Tuesday, June 08, 2004

June 8, 1851
was Pentecost, and Venerable John Henry Newman,C.O., preached a sermon, of which the following notes survive:
The Life-Giving Spirit

"1. INTROD.—We have what we have waited for. Paschal time is not only a time of rejoicing, but of waiting for a gift. The whole creation groaning, etc. Hence, now being the end, we go no further, but date our time from Pentecost.

2. The gift of today set up the Church, hence it is said to be a vehement wind filling the house. Solomon's temple filled with the glory, as the sweet nard filled the house.

3. For up to this date the Church was not formed. The multitude who followed Christ was but matter. They were not a body filled with Christ. Christ was with them, but external; they were not confirmed. They were all scattered abroad as sheep. Hence as an individual may have first actual, then habitual grace—so the multitudo fidelium all Paschal time is begging to be the bride of Christ.

4. Now then the Spirit came down, to gather together the children of God, etc., all those who had fled away, etc.; returned—3000-5000 .

5. Like the resurrection of dry bones, Ezech. xxxvii.

6. Such is the power, the manifestation, of the Spirit; thus sudden, thus gentle, thus silent. It is life from death—what health is after sickness. It makes young. Oh what a gift is this! Who would not wonder if a physician could make an old man young? See him, unable to do more than grope about, his limbs stiff, his face withered, etc., etc. But the physician comes, and health and comeliness and vigour return, etc. This is what is fulfilled by the power of the Spirit, in a measure in individuals, certainly in the body.

7. And is it possible such is in store for England?—(explain). Nothing unexpected, nothing too difficult. It is grace, yet spreading not at once.

8. Prayer for it. Never so much prayer as now."


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