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  My Witness

Vol. 7, No. 3, July, 2002

The Holy Spirit -- Agent of Evangelization, Part 4
by Sr. Brigid Meierotto, S.N.C.

Sister Brigid "Evangelization will never be possible without the action of the Holy Spirit" (Pope Paul VI, Evangelization in the Modern World, paragraph 75).

In the last message, we got some acquaintance with the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of power. In this fourth message we are going to meet the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of Glory! Think about it power and glory are closely related in the resurrection of Jesus.

What is glory? Glory is a very concrete reality in the scripture. It takes on the appearance of a fire surrounding the top of Mount Sinai, or the cloud that was mysterious and full of light (Ex. 16:10; 24:15-17; Num. 9:15; Dt. 5:22-24).

We see that glory is the sign of the sovereign presence of the Almighty and we are filled with awe (Ex. 40:34; Num. 10:34; 1 Kgs. 8:11; Ez. 10:4; 43:2-5; 44:4). Ez. 44:4 reads:

"Then he brought me by way of the north gate to the front of the temple; and I looked, and behold, the glory of the Lord filled the temple of the Lord; and I fell on my face."
It's no wonder then, that glory breaks forth in spectacular works (Ex. 19:16; Dt. 5:22; Jn. 11:40). As Jesus tells Lazarus' sister, Martha:
Jesus said to her, "Did I not tell you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?
Notice that in the New Testament, glory and power are interchanged, so that in one place we read, "the glory of his power" and in another, "the power of his glory" (Eph. 3:16; Col. 1:11; 2 Thes. 1:9).

And, the Kingdom will come in power and in glory (Mk. 8:38; 9:1; 13:26). Take a moment here to pray the Our Father and pause on the phrase, "thy kingdom come." How will the Father's kingdom come? In power and in glory!

It comes through Jesus! The promise of the Messiah who was to come is fulfilled in the resurrection of Jesus: the full outpouring of the Spirit the triumph of power, the light of glory Jesus lives through the power of God (2 Cor. 13:4), and he was raised by glory (Rm. 6:4).

Jesus' resurrection is his glorification, his becoming Lord and life giving Spirit (1 Cor. 15:45). Jesus was raised through the Spirit of power and glory and transformed in him.

Jesus is the Good News and the Holy Spirit is his agent! In the glory of Jesus Christ, we, his disciples, are also transfigured into a spiritual body (2 Cor. 3:17f):

"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being changed into his likeness from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit."
We possess the first fruits of the Spirit (Rm. 8:23); his pledge (2 Cor. 1:22; 5:5); a foretaste of the final gift of the Spirit (Rm. 8:11); and a glory which will one day make us like Jesus Christ in glory by the power of his resurrection (Ph. 3:10, 21).

It is beyond our imagining, isn't it? Just think of the power and the glory of the Good News! Our transformation in Jesus is the work of the Spirit, the power and the glory (Eph. 3:14 19).

"For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with might through his Spirit in the inner man, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have power to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fulness of God."
On the day when we come to be with Jesus in heaven, we will stand before him with glorified bodies, bodies full of strength, spiritual bodies (1 Cor. 15:43f). We will live forever in glory, in strength, because we will rise again in the Spirit.

We can see that the Spirit and glory are definitely identified. 1 Peter 4:14 says, "the Spirit of glory and of God." The cloud, called the glory of God, is also the symbol of the Spirit.

We ask again: glory what is it? Glory is God himself in the radiance of his being. God comes out of himself by his action: creating, revealing, communicating himself, glorifying himself. Maybe you have heard this statement made about someone who is just bursting at the seams with confidence and accomplishment: "he's in his glory." Yes, the person is rejoicing in the radiance of his being.

There exists in God a trust, a power of outpouring, a breath by which God breathes this is the Spirit. Active, radiating power, he is God himself in his ecstasy.

The truth of this seems beyond belief this Spirit dwells in us to call us forth, to enlist us to love, to evangelize, to bring Jesus to others so the kingdom will come in power and glory!

Pray let the Holy Spirit teach you!

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