“I will pour out my Spirit …”

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There is a legend in Portugal of the “Crowing Cock of Barcelos.” It is said that a certain man was condemned at Barcelos, a small town on the North of Portugal, to be hanged for a crime he did not commit. He swore his innocence, but had no alibi to prove the truth. Prompted by faith, he appealed to his patron saint, Saint James, praying for protection, begging for release from the unjust sentence. Then, as his last wish, he asked to be allowed to go to see the judge. The Magistrate received him in his dining room where he was eating dinner. Once again the man pleaded for his life, swearing his innocence; and under a sudden faith impulse, he added that the roasted cock which lay on a tray on the judge’s table would get up and crow if his statements were really true. Then, indeed, the rooster immediately jumped up off the tray and started crowing vibrantly. Ever since, the “Crowing Cock of Barcelos” has been a symbol of faith in that land.

What do you suppose could happen if Christians today were intentional and intense in their prayers, and acted more on “sudden faith impulses” instead of ordinary common sense? What do you think Christ’s Church could accomplish by putting our complete and desperate trust in Jesus Christ and the power of his Holy Spirit? If we acknowledged that we are totally dependent on the resources of our loving and gracious God, and not on our own means for life, what do you think would happen? I daresay people’s lives would be much different than it presently is for most of us. We might see “roasted cocks crow,” or as Scripture tells us, such miracles as mountains moved! The miraculous power of God would be unleashed to bring millions of unbelievers to faith and know Jesus as Savior and Lord, because God’s mission to save our lost world would be embraced by Christ’s Church with new zeal, through faith brought to effect by God himself.

When all is said and done, we will finally discover that we really are totally dependent only on faith in our Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ. But why wait until all is said and done, when instead, we can live and prosper in God’s gift of faith now! “God declares, I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions and your old men shall dream dreams.” (Joel 2:28 and Acts 2:17) Through faith, may all our dreams and visions in Christ Jesus become a reality in our lives today!

Pastor Kurt Wandrey