On this Pentecost Sunday, please read this fascinating writing by Rev. Shirley C. Guthrie, on the Holy Spirit. (Click for PDF)
QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION AND STUDY
- Do you agree that the Holy Spirit is also at work in the world outside the church, among and in people who are not Christians? Could the Holy Spirit be at work in a shopping mall? In a session of the United States Congress? At a baseball game? How could we tell whether or not the Spirit is at work in such unexpected places?
- Why is it important to insist that the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ?
- Read Paul’s discussion of the gifts of the Holy Spirit in 1 Corinthians 12— 14. What gifts are mentioned? Why are they given? Do they conflict with each other? Do all Christians receive the same gifts? What is the greatest gift? What does Paul think of “speaking in tongues”?
- In light of the biblical understanding of the meaning of the word spiritual, what would be a spiritual relationship between a husband and wife? Between friends? Between an employer and his or her employees?
- What does it mean to be “born again”? How can we recognize a born-again Christian when we see one?
- If faith, hope, and love are gifts we can receive only from the Holy Spirit and are not gifts we can achieve for ourselves, should we blame or condemn people who do not have these gifts?
- How can we be faithful to the Christian convictions we already hold and yet let ourselves be corrected by the Holy Spirit?
- Could the Holy Spirit lead us to “new truth” that is not specifically given us in the Bible? Could the Spirit lead us to think and act differently from the way Christians who respect the authority of scripture have traditionally thought we should think and live?