The day of Pentecost is, in many ways, the beginning of the church. Luke makes this clear by introducing the start of Jesusí earthly ministry with an account of his baptism and the descent of the Spirit, and then introducing the beginning of the spread of the Gospel with an account of the outpouring of the Spirit on the disciples.
The Holy Spirit is therefore instrumental in the formation and the work of the church of believers from the very beginning. The ministry of the church is dependent on the Holy Spirit.
Filled with the Spirit, Peter addresses the crowd, explaining that they are witnessing the fulfilment of Joelís prophecy and linking it to the salvation offered through Jesus Christ. We are told that three thousand became believers on that day, and that this number was added to daily in the weeks that followed.
The timing of Pentecost is not a coincidence. The Feast of Pentecost always came 50 days after Passover, and was a time when the Jews offered the first fruits of their first harvest to the Lord. How appropriate then that such a new crop of believers was added on this day!
It was also the time when the Jews celebrated the anniversary of the giving of the Law to Moses. The Law provided Godís people with the guidance they needed under the old covenant. The Holy Spirit comes to be our teacher and guide under the new covenant.
Lord God, thank you that the coming of your Holy Spirit was part of your long-promised plan for your people. May your Spirit fill your church today as it did at the time of Pentecost.