;

20 But you, my friends, keep on building yourselves up on your most sacred faith. Pray in the power of the Holy Spirit,

A strategy for the faithful

20 But you, dear friends: build each other up on the foundation of your most holy faith, pray in the Holy Spirit,

20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit,

20 But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith, and pray in union with the Ruach HaKodesh.

20 But you, Chaverim, build yourselves up on what is kodesh kodeshim (most holy) of yours, your [correct, Orthodox Jewish] Emunah (Faith, v.3, the Emunah of the true Dat HaYehudit], davening in the Ruach Hakodesh.

Holy-Spirit-Tapestry

journey on: everyone who has given up house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the Kingdom of God

Count The Cost and Journey On in 2014

Luke 14

25 A large crowd was following Jesus. He turned around and said to them, 26 If you want to be my disciple, you must hate everyone else by comparison—your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. 27 And if you do not carry your own cross and follow me, you cannot be my disciple.

28 But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it? 29 Otherwise, you might complete only the foundation before running out of money, and then everyone would laugh at you. 30 They would say, ‘There’s the person who started that building and couldn’t afford to finish it!’

31 “Or what king would go to war against another king without first sitting down with his counselors to discuss whether his army of 10,000 could defeat the 20,000 soldiers marching against him? 32 And if he can’t, he will send a delegation to discuss terms of peace while the enemy is still far away. 33 So you cannot become my disciple without giving up everything you own.  

cost of the kingdom of God
cost of the kingdom of God

34 “Salt is good for seasoning. But if it loses its flavor, how do you make it salty again? 35 Flavorless salt is good neither for the soil nor for the manure pile. It is thrown away. Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand!

Luke 18 

26 Those who heard this said, “Then who in the world can be saved?”

27 He replied, “What is impossible for people is possible with God.”

28 Peter said, “We’ve left our homes to follow you.”

29 “Yes,” Jesus replied, “and I assure you that everyone who has given up house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the Kingdom of God, 30 will be repaid many times over in this life, and will have eternal life in the world to come.”

counting down -last three days: (31st) Grace, Blood, Covenant, Spirit

today (31st December 2013) verses: all about passing over. Key words: Jesus is the only passing over way. Grace, blood, everlasting covenant, the Spirit of God.

Exodus 12; Exodus 11; Hebrews 10:11-12; Hebrews 13:9; Hebrews 13:20; 1 Corinthians 6:17; Joshua 5:10; Joshua 7:11-13; Romans 13:12-13; 1 John 1:7; 1 John 2:8 (New King James Version)

Exodus 12:11 11 And thus you shall eat it: with a belt on your waist, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand. So you shall eat it in haste. It is the Lord’s Passover.

Hebrews 10:11-1211 And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God,

Hebrews 13:9 Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them. 13:20 20 Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,

1 Corinthians 6:17 17 But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him.

Joshua 5:10 10 Now the children of Israel camped in Gilgal, and kept the Passover on the fourteenth day of the month at twilight on the plains of Jericho.

Joshua 7:11-13 11 Israel has sinned, and they have also transgressed My covenant which I commanded them. For they have even taken some of the accursed things, and have both stolen and deceived; and they have also put it among their own stuff. 12 Therefore the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, but turned their backs before their enemies, because they have become doomed to destruction. Neither will I be with you anymore, unless you destroy the accursed from among you. 13 Get up, sanctify the people, and say, ‘Sanctify yourselves for tomorrow, because thus says the Lord God of Israel: “There is an accursed thing in your midst, O Israel; you cannot stand before your enemies until you take away the accursed thing from among you.”

Romans 13:12-13 12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. 13 Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy.

1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.

1 John 2:8 Again, a new commandment I write to you, which thing is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away, and the true light is already shining.

________________The Whole Armor of God

10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— 19 and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak. (Ephesians 6:10-20)

Zechariah 4:6 So he answered and said to me: “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the Lord of hosts.

the full armor of God

A Christmas present: Life, Spirit, Peace, Joy, Healing, Freedom!

Many Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ around this time although they know that Jesus was not born on 25th December. Most churches too, do not want to be left out of this man-made tradition or culture. One Biblical way of celebrating this season is to read the whole Bible in one continuous sitting, from beginning to the end. Jesus said, I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. Reading the whole Bible together as a church (a group of Christians taking turn) would take about 72 hours depending on the language proficiency of those who read. While waiting for their turns the participants can sit around or rest anywhere within hearing distance. Be awed by the presence of the spiritual God. The Word is God. The Word became man as Jesus. Be transformed while you abide in Him and His words abide in you during this season of waiting upon the Lord as the ultimate celebration of Jesus’ birth. Let the Holy Spirit breathe life on you.

For those who gather together as one family or a few families (as in house church), you may choose to read the New testament only. It will take about 17-19 hours in one sitting. The result will be great for each participant. This is the best present you can receive from your heavenly Father! This blogger has done this on my own and it took me about a week, resting in between reading. Something broke through.

John 1:1-3 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. 
 John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
John 6:63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.
 Romans 16:20 And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.
1 Peter 2:24  who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed. 
 John 8:32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
First verse of the Bible: Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

Last 2 verses of the Bible: Revelation 22:20-21 20 He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly.” Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus! 21 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

______________Luke 24:35-49 (highlight added by this watchman)

35 Then the two from Emmaus told their story of how Jesus had appeared to them as they were walking along the road, and how they had recognized him as he was breaking the bread. 36 And just as they were telling about it, Jesus himself was suddenly standing there among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. 37 But the whole group was startled and frightened, thinking they were seeing a ghost!

38 Why are you frightened? he asked. Why are your hearts filled with doubt? 39 Look at my hands. Look at my feet. You can see that it’s really me. Touch me and make sure that I am not a ghost, because ghosts don’t have bodies, as you see that I do.” 40 As he spoke, he showed them his hands and his feet.

41 Still they stood there in disbelief, filled with joy and wonder. Then he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and he ate it as they watched.

44 Then he said, When I was with you before, I told you that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and in the Psalms must be fulfilled.” 45 Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. 46 And he said, “Yes, it was written long ago that the Messiah would suffer and die and rise from the dead on the third day. 47 It was also written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of his name to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.’ 48 You are witnesses of all these things.

49 “And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven.” Come Holy Spirit