Pentecost represents a special day in the history of Christianity when the birth of church was officially launched in upper room in Jerusalem. Christ promised His followers that they would be endued with power from on high in order to be effective witnesses “in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the Earth”.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentecost
Something was going to change, and Jesus commanded His followers to wait. Wait for what? After witnessing Jesus’ miracles during the three and a half years of ministry, the crucifixion, the resurrection, then the ascension of Christ, the core of Jesus’ believers knew they had better do what Christ stipulated.
According to Scriptures around 500 people initially tarried accordingly, however as the days passed and the time of Pentecost had fully come, only 120 of the original group remained. The other 380 apparently gave up and saw no purpose in waiting and missed the opportunity of a lifetime.
was a Jewish Festival of Weeks, also known to be the Festival of Harvest or Day of Firstfruits. The day fell on the fiftieth day after the Feast of Passover, which exactly matched the day of Jesus’ crucifixion. The fullness of time was thoroughly demonstrated when the spectacular event of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit took place “when the time had fully come”.
Acts 2:1-4 discloses the supernatural outpouring of the Holy Spirit where the initial evidence was a pour manifestation of fire settling on each person praying and waiting. Each person began speaking in other tongues as the Holy Spirit enabled. The commotion was so loud that God fearing Jews from every nation heard the speaking of tongues in their own language.
Many of those speaking were unlearned men from Galilee whom many of the Jews knew had no ability to articulate anything in another language. This only intensified the mystery.
Peter testified powerfully to the crowd the reason of the Holy Spirit empowerment and referenced that the fulfillment of the prophet Joel had taken place. The Holy Spirit anointing of Peter was so strong that thousands were convinced by the conviction brought on by Peter’s words and converted to be followers of Christ.
The effective equipping of the saints took place as nine gifts of the Spirit documented in 1 Corinthians 12 were given for the purpose of glorifying God. These gifts were to be used as evidence that the power of God accompanied believers in accordance to the promises made by Christ.
Pentecost Sunday is a day to celebrate all of the gifts of the Spirit that are still in operation today according to the authority of the Scriptures.
Many debate that the Spirit gifts ceased to be in operation once the apostles passed from history, however upon inspection of the Bible, especially the verses of 1 Corinthians chapters 12 through 14, one would create a major discrepancy to the infallibility of the truth if God allowed the cessation of gifts. Demonstrating the Holy Spirit gifts “in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the Earth” could never be accomplished if the gifts ceased to operate.
The invalidation of much Bible scripture would take place should the gifts be Spirit only have been an event finite to the apostles. The supernatural power of the Holy Spirit has been demonstrated quite often in the great moves associated with Revivals; the Welsh Revival, the Azusa Street Revival, Brownsville Revival, and the Toronto Outpowering.
Claims that the Holy Spirit does not work any longer would mean the power of conviction of sin and the drawing of sinful men to the cross does not operate. Nobody can come to God unless being drawn by the Spirit.
Pentecost Sunday represents a high water mark of the Christian influence and evidence that God has already made a down payment to the future promises He will ultimately deliver.
God uses His gifts to get the attention of unbelievers and to substantiate His presence to those that do believe. Without the Holy Spirit, the church would be anemic.