Read: Joel 2:27-29
I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh (Joel 2:28).
The Holy Spirit Is For All
“Blessings Unlimited” — that would be a good title for this announcement of God’s plan for His people. “I am the Lord your God… and my people shall never be ashamed.” But who are my people? The rabbis restricted God’s blessings to certain classes even among the Jews. They said: “Prophecy does not reside on any but such as are wise, valiant and rich.” But this was not God’s plan; God was stretching Joel’s mind and ours.
There is no gift of God’s grace denied to any man who asks for it. The promise is, “I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh.” We tend to think that only parents — persons of maturity — can be used of God. But the promise is here given also to the young. “Your sons and daughters shall be inspired” (Moffatt). No age is excluded. God speaks to the old and to the young — though He may use a different language. He makes himself real to old men in their dreams; He speaks to young men in their visions.
Some would give men a special preference over women, but in God’s gift of himself there are no sex distinctions — “both sons and daughters may know and speak of the things of God. And there is no favoritism based on class or income: “Even upon the servants and the maids I will, in those days, pour out of My Spirit” (Berkeley).
We rejoice in the goodness of God that makes His grace so freely available. Of the gift of the Holy Spirit, our glad hearts sing:
For the love of God is broader Than the measure of man’s mind; And the heart of the Eternal Is most wonderfully kind.
— F. W. Faber