Clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” 1 Peter 5:5 (NIV) Evangelical Christians need to listen to the criticisms of those who do not like us, and one of these criticisms is that we are arrogant. That is a...
“We hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.” Acts 2:11
Think about how different the people at Pentecost were from the crowd in the time of Moses. The people in the desert were taken up with complaining; the people in Jerusalem were taken up with “telling… the mighty works of God.” Those in the desert were self-absorbed; those at Pentecost were God-intoxicated. The folks in the desert were ungrateful; the folks at Pentecost were filled with praise.
Imagine going to a church and overhearing the conversations around you, and they are mostly ungrateful, self-absorbed, and complaining. The people profess to be Christians, but their speech betrays them. Now suppose the next Sunday you go to another church where the people are God-intoxicated, filled with praise, and proclaiming his mighty works. Which one would you conclude is the real church?
Think about how this remarkable outpouring happened. Peter, speaking about Jesus, tells the story: He was “delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God… crucified and killed,” but “God raised him up” (2:23-24). “Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing” (2:33).
The Bible speaks of the Spirit being sent by the Father and by the Son (Eph. 3:14-16, Luke 24:49). The outpouring of the Spirit happens when the work of Christ is complete, and the Son, as the advocate of these people, is at the right hand of the Father. The Spirit is poured out on those who look to him in faith and walk with him in obedience.
Take a moment to give thanks for the completed work of Jesus, through whom the Holy Spirit has been given.