Pentecost is the most marvelous festival in the Christian calendar which sits at the pivotal point in the Christian journey. Pentecost commemorates the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon mankind as promised by Jesus and prophesied by the prophet Joel. (Joel 2:28-29; Act.1:4-5)
It is an extraordinary day because it is the day which signifies a believer’s spiritual rebirth from the fallen ‘Adamic humanity,’ and being reborn into the new risen ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus Himself, the second Adam. (1 Cor.15:45) Through Jesus’ divine/human new being (Immanuel) humans are recreated into complete humans as God first created mankind to become. (Isa.7:14; Matt.1:23; Gen.1:26-27)
Paul said this, “In Christ you have been brought to fullness, for His power extends over everything” (Col.2:10). Yes, everyone who receives Jesus as Savior is equipped with divine fullness and share in God’s glory. (Rom.8:17; Gen.1:26-27)
Jesus said this to the people who were gathered for a festival, “Whoever believes in Me, as the Scriptures have said, river of living waters will flow from within them. By this He meant the Spirit” (John 7:38-39). What is a river? A river is an attractant for people because it is a place where they can flourish and be sustained indefinitely by the river’s waters. Ancient civilizations have been established along mighty rivers – the Nile, Euphrates, Yangtze, Ganges, Amazon, Mississippi, Thames, etc.
The greatest river is spiritual in nature. That is the role of the Holy Spirit – to give the spiritual life-giving waters for the sustenance of humanity who have received Jesus as Savior. Peter made this transference, this diffusion and flow of the Spirit to humans through Jesus’ mediation apparent when he said, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Act.2:38).
This was Peter’s message to the people as they celebrated Pentecost on that momentous day when this astounding prophecy of Joel came to pass in Jerusalem when the Spirit was poured out upon the disciples and believers. And as sure as God promised, the Spirit was poured upon the disciples and followers, one hundred and twenty in all. Soon after, three thousand more people were added by Peter’s message of reconciliation. (Luk.24:49; Act.2:41; Joel 2:28-29)
The Spirit will not and cannot enter human life unless and until a human being “repents and is baptized.” What does this phrase mean, “repent and be baptized?” To repent means to acknowledge one’s past life of existing in the sin-condition of the fallen ‘Adamic humanity.’ The ‘Adamic humanity’ is the fallen sin-conditioned humanity of Adam mankind inherited from his first sin in Eden. It is diametrically opposite to the ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus. He is the second Adam God gave for mankind’s redemption and restoration. (1 Cor.15:45; Isa.7:14; Matt.1:22-23; John 3:16-17)
From Paul’s words, we understand that all humans are descended from two human genealogy – the ‘first Adam’ and the ‘second Adam’ (Jesus). One is given by physical birth through Adam’s creation, while the other is bestowed by both human and spiritual birth through the Holy Spirit. (1 Cor.15:45; Matt.1:20-23). From this revelation, the terms ‘Adamic humanity,’ and ‘Immanuel humanity’ is used. Pentecost and the gift of the Holy Spirit was a promise fulfilled of humanity’s new birth into Jesus’ ‘Immanuel humanity.’ (John 3:5, 3)
Secondly, to be baptized means to be born and inducted (initiated, installed, and ordained) by the Spirit’s power into the risen ‘Immanuel humanity’ of the resurrected Jesus, and enter into communion with the divine triune life of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit. We read Jesus instructed His followers, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing (inducting) them in the name (life) of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matt.28:19, italics my emphasis). To be inducted into the divine life is to live the ‘Triune Life*”. (To know more about the ‘Triune Life’ please read my post titled, “Our Human Response In The “Triune Life” of God,“ at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199; and the “New Humanity of Jesus” at: http://bulamanriver.net/9718).
Paul said this about our baptism following Jesus’ own template of repentance and forgiveness by John the Baptist in the Jordan River. (Matt.3:13-17) To the Roman believers, he said saliently, “Don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. For if we have been united with Him in a death like His, we will certainly also be united with Him in a resurrection like His” (Rom.6:3-5).
Yes, to be baptized means to die to and bury our fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ from Adam in the watery grave of baptism through Jesus’ cross. Then rising up and out of the watery grave into the new resurrected life of Christ’s ‘Immanuel humanity,’ the second Adam, and unified with the one triune God. (1 Cor.15:45; Matt.28:19) Jesus’ ‘Immanuel humanity’ means the ‘God with us’ human life that’s inspired by the resurrected Christ in the Spirit’s power. (Matt.1:23; Isa.7:14)
In the new spiritual birth, humans become and receive Jesus’ new ‘Immanuel humanity,’ displacing and replacing the sin-conditioned fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ of Adam in Eden. Jesus gave his followers a rather weird prerequisite for becoming a follower. He said, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. For My flesh is real food and My blood is real drink. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood remains in Me, and I in them. Just as the living Father sent Me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on Me will live because of Me. (John 6:53-57).
Jesus was speaking metaphorically, not literal cannibalism as His listeners assumed. Later, Jesus used the emblem of bread and wine to convey the same message. John records, “Jesus took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and gave it to His disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is My body.” Then, He took wine and said, “Drink from it, all of you. This is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins” (Matt.26:26-28).
The terms “flesh and blood,” and “bread and wine,” were metaphors to convey the truth of the second Adam, the new glorified bodily ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus that is God’s gift to humanity. (John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:45) Paul said, “If anyone is in Christ, the new creation (Immanuel human) has come: The old (Adamic human) has gone, the new is here!” (2 Cor.5:17, italics mine for emphasis).
So recapping, “to repent” means to give up and forsake the sin-conditioned fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ of the first Adam, and “be baptized” means to be inducted and installed into the new ‘Immanuel humanity’ of the resurrected Jesus, the second Adam, and unified in the one triune life of God. (1 Cor.15:45) Through Jesus’ glorified humanity, mankind is made to live the Triune Life* in the Father, Son, and Spirit. (Matt.28:19)
So, Jesus is the One who gives passage for the Spirit to enter and renew humanity in Jesus’ ‘Immanuel humanity’ and the Triune Life*. Notice, “But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you” (John 16:7, NLT). Jesus said this knowing of His impending death on the cross to redeem mankind. Recall, Adam had cutoff humanity’s connection and communion with the Spirit as symbolized by the ‘Tree of Life’ in Eden.
Note, after Adam had sinned, the Bibles says this, “After sending them (Adam and Eve) out (of Eden), the Lord God stationed mighty cherubim to the east of the Garden of Eden. And He placed a flaming sword that flashed back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life (Holy Spirit)” (Gen.3:24). So, humanity was cutoff from the Holy Spirit because of Adam’s sin against God, which humanity inherited from Adam. (Rom.5:12, 15) Unity with God substantially means holistic union in His Trinitarian Being in the Father, Son, and Spirit. You cannot have One without the Others. God is one not three. (Mar.12:29; Deut.6:4)
It was left for the second Adam (Jesus) to make this all-important vital connection to the Spirit and to the Tri-Personal Being of God. (Matt.28:19; John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:45) Paul said, “For if the many died by the trespass of the one man (first Adam), how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ (second Adam/’Immanuel human’), overflow to the many!” (Rom.5:15, 17-19, italics my emphasis).
What happens when the Spirit comes and makes His abode in a human life? Paul answers, “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?” (1 Cor.6:19). Yes, the Spirit’s presence in a person makes him/her the very temple of the living God. In this, God’s following prophecy comes to pass, “As God has said: “I will dwell with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be My people” (2 Cor.6:16). Yes, individually and collectively, saved humans have become the very temple God has sought to erect and live in upon earth.
The temple Moses built in the wilderness under God’s instruction, and subsequently Solomon’s magnificent temple in Israel, was picturing the spiritual temple of the hearts of saved humanity. God is not human to live in physical structures like grandiose cathedrals and other religious edifices. The Bible states He already has a physical temple, the whole of creation is His physical temple. (Isa.66:1-2)
God is Spirit and therefore lives in a spiritual temple. God lives in His glorious temple in heaven; however, if God does not dwell in any physical temple, then what is this temple in heaven? The heavenly temple is Jesus Christ. He is the second Person of the Tri-Personal God (Trinity), the Son of God, the Messiah, the High Priest who officiates in the temple of Himself. Upon earth, His spiritual temple is the inner sanctum of the hearts and minds of saved humanity. (Psa.34:18; 51:10-12, 16-17; Matt.22:37-40) Once we live this life in the Spirit then we are living in harmony with creation and the universal order as divinely conferred upon Adam and humanity at creation. (Gen.1:26-31)
We saw earlier Jesus compared the Holy Spirit as a riving of living waters. (John 7:38-39) This metaphor is symbolic of the Holy Spirit’s cleansing activity in human life. A human being is the spiritual riverbed for God’s Spirit. So, the “riverbed” (human person) plus the “living waters” (Holy Spirit) = the authentic union of humans with the Triune God through the ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus.
And if the Spirit’s “living water” is always flowing in humans, then He never leaves a void in us but fills every aspect of our lives. What is the Spirit’s cleansing activity? What does He do in each of us as His vessel, God’s very temple on earth? Paul documents this in his letter to the Corinthians as he expounds about God’s Love-fruits as expressed through the fruits of His Spirit’s activity in humanity. (1 Cor. 13; Also Gal. 5:22-23; Rom. 12:9-21).
God’s Love-fruit is the peaceful flow of the Spirit’s life in humans through His Love fruits. Paul tells us what they are: it is, *the fruit of patience, *the fruit of kindness, *the fruit of contentedness, *the fruit of being modest and unboastful, *the fruit of humility, *the fruit of honor, *the fruit of unselfishness, *the fruit of calmness and dignity, *the fruit of forgiveness and compassion, *the fruit of delighting in good and shunning evil, *the fruit of tolerance, *the fruit of responsibility, *the fruit of enduring hope, *the fruit of steadfast perseverance, *the fruit of joy, *the fruit of peace, *the fruit of goodness, *the fruit of faith, *the fruit of gentleness, *the fruit of self-control, *the fruit of zeal and spiritual fervor, *the fruit of friendship, *the fruit of sharing and generosity, *the fruit of prayerfulness, *the fruit of hospitality, etc. (1 Cor.13) The spiritual river is the flow of the Spirit’s Love-fruits we see above in humanity.
All these and other Love-fruits and traits of the Spirit spells one thing: they spell the actions and emotions of God’s Love in the life of saved humans. (Rom.5:5) By and through them we decipher and peek into the different tones of God’s Love. They present to us the way of life of how God had eternally existed in His Triune Being in the Father, Son, and Spirit, and now invites humanity into His Loving existence. John tells us about how this Loving relationship will exist for eternity, “God is Love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of Love, we live in God and God lives in us’ (1 John 4:16).
As we approach the festival of Pentecost which commemorates the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon mankind as prophesied by the prophet Joel, let us be reminded that it is the Spirit’s Presence in humanity that brings about and enliven the very Christ-life in each of us, His ‘Immanuel humanity’ empowered by the Spirit’s Love. And with Christ living and walking in humans, mankind has become the very temple of God upon earth where our heavenly Father dwells and is worshipped day and might. (Joel 2:28-29; Act.2:17)
I close this post with my best wishes to all my readers for a blessed Pentecost season 2021. May God’s Spirit be with you and grant you peace and abundance.
Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life.* Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us.
I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made children of God forever. (1 Sam.16:7; Jer.17:10) You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religion, religious sect or denomination, color, culture, or nationality – but into one glorious ‘Immanuel humanity’ that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:
Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, thank You for recuing me and my loved ones, and all humanity, from the enemy’s fearful and destructive waters, and bringing us home into the life-giving waters of Your Ocean of Love. Grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts You have conferred upon us all so we may serve one another in Your Love. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”
Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at – email@example.com.
Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you and your loved ones this Pentecost season and always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life”*. In closing, pray for God’s intervention with regard to the pandemic that is sweeping this world. Finally, may you always find strength in the Lord’s Joy.
Farewell for now,
Kiang, (Your Servant in Christ)
*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35; Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)
I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23; Rom.3:10-12, 18, 23; John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:50-55; Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)
So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”
I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:14; 1 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified with in Love. (Mar.12:29; Deut.6:4)
Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!
Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life.
In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.
Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5; Eph.3:16; Col2:2) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).
The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:9; 37:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)
The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.
**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.
*Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664
All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.
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