Jesus Promises the Holy Spirit

The forgotten holiday - Ascension Day

The problem of the forgotten holiday – Ascension Day

What is the forgotten holiday?  Actually, maybe not so much forgotten.  More like never really celebrated that much.  Ever.  I call it the “forgotten” holiday as a nod to Francis Chan’s book – The Forgotten God.  Does that help to identify it?  If you live someplace like France, Germany, Norway or Sweden – you’ll be wondering why I call it forgotten.  Your countries haven’t forgotten.  But if you’re like me, in the U.S. – or if you’re in the U.K., Canada or Australia – you get it.  Maybe, no matter the country, you get it if you’re Catholic.

So what is the forgotten holiday?  It’s Ascension Day.

Receive the Holy Spirit

The problem of “Receive the Holy Spirit”

And with that he breathed on them and said, Receive the Holy Spirit.   This verse is from John 20:22.  Yes – John’s Gospel.  This is one of those verses that just makes you want to ask, “What is going on here?  Didn’t that happen later?  Wasn’t that in Acts?  On Pentecost?”

Let’s start someplace unexpected.  In the middle.  At the very beginning of the book of Acts, written by Luke.

Before the rooster crows, but was it once or twice?

So which one is it?  Was Jesus telling Peter the rooster was going to crow once, or twice?  Does it matter?

Well, yes it does matter.  You don’t want to give someone a “free pass” to say there’s a discrepancy between the Gospels, and therefore there is an error in the Bible.  There should be at least an attempt to see why this apparent discrepancy might exist.

However, first and foremost we need to see if it’s really even different.  Conclusions are no better than the assumptions upon which they’re based.  So, we really cannot just assume the verses disagree without verifying it.

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