What exactly is Pentecost? Why does it matter?

“When the Feast of Pentecost came,

they were all together in one place.

Without warning there was a sound like a strong wind, gale force

—no one could tell where it came from. It filled the whole building.

Then, like a wildfire, the Holy Spirit spread through their ranks,”

Acts 2:1-3 (The Message)

pentecostcroseandflame

I believe in God the Father Almighty,

Creator of heaven and earth…

and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord…

I believe in the Holy Spirit…

(portions of the Apostles Creed)

 

What happened that day?

What is the Holy Spirit?

The traditional of our faith says Pentecost is the day the Holy Spirit came, fifty days after the Resurrection. The tradition of our faith also says the Holy Spirit is part of the trinity: Father, Son, Holy Spirit. One God: Three persons.

The greek word for spirit is “pneuma”, like pneumatic, also meaning air or breath to refresh us. Acts 2 in the message refers to the spirit as fire or like a wildfire to energize us. Other passages of the bible compare God’s spirit to living water to rehydrate us.

Ultimately, the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God, the presence of God. It is God with us, with us and within the heart of the believer 24/7. Jesus, the Son of God cleanses our bodies, the temple of God, while the Holy Spirit offers to dwell within out temple if we invite God into our hearts and our lives.

The Spirit of God is not God doing things for us. It is not God asking us to do things for God. It is God with us.

My prayer for all of us as we prepare to celebrate the day of Pentecost is that we invite Jesus to clean out our temple of all the junk in our lives and we also invite the spirit of God, God himself to enter our hearts and lives. As we do, like the breath of God, may it refresh us. Like the fire of God, may it energize us. Like living water, may it calm us, spiritually rehydrate us and bring life to our lives and the life of our church.

Pastor Dave