Today is Pentecost Sunday. Pentecost has been around for a long time – even longer than the New Testament. Back in the Ol’ Testament days, worshippers would bring their offering of bread to the Temple in Jerusalem as a way of saying thanks to God. Thanks for the bread which sustains us physically and thanks for your Word which sustains us spiritually. All God’s people would hightail it for Jerusalem for this annual feast on the 50th day (Pente = 50) following the Passover.
The truth is that Pentecost was not new. But God by His Spirit made it astonishingly new in a completely unexpected way.
Jesus told His followers to wait in Jerusalem for the gift of the Holy Spirit. In Acts 2:1, we read that they were gathered in one place on the day of Pentecost. Pretty normal, run-o-the-mill Jewish feast. But then God does the unexpected in Acts 2:2, which is where the wind, the fire, the tongues, and the power all show up. The world is forever changed. 3,000 people come to Jesus that day, and a new global and eternal movement is started. We call it the Church.
But let’s not complicate the process. Their part in Pentecost was simply to wait, which is exactly what those 120 believers did.
They waited because of a person — Jesus.
They waited because of an event — His life, death, and resurrection.
They waited out of obedience — simply because Jesus told them to wait.
United as one, in one space, in one Name, because of One God who is yet Three.
Mind boggling. But not complicated. I wait. You wait. We wait for the Holy Spirit. Poured out once and for all on the church, we don’t need to hang tight until Pentecost 2.0. Rather, we need to say “purify me and fill me yet more.” That’s the prayer of the church. It’s a prayer of waiting. And that’s our part in Pentecost.
May every day be a day where the Holy Spirit has even greater influence in our lives. May we yield to the cleansing fire and life-giving wind of the Spirit. May we put our limitations aside and eagerly await the blessed Trinity to infuse our lives.
Spiritual transformation has many enemies. People accused these 120 Spirit-filled people of being drunk. Cynicism is the enemy of transformation in our world and even in the church. Or maybe mediocrity. Or pride. Or spiritual disengagement. You name it; the Spirit knows it. Let Him tell you (not me).
Do your part today as you seek the Holy Spirit. Wait.