Word from Scotland
by Sandy Shaw
What happened at Pentecost and how is this so highly relevant to the Church of Jesus Christ today? Why does this matter? It is much more important than many really realise.
These apostles and disciples were gathered together in one place. They were in the Temple in Jerusalem because when we read the record and account given to us by Dr Luke no one moved until the apostles arose and Peter spoke and explained the significance of what had just taken place.
They were gathered together in one place, at the one time and they were united. Someone had organised it and all were present and Jesus Christ blessed that gathering.
They knew and understood something of the fundamentals and basics of discipleship from the very beginning. Over these past years I have met very few people who have understood the basics of discipleship.
Read the account which is given us in Acts Chapter 2. Whenever someone reads the Word of God and opens himself or herself to the Word of God our living loving gracious God is so willing and eager to bless and reward.
Be open to God’s Word and to receive and embrace what He reveals to you.
We read of the blowing of a wind, and tongues of fire resting on each of the one hundred and twenty heads of the apostles and disciples, and there would be as many as fifty thousand people present on this important occasion. It was a Jewish festival and the Temple courts would be crowded. We read about that a few sentences later.
They are all filled with the Holy Spirit and each speaks in tongues - or praises God in a language they had never learned. I have enjoyed this manifestation of the Holy Spirit for over fifty years and it has been such an edifying and encouraging spiritual ability.
Jesus had promised to send the Comforter, or the One who comes alongside to help, and that is exactly what happens on this occasion – although there is also an anointing of the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit fills these disciples of Jesus and they overflow at the mouth. We overflow at the mouth too, if we are angry, or in love, or filled with the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is the One who anoints and guides and directs and leads and he anoints and empowers and does so much more.
This is God the Holy Spirit. These one hundred and twenty apostles and disciples of Jesus Christ are having an encounter with Almighty God.
When this happens to day, we have an encounter with Almighty God and do we all not so need that once again?
These disciples are changed. These men and women are totally transformed – and notice that Mary, the mother of Jesus, is present there in that congregation.
Yes, people are ridiculed and mocked and laughed at, because the bewildered onlookers do not understand the significance of what is taking place.
Jesus Christ is birthing and launching His glorious Church!
Dear Peter, who had caused so much upset, arises and explains – and explains so fully and adequately. This is what had been prophesied. What Joel said would happen is happening and this experience of the Holy Spirit continues to be experienced and will do so until Jesus Christ comes again.
The Helper was bringing Hope. We so need Hope in our troubled world today – and in the compromising Church.
If you are looking for a deeper spirituality and for inspiration that will never depart from you, this is where it is to be found and discovered and enjoyed, but remember it is for service and ministry!
“Our loving heavenly Father – we give thanks for every good and perfect gift. At this time we give thanks for the experience and significance of what happened at Pentecost – and we thank you risen and ascended Jesus, that you continue to pour out the Holy Spirit today upon men and women. Anoint us – empower us – so that we may serve. Amen”
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Alexander 'Sandy' Shaw is pastor of Nairn Christian Fellowship in Nairn, Scotland. Nairn is 17 miles east of Inverness - on the Moray Firth Coast - not far from the Loch Ness Monster!
Gifted as a Biblical teacher, Sandy is firmly committed to making sure that his teachings are firmly grounded in the Word.
Sandy has a weekly radio talk which can be heard via the Internet on Saturday at 11:40am, New Orleans time, at wsho.com.
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