Two Promises 

The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit
that we are children of God.
Romans 8:16

 I have told you this while I am with you.
The Advocate, the Holy Spirit whom  the Father will send in my name
will teach you everything
and remind you of all that I told you.
John 14:25–26


The background of the Gospel is a time of crisis.   The nation built by David upon God’s promise, after infidelity, exile, and defeat had come to an end with the occupation of Jerusalem by the surrogates of Rome, the Herodians and Pontius Pilate.  The Temple priesthood was corrupt.  There are accomodationists such as the Sadducees who believe that Jews must accept Roman Rule as the price of keeping their city and the Temple.   There are zealots, revolutionaries who want to end the Roman occupation violently.  There is the Sanhedrin, the great council, seeking always a way between these factions.  And there is expectation that the Messiah will come, perhaps to restore Israel to its Davidic greatness, perhaps as herald of the Day of God.     Continue reading “Pentecost”