Sunday, January 01, 2017

We are not alone

The Holy Spirit 
descends on Christ 
at His baptism. 
(Photo © 2016 by V. Nesdoly)

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Galatians 3:26-4:7

“And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out Abba Father!’” Galatians 4:6


On this day, when we cross the threshold of the new year, we may come with a variety of emotions. There may be anticipation over all those crisp new calendars and empty date blocks yet to fill. There may be a feeling of “here we are again” jadedness. Or there may be outright dread of the unknown that we will face in the next 365 days.

Our reading today reassures us, however we’re feeling, we are not alone on this journey. If we have believed in Christ’s atonement for us (…were baptized into Christ have put on Christ - Galatians 3:27), have accepted His buying us back (are “redeemed” - Galatians 4:5), then we are His responsibility. He has adopted us as His sons and daughters. Our hearts witness to this and now recognize Father God as “Daddy” (“Abba Father”).

It’s not on our own that we come to this place of belonging, dependence and security, though, but through the Holy Spirit: “And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts…” Galatians 4:6.

We have a companion for the days ahead, a multi-faceted helper, as witnessed to by His many names:

Eternal Spirit - Hebrews 9:14
Holy Spirit - Psalm 51:11; Ephesians 1:13, 4:30
Power of the Most High - Luke 1:35
Spirit of Adoption - Romans 8:15
Spirit of Christ - 1 Peter 1:11
Spirit of Counsel - Isaiah 11:2
Spirit of Glory - 1 Peter 4:14
Spirit of God - Genesis 1:2
Spirit of grace - Zechariah 12:10
Spirit of Holiness - Romans 1:4
Spirit of Judgment - Isaiah 4:4
Spirit of Knowledge - Isaiah 11:2
Spirit of Life - Romans 8:2
Spirit of Lord God - Isaiah 61:1
Spirit of Strength - Isaiah 11:2
Spirit of Prophecy - Revelation 19:10
Spirit of the Father - Matthew 10:20
Spirit of the Lord - Isaiah 11:2
Spirit of the Son - Galatians 4:6
Spirit of Understanding - Isaiah 11:2
Spirit of Wisdom - Isaiah 11:2

(The above list from the NKJV Thompson Chain Bible - “Titles and Names of the Holy Spirit” #3634.)

With such a companion we can go into the year with the confidence of well-taken-care-of children!

PRAYER: Dear Father, thank You that I don’t enter 2017 alone, but have the Holy Spirit as my companion and helper. Amen.

MORE: Holy Name Day

Today the church celebrates the Feast of the Holy Name. The day’s liturgy begins with this collect:

"Eternal Father, you gave to your incarnate Son the holy name of Jesus to be the sign of our salvation: Plant in every heart, we pray, the love of him who is the Savior of the world, our Lord Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen."

Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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