Today is Pentecost, where we celebrate the giving of the Law through the Spirit and not the letter.
Today is Pentecost Sunday. It is the day Israel was given the ten commandments through Moses and when the church was given the Holy Spirit through Jesus Christ. It is a holy day. Both covenants were enacted on this day. 2 Corinthians 3 states the first was the “letter of the law that kills and brings condemnation.” The second, the new covenant of “The Spirit who gives life and righteousness.” How? The first covenant was through the works of the law that our flesh would never be able to keep. The new covenant is in Christ Jesus, through faith in the Father’s resurrection of His Son after His sacrifice for sin for everyone, for all time. The new covenant is of the Spirit who gives life and righteousness, putting God’s laws in our minds and writing them on our hearts.
Now, the law is not in stone or letter, but placed in our minds and written in our hearts through the Holy Spirit. (Hebrews 8:7-13). Rather than the letter leading us, the Spirit leads us, but the law is the same. Reading the Word allows the Holy Spirit to take the truth of Jesus in the scriptures and sanctify us to the Lord out of the world.
Mark 3 – 9
The apostles are chosen, and the parable of the Sower given and explained, which is the key to understanding all parables (Mark 4:13). Wind and waves obey Jesus, demonized man is healed, Jairus’ daughter is raised from the dead and the woman with an issue is healed. Jesus is rejected in His hometown, and the five and four thousand are fed. Finally in Chapter 9, Jesus is transfigured on the Mount of Transfiguration as the disciples are overshadowed in the Father’s Glory – “This is My beloved Son. Hear Him.”
1 Corinthians 1 – 8
Corinth is a port city rich and influential in the ancient world. Having received the gospel, they excel in gifts and faith but are divided through sectarianism and pride. The gospel is weakness to the Jew and foolishness to the Greeks. We know Christ through the Spirit and not through the flesh (carnal) nor our soul (natural). What we build with, on the foundation of Christ, will be determined by the testing of fire. Rewards to those whose works stand and loss of rewards to those whose works are burned up, salvation through the fire. Stewards of the mysteries of God and Paul’s fatherly care above the many teachers we have is contrasted in Chapter 4.
Sexual sin is to be mourned over, not puffed-up attitudes. The standard for the church is holiness and to the world evangelism, for they can’t hold God’s ways until they are saved. Going to court against a brother, principles in marriage and to those not married, and living as you were called. Chapter eight speaks to our consciences and our call to love.
Deuteronomy 18 – 25
The promise of the Messiah is given in Chapter 18. Cities of refuge are explained as well as principles governing warfare. Female captives becoming wives is a picture given of us, in Psalm 45 (Deuteronomy 21:10-14, Psalm 45:10-17).
Laws of sexual morality are reviewed, and those excluded from the congregation for their past sin against Israel. All laws are limits but can be overcome through faith, as Ruth, a Moabites, was brought into Israel becoming the great grandmother of King David. Divorce and marriage along with miscellaneous laws finish this week’s reading.
Pentecost has come and it’s our reading for Sunday.
Psalms 88 – 92
Psalm 88 is a prophetic picture of Jesus being placed in the abyss for our sins as He dies death. Spiritual death on the cross becoming sin for us and receiving the wrath of God upon Himself. Psalm 89 is a blessing of God’s care. Psalm 90 is the psalm of Moses, 91 is our promise of the Secret Place and protection. Psalm 92 the blessing of a long life or service and worship in the House of God.
Ezekiel 1 – 6
Ezekiel 1, is the picture of the glory of God and the Son of Man sitting on the throne, looking up from the earth. Revelation 4 and 5 are seeing the same vision but from heaven. Note this chapter was read on the day of Pentecost and today throughout Israel during this Feast of Weeks. No wonder there was joy in the upper room, they were inside this heavenly vision of the glory of God.
Scrolls are being given to Ezekiel, his call as a watchman set, and Ezekiel is called to enact Jerusalem’s siege. Ezekiel is a prophet (exiled in Babylon) during the prophet Jeremiah’s ministry in Jerusalem. He sees the same things Jeremiah is seeing in the Spirit, seeing all the idolatry of Israel.