Thursday, February 03, 2005

A number of new beginnings

50 means new beginnings... perfect completion (seven times seven), plus one. Starting over again, with freshness and focus. The ancient Hebrew scriptures speak of the year of Jubilee (Leviticus, chapter 25). Every 50th year, a clean slate. Debts forgiven, property restored to its rightful owners, slaves and indentured servants set free, rest for the land and for the people... celebration of new beginnings. The early Christian church was galvanized by a new connection with God, through the Holy Spirit, on the day of 50 (or "Pentecost," as the Greeks would have said it). 50 days after the resurrection of Jesus, a new beginning with ordinary people being empowered for the extraordinary. The church was born on the day of 50, and the world has been revolutionized as a result.

God is working in Amsterdam today... offering new beginnings. A newfound community of faith is growing and developing in the city center, proclaiming God's forgiveness, restoration, freedom, peace, renewal. Ordinary people are experiencing the extraordinary, through new life as children of God, redeemed by Christ, filled by the Spirit. This is 50...


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