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Descent Of The Holy Spirit

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Descent of the Holy Spirit
  3. Audible Sound and Appearance of The Holy Spirit – Acts 2:2-3
  4. Speaking of Many Tongues – Acts 2:4-13
  5. Peter Speaks and All Understand – 2:14-40
  6. Many Baptized - 2:41
  7. Implications for Us Today and Baptism to Regeneration
  8. Conclusion
  9. Bibliography


The story of Pentecost in the book of Acts folds into itself many biblical themes having to do with the work of the Holy Spirit, which establishes and reestablishes societies of faith, even if it stays out of the individual’s power to influence it. It is the day when Jesus’ followers received the gift of the Holy Spirit. This is the most imperative incident in the Book of Acts. Without it the book of Acts would never have been inscribed. It was this one extraordinary act of God in pouring out the Holy Spirit on the initial followers that instigated all the Spirit sanctioned acts of men of which we read about in the early account of the Christian Church.

We will be looking to several areas of the day of Pentecost. Here are those areas: where was the location or house that the hundred and twenty followers were hiding at; what does the Holy Spirit look like on that first day of Pentecost; what does it sound like; what happen immediately after receiving the Holy Spirit; what does it mean to speak in tongues; is it a holy language or just different cultural languages; what happen when Peter spoke to the crowd; what did he speak about; how many were baptized; what type of baptism was it; and finally what are if any implications for us today? These and many others will be discussed in this paper. The reason for this paper is to try and comprehend what the author of the book of Acts means by baptism of the Holy Spirit, speaking in tongues, as well as the implications of It on us today. We will go into great detail, scripture by scripture what the author of Acts means for the audience that he was writing to as well of what it means for us today.

Descent of the Holy Spirit

Pentecost is generally recognized as the “Feast of Weeks” Shavuot. Jesus had around one hundred and twenty followers by the time he died on the cross and rose again. “One time when Jesus was eating with them, he told them not to leave Jerusalem. He said, “Wait here until you receive what the Father promised to send. Remember, I told you about it before” (Acts 1:4, ERV). The Jewish leaders in Jerusalem had killed their Master and would more than likely be after His followers, as well. The disciples were planning to return to their homes, but Jesus commanded them to stay in Jerusalem. This was the upper room, the same room that Jesus and his twelve disciples had the Lord’s last supper. They waited for fifty days in that room, wondering what it all meant, their voices hushed with probably sighs too deep for words.

Audible Sound and Appearance of The Holy Spirit – Acts 2:2-3

Until Pentecost, Jesus was the only one that could receive the Holy Spirit. The bible tells us that when the Holy Spirit came it sounded “like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting” (Acts 2:2, NIV). The sound was so forceful and the disturbance so remarkable that the individuals congregated in the streets outdoors were perplexed about what was happening.

This sound functioned as a signal to everyone in the group in the upper room. A few describe Luke’s insertion of the wind as representing the initiation of a new covenant. God uses wind to represent his Spirit, who would resuscitate the dead at the future renovation of Israel (Ezek 37). This sign showed the discharge into history of what was predicted for the future.

The bible also tells us that “They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them” (Acts 2-3, NIV). In Luke 3:16, it says that Jesus would baptize individuals with fire and the Holy Spirit. The word ‘tongues’ is the identical word as the ‘dialects’ (‘tongues’) in the following verse, but the circumstance compels that their denotations are distinctive. The fire-like manifestation appeared itself as a single form, and then suddenly separated distributed itself and rested over everyone present. Wind and fire were recognized imagery for the authoritative and purification procedure of God’s Spirit. The symbols of the sound of wind and visuality of fire was so the disciples would comprehend the implication of what was happening to them. But these, symbols with the ability to speak in tongues, were but the complements of Pentecost. They were insignificant and short-lived. The main thing was that they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. This was the profound miracle, far superior the others.

Speaking of Many Tongues – Acts 2:4-13

God’s Spirit so strongly affected these people that they all inaugurated to speak out in Comment by Dianna: prayer. As mentioned previously, the sound was so forceful and the disturbance so remarkable that the individuals congregated in the streets outdoors were perplexed about what was happening. The hearers acknowledged the followers as Galileans. Since the Galileans were detestable culture, it was particularly shocking that they should speak in various dialects. They were from several areas and some were born Jews, and some changed their religion to worship God as a Jew (Acts 9-11). Yet the spectators hearkened them talking, each in his own dialect.

People instinctively cogitated “Galilean” as multiracial not worth considering. This discrimination made these Galileans’ seeming worldwide dialectal skill seem even more amazing. Some Jewish scripts also stipulate that Galileans were unsuccessful to differentiate their gutturals correctly. Hearing the adoration of God in foreign dialects may have been familiar during great festival seasons, but now they were hearing such praises in several languages from the lips of the Galileans! But others had a reaction of mocking. This is a bit astonishing, since the hearers obviously comprehended the praise spoken by the disciples. This signifies the rapturous, though understandable, quality of their speaking in dialects. Nevertheless, such an erroneous interpretation would instantly be corrected by Peter in the following speech.

Peter Speaks and All Understand – 2:14-40

Around that time, “Peter stood up . . . and addressed the crowd” (Acts 2:14). This was the same Peter who had denied Jesus three times just a few weeks ago. This was also the same guy who had trouble speaking, when he was asked by Jesus asked him if he loved him.

Peter was standing confidently in front of several thousand people affirming to all of them that Jesus was alive. He was speaking about a mile or so from the place, they hung Him on the cross and to the same individuals that was shouting “Crucify Him” before Pilate. Peter was taking his life in his own hands by taking a stand at that moment. However, since he had been baptized in the Holy Spirit, he had the power and guts to do what he had not been able to do before. Peter addresses them confidently and eloquently which was a not at all like his disposition before the resurrection, acquiring his claim from Scripture. That Peter “stood” to speak to the gathering of individuals corresponds with the normal ancient custom for speaking in assemblies (e.g., 1 Cor 14:30).

Peter’s sermon that day was first of a significant quantity of sermons in the book of Acts. The people thought that followers that were speaking in the people’s native dialect was drunk.

Individuals stunned by a supernatural event may decide to acknowledge God’s hand at work in His world, or they may reject it and decide it is something else. When they decide on the latter choice, intoxication is as decent a reason as any. However, Peter assures them that is not the case. Peter replies to the questions (2:12-13) in converse order. Individuals typically get drunk in the evening (cf. 1 Thess 5:7), at banquets, but not at 9 a.m.; individuals may have a hangover in the morning, but only in the sporadic circumstances would anybody act drunk then.

He told them about King David who said of God: “I saw the Lord before me always; he is at my right side to keep me safe” (Acts 2:25). He was not shaking any more. He spoke of the prophet Joel who said: “God says: In the last days I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions. Your old men will have special dreams” (Acts 2:17). Nevertheless, he was not finished with them yet. ‘My fellow Israelites, listen to these words,’ (Acts:2:22) he directed them and he told of Jesus whom God ‘raised Him from death’ (Acts 2:24). Peter reminded them that Jesus was a special man from Nazareth. Jesus verified to them how exceptional He was by the miracles, wonders, and miraculous signs that God did through Jesus, His Son (Acts 2:22). Peter also reminded them that they knew what he was saying was true. Peter then reminded them that is was them that crucified Jesus. It was God that handed over Jesus to be crucified but it was them that put him to death. It was God’s plan a long time ago.

He reminded them that King David died and buried, and his body is still in the tomb. Peter reminded them that he was a prophet and David was told by God that someone from his own family would sit on his throne as king. And that is why David said ‘He was not left in the place of death. His body did not rot in the grave’ (Acts 2:31; Psalm 16:10). Given the awareness bestowed to this verse about place of death and grave in relation to the resurrection of Jesus, anyone would be likely to see the significance of quoting Psalm 16:8-11 to be located there. On the other hand, a conscientious look divulges another benefit these verses achieve: they are all very significant for comprehension the full claim Peter is making.

Peter told them that he and the other disciples saw with their own eyes, that Jesus was lifted up to Heaven and that He is now with God and is sitting on God’s right side. God His Father gave Jesus the Holy Spirit which had been promised to Him. Furthermore, Jesus has poured out His spirit onto him and the other disciples and that is what they, the hearers, had witnessed. It was like the eye of God, it was not magic, it was simply a call from God. He told them that the Holy Spirit had cleansed the hearts of the disciples. Peter professed that God understood their hearts and their thoughts, gave them the Holy Spirit and purified their hearts by faith.

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Peter reminded them that it was not David that was never lifted up to heaven. Peter also reminded them that David had said ‘The Lord God said to my Lord: Sit at my right side, until I put your enemies under your power’ (Acts 2;35; Psalm 110:1). At the end of Peter’s long sermon, he told them that God made Jesus to be Messiah and Lord and that he was the one whom they had nailed to the cross.

After hearing all that Peter had to say, they asked him what they should do now. He told them that they needed to change their hearts and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ (Acts 2:38). After that their sins would be forgiven and they would receive the gift of the Holy Spirit as well. He told them that this gift of forgiveness and the Holy Spirit was for everyone that God has called to Himself. Then he forewarned them to save themselves from the evil people who live now.

Therefore, his sermon is an orthodox Jewish (*Midrashic) account of the last line he quoted, and answers the question: What is their Lord God’s name? In the Hebrew, “Lord” is the revered name of God (Yahweh), for Judeans it is (Adonai); in the Greek script that Peter probably quotes to speak with hearers from numerous nations, it is simply the Greek word for “Lord,” but all biblically literate hearers would know that it means “God” here. Nobody was transformed that day by the tongues that were adoring God. It required Peter’s anointed, prophetic sermon to get them to the state of remorse and faith.

Many Baptized – 2:41

As open testament of this declaration, they should be baptized in Jesus’ name. Let each person be baptized. This was to come after remission of sins, as in the ministry of John the Baptist (Mark 1: 4).

Remission of sins is not a new concept in the New Testament, it emerged in the ministry of John the Baptist (Mark 1:4; Luke 3:3) and in Jesus’ sermons (Mark 1:15; Luke 13:3). The circumstance shows baptism here as referring to water, not the Holy Spirit. In the New Testament, water baptism became the homogenous of Christians.

But this time the baptism was to be in the name of Jesus Christ-a clearly Christian baptism. In Israel’s Scriptures, “name” often indicated character, so that when God acted on behalf of his name,” he is endorsing his honor, a subject easily comprehended in the olden Mediterranean with its stress on honor and disgrace. “In God’s name” could show an agent’s representing God’s interests (Exod 5:23; Deut 18:19–22; Jer 14:14–15), according to his authority (Deut 18:5, 7), or by his aid (Ps 118:10–11; Prov 18:10) or using his name for a miracle (2 Kgs 2:24). In prayer, which fits this circumstance (Acts 2:21), calling on the deity’s name meant speaking to him (1 Kgs 18:24–26, 32; 2 Kgs 5:11; Pss 9:2; 18:49).

The results of this powerful sermon of Peter’s was that about three thousand individuals were baptized and was added to the small group of one hundred and twenty believers that had been filled with the Holy Spirit earlier that day.

It was a monumental evidence of the sovereignty of the Holy Spirit. These new catechumens continuous persistently in the apostles’ teaching’ didache” and communion (koinonia). There was a coalition of faith and of spirit. Breaking of bread almost certainly means a regular observance of the Lord’s Supper. They spent time together both in private homes and in the Temple (v. 46). Numerous Greek societies met for shared meals only once a month, on the other hand, this initial Christian custom of daily meals is hence significant.

These individuals were given the Holy Spirit because that’s what Peter vowed in Jesus’ name. Pentecost was a one-time event, with only a slight repeat or two emerging somewhere else during the first century.

Implications for Us Today and Baptism to Regeneration

Pentecost, most of us, think that it is the day the Holy Spirit came to Jesus’ first believers. This is correct but the Holy Spirit did not stay still. The Holy Spirit is not something that can be earned by good works. It is given by the grace of our Lord and Savior who has promised it to us.

The promise of the Holy Spirit, which is offered to those who respond His invitation, provides both women and men with the guarantee that they are not limited by their own measly means, that they will not be left alone, and that God will emancipate both the past and present.

Baptism of the Holy Spirit is agift, which is promised by Jesus, it is unearnable. No matter what we do, we can not earn it. It is present that is sent by God so we can function in agreement with his plan. To receive this gift, one does not have to be notable to be given or to receive this precious gift. One just needs to ask Jesus for it. He will not reject you, judge you, or be disappointed in you. He just wants to give it to you. It is it’s useless to employ a lot of time mourning over not being worthy enough to earn it, it cannot be earned. He gives it to us by His marvelous grace. Jesus said, “If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him” (Luke 11:13)!

From now to the ‘not yet’ of the kingdom of God, Jesus is still ruling on the right side of the Father. Which one can see by the out pouring of the Holy Spirit and the circulating of the good news of Him. Believers may face opposition and suffering because His sovereignty has ‘not yet become complete. However, the word will keep on spreading throughout the world. God’s people are strengthened in the environment of local churches. God is still inviting people to salvation, inviting people to Himself, inviting them to accept Jesus and live for Him. Therefore, Holy Spirit baptism, which was promised for all, is for us still, today.


Holy Spirit Baptism or Pentecost is not spoken about very much if at all. Baptism of the Holy Spirit is not a new thing, it has been around for about two thousand years. However, there may be a few religions or churches. That first day of Pentecost was a very important day. It was the day that the first believers was given a part of Jesus, so they would never be alone. It would be there to help them in times of stress or trouble.

The gift of tongues is an audible way one can tell if a person has received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Usually it is done almost immediately after one is initially baptized in water. However, that is not always the case. One must be ready and willing to accept that gift before one will receive it.l Today, two thousand years later the gift of the Holy Spirit is still freely given to anyone who asks. It will be that way until the good Lord comes the second time. We do not know when that day may be so we must be constantly on guard and spreading the good news until that day comes.


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  13. Soal, Alexander D., and Desmond Henry. ‘The reversal of Babel: Questioning the early church’s understanding of the gift of the Holy Spirit in Acts as a reversal of the curse of Babel.’ Verbum et Ecclesia 39, no. 1 (2018). Academic OneFile.
  14. Thompson, Alan J. The Acts of the Risen Lord Jesus: Luke’s Account of God’s Unfolding Plan. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2011. Accessed April 4, 2019. ProQuest eBook Central.

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