When Pentecost, the Fiftieth day after Passover, came, all the believers were together in one place. Suddenly, a sound like a violently blowing wind came from the sky and filled the whole house where they were staying. Tongues that looked like fire appeared to them. The tongues arranged themselves so that one came to rest on each believer. All the believers were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages as the Spirit gave them the ability to speak. (Acts 2:1-4)
This Sunday marks the day on the calendar when Christians celebrate the Day of Pentecost. We celebrate the Holy Spirit coming and filling believers.
Sometimes lost in that celebration is the history of Pentecost. I believe we need that history to fully understand how significant this event truly is.
What was Pentecost? It was a solemn festival of the Jews, so called because it was celebrated on the fiftieth day after the sixteenth of Nisan, (Mid March to Mid April) which was the second day of the Passover. It was called the feast of weeks, because it was celebrated seven weeks after the Passover. It was instituted to oblige the people to go to the temple of the Lord, there to acknowledge His absolute dominion over the country, and to offer Him the first fruits of the country. In addition, they were to remember and give thanks to God for the law which had been given them at Sinai on the fiftieth day from their flight from Egypt!
A celebration of the law!
Imagine that celebration!
Things have changed now though,. Instead of celebrating the law, we celebrate the Holy Spirit filling each and every believer.
We went from celebrating law to celebrating life!
How do we get from law to life?
At the end of Acts chapter 2, we see that when the Spirit came, thousands repented and were baptized! The church grew by leaps and bounds and a genuine love for others was on display!
This summer, why not choose life? If you have already made that choice, then you really do have a reason to celebrate Pentecost!