The Coming of the Holy Spirit
1When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.
2Suddenly a noise like a strong, blowing wind came from heaven and filled the
whole house where they were sitting. 3They saw something like flames of fire
that were separated and stood over each person there. 4They were all filled with
the Holy Spirit, and they began to speak different languages by the power the
Holy Spirit was giving them.
5There were some religious Jews staying in Jerusalem who were from every
country in the world. 6When they heard this noise, a crowd came together. They
were all surprised, because each one heard them speaking in his own language.
7They were completely amazed at this. They said, “Look! Aren’t all these people
that we hear speaking from Galilee? 8Then how is it possible that we each hear
them in our own languages? We are from different places: 9Parthia, Media, Elam,
Mesopotamia, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus, Asia, 10Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt, the
areas of Libya near Cyrene, Rome 11(both Jews and those who had become
Jews), Crete, and Arabia. But we hear them telling in our own languages about
the great things God has done!” 12They were all amazed and confused, asking
each other, “What does this mean?”
13But others were making fun of them, saying, “They have had too much
Peter Speaks to the People
14But Peter stood up with the eleven apostles, and in a loud voice he spoke to
the crowd: “My fellow Jews, and all of you who are in Jerusalem, listen to me.
Pay attention to what I have to say. 15These people are not drunk, as you think; it
is only nine o’clock in the morning! 16But Joel the prophet wrote about what is
happening here today:
17‘God says: In the last days
I will pour out my Spirit on all kinds of people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy.
Your young men will see visions,
and your old men will dream dreams.
18At that time I will pour out my Spirit
also on my male slaves and female slaves,
and they will prophesy.
19I will show miracles
in the sky and on the earth:
blood, fire, and thick smoke.
20The sun will become dark,
the moon red as blood,
before the overwhelming and glorious day of the Lord will come.
21Then anyone who calls on the Lord
will be saved.’
22“People of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus from Nazareth was a very
special man. God clearly showed this to you by the miracles, wonders, and signs
he did through Jesus. You all know this, because it happened right here among
you. 23Jesus was given to you, and with the help of those who don’t know the
law, you put him to death by nailing him to a cross. But this was God’s plan
which he had made long ago; he knew all this would happen. 24God raised Jesus
from the dead and set him free from the pain of death, because death could not
hold him. 25For David said this about him:
‘I keep the Lord before me always.
Because he is close by my side,
I will not be hurt.
26So I am glad, and I rejoice.
Even my body has hope,
27because you will not leave me in the grave.
You will not let your Holy One rot.
28You will teach me how to live a holy life.
Being with you will fill me with joy.’
29“Brothers and sisters, I can tell you truly that David, our ancestor, died and
was buried. His grave is still here with us today. 30He was a prophet and knew
God had promised him that he would make a person from David’s family a king
just as he was. 31Knowing this before it happened, David talked about the Christ
rising from the dead. He said:
‘He was not left in the grave.
His body did not rot.’
32So Jesus is the One whom God raised from the dead. And we are all witnesses
to this. 33Jesus was lifted up to heaven and is now at God’s right side. The Father
has given the Holy Spirit to Jesus as he promised. So Jesus has poured out that
Spirit, and this is what you now see and hear. 34David was not the one who was
lifted up to heaven, but he said:
‘The Lord said to my Lord,
“Sit by me at my right side,
35until I put your enemies under your control.”’
36“So, all the people of Israel should know this truly: God has made Jesus—
the man you nailed to the cross—both Lord and Christ.”
37When the people heard this, they felt guilty and asked Peter and the other
apostles, “What shall we do?”
38Peter said to them, “Change your hearts and lives and be baptized, each one
of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will
receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39This promise is for you, for your children,
and for all who are far away. It is for everyone the Lord our God calls to
40Peter warned them with many other words. He begged them, “Save
yourselves from the evil of today’s people!” 41Then those people who accepted
what Peter said were baptized. About three thousand people were added to the
number of believers that day. 42They spent their time learning the apostles’
teaching, sharing, breaking bread, and praying together.
The Believers Share
43The apostles were doing many miracles and signs, and everyone felt great
respect for God. 44All the believers were together and shared everything. 45They
would sell their land and the things they owned and then divide the money and
give it to anyone who needed it. 46The believers met together in the Temple every
day. They ate together in their homes, happy to share their food with joyful
hearts. 47They praised God and were liked by all the people. Every day the Lord
added those who were being saved to the group of believers.
The Holy Bible, New Century Version
The Book of Acts was written to give an accurate report of what happened to Jesus' followers and how the early church began and spread. It was written by Luke, the physician and historian, as a sequel to the Gospel that bears his name. Luke told how the gospel spread from Jerusalem to Samaria and finally to every part of the world.
God planned that the Holy Spirit would come to empower Believers. Jesus gave this plan to the apostles, his last promise before he ascended to heaven.
If the Christian life is simply a matter of doing our best, there was no need for God to send the Holy Spirit to help us. After all, our best is our best. How do we improve on that? Since God is omniscient, as we certainly believe He is, He knows when we have done all we can do. Why complicate matters?
Jesus let it be known, however, that God was looking for more than our best. He was looking for a life-style and attitude that superseded our best, a life-style and attitude that we could never attain through our own efforts....
Think about this. If we don't need any help, why send a Helper? The promise of a Helper presupposes that we need help. The promise of a Helper was Jesus' way of tipping us off to one of the most profound truths concerning the Christian life-it's impossible! The quality of life Jesus expects from His followers is unattainable apart from outside intervention. (From The Wonderful Spirit Filled Life by Charles Stanley)
Are you nervous about sharing your faith? Be bold. Open your mouth to share and let the reliable Holy Spirit direct your conversation.
Promises About the Spirit - John 14:16, 26, 15:26-27; 16:7-8, 13; Romans 8:11, 26;
2 Corinthians 1:21-22; 5:5; Ephesians 1:13-14; Hebrews 10:23.