Pentecost 2023

Pentecost 2023

We are celebrating a birthday party today when the Holy Spirit was given out to the Body and Bride of Jesus and the Start of the New Testament Church.

The Feast of Pentecost (means 50), also known as Feast of Shavuot, or Feast of Harvest or Feast of Weeks. 

Pentecost is the festival when Christians celebrate the gift of the Holy Spirit, and it is celebrated on the Sunday 50 days after the Wave Sheaf Offering during the Passover season.

Numbers 28:26 “On the first day of your harvest season, you are to hold a sacred assembly when you present your first fruits during the Feast of Weeks. No servile work is to be done.

So, on this day we are to hold a sacred assembly and meeting and do no regular work.  But for us, it has a deeper meaning.  This is the day when the New Testament Church started with the giving of the Holy Spirit.

Leviticus 23:15 Starting the day after the Sabbath, count for yourselves seven weeks from the day you brought the sheaf of wave offering. They are to be complete.

Leviticus 23:21 “On the same day proclaim a sacred assembly for yourselves. You are not to do any servile work–and this is to be an eternal ordinance wherever you live throughout your generations.

We are doing this today, meeting as commanded, a sacred assembly

Exodus 34:22 “You are to observe the Festival of Weeks, the first fruits of the wheat harvest, and the Festival of Ingathering at the turn of the year.

After his resurrection, Jesus appeared to his disciples and instructed them to do what:

Luke 24:48-49 You are witnesses of these things. (49) I am sending to you what my Father promised, so stay here in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”    {Power is given}

John 20:19 Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, “Peace be with you.”

John 20:22 And when He had said this, He {Jesus} breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.

Acts 1:2-3 up to the day when he was taken up to heaven after giving orders by the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen. (3) After he had suffered, he had shown himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them during a period of 40 days and telling them about the kingdom of God.   {taken up refers to the ascension}

forty days {40}: This is the only place that mentions the period of time between the resurrection and the ascension. For forty days Jesus was among them.

There are ten recorded appearances of Jesus after His resurrection.

Acts 1:4-5 While he was meeting with them, he ordered them, “Don’t leave Jerusalem. Instead, wait for what the Father has promised, about which you heard me speak. (5) For John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit a few days from now.”

{Remember, Israel was baptized in the Red Sea}

Jesus said He needs to go away to allow the Holy Spirit to come

As they were gathered there, celebrating the feast of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came upon them “like a rushing, mighty wind” and “tongues of flame” appeared over their heads.

Notice, all, one accord usually in prayer together.  Look at, received Power

They had the Holy Spirit, but not the power of the Holy Spirit. 

Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”  {we are now Jesus’ ambassador} 

Acts 1:14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers.  {Jesus physical half-brothers were there}

Jesus’ brothers:  did not believe in Him, until after His resurrection.  Mary, mother of Jesus, was there. The reputation has now been cleared.  This is the last time we read of Mary, except for John’s personal letter, 2 John.

Acts 1:15 In those days Peter stood up among the believers {disciples} (a group numbering about a hundred and twenty)

For 40 days Jesus was with them, after which he ascended to heaven.

Remember, From Passover to Pentecost was 50 days, so they waited 10 days until Pentecost in Jerusalem as they were told.

They stayed in Jerusalem, the Holy Spirit Descends on them. 

Acts 2:1 When the day of Pentecost was being celebrated, all of them were together in one place.   {Porch of the Temple}

Did they do this for the nine days leading up to celebrate Pentecost as their custom was.

Acts 2:2 Suddenly, a sound like the roar of a mighty windstorm came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting.

Some scholars think they could be meeting in one of the porches of the Temple Court, 

Acts 2:3 They saw tongues like flames of fire that separated, and one rested on each of them.  {Men and women} 

Acts 2:4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages as the Spirit gave them that ability. 

The Power of the Holy Spirit, came to the 120, Jesus considered this a baptism for His followers at the time and a laying of Jesus hands on them by the Holy Spirit and becoming the first of many in the Body of Jesus.  The Holy Spirit enables the disciples to speak in foreign languages.

Acts 2:5-6 Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven.  (6)  When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken.

Acts 2:7 Stunned and amazed, they asked, “All of these people who are speaking are Galileans, aren’t they?  

{Galileans?  Did Jesus sound like this – example – Brooklyn accent} Jerusalem Jews felt people from Galilee were known to be uncultured and poor speakers.  This was a reason they were impressed with their ability to speak in other languages. 

Acts 2:8 So how is it that each one of us hears them speaking in his own native language:   {miracle}

Acts 2:9-11 Parthians, Medes, Elamites, residents of Mesopotamia, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus, Asia, (10) Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt, the district of Libya near Cyrene, Jewish and proselyte visitors from Rome, (11) Cretans, and Arabs, listening to them talk in our own languages about the great deeds of God?”   {or great deeds, wonders, wonderful works, of God}

Acts 2:12 All of them continued to be stunned and puzzled, and they kept asking one another, “What can this mean?”

Gift of tongues was given primarily as a sign to unbelievers. The crowd had a common language (Greek), and Peter preached a sermon to them in Greek, could it be that what they heard was in their own language – miracle. 

1 Corinthians 14:21-22 In the Law it is written: “With other tongues and through the lips of foreigners I will speak to this people, but even then they will not listen to me, says the Lord.”  (22)  Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers; prophecy, however, is not for unbelievers but for believers.

Acts 2:13 But others kept saying in derision, “They’re drunk on sweet wine!”

Peter sermon is not about the Holy Spirit, it is about the Son of God, Jesus,  and answers their question of “What can this mean What meanest this?”

Acts 2:14 Then Peter stood up among the eleven apostles and raised his voice to address them: “Men of Judea and everyone living in Jerusalem! You must understand something, so pay close attention to my words.

Eleven other apostles besides Peter. Peter with the other apostles begins the gospel sermon to the Jews as a witness. Did they see or hear Jesus?

Notice, there was a remarkable change in Peter.  He had courage and boldness to preach Jesus to the Jews.  {from the porch of the Temple}

Peter didn’t wake up that morning knowing he would preach to thousands, and that thousands would embrace Jesus in response.

Acts 2:15 These men are not drunk as you suppose, for it’s only nine o’clock in the morning.      {Holy Spirit came early in the morning}    

The Jews scarcely ever ate or drank, for that hour was the hour of prayer was their custom.  Peter answered the criticism that the disciples were drunk, early in the morning. 

Acts 2:16 Rather, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel:

Peter had to know the Scriptures from memory.  Peter just said, lets have a Bible study.  This is the 1st of 3 Old Testament passages Peter will quote, from memory.  Joel 2:28-32; Psalms 16:8-11, Psalms 110:1 

Acts 2:17 ‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out My Spirit on everyone. Your sons and your daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, and your old men will dream dreams

{My Spirit} {Joel 2:28}

Last Days:  Is this the start of the Last Days. Workers will receive the Spirit. 

Acts 2:18 In those days I will even pour out my Spirit on my slaves, men and women alike, and they will prophesy.  {Joel 2:29}

Even Workers will receive the Holy Spirit

Acts 2:19 I will display wonders in the sky above and signs on the earth below: blood, fire, and clouds of smoke.  {Joel 2:30}

Earth beneath:  miracles done by Christ, and his apostles, on earth; 

Acts 2:20 The sun will become dark, and the moon turn to blood, before the coming of the great and glorious Day of the Lord. {Joel 2:31}

Day of the Lord:  This is obviously speaking of very end time issues. 

Acts 2:21 Then whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.‘ {Joel 2:32}

This verse destroys Jewish prejudice. Not only just Jewish, but also the Gentiles, can be saved.    All people can be saved. 

Acts 2:22 “Fellow Israelis, listen to these words: Jesus from Nazareth was a man attested to you by God through miracles, wonders, and signs that God performed through him in your midst, as you yourselves know.

Peter begins to preach Jesus directly to them.  Jesus is the primary subject (not the Holy Spirit).  They were there and saw it all.

The focus of the sermon: The resurrected Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth. 

Acts 2:23 After he was arrested according to the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified this very man and killed him by the hands of lawless men.

Gospel:  have crucified, and put to death; Very strong, Peter did not flinch at saying, “You crucified this Man who God sent.” His first concern was not to please his audience, but to tell them the truth.

Acts 2:24  But God raised him up and put an end to suffering of death, since it was impossible for him to be held by it.

God raised Jesus up, is a basic doctrine. Peter explains the resurrected Jesus.

Acts 2:25  For David says about him, ‘I always keep my eyes on the Lord, for he is at my right hand so that I cannot be shaken.  {Psalms 16:8}

Acts 2:26  That is why my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices, yes, even my body still rests securely in hope.  {Psalms 16:9}

Acts 2:27 For you will not abandon my soul to Hades or allow your Holy One to experience decay.  {Psalms 16:10}

Acts 2:28  You have made the Ways of Life known to me, and you will fill me with gladness in your presence.’  {Psalms 16:11}

Life, Death and Resurrection

Acts 2:29  “Brothers, I can tell you confidently that the patriarch David died and was buried, and that his tomb is among us to this day.

David is really dead and is asleep or unconscienced

Acts 2:30 Therefore, since he was a prophet and knew that God had promised him with an oath to put one of his descendants on his throne,

God had sworn:  God promise, God would raise up Christ to sit on David throne”: When?

Acts 2:31 he looked ahead and spoke about the resurrection of the Messiah: ‘He was not abandoned to Hades, and his flesh did not experience decay.’  {5 days for flesh to decay} 

Acts 2:32 “It was this very Jesus whom God raised, and of that we are all witnesses.

We are all witnesses:   of his resurrection, they (whole 120) having seen him, and heard him, and ate, and drank, and conversed with him since his resurrection, attest this great truth.

Acts 2:33 He has been exalted to the right hand of God, has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit, and has caused you to experience what you are seeing and hearing.

Jesus is at the right hand of the Father, is why you see and hear now the Holy Spirit and is a proof of Jesus.

Acts 2:34 For David did not go up to heaven, but he said, ‘The Lord told my Lord, “Sit at my right hand,

The Father told Jesus to sit at His right hand and involved with rulership.

Acts 2:35 until I make your enemies your footstool.”‘  {Psalms 110:1}

Enemies your footstool:  When the work of Jesus has ended and Jesus has conquered all, then all power is given up to the Father. 

Psalms 110:1 A Davidic psalm. A declaration from the LORD to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool.”

Jesus had just established himself as the final Lord, King and Priest over the world.

Acts 2:36 “Therefore, let all the people of Israel understand beyond a doubt that God made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah!”

This is the theme of Peter’s sermon.  This is the key Wording in this sermon: Jesus is Lord and Messiah {Christ}! (Isa 53; Isa 61). 

Acts 2:37  When the crowd that had gathered heard this, they were pierced to the heart. They asked Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what should we do?”  {many have heard Jesus personally in the last 3.5 years}

They realize their sins, and were pierced or cut through their hearts with sorrow, because they knew that they were responsible for the death of Jesus {as each of us are} and that they had to do something in response to this understanding.

The crowd asked a good question:  What shall we do.  Peter invites the Jews to come to Jesus, to be a follower.  Repent, baptized, receive Holy Spirit.

Acts 2:38 Peter answered them, “Every one of you must repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus the Messiah for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the Holy Spirit as a gift.

Repentance was repeatedly part of the apostles’ message.  Saying, repent, does this sound like a harsh word from some of the present day preachers.

Acts 2:39 For this promise belongs to you and your children, as well as to all those who are distant, whom the Lord our God may call to himself.

Here in Peter’s own words he is acknowledging that the call is not only to Israel, although it takes him awhile before he realizes that he is supposed to go to the Gentiles also. 

Peter also specifically promised that the promise of the Holy Spirit would be given to those who believe in all succeeding generations 

Acts 2:40 Using many different expressions, Peter continued to testify and to plead with them, saying, Be saved from this corrupt generation! 

Peter gave an invitation or challenge for his listeners to respond.  Peter’s sermon didn’t end there. He continued to urge the crowd to come to Jesus in repentant surrender.

But since every generation is responsible for Jesus’ death, then every generation needs salvation. 

Acts 2:41 So those who welcomed his message were baptized. That day about 3,000 people were added to their number.

The response to Peter’s sermon.

The church increased by 25 times, from 120 to 3000.  It will be as if we would go from 9 to 225 overnight. 

Acts 2:42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.

The Jews repented and was baptize, they now wanted to know more.  Is there where the Apostle doctrine come from.  Did the Apostles write down what the Jews had to do and how to live, because it was the truth of God.

Remember, no Gospel books have been written yet.  This is what we know, the original Apostle doctrine. Teaching Way of Life as Jesus taught them.

The early believers “devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching

Here in Peter’s own words he is acknowledging that Jesus call is not only to Jews, but to Gentiles, although it takes him awhile before he realizes that he is supposed to go to the Gentiles also. {it took 10 years? and some nudging}

This was the first Sermon given by Peter.  Take time to think about it, mediate about it and thank God we are called to be part of the Body today.

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