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“And all that believed were together, and had all things common; and they sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all, according as any man had need.” - Acts 2: 44 - 45

“And with great power gave the apostles their witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus:and great grace was upon them all. For neither was there among them any that lacked:for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, and laid them at the apostles 'feet:and distribution was made unto each, according as any one had need.” Acts 4: 33 – 35

Introduction

Pentecost means many things to a lot of different people. Traditionally it refers to the coming of the promise Holy Spirit. To charismatics it refers to the gift of tongues. To missiologists it is the enabling power for witness. If we have to appreciate and live in the power of Pentecost, I believe we need not ask what is Pentecost but why Pentecost.

Old Testament Pentecost/ Shavuot

The Jews celebrates Pentecost to commemorate the giving of the Law in Mt Sinai (Exodus 20). On that day the Lord appeared before the people of Israel amidst fearful thunder and fire. He gave the decalogue as the testament of their life as the people of the Lord. It also commemorates their founding as the nation that belongs to the Lord. They were no longer a community of tribes wandering without a leader. On Pentecost the LORD became their Lord and king who promised them a land of their own possession.

New Testament Pentecost

The book of Acts narrated that on a Jewish celebration of Pentecost, fifty days after the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ, the law was imparted in the hearts of the disciples of Jesus in fulfillment of the prophecy of Ezekiel. The Holy Spirit came hovering over the disciples as tongues of fire. The new covenant people of God has been founded under the rule of Jesus Christ, the Lord and king.

The Gift of Pentecost

1.       To walk and obey the LORD.

Ezekiel 36: 27 The Holy Spirit came to give God’s people the Power to walk with and obey the LORD (Ezekiel 36:27)

• Halach (to walk, to go) - a metaphor used of the manner of life of those who followed

• Yahweh (Gen. 17: 1 - Abraham)), ‘following after’ the LORD (Gen. 5: 22 - 24 - Enoch) the imagery of discipleship (1 Kings 19 : 19 - 21 - Elijah and Elisha) carried in the New Testament

• Obey - a reversal of the disobedience of Adam, not to repeat the same mistake of the first Adam, “Back to the Garden” situation (Matthew 5). The starting point of obedience is a childlike trust in God not legalistic observance of the law.

2.       Purification and Transformation Isaiah 4:4// Luke 3:16 -17“And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remains in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem; when the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof, by the spirit of justice, and by the spirit of burning.” Isaiah 4: 3 - 4)

• This passage was declared by John the Baptist in Luke 3:16 - 17, and fulfilled in Pentecost.

• Purification - the choosing of people of those who will be the New People of God

• Transformation - Isaiah 4: 5 - 6, an imagery of Creation account, the Spirit hovering the empty earth and Creation follows.

3.       Generosity and Equality, the Jubilee Year, Isaiah 61:2a//Luke 4:19

The Jubilee Year, Equality and Justice (Luke 4:19) - the trajectory of Pentecost that occurred in the upper room is the spirit of Jubilee of love and equality in Acts 4.• The Year of the Lords Favor - Jubilee year the cancellation of debt, the return to love, grace, equality and justice

• “For neither was there among them any that lacked..” Acts 4: 34.

• The social expression of love, expected of the church.

• Ananias and Sapphira account is a sin against the Spirit, lying against the Spirit.

Don’t Ignore the Gift of Pentecost

1. We have received the Spirit not to make pompous claim of our Christianity, but that we may walk and obey the LORD.

2. We have been purified, chosen as His people that we may reflect the Image of God as one community.

3. We have received the Spirit of God so that we may have Shalom here on this earth as we live in the Spirit of Jubilee.

 

Rejoice for the promise that has given to us!

 

THE GIFT OF THE PENTECOST THAT PEOPLE IGNORES
By Pastor Rene Nepomuceno

#WOTD