The Breath of Life

“So Jesus said to them again, "Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you." And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit.”

John 20:21-22

In a day when we are going to great links to be extremely cautious about breathing on other people due to the coronavirus I am reminded that life actually began doing the very opposite. We read in Genesis 2:7, “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being” that it was God breathing into Adam that made him come to life to begin with. You can almost picture God performing CPR thousands of years before man discovered it when He held the lifeless body of Adam in his arms and breathed His breath, the very breath of God into man bringing Adam to life. God provided the breath of life long before ventilators were ever invented.

If you recall one of the greatest concerns doctors had at the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak was that there would not be enough ventilators for patients with advanced cases of the virus to go around. According to the American Thoracic Society, “a ventilator can help a patient by doing all or some of their breathing, and that a ventilator is far superior to a mask and other breathing devices because it can deliver higher levels of oxygen. It can also provide positive end expiratory pressure (PEEP), which helps hold the lungs open so the air sacs do not collapse.” It was determined by medical science that ventilators were necessary for saving lives since the virus could attack the lungs of coronavirus patients making it impossible for them to breathe on their own. To survive they would need something or someone to breathe for them.

More than a ventilator, We need Jesus to breathe for us daily. We need to hold on to the fact that God Himself provides the very breathe we need to live and that when He is done with us and the purposes He has for our lives, we will breathe our last and be received up into glory, and never a day too soon. Job 33:4 states the facts plainly, “The Spirit of God has made me, And the breath of the Almighty gives me life.” John’s gospel tells us that Jesus purposefully breathed on the disciples to transmit the gift of the Holy Spirit to them. The same way God in the book of Genesis turned a dirt clod into a man, (sorry men but its true. We are nothing more than dirt clods that God breathed His life into bringing us to life. Women on the other hand were fashioned from a rib). Breath is critical to life as we often say when a person dies, “they breathed their last”, or “they took their last breath.” Breathing has always been associated with living.

Have you ever been around someone that when they left you said to yourself, “they were like a breath of fresh air.” The point is, we can spread a lot of things with our mouths. “Life and death are in the power of the tongue” our bible teaches us. God has been telling us for centuries to cover our mouths so that we don’t contaminate people with slander, gossip, unkindness and lies and instead remember when we speak to others our main purpose is to bring them life. Words to strengthen them, to encourage and comfort, words that offer them hope.

Think of yourself as a human ventilator today. God has given us the ability to save lives today with the words we speak. Fill your tank with the words of life that come from God’s Word, hear the words of the apostle Paul who in Ephesians 5:19-20 writes, “singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Breathing is a beautiful thing so remember as you do…

“Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD!”

Psalm 150:6



Michael Osthimer




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