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The Coming of the Spirit

Therefore he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant.

Hebrews 9:15

Watch Week One, Day One

Jesus and His Church

The church began with Jesus. He is the founder and sustainer of the church. As a Jewish man, Jesus came as the prophesied Messiah, Savior, whom the Jews had long awaited. As the story unfolds in the Bible, we see that some Jews believed that Jesus was the Messiah while others rejected Him due to unfulfilled expectations. With this in mind, the first Christians were Jews. The Christian faith first spread among the Jews and then to the Gentiles.

Jesus came to offer salvation. To redeem mankind back to God. To satisfy God’s wrath toward sin. To provide a path of reconciliation. To usher in a new covenant—a covenant based in His holy life instead of the old covenant, which, with all our failed attempts to obey the law, was not the end for us. Hebrews 9:15 says, “[Jesus] is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant.” Jesus is the new covenant, and He offers salvation to all. This led the way for the beginning of the church.

Jesus started the church with an eccentric group of twelve men including tax collectors and fishermen. He asked these men to leave their lives behind and follow Him. For three years, Jesus taught them about the kingdom of God and prepared them to be His witnesses in “Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8). Moments before Jesus ascended into heaven, He sent His followers out to make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19). This is how the church began—through Jesus and His commission to go to the ends of the earth and make disciples.

Colossians 1:18 says, “He is the head of the body, the church.” Jesus is the head of the church, the leader of the church, and the foundation of the church. Ephesians 5:25–27 further illustrates His position: “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.” Jesus’ love for the church runs deep—so deep that He would give His life for her in order to present her as holy before God. The church is Jesus’ avenue for encouraging His followers and spreading the gospel. The church is of utmost importance to Jesus.

Before Jesus ascended into heaven, He told the disciples to stay in Jerusalem until the promised Holy Spirit came upon them.

pentecost

Read Acts 2:1–13

The promised Holy Spirit was about to arrive. About 120 followers of Christ were all together in one place (Acts 1:15; 2:1). They were waiting. Waiting for what Jesus promised to be “power from on high,” the Holy Spirit (Luke 24:49). Imagine this charged moment. These followers of Christ had recently experienced Jesus’ death, resurrection, and ascension. They believed He was the Messiah, but now what? Jesus had sent them out to make disciples, but how would they do this? The Holy Spirit. He would give them power to start His church and take the gospel to the ends of the earth.

At Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came like a mighty rushing wind, as tongues of fire, and filled each person. They all began to speak of the mighty works of God in all different languages so that all understood. This day, upon the Holy Spirit’s arrival, with these 120 people, Jesus’ church began. And this church, Jesus’ church, has thrived and expanded through the centuries, all the way to us in this present age.

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How does Christ’s love for the church affect you?

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Comments (3)

He died for church loves it, washes it is head of it came to dwell in it wow ! Makes me feel intimate with Christ – God I have instant access to God – I am not afraid of God anymore it is not based on my own efforts merits yahoo! I’m bought with a price it’s Hid work !

He has adopted me into His family and given me brothers and sisters in the faith. Christ’s love for the church means He cares about her. He cares about me, as a member of His beloved church. It means I’m not alone and that His church will stand the test of time, come what may because the plans of the Lord don’t fail. This personally encourages me to be an active member of the local and global church…to be about the work He has called me to as His child. His love for the church compels me to love others and share the good news.

Because of the loving relationship between Christ and the Church, Pam and I are apt to look for friends first from the church family versus from the general community at large.

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