Today’s Old Testament reading, from the Book of Numbers, gives the story of the Spirit coming down on the seventy elders, those chosen to bear the burden of the people with Moses, so that he did not have to bear it alone: ‘Then the Lord came down in the cloud and spoke to him, and took some of the spirit that was upon him and put it upon the seventy elders; and when the spirit rested upon them, they prophesied’.

St Augustine, in commenting on the Spirit that fell upon the seventy, wrote: God is the only one who could be in everyone who wants to be in that grace. Now, as it says: “And I will take part of the spirit that is in you”, and it is not said: “of your spirit,” the solution of the problem is easier, because we understand that God did not mean any other thing than they would have also the help of grace from the same spirit, of which Moses participated. And that’s why they would have the amount of spirit that God wanted, but not so that Moses had less’.

As the Psalmist would write: ‘Whither shall I go from thy Spirit? Or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend to heaven, thou art there! If I make my bed in Sheol, thou art there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there thy hand shall lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me’.

May the Spirit of God rest upon you this day, that you may know peace, joy and light, and may He bless you.