By Sidharth Mohandas
While Jesus was with His disciples He made it clear to them that the Holy Spirit would not come until He [Jesus] ascended back to heaven [John 16:7]. He also said that when His disciples would receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, they’d be witnesses unto Him [Acts 1:8]. In other words, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the waiting disciples was a proof that Jesus had ascended to heaven and had sat down at the right hand of the Father [Acts 2: 33]
Here’s a statement I’d like to make: When you are born-again you become a witness to Jesus’ resurrection. However, you become a witness to the ascension of Jesus into the heavens only when you receive the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the gifts that accompany it.
When He ascended on high, He led captives in His train and gave gifts to men. [Ephesians 4: 8]
When Jesus ascended to heaven, He gave the gift of the Holy Spirit, through Whom came many gifts. These gifts are mentioned in 1 Corinthians 12:8-10 and Romans 12:6-8.
Now I wish to draw your attention to 1 Corinthians 13: 1, where it says “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.”
It is interesting that Paul was using the Hebraic High Priest garment to explain the more excellent way of using the gifts of the Spirit through the fruit of the Spirit [love]. Now, the High Priest’s ephod had two things at its hem: Pomegranates and Golden bells [Exodus 39:22-26]. The Pomegranates symbolizes the fruit of the Spirit while the Golden bells in between them symbolize the gifts of the Spirit. This is why Paul says we’d be just clanging cymbals without the fruit of the Spirit. Now in the Old Covenant, the High Priest would enter the Most Holy Place once every year and the people would wait in fear outside the tabernacle while the High Priest sprinkled the blood on the Mercy Seat. In those days if a High Priest came before the direct Presence of God with sin in his heart or with a displeasing sacrifice, they’d fall dead then and there. The only way those who stood outside could know that the High Priest was alive was by the ringing of the bells on his ephod. In the New Covenant, Jesus is our High Priest, and according to Scriptures He has ascended into the the Most Holy Place. Therefore, when you and I operate in the gifts of the Spirit, we are being witnesses to the fact that Jesus is alive in the Sanctuary.
I encourage you today not to be ignorant about the gifts of the Spirit [1 Corinthians 12: 1], but to desire earnestly the best gifts [1 Corinthians 12: 31], to be zealous for them [1 Corinthians 14: 1], and even pray for them [1 Corinthians 14: 13]. When you operate in the gifts and excel in it by operating in the love of God, you are being a witness to His ascension. We need to ask ourselves today: Are the bells ringing in my life?