Monday, May 28, 2018

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Luke 3:15-22
Heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: "You are my Son, whom I love; I am well pleased. "(Luke 3:22)
The given text speaks about Holy Spirit. This passage belongs to the section elucidating the ministry of John the Baptist. John the Baptist was the son of Zechariah who ministered in the wilderness. Wilderness always reminds us of the journey of the Israelites through the desert on their way to Canaan. Desert always sketches the rough and tough, pain and pathos of the life. The words of John the Baptist seems to be tough but speaks straightly about the realities of society. The focus of the message of John was "repentance and bear fruits." Listening to the words of John, all were questioning in their hearts the identity of John. Without much delay John reveals the source of his message, the Holy Spirit. Luke 3:15-22 clearly speaks about three functions of Holy Spirit. They are repentance, redemption, and revelation.
Repentance: John clearly states that without repentance there will be no transformation. People expected a change in both social and religious milieu. John explicates that baptism is only the beginning point to that change. Baptism begins with repentance and celebrates the process of redemption. True repentance must always lead to redemption. Repentance is not simply a change of the mind; but repentance is the transformation of the total self. It is transformation of the formative factors of self.
Redemption: John is referring to Jesus' coming and His engagement to establish justice and peace. Justice and peace had been vandalized by the Roman Empire. Roman Empire afflicted their subjects with unethical policies and unjust behaviors. John very well conveyed that Jesus will reform the conditions of human life and He will redeem the lives of the suffering people. He will bring justice and peace by judging the evil practices that demoralize the people. Holy Spirit renews the hope of the people and guides us to a historic redemption.
Revelation: John was speaking about Jesus, the Messianic Lord. Marginalized and victimized people always expected the coming of Messiah. But they were not aware of the identity of Messiah. Holy Spirit revealed the identity of Jesus. The descending of the Holy Spirit is symbolically represented and reveals that Jesus is the true Messiah sent from heaven. Holy Spirit is God's invisible presence. Holy Spirit, one among trinity, is a gift to the Holy Church. Holy Spirit reveals the Church about her mission.
0 Lord the Messiah, enable your church to function as the medium of Holy Spirit in this world. Amen
Do not miss out on God's blessings because it is not packaged in the way that you expect.

Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church