Acts 2:1-21 - A refresher about what Pentecost means

Updated: Apr 24

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When the day of Pentecost had come, the disciples were all together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.


Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. Amazed and astonished, they asked, "Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabs-- in our own languages we hear them speaking about God's deeds of power." All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, "What does this mean?" But others sneered and said, "They are filled with new wine."


But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them, "Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o'clock in the morning. No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel:


`In the last days it will be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams.


Even upon my slaves, both men and women, in those days I will pour out my Spirit; and they shall prophesy.


And I will show portents in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood, and fire, and smoky mist. The sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the coming of the Lord's great and glorious day.


Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.' "


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This is the final mandatory reading from Acts for the Easter season, Year B, according to the lectionary for the Episcopal Church. This reading can be chosen as either the First Lesson or the New Testament selection for this Sunday. If chosen as the New Testament reading, then it will be accompanied by a reading from Ezekiel, as the First Lesson. There is written: "Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and say to them: O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord.'" Following that will be a portion of Psalm 104, which sings, "You send forth your Spirit, and they are created; and so you renew the face of the earth." If this reading from Acts is chosen to be the First Lesson, the the New Testament selection will come from Romans, where it says, "we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies. " Finally, all will accompany the Gospel reading from John, where Jesus said: "When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who comes from the Father, he will testify on my behalf."


I wrote a [rather snarky] synopsis of this reading last year, when the churches were shut down by the government, afraid fake Christians gathering in churches would endanger the world [more than the fake Christians] by spreading COVID19. [Click here to read it.] In 2018, I wrote more seriously about this reading, under the title Acts 2:1-21 – The feast of fifty days. I offer both to be read now, as this reading is a standard for Pentecost Sunday every year; and, the same assessments I have made in the past still apply today.


The wonder of Scripture is it can offer new insights every time the same readings are read. As I have evolved over the years to see the seasons set apart during the year, according to the Roman Catholic – Episcopal/Anglican – Lutheran and all others of the universal catholic church mindset, I see each season plays specific roles in the development of a soul towards true Christianity, I have relatively recently come to see the season of Easter as the time when one, whose soul has married Yahweh AND been reborn as His Son [Jesus resurrected within], must come to terms with new talents that are the gifts of this presence. In the 2021 Easter season, in particular, I have developed a view of this time being preparatory for ministry, learning how to use Jesus' Spirit resurrected within one's flesh. Ministry begins after Pentecost Sunday [or on this Sunday], so one’s soul must step aside and allow God’s Spirit – the resurrection as His Son, a Christ – to operate in one’s flesh, as a reproduction of Jesus in ministry.


From that perspective, I want to offer some new insights that I have been shown recently. One comes from the realization that the recording of the events of that day, by Luke, cannot be limited to only that day. Scripture is not primarily for historical documentation. It is a living document that truthfully applies at all times. In that regard, the translation that says “the disciples were all together in one place” is misleading, as the Greek word that would translate as “disciples” was not written. That means this reading applies to the one hundred twenty then [who voted to have Matthias to replace Judas]; and, it applies to “all” who forever will be “together on the basis of this self.”


The second segment of words in verse 1 states: “ēsan pantes homou epi to auto,” which literally translates to say: “they existed all together on the basis of this self.” The word “homou” can translate as “together” or “at the same place at the same time.” The word “ēsan” is a form of the verb “eimi,” which states, “I am, exist.” As a word stating the “being” or “existence” of “all at the same place at the same time,” the third-person plural imperfect active indicative says “all” had been in this state of being with one soul presence for some time prior. They were prepared for what was about to happen, even if they had no idea what would take place.


This timeframe of “existence” is then set at fifty days, as that is the meaning of the Greek word “Pentēkostēs.” While the capitalization of that word easily implies a proper noun name, the reality that divinely elevates something as benign as “fiftieth” - implying an important day that numbers fifty - is it reflects on the time Moses demanded Pharaoh release the Israelites from bondage, until Moses brought down the Covenant from Mount Sinai. That took fifty days. The capitalization then reflects on a holy number of days required to pass, in preparation for the time one enters into an eternal commitment to Yahweh [Holy Matrimony]. That number needs closer examination.


The Christian concept of “Pentecost” is distorted. Pentecostals seem to believe that “speaking in tongues” is what the name means, when the name clearly means “Fiftieth.” The Episcopal Church [and others of the universal catholic dogma] have created a new idea of fifty days being after Jesus was risen. In this concept, Easter Sunday represents day one, such that seven Sundays later [the eighth Sunday in a fifty day range], Pentecost Sunday fits nicely into this manufactured notion. All of this 'Christianization' represents a man-made new covenant that replaces the old, changing the meaning of Pentecost and shifting the sabbath from Saturday to Sunday.


Praise the "human testimony" that came up with that idea!


[See 1 John 5, search for those who make God out to be "a liar," as if God-commanded days of recognition can't be changed on a whim. Obviously … they can!!!]


The Greek word “pentékosté” is not Jewish. The Jewish name for the day Yahweh commanded be forever observed is called Shavuot, a Hebrew word meaning “Weeks.” It is capitalized because it is a divine day of recognition, as seven weeks [seven days each] totals forty-nine days. The days of the seven weeks are counted daily, with the count officially ending the day before Shavuot, the “fiftieth day. the Greeks called "pentékosté." To understand this count, one must return to the opposite end of the time span, to that which is the Passover feast [called the Seder] and the festival of the Unleavened Bread [eight days total].


Because Yahweh commanded the Israelites to maintain a calendar, which began on 1 Nisan [a lunar based time of new moon], the timing was the first new moon of spring. Yahweh then commanded a festival of remembrance of the Passover, to take place on 14 Nisan [the full moon]. To commemorate the Israelites being the first fruits produced by the Yahweh line of high priests [Moses the first of this], the first fruits of spring [grains, olives, figs, grapes, etc.] would be picked when still green and placed in the Temple [or Tabernacle], after the Israelites had been prepared in the wilderness for forty years.


Those first fruits would have a feast [feast of the First Fruits, in Hebrew “Bikkurim”], which would be held one evening during the seven days of the festival of the Unleavened Bread. The day of that feast might or might not coincide with the beginning of an official counting towards the forty-nine days [Weeks]. Because the gathering of first fruits was ordered to be in omers [dry measure], the counting of the weeks is referred to as the ”Counting of the Omer.” Each evening a prayer is recited and each day in the counting is recognized. The first day in this count is 16 Nisan [after 6:30 PM when 15 Nisan ends]. Because there are 15 days in Nisan [a 30-day month] and then 29 days in the second month, Iyar, the fiftieth day is always 6 Sivan [the third month in the Hebrew calendar].

No longer a Bethphage [House of green figs] omer of fruit, but ripe and ready to serve.


Whether or not the order given by Yahweh, through Moses, about this element of the first fruits beginning after the Israelites would enter the Promised Land and always maintained thereafter, the symbolism must be recognized as having a Passover connection. The Passover meant the death of all firstborn males, unless they were protected from death by the sacrificial lamb: blood on doorposts, lamb cooked and eaten – the Passover Seder meal. Those who complied with the orders given Moses by Yahweh, and lived, would become the first fruits of Israel. Those first fruits would then marry Yahweh when Moses brought down the marriage vows [the Covenant]; so, the symbolism of green fruit maturing to ripeness and edibility was a reflection on the green sons of Israel who would mature into servants of Yahweh [His priests]. This was at first the dedication of the firstborn male in a family to Yahweh, as His priest. Later, this was reduced to just the firstborn sons of Levite descent; but then that too was amended where one could pay to have a son released from such duty.


This is where it is important to realize that Moses did not enter the Promised Land. Moses served Yahweh by preparing the Israelites to carry the torch he lit upon them. Joshua became the first torchbearer, by name, with all the rest [the common people] also expected to maintain the flame of Yahweh within them [His wives]. Likewise, Jesus would play the role of preparing the Christians to carry the torch he lit for them. Peter would take a role similar to Joshua, along with the other Apostles named, but all the rest [the common people] were expected to have the same Spirit within them. In the same way, Elijah was in the same classification, leading to Elisha and the Northern Kingdom overthrowing bad kings and queens. These three should not be seen as appearing with Jesus [the Transfiguration] by accident, as that divine vision was a statement about that category of divine leader for Yahweh. Besides, neither Peter, James, nor John knew what Moses or Elijah looked like. Their presence was divinely led to be known, then and when the apostles later told of that event.


This has to be seen as the deeper meaning of “Pentecost,” as Shavuot means the receipt of an assignment by Yahweh, after having been prepared [or “matured”]. In all of the examples above, the Israelites can be seen as entering the Promised Land with the Spirit of Moses joined with their souls. The same can be said for Elisha, as he requested and received “a double share” of Elijah’s Spirit. It is impossible for a soul alone in the flesh to fully commit to Yahweh and act as His Son. Thus, the “double share” of Jesus’ Spirit is described in Acts 2 as “coming suddenly” and “filling all.” The account of it happening on Shavuot does not and cannot limit how, when, where, who or why Yahweh places His Spirit upon His wives [those of true faith].


The languages miraculously given to “all” who had been married to Yahweh were not simply a sudden talent to speak one of the languages spoken fluently by the visiting pilgrims. That list today adds French, Italian, German, Spanish, and English [and all other languages the Holy Bible has been translated into]. While sudden fluency in a foreign language [not brought about by a computer program] would be amazing in terms of “human testimony” [from John’s first epistle], the “testimony of God is greater.” Therefore, that is what went along with being able to speak a foreign language.


The “greater testimony” is “all” of the one hundred twenty Apostles [common people variety, minus the twelve] filled the streets of the Essene Quarter and explained the meaning of Hebrew Scripture. As they did that, Peter and the eleven shouted out explanations in all the languages listed. What they told them was that which all pilgrims knew written, but none grasped what it meant [recall the Ethiopian eunuch]. Thus, it was not just Peter and the eleven speaking with “raised voices,” but “all” who had received a “double share” of Yahweh’s Spirit – reborn as Jesus, His Son also [regardless of human gender].


That is what the Easter season' practice is all about. Reading Scripture and letting the Spirit of Jesus open one's eyes [and Mind] to understanding. Then, once one is confident understanding everything says the same thing, feeling confident that one can enter ministry just like the one hundred twenty. Their acts cause nearly three thousand to also marry Yahweh. [See the story of the Ethiopian eunuch again.]


The only language that Yahweh wants anyone to know is His divine language, from which ALL HOLY SCRIPTURE has been written. The remarkable feat that one hundred twenty wives of Yahweh did – ALL REBORN AS JESUS – was they explained what everyone in Jerusalem for the Passover had memorized all their lives, but never could explain themselves. That same remarkable feat still exists today, through true Christian priests [Anointed ones of Yahweh, with Jesus resurrected within their flesh, joined with their souls].


That is why priests ministering to others is their ACTS OF APOSTLES. Anyone running around in some alb and robe, telling people “I believe in Jesus Christ and I believe you should too” is nothing more than a hired hand. Telling cute anecdotes or quoting names once used in a seminary term paper [for an A grade!] is not speaking the "testimony of God." All the 'human testimony" a seminary graduate has is worthless, if one's soul has not married Yahweh and Jesus been resurrected within. True Christianity demands priests of Yahweh who are Anointed ones that understand the truth of Scripture; especially now that so many churches are led by wolves in sheep’s clothing and false shepherds.


Note:


For anyone keeping up with the reality of those last fifty days of Jesus, here is the breakdown:


14 Nisan [after 6:30 = 15 Nisan] - First Seder at the home of Simon the leper. [Sabbath]

15 Nisan [after 6:30 = 16 Nisan] - Second Seder (aka - Last Supper) in upper room - 1st day counting the omer [Sunday]

16 Nisan - Jesus before Caiaphas, Peter's denials - 2nd day in the CoO [Monday]

17 Nisan - Jesus before Pilate and then Herod Antipas then back to Pilate: offered with Barabbas & flogging & ridicule - 3rd day in the CoO [Tuesday]

18 Nisan - Jesus crucified, dead at 3:00 PM - 4th day in the CoO [Wednesday]

19 Nisan - Jesus left dead on cross @ 3:00 PM = 24 hrs. - 5th day in the CoO [Thursday]

20 Nisan - Jesus left dead on cross until speared in side and Pilate allowed Joseph of Arimathea to take the body and prepare it for entombment @ 3:00 PM = 48 hrs. - 6th day in the CoO [Friday]

21 Nisan - Jesus in tomb @ 3:00 PM = 72 hrs. / Jesus risen - 7th day in the CoO [Sabbath]

22 Nisan - Jesus found out of open tomb, guards fled, mystical appearances at tomb, on road to Emmaus, and with disciples & followers [2x - 3:00 PM & 6:30 PM] - 8th day in the CoO [after 6:30 PM, Sunday]

23 Nisan - Disciples travel date to be filled with the Spirit of Jesus - 9th day in the CoO [Monday]

24 Nisan to 29 Nisan - [Monday - Sabbath] 10th to 14th day in CoO [end on Sabbath]

30 Nisan, 1 - 6 Iyar - [Sunday - Sabbath] 15th to 21st day in CoO [end on Sabbath]

7 - 13 Iyar - [Sunday - Sabbath] 22nd to 28th day in CoO [end on Sabbath]

14 - 20 Iyar - [Sunday - Sabbath] 29th to 35th day in CoO [end on Sabbath]

21 - 27 Iyar - [Sunday - Sabbath] 36th to 42nd day in CoO [end on Sabbath]

28 - 29 Iyar, 1 - 5 Sivan - [Sunday to Sabbath] 43rd to 49th day in CoO [Ascension on Sabbath] - Forty days between 24 Nisan and 5 Sivan

6 Sivan - Shavuot [Sunday] 50th day in the CoO