You don’t have to be alone. You don’t have to feel loneliness. You can have a life-giving relationship with God. You can have strengthening relationships with other people. It is possible.
Part of the purpose for Jesus’ time on earth was to be “God with us”. Jesus makes relational connection available.
Preparing His friends for a time when He would no longer be with them physically, Jesus told them that He was asking Father God to send the Holy Spirit to be with them.
“I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him. But you know him, because he lives with you now and later will be in you.” – John 14:16-17
“It was also written that this message would be proclaimed in the authority of his name to all the nations, beginning in Jerusalem: ‘There is forgiveness of sins for all who repent.’ You are witnesses of all these things. And now I will send the Holy Spirit, just as my Father promised. But stay here in the city until the Holy Spirit comes and fills you with power from heaven.” – Luke 24:47-49
Today is the day on the historic Christian calendar when we remember the events recorded in Acts chapter 2.
Jesus said, “Wait for it,” in Acts 1:1-9. They did. At least 120 believers were together, waiting. They were united in relationship. They were praying together. They were loving God with the best of their energy and loving others selflessly. Jesus was crucified during their Passover holiday, when they were recalling the salvation God provides. Our God has always made a way for us to receive new life. After Jesus death, burial, and resurrection he spent time with more than 500 people. Then Jesus returned to Father God in Heaven. Fifty days after his crucifixion, they were waiting for the Holy Spirit.
“On the day of Pentecost all the believers were meeting together in one place. Suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm, and it filled the house where they were sitting. Then, what looked like flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on each of them. And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in other languages, as the Holy Spirit gave them this ability. At that time there were devout Jews from every nation living in Jerusalem. When they heard the loud noise, everyone came running, and they were bewildered to hear their own languages being spoken by the believers. They were completely amazed. ‘How can this be?’ they exclaimed. ‘These people are all from Galilee, and yet we hear them speaking in our own native languages!’” – Acts 2:1-8
Peter teaches that this is a fulfillment of Joel’s prophecy, “God says, ‘I will pour out my Spirit upon all people….everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’” – Acts 2:14-21
“You nailed him to a cross and killed him. But God released him from the horrors of death and raised him back to life, for death could not keep him in its grip.” – Acts 2:24
“God raised Jesus from the dead, and we are all witnesses of this. Now he is exalted to the place of highest honor in heaven, at God’s right hand. And the Father, as he had promised, gave him the Holy Spirit to pour out upon us, just as you see and hear today.” – Acts 2:32-33
“Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. This promise is to you, and to your children, and even to the Gentiles – all who have been called by the Lord our God.” – Acts 2:38-39
The followers of Jesus were forever changed by their personal relationship with Jesus. They also chose to follow the instructions of Jesus, waiting for the Holy Spirit. This interaction with Holy Spirit changed them. They received peace, strength, and abilities beyond what they had before. Their lives proved an incredible change for the better.
“I am not alone because the Father is with me. I have told you this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” – John 16:32-33
“I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one…so that the world will believe you sent me.” – John 17:20-21
“I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.” – John 17:23
How Should We Respond?
1. Receive Salvation
2. Receive the Holy Spirit
3. Give God Relational Time