Pentecost Sunday - May 19

Sunday, May 19, 2024 10:15 AM

Pentecost Sunday, May 19

Come to worship on May 19 as we celebrate Pentecost .

May 19 is Pentecost Sunday. Pentecost occurs 50 days after Passover. Pentecost started as the Jewish Feast of Weeks (Ex. 34:22 & Deut. 16:10), which marked the conclusion of the harvest, and later commemorated God’s gift of the Law (the 10 commandments) on Mt. Sinai.

Just as the Lord Jesus Christ superseded the meaning of the Passover by the events of Good Friday (Passover) and Easter (Firstfruits), so He superseded the meaning of Pentecost by giving the greater gift of the Holy Spirit, as is recorded in Acts 2.

Our Evangelical Catechism describes the Holy Spirit (questions #74-100) by explaining the 3rd Article of the Apostles Creed (#74) – “I believe in the Holy Spirit; the one holy universal Christian Church; the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting. Amen.

The Holy Spirit is “God” (#75), “the third person in the Holy Trinity” (#76), who “works” in us “through the Word of God and the Holy Sacraments” (#77).

The work of the Holy Spirit is outlined (#78) as “Calls,” “Teaches,” “Leads,” and “Enables” (#78). Those who respond to the Holy Spirit by “Repentance” (#79) and “Faith” (#80), are “Justified” in God’s sight as righteous (#81), “Born Again” spiritually (#82), which means “Regenerated” (#83) and “Converted” (#84). The Holy Spirit makes us “children of God” (#85) and carries out the process of “Sanctification” within us by which they more and more live the new life (#86).

The Church which the Holy Spirit creates is described as “the entire body of true Christians” (#87); and is “ ‘one’ because it has one Lord, one faith, one baptism …” (#88); is “holy because the Holy Spirit works mightily in it” (#89); is “universal because God has meant it for all men” (#90); and is “Christian because Christ alone is its foundation” (#91).

The Mission of the Church “is to lead men to Christ …” (#92); and “make the rule of God established in the hearts and lives of men” (#93); which Jesus outlined “in the Sermon on the Mount” (#94). However, the Church isn’t yet what it was created to be “frequently erred and been corrupted,” but God has promised “its future perfection” (#95).

The future is then outlined as “the communion of the saints” – “all Christians … who love and help one another” (#96); “the forgiveness of sins” – “offered … to all sinners” (#97); “the resurrection of the body” – “unto the resurrection of life,” or “judgment” (#98); and “life everlasting” – “the children of God receive the glory of Christ … and shall abide with him forever” (#99).

The work of God the Holy Spirit is summarized in question #100, given below.

Q 100. A summary of the Third Article of the Christian Faith.

1. How do you become a true Christian? I believe that I can not by my own reason or strength believe in my Lord Jesus Christ, or come to him; but the Holy Spirit has called me by the Gospel, enlightened me with his gifts, sanctified and preserved me in the true faith.

2. Through what institution does the Holy Spirit work? The Holy Spirit calls, gathers, enlightens, and preserves the whole Christian Church on earth and keeps it with Jesus Christ in the one true faith.

3. What do you receive in the Church through the Holy Spirit? In the Christian Church the Holy Spirit daily and abundantly forgives me and all believers all sins.

4. What is your hope for the future? On the last day Christ will raise up me and all the dead and will give to me and all believers everlasting life. This is most certainly true.

As we approach Pentecost I encourage you to pull out your Evangelical Catechism and read questions and answers 74 thru 100. Also, take the time to read the supporting Bible verses upon which these answers are based. And, if you don’t have the Evangelical Catechism, then come by my office and pick up a copy.

Come to worship on May 19 as we celebrate Pentecost. Come and be filled with the Holy Spirit. For the Holy Spirit alone brings life and a passionate zeal to live for Jesus Christ. We the people of Zion desperately need Him if we are to have a future as a congregation.

John 3:5 (ESV) “Jesus answered, ’Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.’

Ephesians 5:17-20 (ESV) “… Understand what the will of the Lord is. … be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”