Summary: We continue in our series ‘Dare to be Different’ and our focus this month is on ‘Different future’. Pentecost Sunday is a day of celebration, a day when we remember how the Holy Spirit came and transformed the lives and the future of the first disciples.
We continue in our series ‘Dare to be Different’ and our focus this month is on ‘Different future’.
Today is Pentecost Sunday, it is a day of celebration, a day when we remember how the Holy Spirit came and transformed the lives and the future of the first disciples.
In many ways, Pentecost is the day when the future shape of the church was born.
Our modern celebration of what happened at Pentecost is quite different from why and how people celebrated Pentecost in Bible times. Pentecost was a celebration that took place fifty days after the Passover celebrations at the end of the harvest.
We are a Pentecostal church and today on Pentecost Sunday what we celebrate is the coming of the Holy Spirit and the birth of the church.
Pentecostal. It’s a word that can mean different things to different people.
The preacher M. Hamilton Stevens wrote this: “For many, a “Pentecostal” is someone that likes lively praise and worship, or someone that speaks in tongues all the time, or a person that speaks of themselves being “holy and sanctified”, and of course there is the person that rolls on the floor and blows bubbles.”
Perhaps you can relate to some part or all of his definition of Pentecostal. Let me give you a more solid definition of Pentecostal from the Bible: A Pentecostal is a person who is Spirit Filled and Spirit Powered and Spirit-Controlled. “you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere” (Acts 1:8)
A Pentecostal is Spirit powered.
Jesus said His disciples would receive power after the Holy Spirit comes into their lives.
Power to be an effective witness.
Power to share the truth of who Jesus is.
Power to witness.
Power to preach the Word of GOD.
A Pentecostal is Spirit Controlled.
Think about Phillip for a moment, Philip is a good example of someone who was willing to allow The Holy Spirit to lead him and guide him.
Philip went to Samaria a place that nobody else wanted to go to and God used Philip to start a revival by preaching about Jesus.
A Pentecostal understands the presence of The Holy Spirit is to help us to follow God’s ways and purpose for our lives. To help us live to serve God not ourselves.
A Pentecostal realises that the Gifts of the Holy Spirit are given to us to exalt Jesus not us. The Holy Spirit is given to all who trust in Jesus as Lord and Saviour so that we can tell others how they can be forgiven, saved and assured of a place in Heaven.
Today as Pentecostal people we remember and we celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit. We celebrate the fulfilment of the promise Jesus made to His disciples in Luke 24:49, “I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven.”
The Holy Spirit is an important part of the Trinity, but perhaps the least understood.
The concept of a Holy Perfect God we get, the concept of God as Creator makes sense, Omnipotent, Omniscient, Omnipresent, we are comfortable with the concept of Father God
We understand that Jesus was real, He was born, He lived a perfect life, Jesus willingly went to the cross, and even though He was sinless, He died in our place, as payment for the sins of those who trust in Him as their personal Lord and Saviour, and on the third day - Jesus rose triumphant from the grave, His resurrection, the evidence that He was who He said He was, the Son of God, the Saviour of the world, Jesus, we are pretty comfortable that we know, what we know we know.
Understanding the presence and the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives today, that is an area where some of us may feel out of our depth.
I would suggest that as Pentecostal people:
we can know more about the Spirit than we do,
we can draw closer to Him in our everyday lives,
we can sense His presence within us,
we can allow Him to work in us and through us,
we can experience a fresh sense of purpose.
Our desire should be that we would not just know more about the Spirit but that we would experience Him in our lives as we allow Him to work in and through all of us.
Let me encourage you to allow yourself to be inspired, moved and changed by the Holy Spirit.
All of us at times can stifle the work of the Spirit in our own lives, don’t quench the power of the Spirit in your life.