Today in church, Gary had the opportunity to teach on Acts 2. And, where I thought I would be excited to listen to a “fresh” rendition of Acts, I felt as though perhaps it was a message I had already heard in some respects. It is hard sometimes to pull out new things from a chapter that one has not heard. In fact, I feel as though when I share something with others, that I am the only one that had not heard it before. I feel as though I am wasting someone’s time by sharing something they have already experienced or read before. I will attempt to bring out some things I experienced through the writings of Luke in the book of Acts, chapter 2.
As the disciples were waiting for the Holy Spirit to show up (which I almost have to believe they did not understand at all), they came together and had fellowship with one another. It is only my guess that they met with one another and broke bread with each other because these are things they had experienced with Jesus. The event of the Rich, Young, Ruler would have been a great example to each of the Apostles that possessions can often get in the way of worshipping God. So, it would make sense that they brought all their belongings to one another and lived in a “socialistic” lifestyle – giving each other what the other needed and so forth.
Then, all at once, the Holy Spirit shows up. It was loud too. It says that a “violent wind” swept through the house, and the whole house was filled. This is a great picture of what happened when the Temple was dedicated to God in the OT. The Holy Spirit would come and “fill the house.” It then says that tongues of fire were upon them and they spoke in “different tongues.” This whole tongues issue has been particularly interesting to me. For apart of my life, I believe that they were “heavenly tongues” in which people said things that were “angelic.” I have since come to understand that these were spoken languages – and others who heard them were hearing them in their own language! This event reconciles Genesis 12 and the Babel experience. During the Babel period, their languages were “mixed up” and people were unable to understand one another. In Acts 2, they could hear one another and they were gathered once again to hear the message of God. It is a powerful story I believe we oftentimes underestimate a lot. God was at work in a major way.
So this is where our story ends. Next Sunday will be another part of Acts. In closing, I would like to make one final thought about this passage that oftentimes bothers me more than blesses me. I have heard it said that the church should be an “Acts 2” church. In some respects, I understand where they are coming from. My only serious conviction about their statement is that the Church does not stop at Acts 2. It continues through Acts 3 – to the end of Revelation. I would rather someone say, “I want to be a kind of Church where Christ’s Spirit can fall upon us – like Acts 2.” It is a slight difference but to me, and hopefully to others, it DOES make a significant difference as to how we understand and study the Word of God – and the book of Acts as a whole.