2138.) Acts 2:1-21

"Pentecost" watercolor by Estella Canziani, 1936

“Pentecost” watercolor by Estella Canziani, 1936

Acts 2:1-21 (NLT)

The Holy Spirit Comes

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Music:

HERE  is “Spirit of the Living God, Fall Afresh on Me” in Celtic style.

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1 On the day of Pentecost

Pentecost was a Jewish feast held 50 days after Passover. It celebrated the firstfruits of harvest (Numbers 28:26), and it also commemorated the giving of the Law through Moses. So the day is rich in meaning for the people of Israel already.

all the believers were meeting together in one place.

The New King James Version has it that they were meeting “with one accord.” Hahaha!

2 Suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm, and it filled the house where they were sitting. 3 Then, what looked like flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on each of them. 4 And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in other languages, as the Holy Spirit gave them this ability.

Matthew 3:11 (ESV)

John said,  “I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”

quilted banner of flames and a dove, for Pentecost

quilted banner of flames and a dove, for Pentecost

5 At that time there were devout Jews from every nation living in Jerusalem. 6 When they heard the loud noise, everyone came running, and they were bewildered to hear their own languages being spoken by the believers.

Not many homes of that day could hold 120 people. It is far more likely that this upper room was part of the temple courts, which was a huge structure, with porches and colonnades and rooms. The crowd would come from people milling about the temple courts.
—David Guzik

7 They were completely amazed. “How can this be?” they exclaimed. “These people are all from Galilee, 8 and yet we hear them speaking in our own native languages! 9 Here we are—Parthians, Medes, Elamites, people from Mesopotamia, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus, the province of Asia, 10 Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt, and the areas of Libya around Cyrene, visitors from Rome 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism), Cretans, and Arabs.

Click  HERE  is see a map pointing out the regions listed above. It is practically all the Roman world.

And we all hear these people speaking in our own languages about the wonderful things God has done!”

This “un-does” the separation of languages of the Tower of Babel.

12 They stood there amazed and perplexed. “What can this mean?” they asked each other.

13 But others in the crowd ridiculed them, saying, “They’re just drunk, that’s all!”

Let’s talk about speaking . . . in tongues:

There is no way to argue rightly from the book of Acts that God intends for baptism with the Spirit always to be accompanied by speaking in tongues. And Paul teaches plainly in 1 Corinthians 12:10 that God does not give the gift of tongues to everyone. Being baptized with the Holy Spirit may or may not result in glossolalia (tongues-speaking) and therefore, speaking in tongues is not a necessary part of either Luke’s or Paul’s definition of baptism with the Spirit.

I want to stress here though, that I do not reject the validity of the gift of tongues for our own day. It is wrong to insist that they are a necessary part of the baptism of the Spirit; it is not wrong to insist that they are a possible part of that experience today.

—John Piper, pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota

__________________

To open to the beauty of spiritual language does not require you to become a wild-eyed fanatic, a rigid proponent of faith, a drone preoccupied with health or wealth, or a giddy dupe running from one televised service to another.

Charismatic isn’t a stereotyped lifestyle managed by a pop theology or a manipulative leader. It’s a biblical, Christ-centered, sensible, hope- filled, happy, trusting application of God’s promises for today. To be truly charismatic is to enter a dimension of Christian living available to people who sin, fail and suffer, yet seek God’s holiness, depend on His grace and believe for His presence and power in the middle of their tough times.

Speaking in tongues–or any other spiritual gift–is not unbiblical or outmoded, not a status symbol or a substitute for spiritual growth. Above all, spiritual language is not divisive. When the beauty of this exercise is scripturally understood and wisely employed, it is a pathway of blessing for the entire body of Christ.

—Jack Hayford, senior pastor of Church on the Way in Van Nuys, California

__________________

“What good does it do to speak in tongues on Sunday if you have been using your tongue during the week to curse and gossip?”

— Leonard Ravenhill, British evangelist

Peter Preaches to the Crowd

14 Then Peter stepped forward with the eleven other apostles and shouted to the crowd, “Listen carefully, all of you, fellow Jews and residents of Jerusalem! Make no mistake about this. 15 These people are not drunk, as some of you are assuming. Nine o’clock in the morning is much too early for that. 16 No, what you see was predicted long ago by the prophet Joel:

17 ‘In the last days,’ God says,
‘I will pour out my Spirit upon all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy.
Your young men will see visions,
and your old men will dream dreams.
18 In those days I will pour out my Spirit
even on my servants—men and women alike—
and they will prophesy.
19 And I will cause wonders in the heavens above
and signs on the earth below—
blood and fire and clouds of smoke.
20 The sun will become dark,
and the moon will turn blood red
before that great and glorious day of the Lord arrives.
21 But everyone who calls on the name of the Lord
will be saved.’

"That day" by contemporary New Zealand artist Cornelius Monsma

“That day” by contemporary New Zealand artist Cornelis Monsma

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Music:

HERE  is “Holy Spirit, Rain Down,”  words and music by Russell Fragar, 1997.

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Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004 by Tyndale Charitable Trust. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers.

Images courtesy of:
Canziani.  http://www.leicestergalleries.com/art-and-antiques/detail/12679
banner.  http://www.piecefulquilting.co.uk/images/shop_pics/banner_pentecost_250.jpg
Babel.   http://img.tfd.com/cde/BABEL.GIF
woman speaking.   http://img.clipartall.com/clip-art-people-talking-word-is-dead-by-emily-person-talking-clipart-250_283.gif
Monsma.   http://www.monsmart.com/thatday.html
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