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"Let us reason together…" Isaiah 1:18

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Pentecost Sunday: The New Community of the Spirit

Pentecost Sunday 2020

Texts:  Acts 1:8 and 2:1-4

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” 

When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested[a] on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.

MCA’s favorite Lukan theologian, Dr. Robert Menzies writes:

The message is clear: Just as Jesus was anointed by the Spirit to fulfill His prophetic vocation, so also Jesus’ disciples have been anointed as end-time prophets to proclaim the Word of God. Menzies, Robert. Pentecost: This Story is Our Story . Gospel Publishing House. Kindle Edition.

The prophetic message Jesus’ Spirit anointed disciples are to proclaim is:

22 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know— 23 this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. 24 God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it.  Acts 2:22-24

32 This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. 33 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. Acts 2:32-33

36 Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”

37 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every 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. 39 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.”  Acts 2:36-39

As end time people of the Spirit, we have the message given by God through the Apostle Peter.

Immediately following the declaration of our empowered witness through proclamation, we see the revelation of our empowered witness through social structures.

People of the Spirit are empowered with a message and ministry and empowered within a brand-new community of the Spirit.

It is the Spirit’s ministry on the day of Pentecost from which the Apostle Peter writes, “Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people.”  1 Peter 2:10

Because of the Spirit’s ministry on the Day of Pentecost, we are now the newly reconstituted people of God, a Spirit empowered community.

Joining God’ end time community of the Spirit includes repentance, water baptism and results in the promise of receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit. 

“Repent and be baptized every 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. Acts 2:38

The Spirit empowered message, without the Spirit empowered community is only philosophy.

The Spirit empowered community without the Spirit empowered message is only relationship.

The Spirit empowered message and the Spirit empowered community is the newly reconstituted people of God.

The Community of the Spirit is God’s better provision for the health and wellness of His people.

The Community of the Spirit shines spectacularly bright in today’s dim and dark world.

1.  The gigantic unrest related to the corona virus situation. (After all these years of study and research, there is no effective vaccine (I have been told) for ANY of the many strains of corona virus).
2. The financial unrest is at tsunami level.
3. The racial unrest is expansive.
4. The political unrest is pervasive.
5. The emotional (suicide) unrest is the highest in measured history.
6. The domestic violence unrest is hard to measure, but reports are high.

Acts 2 42-46 reveals the life-giving values and behaviors of this new Community of the Spirit.

There is no mention of perspectives and positions on:

The Community of the Spirit is for everyone who repents and is baptized.

This Community of the Spirit is mentioned in Revelation 5:9

And they sang a new song, saying,

“Worthy are you to take the scroll
    and to open its seals,
for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God
    from every tribe and language and people and nation.

This map indicates the huge variety and diversity in the Community of the Spirit even at the beginning.

A close up of a map

Description automatically generated
https://visualunit.me/2020/05/25/the-nations-of-pentecost/

Let’s end our teaching time together with thinking about The Community of the Spirit and the social isolation of our world today.

Social distancing, YES!  Relational distancing, NO!

The Community of the Spirit is perfectly postured as a safe haven in these socially turbulent times.

Would you like to join this God inspired “Community of the Spirit?”  Acts 2:38

“Repent and be baptized every 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. 

MCA specific responses:

  1. Frequent local businesses owned and operated by people from various ethnic backgrounds. 
  2. Please spend a growing percentage of your budget in Mt. View.
  3. Make a new best friend with someone very different from you.  Maybe from a different economic situation or a different ethnicity or a different religion or from a different political perspective or from a different generation.
  4. How long has it been since you spent meaningful time with someone very different from you?

Listen – My Story

  • What experience comes to mind when you remember receiving God’s love through someone very different from you?
  • What experience comes to mind when you remember giving God’s love to someone very different from you?

Learn – Digging Deeper

  1. Read Romans 12:9-21
  2. What might Paul mean in verse 9, by saying “Love must be genuine?”  Does the next sentence, “Hate what is evil and cling to what is good,” shed light on this question?
  3. As you read the passage, make a list of “Things Love Does,” and a list of “Things Love Does Not Do.”
  4. What must happen in your heart to get to obedience of “If you enemy is hungry, feed him” Romans 12:20
  5. What other Bible passages come to mind regarding The Community of the Spirit?

Life – Taking it Home

  1. What is the Holy Spirit saying to you through this lesson? 
  2. How can your Bible Fellowship help you excel in the Community of the Spirit?

Lift – Prayer

  • May we pray with you to become a member of the Community of the Spirit?
  • Which component of love as seen in Romans 12:9-21 may we pray for growth within you?
  • May we receive your prayer requests?
Posted on 30th May 2020 in Uncategorized  •  Comments are off for this post

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