In as much as the life of all creation is dependent on the activity of the Spirit each moment and with each breath, so the presence of the eschatological future of creation is dependent on the soteriological function of the Spirit. The nature of the Spirit is always in relationship to its giving of life. As such the “dynamic of the Spirit imparts itself to what it brings forth or embraces, to what is outside the Spirit’s own existence” (III, 7).
Within the life of God the Son is the recipient of the Spirit, but it is not until the Son is manifested in creation that the sending of the Spirit takes the nature of a gift. The gift of the Spirit to believers in which the Father and the Son work together follows from its mediation by the fact that believers who are linked by faith and baptism to the Son revealed in Jesus Christ, become members of his body. The sonship in relation to the Father finds manifestation in them as participation in the sonship of Jesus and, therefore, in the intra-trinitarian life of God, in the reception of the Spirit by the Son and in the giving back of the Spirit to the Father.
In and through the gift of the Spirit creatures are made capable of independence in relationship to God, while simultaneously being brought into the unity of the Kingdom of God. In the giving of the Spirit to the disciples the church had its beginning and Pentecost in Acts is a symbolically intensified expression of this. The relationship of the Spirit and the church cannot be limited to one biblical concept and should be separated from the Spirit’s work in the world as the origins of all life. In fact, within the person of the Spirit, God’s act of creation is not separated from its coming fulfillment already present in eschatological reality that came in the life of Jesus.
The eschatological function of the Spirit is the pledge of hope beyond death and as such it is both a gift and participation in the life of God. The church participates in the eschatological reality of the Spirit in a special way so as not to control the gift of the Spirit as though it were a possession, but in fact it remains linked to a foundation outside of them in Jesus Christ. The church is then properly understood as the creation of both the Spirit and the Son. The church has a pneumatological ground, yet the work of the Spirit always relates to Jesus and the eschatological future of God’s kingdom that has already dawned in him through the eschatological reality of the Spirit.