(May 22, 2023) Dr Robert McQuillan recalls Pentecostal memories…
May 28 is Pentecost Sunday when it’s expected Pentecostal and charismatic churches will celebrate that Acts 2 occasion when the Holy Spirit fell powerfully on those first Christians.
Pentecost (pentēkostē – fifty) is the Jewish holiday festival of Shavu`ot.Originally firstfruits of the wheat harvest were presented to God 50 days after the Feast of Unleavened Bread (See Leviticus 23:16-17), celebrating the expectation of a great agricultural season ahead. Its theme became one of revelation – of God Himself, His power and His Torah (teaching, direction, guidance, law).
Traditionally where Jesus followers gathered in Jerusalem has been known as ‘the upper room.’ Acts 2:1 calls it a ‘place’, but interestingly this word is a reflexive pronoun linked with ‘a baffling wind.’ Little did those faithful believers image the roaring wind ahead!
That windstorm (NLT) blew through on that first Pentecost Sunday! Acts 2:2CJB records the ‘place’ as a home – ‘Suddenly there came a sound from the sky like the roar of a violent wind, and it filled the whole house…’
Act 2:3-4 records, ‘They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues…’ They were a changed, charged and challenged people!