torsdag 30. juni 2016

Does the Holy Spirit violate my hospitality?

I have always taught that the Holy Spirit does not violate the hospitality of any human being. That means that he does not enter into my life unless I invite him in; and when I invite him in, he does only enter the rooms of my soul’s house, which I give him access to.

Is this teaching challenged by the biblical narratives where the Holy Spirit apparently comes as a surprise?

A typical example of surprise is what happened in the house of Cornelius:
“While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on Gentiles. For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God.”
Acts 10:44-46
Even though the Holy Spirit may surprise, it is not the same as violating a person’s borders or ‘hospitality’. Cornelius and his “house-fellowship” had sought the Lord for some time. I am convinced that this had created a longing after something they did not have any preconditions for knowing what was.

Through obeying the angel and call for Peter, Cornelius had sanctioned the invitation of the Holy Spirit. Also his close family and friends had shown the same openness by accepting the invitation to come and listen to Peter. They even expressed that in this confession: “Now we are all here in the presence of God to listen to everything the Lord has commanded you to tell us.”Acts 10:33

With such expectations and openness, the Holy Spirit does not need further invitations: He comes!

‘Manna’ for today:
Welcome, Holy Spirit, welcome!

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