Acts 19: 1-7
Mark 1: 4-11
Second Sunday after Epiphany
January 18, 2015
TEXT: "And just as he was coming out of the water, He saw the heavens
torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on Him"
During a college music workshop, the great trumpet player, Louis Armstrong, was being asked questions about his early musical training, his trumpet technique, his repertoire, his singing style, etc. Then, a hush came over the audience in anticipation of the legendary Jazzman's answer to a young student's question: "Mr. Armstrong, what is Jazz?" Armstrong thought for a moment, then, with a touch of sympathy in his voice, replied, "If you gotta ask, you ain't got it."
In today's Gospel Lesson, Mark tells us that "Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee" to the River Jordan where He was baptized. "And just as He was coming out of the water," Mark says, " He saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him" (Mk. 1:9-10).
Later, Jesus promised His disciples that the Holy Spirit would descend upon them, "to teach them all things." And we are the inheritors of that promise. Our body is the "temple of the Holy Spirit," the Apostle Paul has written (I Cor. 6:19). But what significance does this have for our lives? Does it mean anything at all in terms of how we live, what we do with our lives? Simply put, "What is the Holy Spirit of God?" And, paraphrasing Louis Armstrong we can say, "As long as we have to ask that question, we'll never know." The knowledge comes in the experience. The knowledge is revealed only in the experience.