Tagged: language

Acts 2:36-41

This text is used for the Lectionary Year A on April 30, 2017.

Have you wondered how a person becomes a member of a church? This section of Acts 2 documents how the first members became a part of the movement.

A new generation of humans was introduced in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost. They became a new generation that morning when their prayers were interrupted by the coming of the Holy Spirit. 120 believers were gathered in a room in the Temple waiting. The Holy Spirit came with the sound of a mighty wind, and a display of fire. A tongue of fire was seen over the head of the disciples. The group was under the leadership of the surviving Apostles that Jesus of Nazareth had appointed before his return to heaven. Simon Peter was the spokesman for the group that day with the support of the eleven other Apostles. Every member was suddenly endowed with a gift of speaking in a foreign language that they had not learned.

The noise of the wind and the worship of the new generation attracts a large gathering. When the attendees want to know what is happening, Peter explains to them that the prophecy of Joel is being fulfilled right before their eyes. Then Peter gives the first proclamation of the Christian Gospel. He concludes the declaration, which included an announcement of the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, with a word about what it all means. Peter declares that the man from Nazareth that they crucified has been raised from the dead, and is exalted. He is now both Lord and Christ. The crowd was made up of Jews, many of the proselytes came from all over the Roman world, so they understand the implication of Peter’s declaration. They are involved in the death of the Lord of glory, the One sent to be the Messiah of Israel. His blood is on their hands.

The words of Peter penetrate to the heart, leaving them very troubled. The Holy Spirit is already performing his mission of convicting humans of their sins. The fear of judgment to come falls upon them immediately. They humbly cry out to the Apostles for help; “What shall we do?”

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