Posts by Greg Wilbur

 

Pentecost marks the end of the season of Easter as the promised Spirit is poured out on the Church. This is the seal of the New Covenant—the presence of the Lord descends on His people just as the pillar of fire descended on the tabernacle and the temple on the Holist of Holies. With the veil of the temple torn in two at the death of Christ, the access to God—the mercy seat and the symbols of the sacraments—is bestowed on the Church who is now collectively the temple of the Holy Spirit. Pentecost is effectively the birthday of the Church.

 

The work of the resurrection is not complete until the ascension of Christ when he returns to the right hand of the Father in human form and in power and authority.

 

Lord’s Day worship imperceptively reorients our affections towards heaven and away from earthly concerns, towards the eternal rather than those things that are passing away, to the way of the cross instead of our own comfort. The on-going shaping of the Sabbath equips, prepares, challenges, and changes us.

 

Ambrose brought the singing of hymns to congregational worship and established what became the foundation of Ambrosian Chant. Hymns like “O Splendor of God’s Glory Bright” and “Come, Thou, Redeemer of the Earth” have instructed countless churches throughout the centuries.

 

This song of comfort and hope would have been particularly consoling during the unrest and uncertainly of the early days of the Reformation. Reminding the people of the truth of the Gospel, the promises of life in death, and the glory of Christ that drives away the darkness of the lands under the shadow of death.