Andy Thinks

The Holy Spirit

Lunch today was at Bertucci’s in the mall.  Pizza, but with a maitre d’.

I thought I’d comment today on Pastor John Ritter’s sermon this morning.  He prompted me to think some new thoughts that I hadn’t thunk before.

The message was about the Holy Spirit.  Part of the message was regarding how the H.S. entered into Jesus’ earthly life.

Pastor John pointed out that in spite of the close parallels between the stories of John the Baptist and of Jesus while still in their mothers’ wombs, scripture records that John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit, but notably does not make that statement about the prenatal Jesus.  There is made no connection of Jesus with the Holy Spirit until immediately after his baptism at about age 30, when the H.S. descended upon him like a dove, and a voice came out of heaven, “Thou art my beloved Son, in thee I am well-pleased.”

Clearly something special happened at that moment.  I wonder what Jesus had afterward that he didn’t have before.  And (a more radical thought) I wonder if John the Baptist possessed something while still in his mother’s womb that perhaps Jesus didn’t have until that moment 30 years later.

This paradox of “fully God, yet fully man” is certainly baffling.  It is hard to imagine where the earthly Jesus’ humanity ended and where his deity began.

Immediately after the Spirit descended upon Jesus, he went into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.  I wonder – being fully human, certainly Jesus must have been tempted before.  We don’t know much about his life before his baptism.  Scripture records that he lived a sinless life, “spotless as a lamb.”  This wouldn’t have been quite so remarkable if he had never been tempted.  How is it that Jesus’ ability to resist temptation earlier in his life was different than his ability to resist temptation in the wilderness after his baptism?  Does God the Father view these as being different in Jesus’ case?  I’m certain he views them differently in our case (that is, before and after we receive Christ).

Did God bestow the Spirit on Jesus after he came out of the water because he had demonstrated a sinless life without the help of the Spirit?

Or was Jesus’ victory over temptation in the wilderness intended to be an illustration to us that once we receive the Spirit, we now have the power to resist temptation that we didn’t have before?

I’d better stop.  I think my brain is going to explode.

Share this:

1 thought on “The Holy Spirit”

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to Top