Sign up for our electronic newsletter:
Subscribe | Learn More


Spirit-Filled Moments

By Matt Shockley
 
Friday, Feb. 19, 2010

Scripture Verses
Acts 2:14-41

 14 Then Peter stood up with the Eleven. In a loud voice he spoke to the crowd. "My Jewish friends," he said, "let me explain this to you. All of you who live in Jerusalem, listen carefully to what I say. 15 You think these people are drunk. But they aren't. It's only nine o'clock in the morning! 16 No, here is what the prophet Joel meant. 17 He said,
   " 'In the last days, God says,I will pour out my Holy Spirit on all people.
   Your sons and daughters will prophesy.Your young men will see visions. Your old men will have dreams.
 18 In those days I will pour out my Spirit even on those who serve me, both men and women.When I do, they will prophesy.
 19 I will show wonders in the heavens above. I will show miraculous signs on the earth below. There will be blood and fire and clouds of smoke.
 20 The sun will become dark. The moon will turn red like blood. This will happen before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord.
 21 Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.'
22 "Men of Israel, listen to this! Jesus of Nazareth was a man who had God's approval. God did miracles, wonders and signs among you through Jesus. You yourselves know this. 23 Long ago God planned that Jesus would be handed over to you. With the help of evil people, you put Jesus to death. You nailed him to the cross. 24 But God raised him from the dead. He set him free from the suffering of death. It wasn't possible for death to keep its hold on Jesus. 25 David spoke about him. He said,
   " 'I know that the Lord is always with me. He is at my right hand. I will always be secure.
 26 So my heart is glad. Joy is on my tongue. My body also will be full of hope.
 27 You will not leave me in the grave. You will not let your Holy One rot away.
 28 You always show me the path that leads to life. You will fill me with joy when I am with you.'

 29 "Brothers, you can be sure that King David died. He was buried. His tomb is still here today. 30 But David was a prophet. He knew that God had made a promise to him. He had taken an oath that someone in David's family line would be king after him. 31 David saw what was ahead. So he spoke about the Christ rising from the dead. He said that the Christ would not be left in the grave. His body wouldn't rot in the ground. 32 God has raised this same Jesus back to life. We are all witnesses of this. 33 Jesus has been given a place of honor at the right hand of God. He has received the Holy Spirit from the Father. This is what God had promised. It is Jesus who has poured out what you now see and hear. 34 David did not go up to heaven. But he said,
   " 'The Lord said to my Lord, "Sit at my right hand.
 35 I will put your enemies under your control." '

 36 "So be sure of this, all you people of Israel. You nailed Jesus to the cross. But God has made him both Lord and Christ."

 37 When the people heard this, their hearts were filled with shame. They said to Peter and the other apostles, "Brothers, what should we do?"

 38 Peter replied, "All of you must turn away from your sins and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then your sins will be forgiven. You will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children. It is also for all who are far away. It is for all whom the Lord our God will choose."

 40 Peter said many other things to warn them. He begged them, "Save yourselves from these evil people." 41 Those who accepted his message were baptized. About 3,000 people joined the believers that day.

Devotion
In prior verses (v. 1-13), the apostles had just amazed a crowd by speaking in the native tongues of those present.  In these verses, Peter boldly addresses the Jerusalem crowd where he uses the words of Old Testament prophets and the not too distant death and resurrection to reaffirm that Jesus is “both Lord and Christ.”  Luke, the author of Acts, records that when the people heard Peter’s sermon, “They were cut to the heart” and asked, “What shall we do?”

Can you imagine being an observer of these events?  Who else could move the hearts of thousands to ask, “What shall we do?” Who else could move 3,000 people to repent, accept Christ as Savior, and be baptized?  There is no question that all of the events of this day were no circus act.  These acts were not magic tricks.  These were not coincidental.  They were the work of the Holy Spirit! 

When was the last time you allowed the Holy Spirit to stir within you?  Call on God today that you might open your heart to feel His presence through the gift of the Holy Spirit.  You might be surprised where God leads you!

Prayer
Father, I praise you for the precious gift of the Holy Spirit.  I am humbled and grateful that you are willing to share yourself with me. May I be open to your leadings, trusting that you know what is best for me and knowing that I can handle anything you lay before me. To you may be all honor and praise, Amen.