Spirit and Fire

First Sunday after the Epiphany
10 January 2010
Epiphany 1C (RCL)

Isaiah 43:1-7
Psalm 29
Acts 8:14-17
Luke 3:15-17, 21-22

Shifting to the RCL has provide some interesting homiletic opportunities. In the BCP lectionary on the First Sunday after the Epiphany, year C, we read Luke 10:34-38; a truly overworked little bit of Acts — Peter’s speech to Cornelius’ household, “Truly, I know that God shows no partiality; rather in every nation whoever fears God and acts righteously is acceptable to God.” A nice piece of scripture, but used any number of times thoughout the lectionary. Now, in the RCL, we have the bit about the apostles in Jerusalem hearing that the Samaritans have accepted the word of God. They have received water baptism, but not baptism with holy spirit (or breath). Peter and John lay hands on them and they receive the spirit. Clearly, for Luke, there is a difference between water baptism and baptism in breath. What is it?

On Pentecost, the spirit falls on the 120 in the upper room, Continue reading “Spirit and Fire”