NT Wright’s assertion of what Pentecost means

From his Pentecost Sermon of 07 posted here: http://www.ntwrightpage.com/sermons/Pentecost07.htm

“The disciples, filled with the Spirit, begin the work of Jesus’ sovereign and saving rule over the world, whose Lord he now is, by their shared common life, their works of healing, their proclamation of him as Lord and King, and their bold witness against the authorities who try to stop them. And that just about sums up the whole book, all the way to when Paul arrives in Rome and announces God as King and Jesus as Lord right under Caesar’s nose, openly and unhindered. So Pentecost is about the powerful presence of Jesus with his people; about the implementation of Jesus’ healing, saving rule through his people; and thirdly about the anticipation, in and through that work, of the final day when heaven and earth shall be one. It isn’t just that the Spirit is the ‘down payment’ of what is to come for us as his people; the Spirit is the advance sign of what God is going to do for the whole earth, the entire created order.”

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2 Responses to NT Wright’s assertion of what Pentecost means

  1. Jeff Ling says:

    Why is this shocking? Is your assumption that Wright is preaching universalism? My understanding is that Wright is talking about that day when creation is renewed ala Romans 8.

  2. paulvk says:

    I think the statement is very orthodox, yet I see pretty clear “red meat” in that statement:

    “the implementation of Jesus’ healing, saving rule through his people”

    I can see two obvious objections to this statement:
    1. the now fading blue state panic over theocracy (the church using the world’s means of power to pursue an agenda)
    2. the underwhelming performance of the church

    the application of Ascension Day and Pentecost without the foundational manner of Christ’s mission leads to some very bad (and common) places. There is more on this at the end of my Pentecost post.

    thanks for your comment! pvk

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