Summary: The Holy Spirit is the catalyst by which the church accomplishes its mission.
The Promise Of The Father
Text: Acts 1:1-11;2:1-4
1. Although this week in the A.D. series you will watch the arrival of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, the Holy Spirit has always been working.
2. From the beginning, Scripture says, "The Spirit of God was hovering over the waters" (Genesis 1:2). In the Old Testament, we frequently read about the actions of the Holy Spirit. He would come upon people, such as judges, kings, and prophets.
3. In the New Testament, the Spirit of God conceived Jesus in the womb of Mary (Luke 1:35), descended upon Him bodily as a dove at His baptism (Luke 3:22), anointed His preaching ministry (Luke 4:16), and gave Him supernatural power to perform signs and wonders (Matthew 12:28).
4. And then after His resurrection, Jesus promised His disciples, "You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth" (Acts 1:8).
5. Jesus kept His promise on the Day of Pentecost, when God poured out the Holy Spirit upon the believers gathered in Jerusalem (Acts 2:1-4).
A. The impact of the arrival of the Holy Spirit was so powerful that, as you will see in this week's episode, it galvanized Peter and gave him and the other disciples the courage to preach openly (Acts 2:14) ”resulting in a great revival (Acts 2:47) and a great missions movement that took the Gospel from Jerusalem to Rome (Acts 28:14) and, over the centuries, from Rome to us.
B. The Holy Spirit has always been working. But His work is not aimless. In fact, He has a job description.
C. In reading Scripture, you can count on finding clear descriptions of the Spirit's various tasks. Scripture does not leave the works of the Spirit to our imagination. The Spirit of God has specific work to be done, and Scripture clearly teaches us about that work.
6. Pentecost shows us…
A. The Promise Of The Holy Spirit
B. The Power Of The Holy Spirit
C. The Pouring Out Of The Holy Spirit
7. Let's stand together as we read from Acts 1:1-11;2:1-4.
Proposition: The Holy Spirit is the catalyst by which the church accomplishes its mission.
Transition: First we see the fulfillment of...
I. The Promise Of The Holy Spirit (1-5).
A. The Gift He Promised
1. The Book of Acts can be summed up in two things; the Father fulfilling his promise and what that gift did in and through the early church.
2. First, however, we must understand exactly what we mean when we say promise.
A. In classical literature promise is actually a legal term for a “declaration of a claim.” It further progressed to mean an “offer” or a “promise,” which approximates the New Testament usage (The Complete Biblical Library Greek-English Dictionary – Delta-Epsilon, 1845).
B. In Luke's writings it is defined even more clearly as "the promise of the Father."
C. Luke 24:49 (NLT)
“And now 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.”
D. Acts 1:4 (NLT)
Once when he was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, as I told you before.
E. Acts 2:39 (NLT)
This promise is to you, and to your children, and even to the Gentiles—all who have been called by the Lord our God.”
3. But what is this promise?
A. Joel 2:28-29 (NLT)
“Then, after doing all those things, I will pour out my Spirit upon all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your old men will dream dreams, and your young men will see visions.
29 In those days I will pour out my Spirit even on servants—men and women alike.
B. In the OT God was very selective about whom he gave his Holy Spirit; like priests, prophets, and kings.
C. However, God promised that there would come a time when he would no longer be selective, but rather he would pour out his Spirit on all of his people.
4. Luke tells us, "Once when he was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, as I told you before. 5 John baptized with water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”
A. In Acts 1:4 Luke again goes to the time immediately preceding the Ascension. Jesus was "eating with them."
B. At that time He repeated the command, emphasizing that they were not to leave Jerusalem. This was very important. The Day of Pentecost would have had little effect if only two or three of them had remained in Jerusalem.