Pentecost is a celebration of God pouring out His Spirit. This year, we celebrate Pentecost on Sunday, May 31, 2020.
Peter explained to the Jews what was happening on the Day of Pentecost is God pouring our His Spirit.
Pentecost is fulfillment of what the prophet Joel spoke Joel 2:28-32
14Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. 15These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning! 16No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
- 17“ ‘In the last days, God says,
- I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
- Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
- your young men will see visions,
- your old men will dream dreams.
- 18Even on my servants, both men and women,
- I will pour out my Spirit in those days,
- and they will prophesy.
- 19I will show wonders in the heavens above
- and signs on the earth below,
- blood and fire and billows of smoke.
- 20The sun will be turned to darkness
- and the moon to blood
- before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord.
- 21And everyone who calls
- on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ Acts 2:14-21 ISV; Joel 2:28-32
In John 3; Jesus explains spirit: “Anything born of the flesh is flesh, but what is born of the Spirit is spirit.” Nicodemus recognized Jesus came from God. “I tell the truth,” Jesus answered him, “if anyone isn’t born from above, he can’t see God’s kingdom.” (Jn 3:2 AAT). Then Nicodemus asked Jesus how someone could be born again. Jesus answered. “Truly, I tell you emphatically, unless a person is born of water and Spirit he cannot enter the kingdom of God. What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. Don’t be astonished that I told you, ‘All of you must be born from above.’The wind blows where it wants to. You hear its sound, but you don’t know where it comes from or where it is going. That’s the way it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit” (Jn 3:5-8 ISV).
We are born from above the moment we do this:“If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation”(Ro 10:9-10 NASB).
We minister as the royal priesthood. Luther relates the priesthood of all believers to the gifts of the Spirit.
It is the Holy Spirit who adorns them in glory and holiness and clothes them in His power and with his gifts. (Commentary on Psalm 110 Jaroslav, Pelikan and Helmut T. Lehman., eds, Luther’s Works [Philadelphia: Fortress Press, and St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1956 -75] Vol. 13 pp, 294-95.)
Our ministry as the royal priesthood is found in the kingdom of God. Under the Old Covenant, God devoted the men of 1 of the 12 tribes to serve Himself and the people of Israel as priests. In the New Covenant, Jesus Christ made all believers priests to His God and Father to minister to God and His kingdom people. God created us in Christ Jesus to do good works and walk in them. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them” (Eph 2:10 KJV). Cf: 2 Cor 5:17; Eph 4:1
Howard A. Snyder in the Community of the King, 1977, shows Luther specifically relates the priesthood of all believers to the gifts of the Spirit.
Here the prophet applies the Priestly office and adornment to the Christians, the people of the New Testament. He says that their worship of God is to consist in the beautiful and glorious priesthood of those who are always in the presence of God and perform nothing but holy sacrifices.
Well what is this “holy adornment,” these priestly garments which adorn the Christians so that they become his holy priesthood? Nothing else than the beautiful, divine, and various gifts of the Holy Spirit as St. Paul (Eph 4:11-12) and St. Peter (1 Peter 4:10) say, which were given to Christendom to advance the knowledge and the praise of God, a function which is carried out pre-eminently by the ministry of preaching the gospel.