“When the day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.” (NKJV)
Pentecost is celebrated on the fiftieth day after Passover. It is traditionally a joyful time of giving thanks and presenting offerings for the new grain of the summer wheat harvest in Israel. It was also called the “Feast of Weeks” because God commanded the Jews (Leviticus 23:15-16) to count seven full weeks (or 49 days) beginning on the second day of Passover and then present offerings of new grain to the Lord. Today, Passover represents to us the shed blood of the Lamb of God. Pentecost represents to us the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the whole new world of the supernatural which God opens up for us when we experience oneness with His Spirit.
Soon after the ascension of Jesus to heaven, his disciples were praying together when they experienced and received the Holy Spirit in a powerful way. This was no quiet little drizzle of some sparks from Heaven. No, it was a bone shaking, life transforming encounter, when the room was suddenly filled with the sounds of heaven – like the sound of a mighty rushing wind, which filled not only the upper room where they were praying but the whole house. The men and women present literally saw fire fall from heaven, when flames like tongues of fire came and settled on each person’s head, as each one experienced the infilling of the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues.
Friend, this is not a traditional Pentecost day message about the reality of the Holy Spirit or the need to receive His presence in our lives. I feel the Lord wants to remind us of a few things through this portion of Scripture and they are as follows:
1)There is fresh fire for you if you want it. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit is not a one time experience. It is an on-going, day to day revelation as we fellowship with Him and come to know Him as He knows us. It is the development of an eternal relationship, and learning to hear His sweet voice in our hearts. It is the beginning of a supernatural partnership, where the blessed Holy Spirit begins to give us the mind of Christ and the love of the Father, and opens up the ceiling and so that we can fly as high as we want to with Him! There is fresh fire from the altar of Heaven and God is willing to give it to whoever seeks more. It brings the manifestation of His power and presence, and the signs and wonder so needful on the earth in these last days as we await the return of Jesus. As we ask, we can receive!
2)Unity is Important to God. When the Holy Spirit fell on the disciples on the day of Pentecost, they were “in one place” and praying “in one accord”. As we seek more of the Spirit, it is a good thing to weed out discord and division. There are times when someone may be against us through no fault of our own. In situations like this, we can pray for the Lord to intervene, and we forgive and bless the person sincerely and move on. However, when there is a situation of strife which we can change by giving or receiving forgiveness, it is important to do it immediately. I believe great moves of the Holy Spirit are happening today in ministries where there is unity, agreement and a shared vision. Discord and division are the work of the evil one, while love, peace and agreement are the language of the Trinity, who enjoy total accord, and complete love and unity. Psalm 133:1 says “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity. It is like the precious oil upon the head, running down on the beard, the beard of Aaron, running down on the edge of his garments. It is like the dew of Hermon, descending upon the mountains of Zion; for there the Lord commanded the blessing – life forevermore.” God blesses unity and His presence and anointing comes in power where there is accord, Hallelujah!
3)Why Tongues of fire? Because God wants to get a hold of our tongues! When the disciples began to speak in other languages, the Holy Spirit took over their tongues. These unschooled fishermen became mighty men of God, preaching in the boldness and authority of the Holy Spirit, and having signs and wonders following. It all begins with the tongue. When we release ourselves to the blessed Spirit and begin to speak in heavenly tongues, it is purely an activity of our spirits interacting with the Holy Spirit, as He begins a new work in us. Before God can effect a renovation and restoration in our lives, He has to begin with our tongues. James writes (in James 3:6): “And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity.” Also verse 8: “But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.” No man can tame the tongue, but the Holy Spirit can, so when we receive the infilling of the Holy Spirit, the first thing we usually see is new spiritual language, which our minds do not know and which we speak by faith and because of our relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. The Word of God tells us in Proverbs 18:21 that “there is life and death in the power of the tongue. It also tells us in Job 22:28 “Decree a thing and it shall be established”. What we utter is extremely important and life impacting, whether for good or for bad. What we speak is the beginning of what we will see happen in and through our lives. I believe the Lord would have us surrender our tongues to Him so that He can bring us into a new season of powerful proclamations and promises fulfilled. The signs will follow what we believe and speak forth. (Mark 16: 17).
4) Celebrate Pentecost. The original feast of Pentecost is all about giving thanks to God and celebrating what He has done for us. He has blessed us in multiple ways which we may have never thanked him for. There is so much He has in store for you and me, but let us start giving thanks for the blessings and breakthroughs we have already seen. We serve an awesome and wonderful God of amazing love and grace who is our eternal Father. He is faithful and true!
Friend, I pray that you will lift up your heart and hands today and ask the Father for fresh fire. He has so much more for you than you have even begun to see and know. He wants to fill your daily life with His power and His glory. He wants you to be His fire filled Holy Spirit dispenser, carrying His fire wherever you go. He wants to do something new and wonderful in your life, and through you, in the lives of others. Be blessed today and walk in the river of Fire, in Jesus’ name, amen!
Minoli Haththotuwa, 28 May 2012