THE WORD IS
On the first Pentecost the outpouring of the Holy Ghost, accompanied by visible signs, took place. The timid Apostles received courage to proclaim the crucified and risen Jesus. Three thousand were cut to the heart and received the assurance of forgiveness for their sins in the name of Jesus. It was an amazing time. The new converts did not remain in their own secluded areas, but continued in the Apostles doctrine and prayer, partook of Holy Communion and were of one heart and soul. The first Christian congregation was born. (Acts 2).
We remember all this on Pentecost.
God, however, does not want Pentecost to be just a festival of remembrance for us. He wants to give us a true Pentecost spirit even now. The most important and central feature of the Pentecost spirit is knowing Jesus. Many know a great deal about Jesus, but still do not know Him as He is.
In order to know Jesus in the right way, we must first come to know ourselves in the light of God's Law. This means that we become convinced of the fact that we are sinners, who need the sacrifice of God's Son in our behalf. Nothing less was sufficient. So great is our debt of sin. Christ suffered for our sins, and thus Peter's words also apply to us: "God has made Him both Lord and Christ - this Jesus whom you crucified" (Acts 2:36). The "you" refers also to you and me.
It's true that the Jews together with the Romans committed the outward act, for which we will not be called to account. But the real reason for Jesus' death was our sin. In the manner of the Publican we have reason to beat our breast and say: "God be merciful to me, a sinner!" (Luke 18:13).
This prayer reveals the other matter related to knowing Jesus. Jesus has obtained mercy for us and God is now merciful to us for His sake. The Holy Ghost through His Word teaches us to know Jesus as our Savior from sin. We have peace of heart.
If we have learned to know Jesus as our Savior from sin, we are blessed. We want to share our faith with others. This can happen in two ways.
First, we gather in fellowship around the pure Word of God as a Christian congregation. In this way we are strengthened, we encourage one another, and the Holy Ghost nourishes us with the food of God's Word.
Secondly, we confess our faith before the world and humbly, in a spirit of love direct others to the fount of salvation. In this way the winds of the Holy Spirit blow and hearts are refreshed.