Summary: What can we learn for today from the amazing Pentecost in Acts 2?
Acts 2:1-21; 36-41
Introduction. One of the key events of the Bible is the Day of Pentecost. In the OT it was a celebration of the end of the wheat harvest - a joyful time - later became known as a celebration of the giving of the law. When we think of Pentecost we might think of the modern Pentecostal believers. What we should really think about, though, is the time that God through His Holy Spirit birthed the church and opened the doors for all people of the world to be saved.
Pentecost was a unique event - a Holy Spirit Baptism only experienced in Acts 2 and Acts 10. It was also an event that set in motion realities that we experience today. What Does Pentecost Power Mean to Us?
1. Pentecost Power Began In Prayer
They had been instructed to wait for power and they prayed together constantly.
Acts 1:8 "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
The Church was birthed in prayer and it still finds life there.
The Upper Room was a place of prayer. (1:12-13a Then the apostles returned to Jerusalem from the hill called the Mount of Olives,a Sabbath day’s walk from the city. When they arrived, they went upstairs to the room where they were staying.)
The Disciples were men of prayer (1:13bThose present were Peter, John, James and Andrew; Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew; James son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James.)
Their practice was to constantly pray (1:14 They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.).
They were dependent upon prayer (1:24-26 Then they prayed, “Lord, you know everyone’s heart. Show us which of these two you have chosen to take over this apostolic ministry, which Judas left to go where he belongs.” Then they cast lots, and the lot fell to Matthias; so he was added to the eleven apostles.)
Had there been no prayer there may have been no Pentecost … they were seeking God and He came near. They were together when the day of Pentecost arrived (Acts 2:1 When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.). We haven’t even begun to pray together as we should and we won’t until seeking revival from God is our heart’s passion.
2. Pentecost Power Depended on God
Acts 2:2-4 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.
We know these men and women as devoted disciples. They did make a difference in their world. They did not have the power to birth the church. Their strength was in the God they trusted. Notice what God did: Sound (wind); Sight (fire); Speech (tongues). None was explainable by natural elements or reason.
Psalm 20:7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
The entire Pentecost story was about faith filled men and women who sought God and trusted Him. Most would trust until the moment of their death.
“Since the days of Pentecost, has the whole church ever put aside every other work and waited upon Him for ten days, that the Spirit’s power might be manifested? We give too much attention to method and machinery and resources, and too little to the source of power.” – J. Hudson Taylor
The question is not what can this church do to be a light in this community but what can God do through this church to reach them with the Gospel.
3. Pentecost Power Exposed a Global Vision
Acts 2:5 Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven.
People from all over the known world were present to witness this Outpouring of the Spirit. Jesus wanted them to be his witnesses “in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
1 Timothy 2:4 “…God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.”
1 John 4:13 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.
Acts 2:11 ...both Jews and converts to Judaism; Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!