Sunday, June 4, 2017



Nineteen hundred and eighty-four years ago a new living organism was born on Planet Earth.  It's name?  The Church!  Fifty days after the Resurrection, the disciples of Jesus Christ and about 120 other Christ-followers were gathered together in an upper room in Jerusalem earnestly in prayer and waiting in expectation for the arrival of the Comforter Jesus had promised them in another room on the night before Passover, the night before He would go to the Cross for the sins of the world.

Jews from all over the known world were also gathered in Jerusalem, cramming homes and inns, for a very special celebration called Pentecost.  For the Jewish people, Pentecost was the feast where they celebrated the giving of the law on Mount Sinai,  a fest that took its name from the fact that the events on Mt. Sinai occurred 50 days after the Exodus of the Jewish slaves from Egypt.

That day the Holy Spirit showed up (see Acts 2 and 3), baptizing those disciples with fire in a event whose accompanied by the deafening sound like a mighty, violent wind.  When the wind subsided, these disciples poured out into the streets and all of Jerusalem witnessed a miracle--what Lloyd Olgilvie calls "the miracle of communication" as they began speaking not in their native tongue of Galilee but in the languages of those who had gathered in that teeming city and each person heard the Word of God in their own language.  Not a unknown glossolalia but a miraculous and instantly recognizable xenolalia.

At first the skeptics, seeing "unlearned" men from Galilee, thought they were drunk but Peter answered them with the first Christian sermon that led to 3000 persons joining that new Church in the day of its birth.
This is what Christians all over the world celebrate today.  Churches and altars and people decorated red--the color of the Holy Spirit's fire will gather and praise God for the birth and the power and the purpose given them on that day.  Although many people today despise that church and although it has not always lived up to its identity, millions and billions of lives of this planet have found healing and hope, salvation and peace because this organism has been alive and at work on this planet.

On this day, the church humbly repents when its humanity has drawn it away from the Spirit, but unashamedly confesses that Jesus is Lord and the Church is His Body.

© 2017 by Stephen L. Dunn. Permission is given to repost or quote provided this copyright notice is included and a link provided to this blogsite or to The courtesy of an email with a link to its reposting or a copy of the work it is quoted in would be appreciated.

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