The Holy Spirit and the Church Dispensation

What's the big deal about Pentecost?

At the Passover, Jesus was preparing his disciples for his departure, promising them another Comforter (John 14:16). Whereas the Holy Spirit had already been with believers in the Jewish dispensation, and had even indwelt individuals for special events as a TDY agent, now in the Church dispensation the Holy Spirit would be in the believers, not only in individuals for special occasions, but in all believers, and not temporarily but forever.

A condition of the Holy Spirit's coming was Jesus' departure. "Now I am going to him who sent me", Jesus said. ... "Because I have said these things, you are filled with grief. But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you." - John 16:5-7.

When did Jesus go? Some would argue that he went at his death:

But there are no time constraints in the eternal realm after death, so there is no conflict here with our linear perception of time.

Some would argue that Jesus went at the Resurrection. But he was seen by many after the Resurrection, so he was not "gone" then.

We submit that Jesus left and went to the Father at the Ascension. What day did Jesus Ascend into heaven? We know that the Holy Spirit would not come to indwell the believers until Jesus left. We may be able to bracket the time, approximately: So the most likely day of his ascension would have been the last of the forty days that Luke said Jesus was seen by his disciples, i.e. P+43, leaving "a few days" until the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. Those few days were most likely a time of crisis and disillusionment for the disciples, bringing the soul-searching questions like "Was it all a big mistake?" But then...

The Holy Spirit finally arrived, with a Bang, like when the ripe thistle bloom explodes, showering seeds far and wide. And those frightened, disillusioned men were empowered with boldness to spread the word. - Acts 2:1-4.

Next Week: A Simplified Model of the Trinity, to introduce the unique role of each Person of the Trinity.