Just yesterday, when I asked to take my partially repaired car early from the mechanic in order to make it to an appointment, the kind manager thought it would be a good idea for me to pay for all of the work in advance. I wasn’t sure how good of an idea that was; however, it turned out that my car was more in need of fixing than previously thought and I ended up asking my daughter to ferry me over to the appointment in her car.
The manager wanted compensation in order to secure our business relationship. It was our experience living overseas that whenever work was needed on the house or on the car, a down payment (normally up to half of the final price) was required. Both of these arrangements are types of pledges or tokens that are given as an assurance of the fulfillment of a bargain or promise.
Three times in the New Testament (2 Cor 1:22, 2 Cor 5:5, Eph 1:14) “guarantee” or “pledge” is used to describe how God has given us the Holy Spirit. “He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.” (2 Cor 5:5) God has given us this guaranteeing pledge to serve as a seal of our relationship with Him and an indication of what is to come.
In Jerusalem this week, 2,000 Christian leaders from the Anglican Church will come together from 50 countries. They will come together around the theme of “proclaiming the Gospel faithfully to all nations”. They will come together with the shared guarantee that the Holy Spirit has been given to God’s people and that this same Spirit is the power (2 Cor 4:7, 2 Cor 12:9, Rom 1:16) by which the nations will come to Christ through the proclamation of the Gospel.
Faith Church has sent three representatives to this Jerusalem conference, possibly the largest delegation from any church in our province. Please pray for Fr. Bates and Sherry Richmond and for Stephanie Marshall as they join with others and represent Faith Church in Jerusalem at this historic GAFCON gathering.