Normally, Christian churches commemorate three major celebrations during the year. Christmas – Jesus’ birth in this world, Easter – Jesus’ death and resurrection as the victor over the sins of the world, and Pentecost – the initial founding of the Church with the mighty outpouring of the Holy Spirit. But is it enough to observe and celebrate these events of history?
At the start of the apostle Paul’s third missionary journey, he visited a new church in Ephesus founded by Apollos. At his first meeting with them, Paul had an important question for this young church. It seems that this was more important to Paul than any other question he could ask. He asked them, “Have you received the Holy Spirit…?“ (Acts 19:2), but these young believers didn´t even know about the Holy Spirit. Paul responded by praying for them to receive the Spirit of God, laying his hands upon them, and suddenly the power of the Holy Spirit came upon them. They began to speak in new tongues and started to prophesy.
When Jesus sent his Disciples into the world with the task of spreading the Gospel , he knew that they would need power, beyond human strength. They, and with them, WE, need the spiritual power that comes from heaven, not from this world; a power from the living God, from his supernatural Holy Spirit. Jesus was sent with the power of his Father, and after his Resurrection he said to his Disciples, “As my Father sent me, I send you!“ (John 20,21). Without this experience I wouldn’t be able to fulfill the mission of Christ to this world!
Pentecost teaches me that almighty God fills his people with his supernatural power for the sake of one great goal; that his people, you and me, would influence this world with his mission. Yes, you can! You can influence your world around you, your family, your colleagues, your city, because the power of the Holy Spirit is in you.
It is an accepted fact that the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements are the fastest growing movements in Christianity worldwide. At the beginning of the 20th century, Pentecostals/Charismatics numbered around one million. Today there are approximately 628 million. This number is projected to increase to 828 million by 2025 ( HYPERLINK “http://www.idea.de/”www.idea.de 23.1.2013). One can easily discover that the growth of this movement is generated by power of the Holy Spirit.
I encourage you to seek to be filled with the Holy Spirit, and you then will be a fruitful testimony in the world.
Vice Chairman of PEM
Superintendent Freie Christegemeinden/Pfingstgemeinden in Österreich