Summary: The Holy Spirit gives us the power to overcome sin, do ministry, and declare the Gospel with boldness and resolve. Do I have all that God wishes for me to enjoy?
Hey listen, have you ever gone somewhere, and maybe you didn’t really want to go, or maybe you just weren’t expecting that much, and once you got there and you got into it, it delivered way more than you ever imagined? Did you ever do anything like that? Have you ever been anywhere like that? Yeah...three of us, okay.
Let me tell you about one of mine. A couple of years ago, I think...actually, it was after a Saturday night service...some people invited us to go to the ballet. For some of you, that is a real trip. For me, not so much. I know we have people who love the ballet. We have world-class ballet people here in the church, but I’d never really gone, never really thought that that would appeal to me, but I thought, You know, somebody else is paying for it, and I’m tired. It could be a two-hour nap. People will leave me alone. They’re all watching that deal, so this will be okay. And I have to tell you, it delivered way more than I ever thought. I mean, lights and...it was just an incredible experience. I went away as a fan at least of that type of ballet.
Well, hopefully, that’s going to happen for you today. In fact, some of you today...this is going to be so cool because I was here last night...are just here. It’s just church on Sunday, but you’re going to get way more than you imagined or expected. We’re going to be studying one of the most powerful chapters in the Bible...Acts, chapter 2. And that actually happened to a group of people. They had no idea what was going to go on, maybe some low expectations, and it totally rocked their world what they got involved in.
So, here’s what I want to do. I have a lot to cover. We just have a whole lot we need to get through in a short amount of time, so let’s dig in. I want to encourage you to bring your Bibles. How many of you own a Bible? Do you own a Bible? Do you have those that are actual books like this? Okay, some of you have that. Some of you are like me, and I have these, but they’re kind of for show. I do it on the computer and on my PDA and all that, and that is kind of where I do it. I just want to encourage you, whatever you use, bring it in and use your Bible because we won’t be able to cover in the bulletin all the Scripture we’re going to look at.
So, let’s jump in...Acts, chapter 1. Jesus...just as kind of a review...got the disciples together. He says, "Here’s is what I want you to do. I want you to wait. I want you take a timeout, and I want you to get all God has for you, and it’s going to rock your world and everybody else’s world." And that is what we talked about last week, how to be a world-changer.
As they come away from that talk...and we didn’t even cover this in Acts, chapter 1...but at the end of Acts, chapter 1, they have to choose a new apostle because Judas had kind of flaked out on them, and so they didn’t know what to do. So, they basically threw dice. You know, lucky sevens! It was Matthias, and then things changed. From this point forward, they have an experience with the Holy Spirit in ways they never could have dreamed. And so, it gets started with a bang.
Let’s read Acts, chapter 2 and verse 1. It says, "On the day of Pentecost." What was the day of Pentecost? It says it was seven weeks after Jesus’ resurrection. Let me explain Pentecost. Think of a required party. That is basically what it was. It was a required party that all Jews were going to come to. They had a couple of feasts a year they had to come to Jerusalem. They were all required to come. Think of New Year’s Eve, New York City. Anybody ever been there? Have you seen it on TV, the ball dropping and all of that? Think of a party like that, only it’s a select group of people who can come.
Let’s think of Cubs fans. It’s a party for Cubs fans from all over the United States, but think of the United States like Europe. Is this getting confusing? In Europe, they have states, but they all speak a different language. Do you understand that? Have you ever been there? You just go to a little place like Connecticut, and they call it a whole another country, they speak a different language. Well, let’s suppose it’s just a required party only for Cubs fans who are scattered out throughout the United States, and they each speak a different language. You have the picture? That’s Pentecost, only you put Jews in for Cubs fans. Okay?