Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Thursday 03 December |
Saint of the Day: St. Francis Xavier
home iconSpirituality
line break icon

The Holy Spirit came when the future looked hopeless

Holy Spirit

Fred de Noyelle | Godong

Philip Kosloski - published on 05/31/20

It was a depressing time to be an apostle, but then everything changed in an instant!

Imagine yourself as one of the apostles of Jesus. He dies a gruesome death, rises from the dead, but then leaves you and your friends alone.

It must have been a confusing time, and while Jesus did promise to send an “Advocate,” it still wasn’t very specific.

Furthermore, think about those who believed in Jesus’ words, but weren’t apostles. They were entirely on the outside and to them, Jesus died and they might have heard rumors of his resurrection.

The future, to some of his disciples, must have appeared hopeless.

Rev. John Freeland, in the Pulpit Commentary on Catholic Teaching, further expands on this reflection.

Nothing could have well appeared more hopeless than the affairs of the religion of Christ on that first day of Pentecost …The Divine Founder had left it without His visible presence. The last of Him seen by the Jewish people was His crucifixion. He had died between two thieves, surrounded by a crowd in whom the hatred of the whole human race seemed to have become centralized…He was dead; His followers had been dispersed; the beginnings of the new religious movement had been taken up by the roots; the thing had come completely to an end. Thus it must have appeared to all. 

However, it was precisely in this hopeless situation that God rushed in, turning it upside down.

But men forgot, as men do forget, that, when affairs have the gloomiest outlook, then God most of all delights to show and to make manifest His power. Almost every feature connected with the commencement of the Christian religion is of a miraculous kind. Twelve poor men, without culture, with very little knowledge as the world understands the term, speaking with an accent the despised dialect of Galilee, stood, on the first Pentecost day, before the inhabitants of Jerusalem to preach to them “Christ and Him crucified.” For forty days previous to this they had been in concealment, afraid; now, suddenly, their fears are gone.

Furthermore, a veil is lifted on the people and many who did not believe in Jesus, now come to him through the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.

And the people who would not listen to the gentle pleadings of the Master now eagerly drink in every word of the accusations made by the disciple. They obey the call to penance to the number of five thousand and are baptized. This was the beginning of the Catholic Church.

It is important to remember this lesson, as often our own lives will experience a gloomy day when everything appears lost.

However, God is always ready to turn the tables and when it is the right time, everything can change in an instant.

We must keep the faith and hope in the Lord, for when we least expect it, he will bring peace and joy back into our lives.


JESUS KNOCKING

Read more:
Jesus appeared to his apostles during a lockdown


JESUS' ASCENSION

Read more:
How Jesus’ presence is still with us after his ascension

Tags:
BiblePentecost
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
LUXOR FILM FESTIVAL
Zoe Romanowsky
20-year-old filmmaker wins award for powerful...
Andrea Bocelli
J-P Mauro
Andrea Bocelli to perform live Christmas conc...
Eric Clapton, Luciano Pavarotti, East London Gospel Choir
J-P Mauro
Hear Clapton and Pavarotti sing a prayer to t...
FATHER JOHN FIELDS
John Burger
Priest who volunteered for COVID-19 vaccine t...
John Paul II
Philip Kosloski
St. John Paul II's guide to a fruitful Advent
ADVENT
Philip Kosloski
Prayer to be watchful during Advent
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.