Tag Archives: Acts

PENTECOST AND THE LAST DAYS

The outpouring of the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost signaled the arrival of the “last days”Joel 2:28-32, Acts 2:17-21.

The application of the prophecy from Joel in Acts links the outpouring of the Spirit to the commencement of the “last days.” For the book, the Spirit’s activity and presence in the church are programmatic and foundational for its existence, from the Day of Pentecost until the return of Jesus.

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WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

The outpouring of the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost caused a great commotion and much consternation in Jerusalem – Joel 2:4-13

In Acts, the presence and activity of the Spirit are essential for the life and growth of the church, from its inception on the Day of Pentecost until the return of Jesus at the end of the age. The church began in Jerusalem with the initial outpouring of the Spirit, then quickly spread beyond Judea to Samaria, Syria, Asia Minor, Greece, and finally, to the city of Rome at the very heart of the empire.

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WHEN PENTECOST ARRIVED

On the day of Pentecost, the long-anticipated time of fulfillment arrived when Jesus bestowed the Spirit on his church – Acts 2:1-4

The second chapter of Acts stresses fulfillment, the things foreshadowed in the Hebrew scriptures were actualized when the disciples were “filled with the Spirit,” beginning with the Feast of Pentecost. The arrival of the Spirit was the key event that marked the inauguration of the Church and the age of the Spirit and set the stage for the proclamation of the gospel.

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BETWEEN LAW AND SPIRIT

Between the ascension and the gift of the Spirit, the apostles tarried in prayer and appointed Matthias to complete their number – Acts 1:12-26

After the ascension, the apostles returned to Jerusalem to wait for the “promise of the Father,” the gift of the Spirit. In the interim, they appointed Matthias to the apostolic office held previously by Judas. As the representatives of the new people of God, they needed twelve representatives to demonstrate continuity with the covenant established by Yahweh.

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TARRY IN JERUSALEM

Jesus commanded his disciples to tarry in Jerusalem until they received the Spirit, empowering them as witnesses – Acts 1:1-11. 

The book of Acts begins in Jerusalem, the heart of the Jewish nation, with the ascension of Jesus and the outpouring of the Spirit. It concludes with Paul preaching the gospel in Rome, the heart of the world empire. Following his resurrection, Jesus ascended to reign over all “at the right hand of God,” whence he bestowed the gift of the Spirit on his church.

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PROPHECY OF JOEL APPLIED

SYNOPSIS – The outpouring of the promised Spirit on the Day of Pentecost signaled the arrival of the “last days” – Joel 2:28

The application of the prophecy from Joel by the book of Acts links the gift of the Spirit inextricably to the onset of the “last days” – The period labeled by Scripture as the “last days” began after the ascension of Jesus and the outpouring of the gift of the Spirit on a gathering of his fledgling church. In the second chapter of Acts, Peter declares that the arrival of the Spirit on that very day is in fulfillment of Joel’s prophecy about the coming “day of Yahweh” – (Joel 2:28-32).

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