Spirituality & Prayer

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Luke and Acts: Abundant Presence of the Holy SpiritReligious Education Congress – Session 7-14 Archdiocese of Los Angeles – March 21, 2010 Felix Just, S.J., Ph.D. Loyola Institute for Spirituality, Orange, CA http://catholic-resources.org


Incredible Abundance?Lectionary Cycle: Year A: Matthew Year B: Mark Year C: LUKE JOHN: esp. Lent & Easter Gospel according to LUKE: Many more Prayers, Parables, Poor & Needy, Meals… Prominence of WOMEN (also in John)  session 3:14 Role of HOLY SPIRIT (also in Acts)  session 7:14


What is "spirit" / "Spirit"?


What is "spirit" / "Spirit"?Defs. of "spirit" in English (from dictionary.com): the principle of conscious life; the vital principle in humans, animating the body or mediating between body and soul. the incorporeal part of humans: present in spirit though absent in body. the soul regarded as separating from the body at death. conscious, incorporeal being, as opposed to matter: the world of spirit. a supernatural, incorporeal being, esp. one inhabiting a place, object, etc., or having a particular character: evil spirits.


Def. of "spirit/Spirit" (cont.)a fairy, sprite, or elf. an angel or demon. an attitude or principle that inspires, animates, or pervades thought, feeling, or action: the spirit of reform. (initial capital letter) the divine influence as an agency working in the human heart. a divine, inspiring, or animating being or influence. Num. 11:25; Is. 32:15. (initial capital letter) the third person of the Trinity; Holy Spirit. the soul or heart as the seat of feelings or sentiments, or as prompting to action: a man of broken spirit. spirits, feelings or mood with regard to exaltation or depression: low spirits; good spirits. excellent disposition or attitude in terms of vigor, courage, firmness of intent, etc.; mettle: That's the spirit!


Def. of "spirit/Spirit" (cont.)temper or disposition: meek in spirit. an individual as characterized by a given attitude, disposition, character, action, etc.: A few brave spirits remained to face the danger. the dominant tendency or character of anything: the spirit of the age. vigorous sense of membership in a group: college spirit. the general meaning or intent of a statement, document, etc. (opposed to letter): the spirit of the law. Chemistry. the essence or active principle of a substance as extracted in liquid form, esp. by distillation. Often, spirits. a strong distilled alcoholic liquor. Chiefly British. alcohol. Pharmacology. a solution in alcohol of an essential or volatile principle; essence. any of certain subtle fluids formerly supposed to permeate the body. the Spirit, God. –adjective pertaining to something that works by burning alcoholic spirits: a spirit stove. of or pertaining to spiritualist bodies or activities. –verb (used with object) to animate with fresh ardor or courage; inspirit. to encourage; urge on or stir up, as to action. to carry off mysteriously or secretly (often fol. by away or off): His captors spirited him away. Idiom out of spirits, in low spirits; depressed: We were feeling out of spirits after so many days of rain. [Origin: 1200–50; ME (n.) < L spīritus orig., a breathing, equiv. to spīri-, comb. form repr. spīrāre to breathe + -tus suffix of v. action ]


"Spirit" in the BibleHeb. Ruach & Gk. Pneuma refer to various things Root meaning: "moving air" = wind, breath, spirit Could be something natural, human, evil, or divine Hebrew Bible: Ruach Translation of Gen 1:1-2? "In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while RUACH from God swept over the face of the waters." (wind? spirit?)


Jacques Tissot - Creation


"Spirit" in the Hebrew BibleGod’s Ruach as the basis of life "Then the LORD God formed man (Adam) from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and the man became a living being." (Gen 2:7) "Then he said to me, ‘Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, mortal, and say to the breath: Thus says the Lord GOD: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.’ " (Ezek 37:9)


Ezekiel 37 Georg Weigel


"Spirit" in the Hebrew BibleGod’s Ruach with prophets, judges, kings "Then the LORD came down in the cloud and spoke to him (Moses), and took some of the spirit that was on him and put it on the seventy elders; and when the spirit rested upon them, they prophesied. But they did not do so again." (Num 11:25) Note: "Prophecy" is not "predicting the future" but rather "speaking on behalf of God" Ruach on Judges & Kings: see esp. Jdg & 1 Sam


"Spirit" in the Hebrew BibleGod’s Ruach on the Messiah: “A shoot shall come out from the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots. The spirit of the LORD shall rest on him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD” (Isaiah 11:1-2)


"Spirit" in the BibleGreek Bible used by Early Christians: Old Testament (LXX) & New Testament PNEUMA = any "moving air": wind, breath, spirit Cf. English "pneumonia" = illness of the lungs or "pneumatic" (air-powered) tools: drills, pumps… Greek verbs pneo / ekpneo = "to breathe (out)“ Used only in connection with Jesus’ death


"Pneuma" in the NTSomething in nature: moving air, wind, breath Something human, but from God: spirit of adoption, spirit of faith, spirit of gentleness, spirit of glory, spirit of grace, spirit of holiness, spirit of life, spirit of power & love & self-discipline, spirit of prophecy, spirit of wisdom and revelation, spirit of your minds, spirits of the prophets, spirits of the righteous, spirit of Elijah


"Pneuma" in the NT (cont.)Something demonic: evil spirit, unclean spirit demonic spirit, foul spirit spirit of an unclean demon spirit of cowardice, spirit of divination spirit of error, spirit of slavery spirit of the antichrist spirit of the world, sluggish spirit


"Pneuma" in the NT (cont.)Something divine: Holy Spirit, Holy Spirit of God Spirit of (our) God, Spirit of the Living God, Spirit of the Lord, Spirit of your Father, Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead, Spirit of His Son, Spirit of Jesus Spirit of Christ, Spirit of Jesus Christ Spirit that is from God Spirit of Truth, eternal Spirit seven spirits of God (only in Rev 3)


Trinity from Mission Santa Clara & by El Greco


Holy Spirit? Icon by Andrei Rublev


Trinity from Mission Santa Clara


"Holy Spirit" in the Gospels (see statistics table on handout)Mark: "spirit" used 24 times, but "Holy Spirit" only 4 times Matthew: "spirit" used 19x, but "Holy Spirit" only 5x Luke + Acts: "spirit" used 36x + 70x; "Holy Spirit" used 13x + 41x "Holy Spirit" drives all the action (see handout) John & 1 John: "Holy Spirit" 3x; "Spirit of Truth" 4x; "Paraclete" 5x


"Holy Spirit" in MARK1:8 – [John the Baptist]: "I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit." (cf. Matt 3:11; Luke 3:16) 1:10 – And just as [Jesus] was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. (cf. Matt 3:16; Luke 3:22) 3:28b-29a – "Whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit can never have forgiveness..." (Matt 12:32; Luke 12:10) 12:35-36 – "How can the scribes say that the Messiah is the son of David? / David himself, by the Holy Spirit, declared, ‘The Lord said to my Lord, "Sit at my right hand, until I put your enemies under your feet." ’ " (cf. Matt 22:43; shorter in Luke 12:42) 13:11 – "When they bring you to trial and hand you over, do not worry beforehand about what you are to say; but say whatever is given you at that time, for it is not you who speak, but the Holy Spirit." (cf. Matt 10:20; Luke 12:12)


More "Holy Spirit" in MATT.1:18-20 – Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. / … an angel of the Lord appeared to [Joseph] in a dream and said, "Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit." 12:27-28 – "If I cast out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your own exorcists cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges. / But if it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come to you." (Luke 11:20 has "finger of God") 28:19 – "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,…"


Holy Spirit in LUKE’s GospelWith John the Baptist: Angel Gabriel says: “Even before his birth, he will be filled with the Holy Spirit” (1:15); …he will act “with the spirit and power of [the prophet] Elijah” (1:17) the child grows and becomes “strong in spirit” (1:80). With Mary: Gabriel tells Mary how she will conceive Jesus: “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you” (1:35; part of the “Annunciation”).


Annunciation – J. Tissot


Holy Spirit in Luke (cont.)With Elizabeth: When Mary visits her pregnant older cousin, Elizabeth is "filled with the Holy Spirit" (1:41). In Mary’s Song of Praise: The Magnificat: "My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior" (1:46-47). With Zechariah: After the birth of John the Baptist, his father is "filled with the Holy Spirit" and utters a prophecy (1:67).


Holy Spirit in Luke (cont.)Simeon: In Jerusalem, "the Holy Spirit rested on" a righteous man named Simeon (2:25) The Holy Spirit had revealed to him that he would not die before seeing the Messiah (2:26) So the Spirit guides him to the Temple, where he encounters the infant Jesus and his parents (2:27).

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