Pentecost, the Great Harvest {Acts 2}

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By Lisa Moore

Acts Chapter 2 begins, "When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place.  And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.  And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them.  And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.", (vs. 1-4). Can you imagine what a glorious spectacle that must have been!  One minute the disciples were ordinary men meeting and worshipping together, the next filled with the Holy Spirit preaching in all languages to all peoples about the "mighty deeds of God."

The word Pentecost comes from the Greek word pentekostes, which means "fifty", and refers to the Jewish Feast of Weeks, or "Shavuot".  In Leviticus 23:15-22, the Jewish people were instructed to count seven weeks or fifty days from the end of Passover to the beginning of the next holiday.  "Shavuot" was a harvest feast and the second great feast in Israel's yearly cycle of holy days. During the time of Jesus, Jews from around the world traveled to the temple bringing their offerings of thanksgiving to God for all of His provisions.  It was during this Pentecost, that God first sent the Holy Spirit to indwell in all believers of Jesus and to establish the church.  

While Jesus walked the earth, He provided strength, inspiration, and teaching to all who believed in and followed Him.  But Jesus knew that His time was short and soon He would return to the Father.  And so He told the disciples, "I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever." (John 14:26)  That helper is the Holy Spirit.  The very minute a believer receives Jesus Christ as their Savior, the Holy Spirit comes to indwell in that believer and seal them for the day of redemption, (Eph. 4:30).  That means that not only is the Spirit sent to help, comfort, and guide us, He is also God's seal on us marking us as God's very own.

Our Father knows all too well how frail we are.  He understands that there is no way we can do what He asks of us on our own. The Holy Spirit gives us the strength we need to do all the Lord commands.  And not only does He supply strength, but from the moment He indwells in us He begins the work of changing us from the inside out.  Shaping and conforming us into the likeness of Jesus.  When we allow Him full control over our minds and hearts, He frees us from the pull of fleshly desires.  And the more we walk in His power, the more the fruit of the Spirit becomes evident in our lives.  But what is the fruit of the Spirt?  In Galatians 5:22-23 James tells us, "The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law."  And when these fruits flow through us to others, we become powerful witnesses for the Lord.  



The Holy Spirit  is God with us in all things.  He convicts us of our sins, and assures us of God's forgiveness.  He helps us to lead lives that are pleasing to our Father.  He gives us the words to use when sharing the Gospel with others, glorifying God and changing lives.  How thankful I am for Him, and to be able to call Him friend.

                                        We all need a friend
                                           to encourage us
                                         we all need someone
                                       who in God truly trusts.

                                          We all need a partner,
                                        with whom we can pray
                                      someone who will help us
                                         stay on the narrow way.

                                          We all need a mentor,
                                          in whom we can share
                                        someone who understands
                                           the weight of our care.

                                          We all need a confident,
                                             to help our faith grow
                                            someone who believes
                                           God's will we can know.

                                            We all need a friend
                                              a faithful supporter
                                             we all need God's Spirit
                                            to be our shock absorber!
                                                                         Deborah Ann

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