As we celebrate the day of Pentecost, we turn to the reading from Acts and read a devotion from The Pentecost Story: Arch Books.
John 15:26–27; 16:4b–15
Have you ever heard a parent say to a child, “Use your words”? Sign language aside, gestures go only so far when we’re trying to communicate. It is words—written and spoken—that are our best communication tools. This truth was felt by the Babylonians when God destroyed their tower. Without words, they couldn’t accomplish their goal, so they abandoned it. Until that time, all of God’s people spoke the same language. After that time, the people were divided.
The coming of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost occurred when people were assembled in one place to celebrate the harvest and God’s blessing. Part of the feast was an offering of grain and included a ritual that was spoken in Hebrew. The problem was that some people didn’t speak or understand Hebrew, so they didn’t understand what was said. They didn’t hear God’s Word.
The fifty days before this had been filled with wonderful but puzzling events: the Lord had suffered and died; but then He rose from the grave, walked and talked among the people, and was bodily lifted into the sky. And now this.
As thousands were worshiping, the sound of the wind was as loud as a tornado. The tongues of fire leaped and danced but didn’t burn. Jesus’ disciples had the sudden ability to speak languages they’d never spoken before. The people heard the powerful, saving word of forgiveness and salvation through Christ. They understood it. And they believed.
Now, through God the Spirit, the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ is spoken to all people and received.
Devotional reading is from The Pentecost Story: Arch Books, page 16 © 2014 Concordia Publishing House. All rights reserved.